NEWS IN DETAIL
Police on alert around university
Strong police detachments have been deployed in the area of the Athens
Polytechnic School, near the National Archaeological Museum, and other
university buildings, as a preventive measure against incidents during the
three-day events commemorating the 1973 Polytechnic uprising against the
Greece reiterates support for Kurds
Greece has renewed its criticism of Turkey for its military operations
against Kurdish autonomists in northern Iraq, and reiterated its support
for the self-determination of the Kurds.
"Greece has systematically supported the right of the Kurds to their
national self-determination," government spokesman Dimitris Reppas told
reporters Saturday, in response to questions on the arrest of the Kurdish
Workers Party (PKK) leader Abdullah Ocalan in Rome Thursday.
"We have repeatedly and in a more thorough manner than anyone else raised,
before international fora, the problem posed by the crude violation of
human rights in southeastern Turkey, as well as the problem created by
Turkey's military operations in northern Iraq," he said.
"It is clear that Greece does not support violence as a means of resolving
political differences, and neither encourages nor covers armed activities
against other countries ... We respect international treaties and legality.
This position is the axis and the foundingg stone of our policy," he
Ocalan's arrest and Turkish demands for his extradition has drawn
condemnation from Greek political parties.
The extradition of PKK leader Abdullah Ocalan would be a vindication of the
murder of thousands of Kurds, of the intervention of the Turkish armed
forces in Iraqi Kurdistan, of the threats against Syria, and of a series of
other terrorist actions," said the Communist Party (KKE) in a statement.
Delors addresses seminar in Athens
The democratic ideal is perhaps the weightiest element that could
contribute to the formation of a single European political identity, above
cultural or utility criteria, former European Commission President Jacques
Delors has said.
"Of these three criteria, the one I believe should weigh more than the
others is that of democracy. Without ignoring local or regional solidarity,
the incentives for a European identity are not incentives of kindred
relations or geographical proximity, but are based on whether one accepts
the basic ideals of the righs of Man and democracy," he said in address to
a seminar on the quest for a European identity which ended here on
The seminar, whose attendants included thirty prominent European academics,
was organised by the "Our Europe" foundation which Delors heads, and the
Greek Centre of European Studies (EKEM).
The attainment of such a political community required that the EU itself
sought greater democracy, greater transparency and that it came nearer its
citizens, Delors stressed.
"The Union must become more effective in order to achieve these goals. I
consider it would be simpler if we set a specific number of fields in which
the member-states would have an exclusive competence, and leave the
exclusive jurisdiction to the Union in other sectors," he said.
Prime Minister Costas Simitis, who also addressed the seminar, referred to
the scepticism regarding the continuation of the course towards European
"A vision, a plan that excites and mobilises, cannot merely reproduce what
already exists, but must supercede it, moving feelings and imagination. But
the watershed is not visible. The creation of a single market, a single
currency and single institutions does not guarantee that an area with
different languages, different religions and different lifestyles will
become a single entity and overcome either increasing socio-economic
differentials or the deeply-rooted perception of the nation-state," he
Albanian gangsters on the rampage
Three heavily armed Albanians barged into a coffee shop in the northen
Greek city of Kavala late Saturday night and with the use of a shotgun, a
knife, and clubs set upon two of their compatriots and seriously beat them
up for refusing to hand them over their meagre savings. The victims were
rushed to hospital while the assailaints left the scene at their leasure.
In a similar incedent in the same city, six masked Alanians entered a farm
house where they gagged and tied three of their compatriots. With the
threat of a shot gun, a knife, planks of wood and iron bars, they not only
extracted 31,500 drachmas from them but also made off with their clothes
Greenaway in Thessaloniki
Pioneering film director Peter Greenaway has said he sees no future is
cinema as we know it. "Cinema is dead. There are no longer interesting film
directors, having turned to other areas, such as new technologies, which
open up new possibilities for a presentation of non-narrative thought.
Cinema today is like an video satyrical work or a literary text," he told
reporters attending the Thessaloniki film festival. Repeat performances of
Greenaway's "100 Objects Representing the World" prop-opera are scheduled
for Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday at the theatre of the Macedonian
Studies Society in the city.
Vartholomeos, Stephanopoulos in Venice
VENICE (ANA)- Ecumenical Patriarch Vartholomeos arrived here on Saturda to
participate in three-day events marking the 500th anniversary of the
presence of an ethnic Greek community in the canal city.
The President of the Republic Kostis Stephanopoulos, Alternate Foreign
Minister George Papandreou and Education Minister Gerasimos Arsenis will
also participate in the events, which centre on the Orthodox Cathedral of
The Patriarch and Mr. Stephanopoulos visited the Institute of Byzantine and
post-Byzantine studies, the Cathedral and the Agios Georgios monastery,
which is undergoing extensive renovations.
During the visit, the Patriarch unveiled a plaque at the Cathedral
commemorating the Archbishops of Philadelphia, the Greek community and the
Bishopry of Italy, while the Greek president unveiled a plaque marking the
Today, the visiting dignitaries are expected to meet with Venice Mayor
Massimo Cacciari, while later they were scheduled to visit the Markian
Finally, the Greek community of Trieste will host a dinner for the Greek
Spyridon contacts US officials over Halki
NEW YORK (ANA) - Archbishop of America Spyridon Thursday travelled to
Washington for talks with US government officials on the continuing crisis
regarding the Halki School of Theology, whose supervisory committee was
arbitrarily dismissed by Turkish autho rities last week.
The Archbishop was accompanied by a delegation of ecclesiastical officials.
During a lengthy meeting between the Archbishop and White House Chief of
Staff John Podesta, discussion focused of the immediate situation
surrounding the Halki issue and steps the US administration has taken to
alleviate the crisis.
At a subsequent meeting with Assistant Secretary of State Marc Grossman, a
former US ambassador to Turkey, Archbishop Spyridon stressed his particular
concerns over what the dissmisal of the supervisory commitee (board of
trustees) signaled for the futu re of the Ecumenical Patriarchate and Greek
Othodoxy in Turkey.
He emphasized the importance of the Halki academy, noting that its
graduates serve around the world in leadership capacities for the Orthodox
Church, while he also underlined the broader concerns over implications for
religious freedoms for all minoriti es in Turkey.
Mr. Grossman restated that the policy of the US and his personal desire was
to see the Halki school reopened.
"Our Europe" two-day event in Athens
A two-day seminar opened in Athens on Saturday on "Seeking the European
identity", with participation by 30 European academics.
The seminar is organised by the institute "Our Europe", which is headed by
former European Commission president Jacques Delors, in cooperation with
the Greek Centre of European Studies (EKEM).
Discussions, set to take place behind closed doors, will be divided into
three parts: The Nation-Sovereignty and Democracy; The State, Market and In-
between Organisations, and finally, the Society of Citizens.
Foreign Minister Theodoros Pangalos inaugurated the seminar.
Albania's Majko continues official visit
President Kostis Stephanopoulos on Friday received Albanian Prime Minister
Pandeli Majko, who is on an official visit to Greece.
Mr. Majko was accompanied by Alternate Foreign Minister George Papandreou.
Speaking to reporters after a meeting with Parliament President Apostolos
Kaklamanis afterwards, Mr. Majko apologised for what he called the trouble
caused in Greece by "criminal elements" from his country.
Mr. Majko appealed to the Greek people to care about the Albanians, "who
may seem to be poorly dressed, and even appear not to be very cultured but
who, believe me, have a rich soul and a culture that cannot be separated
from Greek culture.
"When you read in the front pages of some newspapers bad things (about the
Albanians), the people should show understanding and not identify all the
immigrants working in Greece with the criminal elements," he said. Mr.
Kaklamanis reaffirmed the Greek people's friendly sentiments towards the
Albanian people and expressed certainty that the governments of the two
countries would see to it "that these exceptions will not be made to seem
as creating unease among our peoples" and "poisoning" Greek-Albanian
Mr. Kaklamanis further stressed the Greek Parliament's support for
Albania's efforts "on a difficult but hopeful course" towards a modern,
parliamentary democracy and economy, adding that neighbours should stand by
each other in good and bad times.
Greek weightlifting honours
LAHTI, FINLAND (ANA) - Greek weightlifting champion Pyrros Dimas won one
gold and two silver medals in the world weightlifting championships in
Lahti, Finland, on Friday.
Dimas won first place in the total 85 kg category with 387.5 kg, while
coming second in the snatch with 177.5 kg and in the clean and jerk with
Dimas lost the two gold medals because he was heavier than Bulgaria's
Georgi Gardev in the snatch and Germany's Mark Huster in the clean and
Dimas broke the world record in the snatch by lifting 178 kg but this did
not count in final placement ( not being a multiple of 2.5 kg).
39th Thessaloniki Film Festival opens
The 39th Thessaloniki Film Festival opened on Friday night in the northern
port city with the participation of 169 films.
In addition to 12 competition entries, 19 Greek films will be shown as well
as 12 tributes to independent international cinema. In addition, the
"underground" New Horizons section will feature 36 movies from 15 countries,
with seven films from Singapo re, Sri Lanka, Thailand, India, the
Philippines and Taiwan.
The budget for this year's festival was announced at 460 million drachmas,
400 million of which was granted by the culture ministry.
Athens Foreign Exchange
Banknotes Buying Selling
US Dollar 282.621 289.173
Can.Dollar 182.310 186.537
Australian Dlr 179.909 184.080
Pound Sterling 470.387 481.293
Irish Punt 415.965 425.610
Pound Cyprus 565.182 578.286
Pound Malta 708.976 738.517
Turkish pound (100) 0.087 0.091
French franc 49.848 51.004
Swiss franc 203.087 207.796
Belgian franc 8.101 8.288
German Mark 167.261 171,139
Finnish Mark 54.967 56.241
Dutch Guilder 148.200 151.636
Danish Kr. 43.946 44.965
Swedish Kr. 34.823 3.631
Norwegian Kr. 37.595 38.466
Austrian Sh. 23.747 24.298
Italian lira (100) 16.889 17.280
Yen (100) 231.642 237.013
Spanish Peseta 1.965 2.011
Port. Escudo 1.627 1.665
European Currency Unit Ecu: Buying: 329.532 Selling: 337.173
Gold Sovereign (Rates in Drachmas) Old mint: 19940 (b), Elizabeth up to
1973: 20230 (b), Elizabeth of 1974 and onward mints: 20230 (b), 21650
Gold (in dollars per ounce): London: 284.75, New York: 295.60
Light cloud in the west initially tomorrow Sunday, increasing fast and
developing into rain and local storms, and spreading to the rest of the
country. Winds westerly/southwesterly, gradually increasing to very