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Athens News Agency: News in English, 02-11-29

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] Weather Forecast: Mostly sunny on Friday
  • [02] Foreign Exchange Rates - Friday
  • [03] Gov't pleased with ECHR ruling over so-called 'royal properties'
  • [04] Cyprus' hour has arrived, PM Simitis tells joint PASOK central com.-
  • [05] Bosnia-Herzegovina accepts initiative for regional summit in Sarajevo

  • [01] Weather Forecast: Mostly sunny on Friday

    29/11/2002 10:38:31

    Sunny weather is forecast in most parts of the country, with rain and storms mainly in the southeast island region. Winds east-northeasterly, light to strong. In the north, temperatures will range from 04C to 17C; in the west from 07C to 19C; and in the rest of the country from 11C to 18C. Temperatures in Athens between 10C and 18C; and in Thessaloniki from 08C to 17C.

    [02] Foreign Exchange Rates - Friday

    29/11/2002 10:38:02

    Reference buying rates per euro released by the European Central Bank

    U.S. dollar 1.001

    Pound sterling 0.644

    Danish kroner 7.485

    Swedish kroner 9.137

    Japanese yen 122.3

    Swiss franc 1.486

    Norwegian kroner 7.346

    Cyprus pound 0.577

    Canadian dollar 1.575

    Australian dollar 1.794

    [03] Gov't pleased with ECHR ruling over so-called 'royal properties'

    28/11/2002 23:42:30

    STRASBOURG (ANA - V. Demiris) -- Greece was ordered to pay 13.7 million euros on Thursday by the European Court of Human Rights as compensation to the country's former monarch and two of his relatives for property seized under a 1994 law, a judgement substantially lower than what the plaintiffs originally demanded and one that satisfied Athens.

    Prime Minister Costas Simitis hailed the level of compensation adjudicated by the Court shortly after the decision was announced in Strasbourg, citing what he called a ?major gap? between the ex-monarchs ?arrogant and insolent demands? and the announced damages.

    ?The one who is morally and legally responsible for the 1967 (military) coup does not have the right to compensation, and he should be aware of the immeasurable damage he brought to Greece and Greeks. Greece, however, will pay the compensation because we want decisions by the European Court of Human Rights to be respected,? Simitis said in a brief nationally televised appearance on Thursday afternoon.

    Additionally, the Greek premier stressed that the ruling resolves, ?conclusively and irreversibly?, the last outstanding issue involving the monarchy in Greece.

    A referendum in December 1974 abolished the monarchy by a 2 to 1 margin, paving the way for the establishment of a Parliamentary republic.

    Two years ago, the 62-year-old Constantine claimed that an international firm had assessed the value of the contested properties at 180 billion drachmas ($450 million).

    In its initial ruling two years ago the ECHR court of justices ruled by a 15-2 margin that Athens had violated Article I of the first protocol of the European Convention of Human Rights, which guarantees the right of property.

    Constantine and two relatives at one point demanded 168 billion drachmas (493 million euros) in compensation for the three contested properties, namely, the Tatoi country estate north of Athens; the Mon Repos summer resort on the Ionian island of Corfu and the Polidendri forest estate in the foothills south of Mount Olympus, central Greece.

    [04] Cyprus' hour has arrived, PM Simitis tells joint PASOK central com.- parl. group

    28/11/2002 23:38:47

    Cyprus' hour has arrived, Greek Prime Minister Costas Simitis told a joint meeting of his ruling PASOK party's Central Committee and Parliamentary Group on Thursday, noting that resolving the Cyprus problem has comprised a top goal of Greece for the past 28 years.

    Reiteratig Greece's firm and unwavering stance for a just, viable and functional solution for Cyprus, Simitis said that the draft plan recently submitted by UN Secretary General Kofi Annan provided an opportunity for a ''constructive negotiation'' and was not itself a solution.

    Greece, he said, ''is not negotiating in order to lead the negotiation to an impasse, but to improve the plan'' and achieve a resolution of the Cyprus issue.

    He criticised those who favoured rejecting the Annan plan, as well as those who propounded maintaining the present status quo on Cyprus.

    Simitis also said that Turkey and the Turkish Cypriot side were those under pressure following the release of the Annan plan and the prospect of Cyprus' EU membership, which he said would be finalised at the EU summit in Copenhagen on December 12 without being conditional on a prior solution of Cyprus' political problem.

    Cyprus' EU accession would change the lives of the Turkish Cypriots too, whose democratic and human rights would be totally respected with the accession, he added, and expressed certainty that the Turkish Cypriots would also prosper.

    [05] Bosnia-Herzegovina accepts initiative for regional summit in Sarajevo in 2003

    28/11/2002 23:37:34

    ZAGREB (ANA) - The presidium of Bosnia-Herzegovina has accepted the initiative by the presidents of Greece, Austria and Italy for a regional summit to be held in Sarajevo next year.

    A Press and Mass Media Ministry announcement said on Thursday that the three presidents proposed that the heads of the six countries which resulted in the region of former Yugoslavia (with the exception of Albania and Slovenia) hold an informal summit to discuss the future of the region and its accession in the procedure of the Euro-Atlantic integration.

    Possible dates for the summit in Sarajevo are either March 11 or March 12.

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