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Athens News Agency: News in English (PM), 98-09-09

Athens News Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Athens News Agency at <http://www.ana.gr>

NEWS IN ENGLISH

Athens, Greece, 09/09/1998 (ANA)


MAIN HEADLINES

  • Gov't meeting on unemployment action plan
  • Greenpeace activists resume Larco protest
  • Hospital doctors to strike on Monday
  • Illegal immigrants arrested on Samos
  • Three die in freak road accident
  • Elections force CSF ad ban
  • Greek pop signer appears in court
  • Weather
  • Foreign exchange

NEWS IN DETAIL

Gov't meeting on unemployment action plan

A recent sharp rise in unemployment figures is due to the unregistered jobless signing on to gain eligibility for vocational training programmes and subsidised jobs, Labour and Welfare Minister Miltiades Papaioannou said today. Speaking after a meeting to discuss the government's action plan for employment with Prime Minister Costas Simitis, Papaioannou said there would be no increase in "real unemployment". The jobless rate surged to 9.8 percent in June, or 2.86 percentage points higher than the figure for the same month in 1997, hitting a record high for the summer season when unemployment usually drops.

Greenpeace activists resume Larco protest

Greenpeace activists made a new attempt today to prevent barges belonging to Larco, a Greek state-run ferronickel producer, from dumping waste in the sea. Costas Dombros, a Greenpeace spokesman, said that a few of the activists had tied themselves to the barges. They had also unfurled banners with slogans against waste dumping in the sea. Greenpeace's protests are costing Larco 100 million drachmas a day, the company's president Constantine Daskalakis told a press conference called today. Daskalakis, flanked by the company's workers' union president, said he feared that the protests would close down operations and questioned Greenpeace's motives. Greenpeace representatives said the organisation was determined to continue its protest until the authorities banned the dumping of the waste.

Hospital doctors to strike on Monday

Hospital doctors in the Attica region will begin a three-day strike on Monday to press for more government funding for duty rosters and pay increases. Doctors want payment for being on call to be increased by 60 percent of the daily rostered-on pay as well as increases for rostered duty pay, a 10 percent increase in starting wages and bonuses for specialists. The strike will affect public hospitals and clinics in the Attica basic. Skeleton staff will be on duty during the strike.

Illegal immigrants arrested on Samos

Two Romanian illegal immigrants, weary of waiting their turn to make the crossing from the Turkish coast to Greece, took the initiative and crossed to the island of Samos in a children's rubber boat, port authorities said today. The two men - identified as Ioan Ursu, 40, and Rabu Liviou, 22 - were arrested after reaching the Samos coast at Karlovassi. They are expected to be deported.

Three die in freak road accident

Three people were killed and another 12 seriously injured this morning in a freak road accident involving a tourist coach and two other vehicles on the Athens-Thessaloniki national road. An unidentified man was killed instantly when his passenger vehicle crashed into a tourist coach heading to Athens from Thessaloniki. The accident occured a few miles outside the central Greek town of Larissa. As coach passengers milled about on the national road after the accident, a small truck ran into the group, killing another two people and injuring 12.

Elections force CSF ad ban

All advertising and promotion of programmes funded by the Community Support Framework will be postponed until the end of October so as not to influence voters during the municipal elections next month, according to a national economy ministry announcement. The announcement, from National Economy Undersecretary Christos Pahtas, said that the decision had been taken following complaints from conservative opposition New Democracy party members. Municipal elections will be held on October 11, with run-off elections being held a week later.

Greek pop signer appears in court

Greek pop idol Sakis Rouvas appeared in an Athens court today to testify in a writ brought against him by his former record company, Polygram. Polygram has filed suit against Rouvas alleging that he broke his three-year recording contract with them to sign up with competitor EMI. Polygram is seeking an injunction on the circulation of Rouvas's new recording, with EMI. Rouvas, last year the focus of controversy when he gave a concert with a Turkish pop singer on buffer zone marking the dividing line in Cyprus, told the court that he had signed on with EMI because Polygram "was not showing the interest it should" in his recording career. The hearing is continuing.

WEATHER

Scattered clouds in western, northern and central Greece, turning to rain or storms. Otherwise, fair weather will prevail in most parts of the country with a small drop in temperatures. Athens partly cloudy with possible rain in the afternoon and temperatures between 20-31C. Thick cloud in Thessaloniki with possible rain in the evening and temperatures from 19- 28C.

FOREIGN EXCHANGE

Wednesday's rates (buying) U.S. dollar 294.0490 British pound 487.489 Japanese yen (100) 221.295 French franc 50.687 German mark 169.930 Italian lira (100) 17.211 Irish Punt 425.548 Belgian franc 8.240 Finnish mark 55.927 Dutch guilder 150.591 Danish kr. 44.608 Austrian sch. 24.154 Spanish peseta 2.003 Swedish kr. 36.766 Norwegian kr. 37.962 Swiss franc 207.764 Port. Escudo 1.660 Aus. dollar 173.997 Can. dollar 192.547 Cyprus pound 573.951

(M.P.)


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