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Athens News Agency: News in English (PM), 98-11-06

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, 06/11/1998 (ANA)


MAIN HEADLINES

  • October inflation falls to 4.7%
  • Athens comments on S-300 furore
  • Holbrooke expected in Athens soon
  • Girl jailed over minor offence
  • Earthquake rattles Thessaloniki
  • Stock exchange ends week up 4.9%
  • Weather
  • Foreign Exchange

NEWS IN DETAIL

October inflation falls to 4.7%

Year-on-year inflation fell sharply to 4.7 per cent in October from 5.2 per cent the previous month, the National Statistics Service (NSS) announced on Friday, predicting a further drop in November due to the price reduction of heating oil. In view of the October inflation figure, it now appears that the government's target of 4.5 per cent by the end of December is attainable. The figure might be even lower at the end of the year if the tax cuts on car purchases announced by the government earlier this week have immediate effect in the automobile market.

Athens comments on S-300 furore

The Cyprus problem is one of invasion and occupation by foreign forces, not one relating to the installation of a missile system, the Greek government said on Friday. Government spokesman Dimitris Reppas made the comment when replying to reporters' questions on press reports claiming that Russian- made S-300 anti-aircraft missiles scheduled to be installed on Cyprus might eventually be deployed on Crete. Nicosia's plans to install the defensive missile system have been criticised by the United States and several European Union countries which say it will lead to greater tension in the region.

Holbrooke expected in Athens soon

Richard Holbrooke, the U.S. special envoy, is expected to visit Athens and Ankara soon, U.S. Ambassador to Greece Nicholas Burns said on Friday. Burns, speaking in Thessaloniki after meeting with the Thessaloniki Prefect, did not say exactly when the visit would take place. He added that U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright had also expressed a desire to visit the region and that efforts were under way to scheduled her trip. Albright was scheduled to visit Greece in May this year but a heavy work schedule led to the cancellation of the trip.

Girl jailed over minor offence

There was an outcry on Friday following reports that a 14-year-old girl had been incarcerated for five days after police discovered a seven-year-old conviction for theft against her. The Thessaloniki General Police Directorate confirmed on Friday that Ibeki Ahmetoglou, 14, had been detained after police found a court decision sentencing her to a juvenile detention centre on one count of theft. Ahmetoglou was seven at the time of the offence. It was the second embarrassing incident in as many weeks for the Thessaloniki police: on October 23, a police officer shot and killed a Serbian schoolboy visiting Greece while trying to arrest one of his friends for pickpocketing.

Earthquake rattles Thessaloniki

An earthquake measuring 4.3 on the Richter scale was recorded by Thessaloniki University shortly before midnight Thursday but there were no reports of material damage or injuries. The epicentre of the tremor, recorded at 23.52 local time, was 30 kilometres east of the island of Lesbos in western Turkey.

Stock exchange ends week up 4.9%

Greek equities ended the last trading session of a very positive week slightly higher on the Athens Stock Exchange. The general index ended 0.06 percent higher to 2,255.74 points for a net gain of 4.29 percent on the week. Traders said the market had already banked on a sharp drop in October inflation and was awaiting Bank of Greece's moves on interest rates next week. Trading was heavy with turnover at 57.3 billion drachmas. Volume was 12,864,000 shares. Lambrakis Press Organisation was the most heavily traded stock rising 25.7 percent in its maiden appearance on the market. Ideal, Hellenic Telecoms and Teletypos also recorded heavy volumes.

WEATHER

Fine weather with scattered cloud is forecast throughout Greece today with the possibility of rain in the northwest in the afternoon. Morning fog in mainland Greece. Winds, southwesterly, light to moderate, turning strong in the Ionian Sea. Few clouds in Athens with temperatures between 13-24C. Overcast in Thessaloniki with temperatures from 12-22C.

FOREIGN EXCHANGE

Friday's rates (buying) U.S. dollar 277.829 British pound 460.804 Japanese yen (100) 236.354 French franc 49.836 German mark 167.127 Italian lira (100) 16.894 Irish Punt 416.243 Belgian franc 8.102 Finnish mark 55.004 Dutch guilder 148.220 Danish kr. 43.959 Austrian sch. 23.750 Spanish peseta 1.966 Swedish kr. 35.684 Norwegian kr. 37.571 Swiss franc 203.752 Port. Escudo 1.630 Aus. dollar 175.921 Can. dollar 183.004 Cyprus pound 562.861

(M.P.)


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