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Athens News Agency: News in English, 07-07-08

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <http://www.ana.gr/>

CONTENTS

  • [01] PASOK leader outlines five commitments

  • [01] PASOK leader outlines five commitments

    Main opposition PASOK party leader George Papandreou addressed a rally in Menidi, Western Attica, on Sunday evening and called on the government "before leaving to define immediately the region of forest land that has been burnt by wildfires."

    Papandreou further said that flood-protection work must be carried out soon, any attempts at arbitrary building must be prevented and there must be intervention to preserve biodiversity.

    The PASOK leader said that after the elections his government will take a series of measures for forests such as the creation of an Environment ministry that will be responsible for all duties concerning forestry policy, the immediate preparation of forest maps and a reforestation programme.

    Referring to the neighbourhoods of Western Attica, Papandreou appealed in particular to Black Sea Greeks living there, commented on measures taken by the PASOK government in 2000 and accused the prime minister of doing nothing for the Black Sea Greeks.

    Papandreou also referred to the five major commitments contained in his party's programme, the first being the redistribution of wealth for the benefit of the weak, followed by a new growth model based on the economy of knowledge and the green economy, great changes in education with a guarantee for the public educational system, a new contract with the people regarding employment, the family, the child, health and pensions and the combatting of poverty.

    He said at this point that PASOK "guarantees a decrease in unemployment by 3 percent in the first four-year period and an increase in the unemployment benefit to 70 percent of the basic salary."

    He added that the fifth commitment was the role of the state with a "guiding government", fewer ministries, an elected regional governor, fewer regions and new unifications with a new "Kapodistrias" plan.

    Papandreou accused the government of "mudslinging and of polarising political life with the aim of having its responsibilities forgotten," while calling for elections and sending a message of solidarity to the demonstration held at Syntagma Square on the protection and reforestation of Mount Parnitha.

    He further said that the (Prime Minister Costas) Karamanlis government "is dividing Greece and is hurting it on a daily basis" and spoke of a "tottering government".

    Papandreou also said that the prime minister and his ministers "want the Greeks to forget the looting of social insurance funds, phonetappings, illegal abductions of citizens, torture at police precincts of (public order minister Vyron) Mr. Polydoras, the dissolution of the National Health System, closed universities, ecological disasters and scandals.


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