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Athens News Agency: News in English, 07-07-06

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] PM to address 7th New Democracy Congress on Friday
  • [02] PASOK leader in Lisbon

  • [01] PM to address 7th New Democracy Congress on Friday

    Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis is to address the New Democracy party's 7th Congress that begins on Friday afternoon at the Peace and Friendship Stadium in Faliro, on the Athens coast.

    According to ND Central Committee Secretary Lefteris Zagoritis, who held a press conference regarding the ruling party's 7th Congress earlier this week, the central slogan would be "Together we have accomplished alot, together we will create the future".

    The congress, which begins on Friday and is due to end of Sunday, will carry out an overview of the work done by the government so far and its expectations for the future, Zagoritis said.

    Taking part in the Congress are 4,500 delegates and it will be divided into subject units, while there will also be discussion on the party's positions and charter.

    This is the second regular party congress taking place during this government's term, while the results of the pre-conference process have been extremely encouraging, he added, thanking "all those that contributed to ND's successes".

    The 7th Congress will also be attended by Netherlands Prime Minister Jan Peter Balkenende and the European People's Party (EPP) President Wilfried Martens.

    During the press conference, Zagoritis had stressed that the Congress was not "pre-electoral" though the party was always ready and noted that no candidates had so far stood for the post of party secretary or for seats on ND's Political Council.

    PM visits Archbishop in hospital

    Karamanlis and his wife Natassa on Friday visited Archbishop Christodoulos of Athens and All Greece at the Aretaio Hospital in central Athens.

    Caption: Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis address a New Democracy party pre-conference for Epirus and the Ionian Islands held in the northwestern Greek city of Ioannina on Sunday, July 1, 2007. ANA-MPA/GOUILIELMOS ANTONIOU

    [02] PASOK leader in Lisbon

    Main opposition PASOK leader and Socialist International (SI) President George Papandreou arrived in Lisbon on Friday for talks with Portuguese Prime Minister and current European Union President Jose Socrates.

    Before his talks with Socrates, Papandreou also scheduled to meet Portuguese Parliament President Jaime Gama.

    On Thursday, Papandreou had criticised the government's policies for the Public Power Corporation (PPC) on Thursday as "frivolous and without prospects". He made the statement during a visit to the facilities of the Manager of the Hellenic System for the Transfer of Electrical Power DESMHE.

    He asserted that the government had taken over the PPC as a company with good prospects and that it was now in financial trouble.

    "We are now talking about marginal situations in terms of power load, while there should be provision for tomorrow," Papandreou added, while raising an issue of energy security.

    He also accused the government of talking big about making Greece an energy junction while not paying attention to the fundamentals, like electricity pylons.

    PASOK's leader also stressed that his party was not opposed to cooperation with the private sector but that this must serve the public interest and not the other way round, accusing ruling New Democracy of using public utilities to "curry political clientele" and of failing to introduce rules to control private interests.

    According to the chief of the PPC staff trade union GENOP-DEH, Nikos Fotopoulos, the government had failed to increase the system's installed capacity by the required amount in order to serve these private interests. He noted that there was an "unwritten rule" that the installed capacity of a power grid should be 20 percent more than the peak power load expected. During the past week this peak load had reached 10,500MW so that installed capacity should be 13,500 MW instead of the 11.649 MW that it was at present.

    Caption: ANA-MPA file photo of PASOK leader George Papandreou.

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