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Athens News Agency: News in English, 08-09-28

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] Bakoyannis address at UN
  • [02] Morricone at Herod Atticus
  • [03] Madonna 'sticky and sweet' at OAKA
  • [04] Athens Newspaper Headlines

  • [01] Bakoyannis address at UN

    Greek Foreign Minister Dora Bakoyannis on Saturday afternoon spoke at the 63rd UN General Assembly in New York, where she opened her address by quoting Sophocles, "to err from the right path is common to all mankind."

    She stressed that Greece subscribes wholeheartedly to the goals of limiting damage from the worst of those errors and lives up to the mandate of the United Nations. "My government subscribes to the views in the address delivered by Nicolas Sarkozy of France in his capacity as President of the EU," she said. "In such critical times", Bakoyannis added," individual countries have two choices: We can look inward to pursue narrow self-interests and promote nationalist goals to distract our people from the world's dangers. Or we can look outward, open our minds and our boundaries, engage and motivate our people to understand the only way to deal with the threats before us is to face them together" adding "The Greek people have chosen the second course because our history and our character demand it. We were the first society to develop the ideals that free people throughout the world now cherish - democracy, equality, individual rights. In our more recent history we suffered numerous wars and bitter poverty and privation. Yet we endured, and in time we managed to make our way back to those ideals we first professed".

    Concerning Greece's neighborhood, Bakoyannis expressed her pleasure on Croatia's and Albania's accession to NATO, outlining that Greece will welcome FYROM to the alliance when a mutually acceptable solution is reached on the "name issue". Greece, Bakoyannis said, will continue to be guided by the letter and the spirit of Security Council Resolutions 817 and 845 on the issue, "and I want to take this opportunity to express our appreciation to the U.N. Secretary General and his personal envoy, Mr. Mathew Nimetz, for their commitment and tireless efforts to settle the dispute."

    Referring to the Cyprus issue, the Greek FM expressed her certainty that modern Turkey, with a clear European orientation, will add "to the stability of the western Balkans and Greece will support Turkey's European aspiration as it moves to meet the prerequisites set out in the negotiating framework of the European Union but the peaceful settlement of disputes with other nations are in the essential preconditions and the occupation of over one- third of Cyprus is a serious obstacle." Bakoyannis welcomed the recent decision by Cypriot President Demetris Christofias and Turkish Cypriot leader Mehmet Ali Talat to resume negotiations, under the auspices of the U.N. Secretary General adding that a viable solution can be achieved by the Cypriots themselves through negotiations between the two communities without artificial deadlines and arbitration. Continuing her speech, Bakoyannis referred to climate change saying that a new, truly global, agreement must be achieved in 2009." In this agreement we need to have ambitious binding mitigation targets, but we also need a much stronger effort on adaptation, where there is a huge deficit between the needs and the actual financing provided. A deficit exasperated by the fact that no matter what we do we are locked in for significant climate change in the next three to four decades, which is going to especially affect the least developed countries. It is an unjust reality that those that are least to blame for the creation of the problem are to suffer most. Greece is moving to face this challenge. We have signed this week in New York agreements with the African Union and CARICOM, for the funding of adaptation projects and plan to do that also with the Alliance of Small Island States, providing a total amount of 20 million euros, for the next 4 years. One might argue that this is just a drop in the adaptation bucket. It is however a drop in an empty bucket". On the South Ossetia conflict, Bakoyannis said Greece's position on this crisis is rooted in the principles that have always guided Greece's foreign policy - peaceful settlement of disputes, respect for the sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity of states. "In both the EU and NATO, we supported the six-point Agreement that helped end conflict in the area, but we are anxious to see measures that will alleviate the anger and mistrust that now pervade the region."

    Concerning the broader Middle East and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, the Greek Foreign Minister stressed that it is at the root of most of the problems and the region requires a comprehensive and lasting solution. "I think that we all agree that the Peace Process, re-launched last year at the Annapolis Conference, has the potential to achieve tangible results and merits the strong support of all of us where on Lebanon, we welcome the election of President, the formation of the national unity government and the resumption of the national dialogue. Lebanon's sovereignty and territorial integrity should be respected in conformity with the relevant UN Security Council Resolutions".

    On regional security, Bakoyannis stated that Greece is preparing to assume the chairmanship of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe next January. "The OSCE, the world's largest regional security organization, can be a forum for frank and fruitful talk on security issues and can contribute effectively to such crucial concerns as early warning, conflict prevention, crisis management and post-conflict rehabilitation." Bakoyannis urged the UN <font size="2" face="Verdana">to strengthen its efforts to alleviate the bitter poverty that still grips many parts of the world, expressing her regret the lack of progress in the Doha round talks. "In 2000 we agreed on the Millennium Development Goals, probably the most ambitious development project ever undertaken by man. Time-wise we are half-way there. Yet, a lot remains to be done. The progress achieved so far is jeopardized by higher prices - particularly of food and oil - and the global economic slow down. Our success will be judged primarily in Africa. "We believe that one way to help jump-start development in Africa is to involve women in the economy more extensively. Providing women entrepreneurial opportunities at local, national and regional levels will allow them to strengthen their role in society, increase their involvement in education, and ultimately allow them to play a more active part in decision making. As the French social theorist Charles Fourier said more than 200 years ago ... The extension of women's rights is the basic principle of all social progress." Concluding Bakoyannis spoke of migration, saying that Greece aims to provide a platform to explore solutions and initiatives for the benefit of all countries and especially for the immigrants themselves, reminding that Greece will host the 3rd Global Forum on Migration in the fall of 2009, as she urged the international community to show its strong commitment to combating terrorism while protecting human rights and the rule of l<font color="#FFFFFF" size="2" face="Tahoma">aw.

    Caption: ANA-MPA file photograph of Foreign Minister Dora Bakoyannis.

    [02] Morricone at Herod Atticus

    Renowned Italian composer Ennio Morricone will conduct, in a world premiere on Sunday and Monday at the Roman-era Herod Atticus Odeon, beneath the Acropolis, his new symphonic work, inspired by the Seikilos epitaph, identified as the world's oldest surviving example of a complete musical composition, including musical notation.

    The score, whose melody has been recorded, along with its lyrics in the ancient Greek musical notation, was discovered engraved on a tombstone, near Aydin, Turkey, not far from the ancient Greek metropolis of Ephesus.

    "I come to pay tribute to your city with a work that was born here, 3,000 ago, with influences from the Middle East, and which has through its evolution, influenced the music of Rome, Ireland, the United States and gospel," the 80-year Morricone told a press conference in Athens on Thursday.

    The Italian composer, who will conduct the Roma Sinfonietta orchestra, will also perform a series of excerpts from some of his famous cinematic film scores.


    [03] Madonna 'sticky and sweet' at OAKA

    Madonna's "Sticky and Sweet" tour hit Athens on Saturday night, playing to a capacity audience at the OAKA Olympic Stadium in the city's Marousi suburb. The Queen of Pop put on a charged show with plenty snap and crackle in the Greek capital, where tickets had been sold out months in advance, swinging by this corner of southeast Europe for her last date on the Old Continent before she heads across the Atlantic to the United States.

    Caption: 'Queen of Pop' Madonna captivated audiences at a packed Athens' OAKA Olympic Stadium on Saturday night, where her "Sticky and Sweet" Tour stopped for just one day before heading back across the Atlantic.ANA-MPA - Symela Pantzartzi.

    [04] Athens Newspaper Headlines

    The Sunday edition of Athens' dailies at a glance

    The latest domestic political developments and the crisis within the ruling party, the repercussions of the global credit crunch, the scandal over controversial property exchanges between the state and a Mouth Athos monastery (Vatopedi) along with the latest opinion polls, dominated the Sunday editions of Athens' dailies.

    ADESMEFTOS TYPOS: "[PM Costas] Karamanlis rolls up his sleeves to tackle the economy - as he showed the Central Committee, he won't let things slide any further".

    APOGEVMATINI: "Benefits for the economically vulnerable - the 2009 budget will not include additional measures"

    ARTHRO: "Toplou monastery the new 'Vatopedi' - How [main opposition party] PASOK 'conceded' 3000 hectares on Crete"

    AVGHI: "Karamanlis a hostage - leadership bluster with empty bravado". [Critices PM's performance at ND's central committee and his attack on party rebels]

    AVRIANI: "Plan to overthrow Karamanlis founders - too bad about the opinion polls raising [PASOK leader George Papandreou] and the operation an MP". [Claims failure of an organised plan by 'political bullies' to topple Karamanlis]

    CHORA: "Miracles industry set up by Ephrain [Vatopedi monastery abbot] - who are those 'caught up' in his habit". [Claims abbot exported 'miraculous' icons and makes revelations about those behind the monastery's land deals]

    ELEFTHEROS TYPOS: "Game reversal using three killer moves - Counter-measures planned by Karamanlis: expulsions, reshuffle, reforms". [Claims drastic plan by PM to emerge from current political crisis]

    ELEFTHEROTYPIA: "Karamanlis' great depression - Opinion polls a slap in the face for ND and the prime minister. PASOK two points ahead, 14 percent to Coalition of the Radical Left (SYRIZA) and six parties in the new Parliament".

    ELEFTHERI ORA: "The lads are in pain, dear Costas! He let them have it, he creamed them and made them act like seminary schoolgirls" [refers to strong stance taken by PM Karamanlis against the party 'rebels' at the recent Central Committee meeting, claiming that it silenced any critics within the party].

    EPOCHI: "[Karamanlis] is challenging them to overthrow him so that he doesn't fall any lower"

    ETHNOS: "Rocketing interest rates choke households-businesses - a second blow after [Finance Minister George] Alogoskoufis' tax gouging measures".

    KATHIMERINI: "Karamanlis' wager and behind the scenes at New Democracy (ND) - the proposals to Maximou [PM's offices], the moves of the top echelons and the reshuffle".

    LOGOS: "Prime minister turns the page - the next steps for emerging from the crisis".

    NIKI: "He's broken off the relationship with society - Karamanlis has lost his outward good image". [Criticises PM's performance at ND central committee, claiming it revealed a failure to pick up society's messages]

    PARON: "Behave yourselves! Karamanlis is awake at last." [Sees new tougher stance by PM against rebels and wrong-doers within party]

    PROTO THEMA: "62.3 % - Get out, Theodoros - ALCO opinion poll - Citizens point to the door while Karamanlis pretends he doesn't understand".

    RIZOSPASTIS: "18th Communist Party of Greece (KKE) conference - Announcement by the central committee.

    TO VIMA: "Plans of engagement against 'rebels' and 'privileged' - Mr. Karamanlis attempts to escape the deadlock".

    VRADYNI: "53,000 to be hired within the year - Exclusive: recovery plan for economic crisis".

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