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Athens News Agency: News in English, 07-05-02

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] Papandreou on incomes' policy; Turkey
  • [02] Athens Academy event on science, technology
  • [03] Greek, Tunisian FMs discuss bilateral, Euro-Med ties

  • [01] Papandreou on incomes' policy; Turkey

    Main opposition PASOK leader George Papandreou on Wednesday guaranteed what he called "a generous redistribution of income" that would restore the purchasing power of Greek families, once PASOK was back in government.

    Addressing his party's Parliamentary council, Papandreou also pledged a significant increase in pensions and financial support for families with children from their birth until they completed their studies.

    During a meeting focusing on the Greek family budget, he said government policies had plunged families into a "generalised insecurity" and made them the least optimistic in the European Union, while leading them to over-borrowing and cutting their income to the point where they were unable to cover monthly expenditures.

    While wages, pay and pensions were being reduced, fixed costs were rising disproportionately, utility rates were constantly increasing and the profits were going to the few and powerful, PASOK's president underlined.

    He predicted that the government would continue its present policy even if Greece exited from the excessive deficit process and was no longer under EU supervision, while stressing that its entry into the excessive deficit process had been unnecessary to begin with and had major repercussions on the prosperity of the Greek people.

    Papandreou on developments in Turkey

    PASOK's leader also referred to the latest developments in Turkey during the meeting, saying that the neighbouring country was heading toward political instability and would go to elections in a polarised climate.

    He expressed hope for a calm and smooth return to democratic norms and the resolution of any differences in a democratic way.

    Concerning the intervention of the Turkish military in the Turkish presidential election, he noted that this was a far cry from the rules and values of the European Union and did nothing to help Turkey's European accession course, which Greece has every reason to support.

    It was extremely important for Greece that Turkey have sound democratic foundations and was a reliable conversational partner in politics, Papandreou stressed.

    ANA-MPA file photo of Papandreou.

    [02] Athens Academy event on science, technology

    The effect of science and technology on human values and questions regarding the future of humanity will be the focus of a three-day international symposium that opened in Athens on Wednesday with the participation of scientists and academics from some 20 countries.

    The 2nd International Symposium, organised by the Athens Academy, opened in the presence of Greek Parliament President Anna Benaki-Psarouda, Education Minister Marietta Yiannakou, main opposition PASOK leader and Socialist International President George Papandreou, Archbishop of Tirana and All Albania Anastasios, a representative of Archbishop Christodoulos and representatives of the local academic and scientific community.

    Scientific progress has improved living conditions offering solutions to humanity but, at the same time, has created inequalities and threats, Benaki-Psarouda stressed in her address.

    Caption: File photo of Parliament President Anna Psarouda-Benaki.

    [03] Greek, Tunisian FMs discuss bilateral, Euro-Med ties

    Foreign Minister Dora Bakoyannis received her Tunisian counterpart Abdelwaheb Abdallah in Athens on Wednesday, with both sides citing volition to boost relations at both the bilateral level and within the framework of Euro-Mediterranean cooperation.

    During a reception that followed the meeting, the two foreign ministers exchanged views on developments in the Middle East and the Mediterranean region, while they agreed on the exchange of further high-level visits within the framework of efforts aimed at forging closer bilateral ties.

    Bakoyannis accepted an invitation to visit Tunisia, while Deputy Finance Minister Christos Folias is scheduled to visit the North African country in the next few days to sign an agreement on the avoidance of double taxation.

    Bakoyannis stressed that Athens backs Tunisia's efforts for closer cooperation with the EU and that Euro-Mediterranean cooperation is an important element for bilateral relations.

    The foreign minister also referred to Tunisia's participation in the Mediterranean Forum ministerial meeting to take place in Rethymno, Crete, in June.

    On his part, the Tunisian foreign minister commented on his country's relations with the EU, stressing that Tunisia was the first southern Mediterranean country to sign the EU association agreement and that beginning in January 2008 it will be a member of the Euro-Mediterranean free trade zone.

    He also pointed out that cooperation within the framework of the EU should not push aside bilateral relations, while he also cited greater tourism exchanges.

    Earlier, Abdallah was received by President Karolos Papoulias.

    Caption: Greek President Karolos Papoulias (R) receives Tunisian Foreign Minister Abdelwaheb Abdallah at the presidential mansion in Athens on Wednesday, May 2, 2007. ANA-MPA / A. BELTES

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