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

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] Athens and Beijing Mayor meet
  • [02] Wildfires across Greece
  • [03] Tourism promotion project

  • [01] Athens and Beijing Mayor meet

    Athens Mayor Nikitas Kaklamanis met on Wednesday with his Beijing counterpart Guo Jinlong in the Chinese capital, ahead of the launch of the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games.

    Mayor Kaklamanis, who is heading a municipal delegation, was the first official Beijing Games guest to meet with Mayor Guo, according to a City of Athens press release.

    As part of the visit to the Olympic City, Mayor Kaklamanis was also received Wednesday by Beijing Organising Committee for the Games of the XXIX Olympiad (BOCOG) chairman Liu Qi.

    Mayor Guo warmly welcomed Mayor Kaklamanis, who conveyed wishes from the Athens City Council for the successful holding of the Games.

    Kaklamanis said he hoped the success of the Beijing Olympics would continue to impact on the city after the Games, particularly with regards to the utilization of sporting venues.

    "You have given thousands of people the opportunity to visit and familiarize themselves with your country. You are acquiring new friends and this will be your greatest gain when the lights go out," the Athens Mayor said.

    The two Mayors discussed ways to enhance cooperation between their cities through the implementation of initiatives to promote economic development, cultural exchange and tourism.

    Mayor Kaklamanis invited his Beijing counterpart to visit the Greek capital and promised to take him on a personal tour of the city of Ancient Olympia, the press release noted.

    On his part, Mayor Guo said that Mayor Kaklamanis was the first official guest he had received, emphasizing the significance the city of Athens holds for China. He pointed out that Chinese travelers were very interested in visiting Greece and suggested that they acquaint themselves more fully with Athens.

    During his meeting with BOCOG chairman Liu Qi earlier in the day, Mayor Kaklamanis wished Liu every success in the staging of the Olympic Games.

    "I am certain that the Olympic Games opening ceremony, which we will attend, will prove to be impressive," said Kaklamanis, who referred to the excellent cooperation between the two cities in the lead-up to the Beijing Games.

    Caption: Athens Mayor Nikitas Kaklamanis (L) and Beijing Mayor Guo Jinlong in Beijing on Wednesday 6 August 2008. ANA-MPA/Ioannis Marinoglou

    [02] Wildfires across Greece

    A wildfire that broke out Thursday morning in a forest region in Kamari, Elefsina, southern Greece, is in progress. Strong firefighting forces on the ground, assisted by two water-dropping aircraft and a helicopter, participate in the efforts to contain the blaze. A major firefighting operation is underway on the north Aegean island of Thasos, to extinguish the wildfire that broke out in a forest region near Limenaria. Two water-dropping aircraft, a helicopter and a strong firefighting force on the ground participate in the efforts to put out the blaze. Meanwhile, firemen from the prefecture of Kavala, northeastern Greece, are combating a wildfire that burns grassland in the municipality of Eleftheroupolis. The wildfire that broke out earlier on Thursday in Lakkoskiti, in the monastic community of Mt. Athos, northern Greece, has been put under control. Ten firemen on foot assisted by two water-dropping helicopters participate in the ongoing efforts to fully extinguish the blaze.

    Caption: ANA-MPA file photo

    [03] Tourism promotion project

    The Tourism Development Ministry has proceeded to upgrading the country's entry and exit points for the projection of Greek tourism.

    According to a ministry press release, in this context, "the ministry has creatively enriched the Cruise Passenger Station "Akti Xaveriou" of the Piraeus Port Authority (OLP) with the purpose of hosting the advertising campaign of the ministry for the eco-tourism routes, which have been co-financed by the 3rd Community Support Framework (CSF)."

    These include eco-tourism routes in popular destinations, such as Santorini, Ancient Olympia and Alonnisos.

    The utilization of OLP's Cruise Passenger Station for the projection of advertising messages through issues which promote the advantages and potential of Greek tourism to passengers of cruise ships, is of decisive importance, as more than 1.5 million cruise ship passengers pass from the port of Piraeus annually.

    This initiative has a strategic and symbolic character due to the great importance which the Tourism Development Ministry attributes to the continuously increased cruise ship market, which attracts more than 11 million tourists annually, the press release concluded.

    Caption: ANA-MPA file photo

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