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Athens News Agency: News in English (PM), 98-11-10

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


Athens, Greece, 10/11/1998 (ANA)


  • Athens warns EU over Cyprus
  • Cyprus can't be hostage to Ankara
  • Athens takes theology school issue to EU
  • Shake-up in police vice squad
  • Chinese couple abducted
  • Education reforms to go ahead
  • 1.5 tonnes of swordfish seized
  • Church caters to sleepy Kavala youth
  • Greek equities end mixed to higher
  • Weather
  • Foreign Exchange


Athens warns EU over Cyprus

Greece considers a new enlargement of the European Union can not be limited only to the countries of Eastern Europe but must include the countries of the Mediterranean, Deputy Foreign Minister Yiannos Kranidiotis said on Tuesday. In a statement welcoming the beginning of talks for Cyprus's accession to the European Union, Kranidiotis said there could be no justification for not including Cyprus in the EU with other candidate countries. "Greece will consent to a future enlargement if this includes Cyprus," the minister said.

Cyprus can't be hostage to Ankara

Government spokesman Nikos Athanasakis later echoed Kranidiotis' views, reiterating Greece's standing position that Athens would not accept the EU's enlargement with the accession of other countries if Cyprus' bid for membership was rejected because of the island republic's outstanding political problem. While welcoming the commencement of negotiations for Cyprus' accession, Athanasakis stressed that the island republic would never become a hostage to Turkey, adding that Ankara had no right of veto with respect to Cyprus' accession.

Athens takes theology school issue to EU

Alternate Foreign Minister George Papandreou said on Tuesday that he had briefed his counterparts at the EU General Affairs Council in Brussels about Turkey's recent abolition of the supervisory committee of the Halki Academy of Theology, according to an ANA despatch from the Belgian capital. Describing Turkey's move to abritrarily abolish the elected committee as "unacceptable", Papandreou said he had also referred at the General Affairs Council yesterday to statements on Sunday by Ecumenical Patriarch Vartholomeos, who was highly critical of Ankara's decision.

Shake-up in police vice squad

The new chief of Greek Police on Tuesday announced a shake-up of two key police departments, following a spate of incidents that has severely shaken morale in police ranks and public faith in the force. Police Chief Ioannis Georgakopoulos said that he would be replacing the entire squad for prostitution and gambling "from director down to last policeman". Also in line for the same treatment is the state security department for weapons and explosive materials. Georgakopoulos took over as chief of Greek Police on September 25.

Chinese couple abducted

Patras port authorities said two Chinese tourists had been kidnapped and taken to Athens in a taxi by unknown persons who then locked them up in an apartment in the Kolonos district, apparently to demand a ransom from their relatives. The same sources said the Chinese couple managed to escape from the apartment by climbing down the light well, but both were injured, according to initial reports seriously. Both are being treated at the Alexandra hospital in Athens. According to reports, the woman is eight months' pregnant.

Education reforms to go ahead

The government said on Tuesday that it was committed to reforming the Greek education system and would continue with planned changes, despite growing opposition from students and teachers. Government spokesman Nikos Athanassakis told reporters that the government aimed to provide the "best possible education to the new generation" but admitted that there were some problems in implementing the reforms.

1.5 tonnes of swordfish seized

The Central Harbour Master's Office of Patras on Tuesday seized 1.5 tonnes of swordfish which had been illegally caught in international waters and found on the St. Vincent-flagged fishing boat "Saint Anthony". The seizure was made when the boat sailed into Patras and tried to clear the catch through customs. Because this is the breeding period for swordfish, the European Commission has prohibited fishing of the species. According to reports, the seized catch will be sold by auction.

Church caters to sleepy Kavala youth

The diocese of Kavala has instituted a later daily church mass for the winter, to get around complaints from the city's youth that they had difficulty getting up in time for the regular early service. The diocese of Filippon-Neapolis said it will hold a 10.30 p.m. service, on the completion of its early morning service at the city's Church of the Apostle Paul. The move is in response to complaints from the city's youth that the morning service is held too early for them to attend. The new mass will be held throughout the course of the winter and will last 75 minutes.

Greek equities end mixed to higher

Greek equities ended Tuesday's session mixed to higher supported by a late wave of buying in banks. The general index ended 0.13 percent up to 2, 253.46 points, reversing an early fall. Turnover was a moderate 41.9 billion drachmas with volume at 9,843,000 shares. Sector indices lost ground with the exception of Banks which ended 1.06 percent higher. Insurance fell 0.22 percent, Investment was 0.38 percent off, Leasing dropped 0.94 percent, Industrials ended 1.07 percent off, Construction fell 1.32 percent, Miscellaneous ended 1.25 percent off and Holding dropped 2.27 percent. The parallel market index for small cap companies ended 0.71 percent off.


Overcast weather with spells of sunshine is forecast for most part of Greece today. Winds variable, light to strong, turning gale force in the south Aegean Sea. Partly cloudy in Athens with temeratures between 9-18 C. Same in Thessaloniki with temperatures from 2-16C.


Tuesday's rates (buying) U.S. dollar 279.873 British pound 466.220 Japanese yen (100) 234.132 French franc 49.792 German mark 167.038 Italian lira (100) 16.874 Irish Punt 415.648 Belgian franc 8.095 Finnish mark 54.947 Dutch guilder 148.066 Danish kr. 43.926 Austrian sch. 23.739 Spanish peseta 1.964 Swedish kr. 35.702 Norwegian kr. 37.756 Swiss franc 202.056 Port. Escudo 1.628 Aus. dollar 177.930 Can. dollar 182.449 Cyprus pound 563.456


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