Athens News Agency: News in English (PM), 98-04-14
NEWS IN ENGLISH
Athens, Greece, 14/04/1998 (ANA)
- PM begins visit to Bulgaria
- Olympic's survival in hands of unions
- Fireworks arrests
- Firebomb attacks on cars
- Greece leads EU in road deaths
- Cohen due in Athens next Tuesday
- Serapheim laid to rest
- Karamanlis's condition critical
- Foreign Exchange
NEWS IN DETAIL
PM begins visit to Bulgaria
Prime Minister Costas Simitis arrived this morning in Sofia for a two-day
official visit, accompanied by Foreign Minister Theodoros Pangalos,
Development Minister Vasso Papandreou, Press and Media Minister Dimitris
Reppas and National Economy Undersecretary Alekos Baltas. Simitis almost
immediately had a private meeting with his Bulgarian counterpart, Ivan
The two premiers are presently heading a meeting of the two countries'
Olympic's survival in hands of unions
The government is not ready to declare Olympic Airways bankrupt but the
airline will close if unions fail to adhere to a five-year restructuring
plan, Transport Minister Tasos Mantelis said today.
He was replying to talk on Monday that OA's management had told the Union
of Civil Aviation Pilots that if workers failed to accept a series of work
regulations then OA's legal department would examine the possibility of
filing for bankruptcy.
Police have so far arrested five traders this week for illegally selling
fireworks and flares as part of efforts to prevent accidents in Greek
Orthodox Easter celebrations. The use of fireworks and flares are a
traditional part of Easter celebrations but often result in injuries. In
1994, four people died in Easter-time accidents related to fireworks.
Firebomb attacks on cars
Two Hellenic Telecommunications Organisation (OTE) vans were set on fire
early this morning outside the company's offices in Maroussi. Two fire
engines and six fire-fighters were needed to put out the blaze.
Greece leads EU in road deaths
Greece has one of the worst records in Europe for the number of road
accidents and fatalities which is fast taking on epidemic proportions in
the so-called advanced countries of the world. The data is contained in
reports to be presented at the 13th Medical Conference of Northern Greece
which will be held in Thessaloniki from May 15-17.
In 1994, according to the data, 2,050 people died in road accidents in
Greece, which corresponds to 20.5 deaths per 100,000 inhabitants.
Cohen due in Athens next Tuesday
US Defense Secretary William Cohen's stopover next Tuesday in Athens will
reportedly focus on the promotion of Greek-US defence cooperation in
efforts to reduce tension between Athens and Ankara.
Mr. Cohen's five-day regional tour, beginning on Friday, will also bring
him to Turkey, Jordan, Egypt and Israel, the US Pentagon announced
According to a US State Department official, Mr. Cohen will meet with
Defence Minister Akis Tsohatzopoulos, while he may also be received by
President of the Republic Kostis Stephanopoulos and Prime Minister Costas
Simitis. He will end his four-hour Athens visit by laying a wreath at the
Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.
Serapheim laid to rest
Archbishop Serapheim of Athens, prelate of the Orthodox Church of Greece
for the past 24 years, was buried yesterday with honours due to a head of
The longest-serving Archbishop in the Autocephalus Church's more than 150-
year history, Serapheim died early Friday morning at the age of 85 from a
respiratory infection compounded by chronic renal failure.
After lying in state for three days at the Athens Cathedral, Serapheim's
coffin was carried on a gun carriage from the Cathedral through central
Athens to the city's First Cemetery as a 21-cannon salute was fired from
Karamanlis's condition critical
Former president of the republic Constantine Karamanlis' condition was
described as critical yesterday, as he remained hospitalised for one
Physicians said Mr. Karamanlis' condition was unchanged, according to a
medical bulletin issued at 8:15 p.m. yesterday.
Mr. Karamanlis was placed on breathing support after his heart stopped
beating early on Sunday. Doctors said the 91-year-old patient had shown an
improvement since being transferred to intensive care on Sunday.
Partly cloudy weather will prevail in most parts of Greece today. Rain in
Crete and the Dodecanese islands from the afternoon. Possibility of
sporadic rain in the northern Ionian Sea and Epirus. Winds variable, light
to moderate. Athens will be overcast with few sunny spells. with temperatures
between 11-22C. Similar weather in Thessaloniki with temperatures from 9-
Monday's closing rates (buying): U.S. dollar 316.686
British pound 529.034 Japanese Yen(100) 244.131
French franc 51.689 German mark 173.203
Italian lira (100) 17.538 Irish Punt 436.579
Belgian franc 8.396 Finnish mark 56.998
Dutch guilder 153.790 Danish kr. 45.422
Austrian sch. 24.612 Spanish peseta 2.041
Swedish kr. 40.245 Norwegian kr. 41.763
Swiss franc 208.885 Port. Escudo 1.692
AUS dollar 207.323 Can. dollar 222.109
Cyprus pound 594.208