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Athens News Agency: News in English, 07-01-19

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] Rail link in western Macedonia reopened
  • [02] Athens appeals to Qaddafi for nurses' pardon

  • [01] Rail link in western Macedonia reopened

    Rail link in western Macedonia reopened

    The government on Friday reopened the revamped Thessaloniki-Amynteo-Kozani railway line, which was out of service for four years due to poor maintenance. The specific railway link, refurbished at a cost of 25 million euros, will be serviced three times daily, with the trip lasting three hours through some of western Macedonia province's most picturesque scenery.

    Transport Minister Michalis Liapis also noted that the Kozani-Grevena-Kalabaka line's upgrading will be examined next.

    Liapis added that some two billion euros worth of rail infrastructure projects will be completed by 2013, stressing that a modern railway network is a fundamental element for economic growth and prosperity in the country.

    Caption: A Hellenic Rail (OSE) train has just arrived at the Amynteo Station in Florina prefecture, western Macedonia province of northern Greece, following the reopening of the Thessaloniki-Amynteo-Kozani line. ANA-MPA photo / N. Arvanitidis.

    [02] Athens appeals to Qaddafi for nurses' pardon

    Greece's President of the Republic Karolos Papoulias has sent a letter to Libyan leader Muammar Qaddafi appealing for a pardon to be granted to a the Palestinian physician and five Bulgarian nurses sentenced to death following the infection of 426 cildren with the HIV virus at a Benghazi hospital, a decision strongly derided by the international community.

    Several international experts have flatly disputed claims by Libyan authorities, offering scientific proof in fact purporting that many of the children were infected before the defendants even arrived in the country.

    Papoulias, who has long-standing ties with the Libyan leader dating to the former's tenure as foreign minister, expressed the "sentiments of grief and indignation over the deaths of the children", while stressing that "the European Union and Greece are prepared to help".

    Papoulias' initiative comes ahead of a state visit to Bulgaria on Feb. 12 and 13.

    Bulgaria has vigorously protested the trial that resulted in the December 2006 conviction of the six, calling their death penalty verdict "unfair". Sofia has also charged gross violations of the defendants' rights.

    The six co-defendants, who have already served seven years in prison (since 1999), were initially convicted and sentenced to death a year earlier, but after international outcry the Libyan supreme court ordered a retrial, which upheld the initial verdict and sentence, with the case returning automatically to the supreme court for appeal.

    Fifty of the children have died, while the rest are being treated in Europe.

    Caption: Karolos Papoulias. ANA-MPA

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