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Athens News Agency: News in English (PM), 98-10-18

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, 18/10/1998 (ANA)


MAIN HEADLINES

  • Greeks go to polls again for local elections run-offs
  • NATO exercise ends in Northern Greece
  • TBM Jason reaches Analatos station
  • Greece to take part in Cyprus' 'Nikiforos' exercise
  • Tax evasion by businesses
  • Georgia peace talks wind up in Athens
  • Penteli reforestation project
  • Weather
  • Foreign exchange

NEWS IN DETAIL

Greeks go to polls again for local elections run-offs

Greeks went to the polls again today to elect local representatives in 567 muncipalities and 35 prefectures after last week's first round of voting decided the battle in the other 466 municipalities and 15 prefectures throughout the country.

Voting began at 7 a.m. and will end at 7 p.m. With certain exceptions, voting is compulsory.

NATO exercise ends in Northern Greece

The head of NATO's rapid reaction force in Europe, British Lt-Gen. Michael Jackson, expressed full satisfaction with the degree of training and readiness of the Greek contingent after attending the alliance's ARCADE FUSION '98 exercise in northern Greece.

Jackson said he was delighted by the level of training and cooperation among staff of the Second Armoured Division.

He denied that the scenario of the map exercise, which is being conducted with the aid of computers, is in any way related to developments in Kosovo, stressing that it was planned two years ago.

He expressed hope that a solution would be found in Serbia's troubled province without the use of force.

TBM Jason reaches Analatos station

Jason the metro-mouse, one of the two tunnel-boring machines (TBM) being used to construct the Athens Metro, has reached Analatos station on Line 2 of the Metro after boring 940 metres of tunnel from the existing Neos Kosmos station hear the old Fix brewery since May 20.

Greece to take part in Cyprus' 'Nikiforos' exercise

Greek air and naval forces will be taking part in the six-day Cypriot National Guard exercise "Nikiforos" which begins next Tuesday.

Details of the exercise were announced to journalists in Nicosia by the chief of the National Guard, Major Panagiotis Tatsiopoulos, who said "Nikiforos" was being held in conjunction with the Greek armed forces exercise "Toxotis" within the framework of the two countries' joint defence doctrine.

Tax evasion by businesses

One in four Greek businesses audited by the finance ministry's economic crimes squad SDOE are involved in tax evasion, according to the SDOE's figures for September.

SDOE said that of 12,545 audits on businesses and self-employed professionals, 3,680 were found to be evading payment of tax or duties.

Self-employed professionals such as doctors, lawyers, civil engineers, artists and public notaries had a 67.93 percent rate for infringements of the tax code.

Georgia peace talks wind up in Athens

Three-day UN-sponsored peace talks between Georgia and the breakaway Abkhazia region wind up in Athens on Monday, aimed at ending a six-year dispute that erupted in Abkhazia, in western Georgia, after Georgian troops assaulted the region in August 1992.

The Abkhazians pushed the Georgians out of their Black Sea republic in the fall of 1993.

A shaky truce is monitored by about 3,000 Russian peacekeepers and 150 UN observers.

Penteli reforestation project

A 12,000 stremma expanse, mostly in the district of Penteli, will be reforested in a tree-planting project that begins early November. The estimated 600,000 trees will help curtail extensive flooding in the Attica basin anticipated as a result of last summer's wildfires.

WEATHER

Mostly fair weather is expected throughout the country Monday, with local clouds in the western and northern regions, possibly turning to rain in the northwest in the afternoon. The weather in Athens will be fair, with temperatures ranging from 13-25 C. The same in Thessaloniki, with temperatures from 11-24 C.

FOREIGN EXCHANGE

Friday's rates (buying) U.S. dollar 275.558 British pound 468.760 Japanese yen (100) 240.580 French franc 50.882 German mark 170.624 Italian lira (100) 17.241 Irish Punt 425.370 Belgian franc 8.271 Finnish mark 56.078 Dutch guilder 151.275 Danish kr. 44.886 Austrian sch. 24.257 Spanish peseta 2.008 Swedish kr. 35.139 Norwegian kr. 36.829 Swiss franc 210.463 Port. Escudo 1.664 Aus. dollar 175.683 Can. dollar 178.560 Cyprus pound 576.808

(L.G.)


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