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Athens News Agency: News in English, 07-09-07

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] Prime Minister Karamanlis asks for 'explicit, clear mandate' in general elections
  • [02] KKE leader addresses rally in Patra

  • [01] Prime Minister Karamanlis asks for 'explicit, clear mandate' in general elections

    Prime Minister and New Democracy (ND) party President Costas Karamanlis asked for an "explicit and clear mandate" from Greek voters so that "with safety and stability, armed with the confidence of the Greeks, we can advance faster and more decisively on the road of changes and reforms," during his address at an election rally in the Macedonian city of Serres on Friday evening.

    Outlining his party's priorities, Karamanlis said that these were "support for our fellow citizens who experienced destruction and the reconstruction of the wildfire-stricken regions. We have prepared and we are implementing, with the support of the Greeks, an integrated reconstruction and development plan. We are forging ahead with speedy paces and we are forging ahead responsibly."

    Focusing on his priorities further, the prime minister underlined that they are the continuation of changes and reforms to "enable the transition to a state that the citizens need and demand, a state that will be more effective, more productive and more responsible."

    Karamanlis further said that considerable steps were taken during the past 3.5 years. Longstanding pending issues were resolved, many procedures were simplified, bureaucracy was curbed and arrangements were enacted which promote transparency and serve public interest.

    "We are more than ready now for new decisive and firm steps. We are determined to continue with a new pace changes at all levels of the state, in all the sectors of central administration, of decentralisation, of local administration," he said.

    Karamanlis then attacked the main opposition PASOK party, without naming it, saying that "the cries of populism and of demagoguery will not disorientate us. No matter how much abuse they will use, no matter how many lies will be used by those who express the past, we shall not follow them."

    Elaborating once again on his priorities, Karamanlis referred to a "substantive strengthening of the social state of fairness." He noted that things are changing and the departure from the excessive deficit process paves the way for high growth rates to be achieved.

    He included a solution to the social security issue among his priorities, making the commitment to have a dialogue begin immediately with all political forces and all social agencies to "achieve a modern, fair and viable system".

    The prime minister also spoke of the continuation of educational reform "to enable us all together to create the school of the future, to make our country a centre of education and culture for the entire region, for us to secure for young women and young men the qualifications required by the new era."

    Karamanlis made special reference to strengthening the economy further. He said that for the first time a new governance succeeded in decreasing the fiscal deficit and at the same time reducing tax rates and increasing national income, as well as increasing the real remuneration of working people.

    He also added that emphasis is being placed on developing the countryside, where 80 percent of national and European Union funds from the national strategic framework for the new period being programmed is being directed.

    Lastly, Karamanlis said that many important things were achieved during the 3.5 years that have passed, but many things have yet to be done.

    "Our will to continue without postponements is firm. Our readiness to defend the interests of the many is firm and unshakeable, our responsibility towards our country and the Greeks is strong and unalterable, we have put Greece on a course that must be continued," the prime minister concluded.

    [02] KKE leader addresses rally in Patra

    Communist Party of Greece (KKE) Secretary General Aleka Papariga addressed a rally in the Peloponnese city of Patra on Friday evening, criticising the two mainstream New Democracy (ND) and PASOK parties and adding that "a powerful KKE is better than strengthened bipartisan rule."

    Papariga said that "to the artificial dilemma set by the prime minister and to the artificial dilemma leaked by PASOK, we reply: one is the real dilemma, weak bipartisan rule and strong people or weak people and strong bipartisan rule."

    The KKE leader further noted that both parties "do not want instability, since they have assumed responsibilities towards big capital, particularly the phase of utilising the 4th Community Support Framework, they have commitments towards NATO and the United States."

    Papariga also stressed that "it is better if they fear us and feel insecure than we fear them and we feel insecure. A strong KKE is better than strengthened bipartisan rule."

    Lastly, Papariga called on her audience to support KKE's election tickets and to vote against "all those who have led the working people to a deadlock."

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