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Athens News Agency: News in English, 04-04-16

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] Foreign Exchange Rates: Friday
  • [02] Weather Forecast: Mostly sunny on Friday
  • [03] PASOK leader accuses government of negligence and defeatism
  • [04] Communist Party leader rejects Annan Cyprus plan
  • [05] SYN leader supports postponement of Cyprus referenda on Annan plan
  • [06] International conference on Kazantzakis

  • [01] Foreign Exchange Rates: Friday

    16/04/2004 10:16:09

    Reference buying rates per euro released by the European Central Bank

    U.S. dollar 1.200

    Pound sterling 0.673

    Danish kroner 7.503

    Swedish kroner 9.260

    Japanese yen 130.4

    Swiss franc 1.564

    Norwegian kroner 8.338

    Cyprus pound 0.590

    Canadian dollar 1.613

    Australian dollar 1.628

    [02] Weather Forecast: Mostly sunny on Friday

    16/04/2004 10:16:01

    Sunny weather is forecast in most parts of the country, with scattered cloud in the west possibly turning to rain in the northern Ionian and Epirus. Winds variable, moderate to very strong. Temperatures in Athens from 12C to 21C and in Thessaloniki between 10C and 19C.

    [03] PASOK leader accuses government of negligence and defeatism

    15/04/2004 23:48:24

    Main opposition PASOK party leader George Papandreou, speaking after the meeting between political party leaders on the issue of Cyprus on Thursday, accused the government once again of ''negligence and of creating a climate of defeatism,'' adding that the party leaders should have also held talks before the negotiations in Lucerne.

    Papandreou called for an active policy until the referenda are held in Cyprus on April 24 and for initiatives to be undertaken towards the European Union to secure the guarantees also requested by the Cypriot Leftist party AKEL, while also backing the claim for a postponement of the referenda and urging the government to take relevant initiatives.

    The PASOK leader referred to his efforts for Cyprus when he was foreign minister and promised to stand by the Cypriots whatever the outcome of the referendum may be.

    [04] Communist Party leader rejects Annan Cyprus plan

    15/04/2004 23:45:18

    Communist Party of Greece (KKE) Secretary General Aleka Papariga opposed the possibility of the Annan plan for Cyprus being adopted during Thursday's meeting of political party leaders.

    ''Our best solidarity for the people of Cyprus is with a 'no' to the Annan plan. We support a 'no' because the Annan plan does not create a bicommunal and bizonal federation but, on the contrary, it creates an international protectorate in the path of oil towards the Middle East which, in our view, is worse than that of Kosovo and Bosnia,'' she said during a press conference following the meeting of political leaders.

    Papariga said Cyprus, as envisaged by the Annan plan, will be a ''non-state'', adding that ''it will be split three ways between the two established states and the British bases which are consolidated and supported, turning in this way into an unsinkable aircraft carrier which the United States can also use.''

    ''Such a state did not even exist during the colonial era,'' she said and wondered ''whether Turkey needed a price for the operation of an independent Kurdish state in Northern Iraq and whether Cyprus, and the Aegean afterwards, will constitute something in exchange for such a development.''

    Papariga said all who are saying that the Annan plan serves a rapprochement between the two communities are not telling the truth and pointed out that the best rapprochement will take place on the basis of the two communities' common opposition to the plan and on the basis of common social and class interests.

    [05] SYN leader supports postponement of Cyprus referenda on Annan plan

    15/04/2004 23:39:32

    Coalition of the Radical Left (SYN) leader Nikos Constantopoulos on Thursday promoted the proposal of Cyprus' left-wing AKEL party for a postponement of simultaneous and separate referenda in Cyprus, slated for April 24, when the Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot communities are called on to accept or not UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan's fifth and final plan for a comprehensive settlement of the Cyprus problem.

    In a press conference following the morning meeting between Greece's political party leaders on the Cyprus issue, Constantopoulos stood in favour of the postponement of the referenda so that there may be further briefing, improvement, correction and the filling in of gaps in the Annan Plan. However, in the event that this is not feasible, he suggested support of the plan.

    According to Constantopoulos, the 5th Annan Plan contained positive and negative elements as well as dangers, but at the same time also forecasts which can develop ''a positive momentum for a solution to the Cyprus issue.''

    The positive elements, he said, include the reunification of the island, a decrease of the transitional period and the European framework. The negative elements are the shortcomings on security issues, the staying of the settlers, the presence of foreign troops and the consolidation of the guarantor powers and the composition of the Supreme Court.

    [06] International conference on Kazantzakis

    15/04/2004 23:33:07

    An international conference on legendary Greek novelist Nikos Kazantzakis will be held at the University of Crete, in Rethymno, April 23-25, as part of the Cultural Olympics, it was announced Thursday.

    The three-day conference will be addressed by researchers from Greek, European and US universities, who will analyse artistic and ideological views of Kazantzatikis' work and its appeal abroad, based on the plethora of translations of his writing and reviews.

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