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Athens News Agency: News in English (PM), 99-05-04

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, 04/05/1999 (ANA)


MAIN HEADLINES

  • Athens welcomes any Balkans conference
  • FM Papandreou 'reserved but optimistic'
  • Greek doctors head to Skopje, Pristina
  • Athens dismisses Turkish air violations
  • Teenager arrested in bomb hoax
  • Weather
  • Foreign Exchange

NEWS IN DETAIL

Athens welcomes any Balkans conference

Greece on Tuesday welcomed a proposal by European Commission president- designate Romano Prodi for the convening of an international conference to examine ways of bringing lasting peace to the Balkans. Government spokesman Dimitris Reppas said Prime Minister Costas Simitis had been in touch with Prodi on the issue. Prodi intimated in an address to the European Parliament on Tuesday that the EU should take the initiative for convening the conference and take greater responsibility in general for resolving the Yugoslav crisis. Reppas described Prodi's proposal for a conference as "a very positive development", adding that there were a number of "indications and conditions" which were boosting hopes that a political solution might be attained.

FM Papandreou 'reserved but optimistic'

Foreign Minister George Papandreou said on Tuesday he was "reserved but optimistic" about the outcome of his recent talks with officials in Moscow in search of a political settlement of the Kosovo crisis. "Diplomacy is now in the limelight. Greece's activity as well as Russia's - with the visit to Washington - have left their mark on this attempt," Papandreou told reporters as he arrived for a meeting with President Kostis Stephanopoulos. Papandreou said U.S. President Bill Clinton's visit to Europe would bolster diplomatic efforts for a resolution from the United Nations which would have the agreement of all parties.

Greek doctors head to Skopje, Pristina

A team of 41 doctors left for Skopje and Pristina on Tuesday to provide medical treatment for children in refugee camps in the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia and the children's hospital in Pristina. Organised by the Athens Medical Centre, the team is led by Maria Carras, a physician and director of Centre for Communicable Diseases (KEEL). Accompanying the medical team are five ambulances, staffed by trained personnel, and a mobile hospital unit. They will provide health services for refugees in camps in Skopje and logistical support to the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia's health ministry. They will then go on to the children's hospital in Pristina. If any of the children are in need of special treatment they will be brought to the Athens Medical Centre.

Athens dismisses Turkish air violations

Greece on Tuesday attributed recent violations of Greek air space by Turkish warplanes to the continuation of Ankara's tactic of provocation. Government spokesman Dimitris Reppas said in all cases the Turkish fighter jets had been intercepted by Hellenic Air Force aircraft. "This behaviour of Turkey does not help it, because it reveals the face of a troublemaker. Ankara should at long last realize this and cease its provocations," Reppas added.

Teenager arrested in bomb hoax

Police said on Tuesday they had arrested a 14-year-old high school student for a bomb hoax that caused the evacuation of a local Athens high school. They said the teenager, identified only by his initials K.E., had telephoned a radio station and said he had planted a bomb at the Galatsi 4th Junior High School. He claimed to be a member of ultra-rightist group Chryssi Avghi (Golden Dawn). The telephone call caused the temporary suspension of lessons at the school while police combed the building for any evidence of a bomb. None was found.

WEATHER

The weather in the country today is expected to be warm, humid and sunny with cloud in western, central and northern Greece. Winds variable, light to strong. Warm and humid in Athens with temperatures between 16-32C. Same in Thessaloniki with temperatures from 13-30C.

FOREIGN EXCHANGE

Tuesday's rates (buying)
U.S. dollar          304.544
Pound sterling       490.881
Japanese yen (100)   254.617
French franc          49.219
German mark          165.074
Italian lira (100)    16.675
Irish Punt           409.943
Belgian franc          8.003
Luxembourg franc       8.003
Finnish mark          54.300
Dutch guilder        146.505
Danish kr.            43.438
Austrian sch.         23.463
Spanish peseta         1.940
Swedish kr.           36.218
Norwegian kr.         39.134
Swiss franc          200.260
Port. Escudo           1.610
Aus. dollar          201.604
Can. dollar          208.459
Cyprus pound         559.151
Euro                 322.856
(M.P.)
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