|Tuesday, 21 January 2020|
Athens News Agency: News in English, 08-05-07
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From: The Athens News Agency at <http://www.ana.gr/>
 PM in Parliament on constitutional revisionPrime Minister Costas Karamanlis, speaking in Parliament during the debate on the revision of the constitution on Tuesday, stressed that the government is obliged to promote constitutional changes immediately to enable the country to meet the urgent needs of society and the increasing demands of a European and an international environment that is constantly developing.
"The time for revision is now," the prime minister said and accused the main opposition PASOK party of deliberately undermining the necessary changes due to its failure to defend its political options.
"The constitution assigns the responsibility of revision to all the Parliamentary political forces without exception. It cannot, therefore, on the one hand be declared that revision is necessary and, on the other, it being undermined. On the one hand, groundless allegations cannot be presented concerning the so-called 'downgrading of institutions' and, on the other, methods to be developed that undermine every progressive change," he added.
Referring to the issue of education, Karamanlis said that the government proposes the revision of article 16 that handles the legislative framework and the insecurity that has been inconveniencing thousands of young people for years, who seek education in foreign public and private universities.
The prime minister added that the revision will provide the possibility for non-state run and non-profit universities being established that will be under the direct and strict control of the government. This, he further said, will contribute to restricting student emigration and utilising the country's scientific potential.
Caption:ANA-MPA file photo of Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis
 PASOK criticises PM's speech on environmentMain opposition PASOK party on Tuesday criticised Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis' speech regarding the environment, made at a conference on climate change and energy security a day earlier.
The prime minister's speech was "out of space and time", PASOK's spokesman George Papaconstantinou told reporters at his daily briefing, adding that Environment, Town Planning and Public Works Minister George Souflias, in his address at the same conference, "told half-truths and big lies".
The prime minister and his environment minister "tried to justify what is unjustifiable," Papaconstantinou said, citing a letter sent by EU Environment Commissioner Stavros Dimas to the prime minister as "proof".
The spokesman said his party was also against the use of nuclear energy.
"Nuclear energy - No thank you", he underlined.
Caption: ANA-MPA file photo of main opposition PASOK leader George Papandreou
 Dimas at Athens Summit 2008European Union Environment Commissioner Stavros Dimas addressed the Athens Summit 2008 on "Climatic change and energy security" on Tuesday, focusing on the greater repercussions that climatic changes will have in the region of the Mediterranean, compared to other parts of the world, and on specific steps being taken by the European Commission in the direction of achieving an international agreement in Copenhagen in 2009 on decreasing carbon dioxide emissions and the great contribution by public opinion to this effort.
The European environment commissioner reminded that the Mediterranean region will sustain greater pressures from climatic change, meaning the destabilisation of climate, compared to other parts of the planet, since the average increase in temperature is 0.95 percent as against 0.74 percent all over the world.
He also referred to the economic analysis made by Nicholas Stern, who had noted three weeks ago that in his initial report he had underestimated the economic consequences emanating from climatic changes and that the results of these changes will be even greater for the economies of the developed and deeveloping countries.
Moreover, he drew attention to a report by NASA this year, according to which the problem is even greater than it had been believed previously. Climatic changes will have much sooner unfavourable consequences for the whole world and, consequently, the taking of measures is more imperative.
Caption: ANA-MPA file photo of European Union Environment Commissioner Stavros Dimas
 Greece in EurojustThe Parliamentary Justice Committee ratified on Tuesday the bill sanctioning Greece's participation in the European Justice Cooperation Unit (Eurojust), whose creation had been decided by the European Council in 2002.
The bill was ratified in principle by the main opposition PASOK party also, although its rapporteur George Petalotis raised objections over "inadeqaute" protection for the citizens' personal data.
Justice Minister Sotiris Hatzigakis said that Eurojust in essence covers the activities of inter-state agreements that have already been functioning, while also applying safety valves for joint European research and supervision groups to exist on Greek soil, but under a Greek public prosecutor and with national law as their axis.
The minister also said that the delay in introducing the relevant bill for ratification in Parliament was imperative "until the conditions were ripe."
Caption: ANA-MPA file photo of Justice Minister Sotiris Hatzigakis
 EU on 'green transport'European Union transport ministers preoccupied themselves with the so-called "green transport", meaning environmentally friendly, during their informal meeting in Slovenia, at which Transport and Communications Minister Kostis Hatzidakis represented Greece.
The European ministers expressed their political will to promote and implement policies favouring the environment on transport issues.
Hatzidakis said that the development of rail and combined transport is essential, since they will curb more pollutant road transport and will improve the network of goods transportation in a friendlier way for the environment.
The minister also said that "our day-to-day travel must have a corresponding orientation and for this reason the use of cars must decrease and the use of alternative transport means, such as public transport and that of a fixed course in particular, which are the friendliest for the environment, must increase."
Hatzidakis further stressed the importance of promoting economic incentives and counter-incentives for the replacement of old cars.
Caption: ANA-MPA file photo of buses in Athens using natural gas.
 Cypriots prefer Greece for holidaysGreece remains the main tourist destination of Cypriots, the president of the Travel Agents Association of Cyprus, Akis Kelepeshis, stated on Tuesday.
Speaking at a press conference for the exhibition "Travel 2008," which the association is organising from May 9-11, he said that in 2007 there were 1,080,512 trips, of which 712,612 were for holidays. To Greece, 438,388 trips were made, of which 293,075 were for holidays.
Taking part in the "Travel 2008" exhibition will be 66 exhibitors from Cyprus, Greece and from other countries as well.
Caption:ANA- MPA file photo of a view of the island of Samothrace
 Athens Newspaper HeadlinesThe Wednesday edition of Athens' dailies at a glance
A new clash between European environment commissioner Stavros Dimas and environment minister George Souflias, this time over nuclear energy, the Hellenic Telecommunications Organisation (OTE) part privatisation issue and opposition and employees' reactions, and the spiralling petrol prices were the main front-page items in Wednesday's newspapers.
ADESMEFTOS TYPOS: "Illegal immigration orgy, main from Turkey to Greece".
APOGEVMATINI: "7,450 job opportunities in the public sector - Detailed charts".
AVGHI: "Defeat of government and of two-party (ruling New Democracy and main opposition PASOK) consensus on Constitutional revision".
AVRIANI: "What is Dimas' intention? The man who played a decisive role in the collapse of the Mitsotakis government in '93 now targets Souflias, creating conditions of decomposition of the Karamanlis government".
CHORA: "The 5 hours that changed Panathinaikos - Jigger (Panathinaikos soccer team majority shareholder Yannis Vardinoyannis) and Vgenopoulos (MIG vice president and PEK-Panathinaikos Unity Movement co-founder) reached historic agreement Tuesday".
ELEFTHERI ORA: "The spiralling price of 'black gold' (petroleum) causes petrol cyclone, which is sweeping the markets".
ELEFTHEROS TYPOS: "Can we endure a nuclear plant in Greece? Scientific community divided, while majority of political world is opposed".
ELEFTHEROTYPIA: "Karamanlis purchasing armaments, amidst boom of prices".
ESTIA: "PASOK openly attempting sabotage of the economy".
ETHNOS: "Up in arms over the new system of (military officers') promotions - Abolition of seniority register, institution of voluntary 35-year-service".
KATHIMERINI: "Serious deficiencies in hospital staff, and long waiting lists".
LOGOS: " 'Black gold' out of control - Global economic 'terror' from the spiralling petrol prices".
NIKI: "OTE: Criminal responsibilities over the sell-off - PASOK calls agreement 'colonial' ".
RIZOSPASTIS: "Redeployment of the class movement and social popular alliance".
TA NEA: "Government setting up...nuclear test - Testing the reactions of the public opinion".
TO VIMA: "Nuclear war in ND - Souflias insists, Dimas criticises - Discussion opens on nuclear-powered electricity production".
VRADYNI: "Everything changing for military officesr - Social security/pensions, and new structure in Armed Forces".
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