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Athens News Agency: News in English (AM), 99-09-07

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


ATHENS, GREECE, 07/09/1999 (ANA)


  • Greece defines EU-Turkey relations in terms of national interests
  • Stocks hit new record, sprint through 5,600 pts
  • Aegean Airlines gets 100,000 passengers
  • Kaklamanis, German FM argue on Kosovo
  • Holy Synod examines issue of Pope visit
  • Onassis Foundation: KPMG Fides is not as great as it thinks it is
  • 2004 Olympics a challenge to show Greece as regional leader
  • Bulgarian businesses convey proposal to Greece
  • Greece, Czech Republic plan agreement
  • Commandos to re-enact daring `Operation Anglo`
  • Cyprus discusses cooperation with northeastern Greece
  • Weather
  • Foreign exchange


Greece defines EU-Turkey relations in terms of national interests

Greece said yesterday that it defined relations between the European Union and Turkey in a way that safeguards its national interests.

"Greece has defined Euro-Turkish relations with terms which safeguard national interests and with the fulfillment of specific preconditions on the part of Turkey. This policy is correct, it is effective, it is a policy of principles and it will not change," government spokesman Dimitris Reppas said in response to accusations by the main opposition New Democracy party that government policy on the funding of Turkey has harmed the country's steadfast interests.

"Greece's contribution to the handling of the consequences of the devastating earthquake in Turkey does not harm this framework, but in addition it promotes national interest," Mr. Reppas said and accused ND of "distorting reality and indeed in sectors where it should have increased responsibility."

Earlier, New Democracy party sopokesman Aris Spiliotopoulos had accused the government of harming the country's steadfast interests.

"The Simitis government, in order to receive praise from third parties, is once again backtracking, undermining its own policy and harming the country's steadfast interests," Mr. Spiliotopoulos said adding that the government was proposing "the same regulations for the funding of Turkey over which Greece had threatened in the past to resort to the European Court."

EU foreign ministers on Sunday accepted, during an informal meeting in Finland, Greece's proposal that earthquake-stricken Turkey should receive reconstruction aid from the 15-nation bloc.

Stocks hit new record, sprint through 5,600 pts

Equities posted a new all-time high yesterday, their 46th this year, breaking through resistance at 5,500 points and 5,600 points on confidence in the government's economic policy and the performance of listed companies.

The general index ended 3.95 percent up at 5,621.67 points from 5,407.85 points in the previous session.

Turnover was 424.324 billion drachmas from 388.181 billion with 46,590,323 shares changing hands.

Sector indices ended as follows: Banks (+1.65 pct), Insurance (+3.65 pct), Construction (+7.93 pct), Miscellaneous (+6.81 pct), Leasing (+2.98 pct), Investment (+5.89 pct), Industrials (+5.36 pct) and Holding (+7.85 pct).

The parallel market index for smaller capitalisation stocks rose 6.57 percent while the FTSE/ASE 20 index for blue chip and heavily traded stocks ended 2.79 percent higher at 3,019.97 points.

National Bank of Greece ended at 25,000 drachmas, Alpha Credit Bank at 24, 800, Bank of Piraeus at 9,930, Commercial Bank at 32,000, Titan Cement (common) at 35,450, Hellenic Petroleum at 4,060, Intracom (common) at 28, 950, Minoan Lines at 8,750, Panafon at 10,090 and Hellenic Telecommunications Organisation at 6,945.

Aegean Airlines gets 100,000 passengers

Aegean Airlines said yesterday that it had carried 100,000 passengers in its first three months of operation.

The newly created airline flies to Iraklio, Hania, Thessaloniki and Rhodes.

Aegean is expecting the delivery of two new aircraft this year.

On October 1, it will inaugurate flights to Alexandroupoli, Kavala and Kerkyra.

Kaklamanis, German FM argue on Kosovo

Parliament President Apostolos Kaklamanis and German Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer disagreed over the issue of Kosovo, while the latter warned Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic that the "Greater Serbia" policy he is following can lead to autonomy for Montenegro and Vojvodina in yesterday's meeting of Council of Europe member-state Parliament Presidents and the G-8 in the German Parliament building in Bonn in the framework of celebrations marking the 50th anniversary of parliamentary rule in the country and the transfer of Germany's capital to Berlin.

"I represent Greece here. A country which was destroyed by the tempest of fascism and Nazism. The first country in Europe which did not allow the advance of axis forces. We are particularly proud because, together with Britain, we were the two countries in Europe which we believe gave other peoples the possibility of organising their resistance," he said.

Mr. Kaklamanis underlined the danger of a flareup in the Balkans as a result of the uncontrolled activity of the Kosovo Liberation Army against Serbs and gypsies in the region in the framework of the creation of Greater Albania, adding that the plan is supported by the United States and enjoys the tolerance of other major powers.

"You are well aware what a blow was dealt at the EU's credibility, it was expressed with the great abstention as well as by the results of the Euroelections, by the campaign decided by the US and followed by NATO and the EU in Kosovo with the pretext of Milosevic's ethnic cleansing against the Albanian-speaking people," Mr. Kaklamanis said.

Replying to "criticism" by the President of Greece's Parliament, as he termed Mr. Kaklamanis' speech, Mr. Fischer said he did not see that the creation of a Greater Albania constitutes a plan by the US and expressed regret over the dissolution of Yugoslavia which he correlated to the nationalistic claims of its peoples which led to bloodshed.

Mr. Fischer said the policy of a Greater Serbia failed, adding that he does not consider the possible autonomy of Montenegro as something right but we will come to it if Milosevic continues this policy, while Vojvodina will be the next step.

Holy Synod examines issue of Pope visit

The Holy Synod yesterday examined the issue of Pope John Paul II possibly visiting Athens in the framework of his tour of areas visited by the Apostle Paul.

Holy Synod spokesman Piraeus Metropolitan Kallinikos announced that there is no question of an official visit by the Pope.

He said the Synod has received no relevant letter, adding that there is only a letter addressed by Cardinal Cassidy to the Archbishop of Athens and All Greece Christodoulos on June 23. It mentions the Pope's circular letter "on his pilgrimage to the places linked to the history of salvation", namely the places from which the Apostle Paul had passed, particularly the point with which the Roman pontiff requests a meeting with Orthodox leaders in the framework of his visits on the occasion of jubilee year 2000 and asks for the opinion of the Church of Greece on the matter.

Metropolitan Kallinikos said, regarding the holding of the Pope's proposed meeting with Orthodoxy leaders, the Church of Greece has proposed to the Ecumenical Patriarch to convene, exercising his coordinating task, Orthodox primates before a joint agree ment on taking a decision. A clergy envoy of the Ecumenical Patriarch has already undertaken to gather the views of primates on the issue. Consequently, the issue is still underway.

The Holy Synod's spokesman said appropriate processes should be followed for a possible visit to Athens by the Pope.

Namely, that the "exclusive Christian virtues of humility and repentance should be developed. Trends which are expansionist, proselytising and undermining of Orthodox Churches and the existence of the Unite movement are, according to the decision by the joint Theology Dialogue Committee between the Orthodox and Roman Catholic Church, indicative of obstacles appearing in shaping positive conditions for a possible visit by the Pope".

Onassis Foundation: KPMG Fides is not as great as it thinks it is

The Onassis Foundation said yesterday that the KPMG Fides, Lucerne, which undertook the management of Athena Onassis-Roussel, "is not a financial giant, as is often said".

In a press release, the foundation added that KPMG Fides, Lucerne was a branch of the KPMG Fides, Zurich that does not have its own capital.

The announcement added that despite relevant arguments, the company is not a single entity with many branches, rather there are many KPMG's, totally independent from one another, which have purchased the use of the name, without maintaining financial bonds.

The foundation added that both the Zurich and Lucerne companies were established in 1992, a fact that proves lack of experience and tradition.

Furthermore, the KPMG Zurich is funded with only 2 million dollars, while in its seven years of operation there have been hundreds of changes in the persons representing the firm.

The announcement also underlined that the registry of the company was at the disposal of the Swiss court authorities when they made the decision to award the management to the firm and yet they chose it. "We believe that Athena deserved better treatment by the Swiss authorities," the announcement concluded.

2004 Olympics a challenge to show Greece as regional leader

The 2004 Olympic Games constitute a great challenge and a great opportunity for Greece, providing the country with a chance to show the world its image of Greece as a regional leader, senior members of the Athens 2004 Organising Committee said yesterday.

Vice-President Niki Tzavella and managing director Costas Bacouris held a news conference on the Games' preparation on the sidelines of the 64th Thessaloniki International Fair.

They stressed that Greek companies would also have the opportunity to collaborate with leading companies in the lead-up to the Games and through Games projects.

This sort of collaboration, they said, would provide Greek firms with the requisite knowledge that would hold them and their workforces in good stead for years later.

They said activity at the Organising Committee had intensified, with 85 people and financial consultant now employed and work under way on a marketing plan.

A new emblem for the Athens Games will be presented on September 30, which will pave the way open for the marketing of the emblem and the signing of commercial agreements.

Both Ms Tzavella and Mr. Bacouris stressed that preparations were running to schedule.

The two also announced that an agreement will be signed for the transfer of know-how from the Sydney Olympiad, that the scheduled agreement with hoteliers is being completed and that a more effective communication programme will go ahead.

Both made it clear that awarding the holding of other Olympic events to another city, with the exception of preliminary soccer matches to be held in Thessaloniki, is not possible and was not achi-eved despite their efforts.

Bulgarian businesses convey proposal to Greece

Bulgarian Deputy Trade and Tourism Minister Georgi Tabakov has conveyed a proposal by 280 Bulgarian businesses which are active in various sectors for cooperation with Greek enterprises which will undertake projects in the framework of Balkan reconstruction.

Mr. Tabakov, who is visiting Thessaloniki in the framework of his country's participation in the 64th Thessaloniki International Fair (TIF), held talks with minister of Macedonia and Thrace Yiannis Mangriotis and the administration of the federation of industries of Northern Greece SBBE.

After his meeting with Mr. Mangriotis, Mr. Tabakov said possibilities of developing infrastructures were discussed, and in particular those linked to the road axes 4 and 9, issues concerning economic cooperation between the two countries, the issue of opening cross-border crossings, as well as the proposal on cooperation between businesses.

Greece, Czech Republic plan agreement

Greece and the Czech Republic are planning an inter-state agreement between the two countries on overall economic cooperation, according to an announcement yesterday by the Czech Industry and Overseas Trade Ministry spokesman Carel Mrocek. He was speaking at a press conference he gave on the occasion of his country's participation in the 64th TIF.

He said the purpose of the agreement is the further development of economic relations between the two countries, both at exports level and that of investment plans.

Transactions between the two countries are showing a gradual increase but, according to Mr. Mrocek, they have not yet reached desirable levels.

The Czech Republic's exports to Greece in 1998 amounted to 85 million dollars, while its imports from Greece did not exceed 57 million dollars. The corresponding figures for 1997 were 97 million dollars and 50 million dollars respectively.

Commandos to re-enact daring `Operation Anglo`

Under the cover of darkness 57 years ago, a Greek submarine put Greek and British commandos ashore on the island of Rhodes, beginning an operation that dealt a definitive blow to the Nazi occupation of the Dodecanese islands.

On Sunday, Greek parachutists will re-enact the daring 'Operation Anglo' for the 30 surviving British veterans of the operation. Also present will be General (Ret.) David Sutherland, who headed the Special Boat Squadron unit operation, and Lord George Jellicoe, a leading resistance fighter in the Aegean during World War II.

Lord Jellicoe had parachuted into Rhodes on September 9, 1943, to try and persuade Italian Admiral Iningo Cambioni, the governor of the occupied Dodecanese islands, to resist the Germans until British reinforcements arrived.

On September 12, 1942, the Greek submarine Papanikolis put the commandos ashore at Kokkini Ammos who, with the help of two local men - Nikos Savvas and Georgios Kyrmichalis, made their way to the airports at Kalathos and Maritsa, where they destroyed German war planes.

The same canoe used to bring the commandos over from the Papanikolis has been brought all the way from Britain to be used in the re-enactment.

The event marks the beginning of a series of functions marking the liberation of the Dodecanese islands from Nazi occupation. The British vets will also be attending a series of events on Rhodes and Leros and will also visit Symi, the first of the islands in the group to be liberated by the Allies.

Cyprus discusses cooperation with northeastern Greece

Cyrpus Trade and Tourism Minister Nikos Rolandis and Alexandroupoli Mayor Triandafyllos Arvanitidis yesterday met and discussed issues regarding the cooperation of the island republic with the northeastern Greek region.

The two men discussed the possibility of a regular air route between Alexandroupoli and Cyprus, by expanding the already existing route of Lesvos - Larnaca.

They also discussed conditions for the creation of joint ventures in light of prospects in the wider Balkan region.


Sunny weather is forecast for today, although mainland Greece and the northern Aegean can expect partly cloudy skies. Winds northerly, light to moderate. Mostly sunny in Athens with temperatures ranging from 21-30C. Same in Thessaloniki with temperatures from 18-27C.


Monday's rates (buying)
U.S. dollar 305.288 Pound sterling 490.167 Japanese yen (100) 278.177 French franc 49.440 German mark 165.815 Italian lira (100) 16.749 Irish Punt 411.782 Belgian franc 8.039 Finnish mark 54.544 Dutch guilder 147.163 Danish kr. 43.598 Austrian sch. 23.568 Spanish peseta 1.949 Swedish kr. 37.541 Norwegian kr. 39.103 Swiss franc 202.839 Port. Escudo 1.618 Can. dollar 204.749 Aus. dollar 197.031 Cyprus pound 560.480 Euro 324.305


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