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Athens News Agency: News in English, 02-02-13

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] FM Papandreou says Greece to take initiatives on Middle East
  • [02] Canadian senator heads committee for the return of the Parthenon
  • [03] Alternate FM in Budapest on Thurs.
  • [04] Greece, Turkey sign memorandum of understanding
  • [05] US ambassador on terrorism, Cyprus issue
  • [06] Foreign Exchange Rates - Thursday
  • [07] Weather Forecast: Mostly sunny on Thursday
  • [08] Greek stocks-close-correction
  • [09] Greek stocks continue moving lower

  • [01] FM Papandreou says Greece to take initiatives on Middle East

    13/02/2002 22:43:55

    Foreign Minister George Papandreou, speaking at a luncheon given in his honour by the Hellenic-Arab Chamber of Commerce on Wednesday, said Greece intends to take initiatives which will heighten during Greece's European Union presidency, in the first half of 2003, to enable the shaping of a coordinated European policy towards Arab countries.

    The meeting focused on "The building of bridges between Europe and the Arab World in the 21st century."

    Papandreou said it is time for Europe to turn its attention to Arab countries, from eastern Europe on which it has been focusing its attention over the past decade.

    He also said that all existing political means should be exhausted for a solution to the Palestinian issue, adding that Greece will take initiatives to enable the peace process to return into orbit.

    Papandreou said Greece will try to activate and implement UN resolutions and contribute to the creation of a free and democratic Palestinian state.

    Referring to economic cooperation between the Arab world and Greece (and Europe in general), Papandreou said institutions will be activated, such as the European Investment Bank, and a contribution will be made to the transfer of know-how, management and networks - transport, telecommunications and energy - for these countries' development course.

    [02] Canadian senator heads committee for the return of the Parthenon Marbles

    13/02/2002 22:41:17

    MONTREAL (ANA - I. Frangouli) - Manitoba State Transportation Secretary Steve Ashton and Canadian Senator Shirley Meihu began their campaign for the return of the Parthenon Marbles to Greece with a drive to collect 100,000 signatures of Canadian citizens.

    The senator, who is the president of the committee for the return of the marbles to Greece by 2004, said "Britain should return the marbles to the place they belong for the Olympic Games of 2004. The excuse that they are guarding them better is not convincing, since they scraped them, they destroyed them".

    [03] Alternate FM in Budapest on Thurs.

    13/02/2002 22:41:10

    Alternate Foreign Minister Tassos Yiannitsis departs for Budapest on Thursday for talks with Hungarys leadership, including Hungarian Foreign Minister Janos Martonyi, Deputy FM in charge of European affairs Peter Gottfried as well as the head of the opposition, Socialist Party president Laszlo Kovacs.

    The Visegrad countrys course towards European Union accession and bilateral issues should dominate talks, along with Hungarian President Ferenc Madl upcoming visit to Athens in May.

    [04] Greece, Turkey sign memorandum of understanding

    13/02/2002 22:39:52

    Greece and Turkey on Wednesday signed a memorandum of understanding in Athens, in the culmination of the first meeting of the Greek-Turkish Interministerial Economic Cooperation Committee.

    The memorandum was signed by Greek deputy foreign minister Andreas Loverdos and Turkish deputy minister for external trade Kursad Tuzmen, who headed their countries' delegations to the meeting, which opened in Athens on Tuesday.

    After the meeting, both sides said the target was for bilateral economic exchanges to reach 5 billion dollars from the current one billion dollars in the next few years.

    They further appeared optimistic that an agreement on the avoidance of double taxation of revenues would soon be forthcoming.

    The Committee will meet again in the next few months, most likely in Istanbul, to discuss cooperation in the fields of commerce, energy, industry, agriculture, transports and tourism.

    [05] US ambassador on terrorism, Cyprus issue

    13/02/2002 22:36:11

    Terrorism and prospects for a solution to the long-standing Cyprus question dominated questions on Wednesday at a press luncheon hosted in honour of US ambassador to Athens Thomas Miller, his first such wide-ranging meeting with local correspondents and reporters since officially assuming the diplomatic post last October.

    Miller again repeated that the notion of pressure does not exist in his relations with the Greek government, instead saying that the word cooperation reigns. ?No two nations in the world agree on everything,? the US envoy said, shortly after praising economic growth in the eastern Mediterranean nation, Greek-US cooperation in the international anti-terrorism campaign as well as both countries converging policies vis-a-vis Balkan developments.

    Regarding terrorism, an issue that has skyrocketed to the forefront of Washingtons foreign policy priorities following Sept. 11, Miller said -- in response to a question dealing with a notorious urban terrorist cell in Greece -- that the ?only outcome? on the horizon is ?arrests and prosecutions?.

    ?Im not going to get into what will happen if not. Were not dealing in hypothetical situations, what if, what if. Its not just Greece. Its the entire world,? the US ambassador said, before citing what he called the tremendous security plainly evident at the ongoing Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City.

    In terms of the recently restarted talks between the Greek and Turkish Cypriot leaders Cyprus President Glafcos Clerides and T/C leader Rauf Denktash -- on the divided island republic, the former US special coordinator for the Cyprus problem cautioned that only a ?fool or a total optimist could predict an outcome.?

    In more-or-less echoing past statements by US officials, including his predecessor in Athens, Miller warned against aiming for a zero-sum solution to the 28-year-old Cyprus problem, adding that chances for achieving the latter ?were greatly reduced?.

    The luncheon was organised the by Athens-based Foreign Press Association (FPA) of Greece at a downtown hotel in the Greek capital.

    [06] Foreign Exchange Rates - Thursday

    13/02/2002 18:22:38

    Indicative tourist buying rates per euro

    U.S. dollar 0.880

    Pound sterling 0.615

    Danish kroner 7.489

    Swedish kroner 9.304

    Japanese yen 116.5

    Swiss franc 1.489

    Norwegian kroner 7.889

    Cyprus pound 0.580

    Canadian dollar 1.403

    Australian dollar 1.732

    [07] Weather Forecast: Mostly sunny on Thursday

    13/02/2002 17:45:19

    Sunshine is forecast in all parts of the country, with mist likely in the morning. Winds southwesterly, light to moderate. In the north, temperatures will range from 1C to 18C; on the rest of the mainland from 4C to 21C; and in the islands from 7C to 19C. Sunshine in Athens, with temperatures between 8C and 20C. Same in Thessaloniki with temperatures from 4C to 17C.

    [08] Greek stocks-close-correction

    13/02/2002 16:52:29

    The general index ended 0.31 percent lower to 2,494.71 points...instead of the general index ended 0.1 percent lower as previously reported.

    [09] Greek stocks continue moving lower

    13/02/2002 16:38:42

    Equity prices remained under pressure for the ninth consecutive session on Wednesday pushing the general index below the 2,500 support level on the Athens Stock Exchange.

    The index ended 0.1 percent lower at 2,494.71 points, with turnover a disappointing low Dr 24.26 billion, or 71.2 million euros.

    The IT, Holdings and Insurance sectors suffered the heaviest percentage losses (0.89 percent, 0.87 percent and 0.59 percent, respectively), while the Retail, Cement and IT Solutions sectors scored gains (2.33 percent, 1.01 percent and 0.89 percent).

    The FTSE/ASE 20 index for blue chip and heavy traded stocks ended 0.34 percent lower, the FTSE/ASE MID 40 index rose 0.16 percent and the FTSE/ASE SmallCap 80 index fell 0.19 percent.

    Broadly, advancers led decliners by 150 to 142 with another 68 issues unchanged.

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