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Athens News Agency: News in English, 07-11-18

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] Karamanlis and Erdogan inaugurate Greek-Turkish natgas pipeline
  • [02] November 17 march ends without incident

  • [01] Karamanlis and Erdogan inaugurate Greek-Turkish natgas pipeline

    Greek Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis and Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan met on the bridge over the Evros River at Kipous on Sunday, at the border between Greece and Turkey, for the inauguration of the Greek-Turkish natural gas pipeline that went into operation on that day.

    The two prime ministers shook hands and posed for a photograph, after which Karamanlis got into the Turkish premier's car and they went to Ipsala on the Turkish side of the border for an inauguration ceremony. This was the second time that the two prime ministers met on the bridge over the Evros River, the first time being in July 2005 when work on the project first began.

    The inauguration ceremony was also attended by Azerbaijan's President Ilham Aliyev, U.S. Secretary for Energy Samuel Bodman and Greek Parliament President Dimitris Sioufas, who had been instrumental in the execution of the project as development minister.

    The pipeline is eventually expected to bring natural gas from the Caspian Sea via Turkey and Greece to Italy and from there to the rest of Europe.

    The two prime ministers inaugurated the project in twin ceremonies held at Ipsala in Edirne, Turkey and at Peplos in Evros, on the Greek side of the border, with Karamanlis sending a message that "we can plan actions and carry out works that contribute to building a better future".

    Addressing the Turkish side, meanwhile, the Greek premier stressed that Greece, its government and all its political forces were "once again seeking good neighbour relations, relations of cooperation, relations of continual rapprochement between the two peoples".

    In his own message, Erdogan expressed hope that the cooperation between Greece and Turkey on this first major and important project would extend to political and cultural issues between the two countries.

    Party reactions

    Commenting on the inauguration of the pipeline in an announcement on Sunday, the Communist Party of Greece said the working and popular classes should treat the celebrations with distrust, because they would gain nothing from its operation.

    "The jobs created will be minimal, while the broader masses will not even benefit from cheap or safe natural gas, because this will be exploited by large business groups. On the contrary, the dangers that arise from imperialist competition, which is constantly getting stronger, in order to control energy and its pathways are extremely great," the announcement added.

    [02] November 17 march ends without incident

    The traditional march to the United States Embassy in Athens that is held each year on the anniversary of the November 17 Polytechnic uprising ended peacefully and without incident on Saturday evening, while turnout was reported as good in spite of heavy rain earlier that day.

    The police presence at the march was strong but discreet and the 34th anniversary events for the polytechnic uprising ended shortly after 18:30.

    According to police chief Anastasios Dimoschakis, this year's march in Athens was almost completely peaceful and there were no injuries or damages reported, while no one had to be detained or arrested. He attributed this to the good cooperation between organisers and police.

    The only tense moment during the march was when two different political groups clashed near Mavilis Square and when someone attacked police with a petrol bomb that burst into flames near the junction with Vassilisis Sofias and Kerasountos. Police did not respond, however, and the incident ended without further developments. Three more petrol bombs that did not catch fire and stones were also thrown at riot police at the Ambelokipi junction, but again police did not respond and the incident ended quickly.

    Regarding marches held in other cities around Greece, Dimoschakis said the majority were without incident while in Thessaloniki three people were detained and one young man was arrested when he attacked police with a plank outside the White Tower police station. Police there used small quantities of teargas to disperse violent demonstrators, who had earlier also broken plate-glass windows at a Greek Post Offices branch.

    Shortly after the marches dispersed, Interior Minister Prokopis Pavlopoulos and Deputy Interior Minister in charge of public order Panagiotis Hinofotis visited the Attica General Police Headquarters on Saturday evening and congratulated the police for their hands-off approach during the march.

    "In a democratic state the police does its work when it doesn't need to intervene," the minister stressed.

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