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Athens News Agency: News in English, 08-04-14

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] PM confers with employment minister
  • [02] 12th Europe Theater Prize
  • [03] Sahara dust covers Greece

  • [01] PM confers with employment minister

    Prime minister Costas Karamanlis met Monday with employment minister Fani Pali-Petralia, who told reporters afterwards that implementation has commenced of the new social security law, as have the procedures for the unification of the social security funds.

    She said she briefed the prime minister in depth on the detailed plan, and on the ministry's policy aimed at increasing employment and reducing unemployment in the country.

    Asked whether the government was planning to liberalise the dismissals ceiling and changes to labor relations, Petralia said that both the government's and her own positions were "specific and absolute", adding that the framework of the government's policy concerned one thing: the model of full-time and quality work.

    Caption: ANA-MPA file photo of Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis

    [02] 12th Europe Theater Prize

    French director Patrice Chereau was the winner of the 12th Europe Theater Prize, receiving his award from Greek culture minister Michalis Liapis during an awards ceremony Sunday night in Thessaloniki, organiser of the 2008 event.

    "In my person, you honor not only an individual, but everyone I love and have worked with," Chereau said as he received his award.

    Former French culture minister Jack Lange said later that very few embodied the European Ideal as did Chereau, and also spoke of his "eternal friend Melina Mercouri", the late actress and former Greek culture minister, who spearheaded the campaign for the return of the Parthenon Marbles to Greece from the British Museum, for which Lange reitereated his staunch support.

    The awards ceremony opened with a greeting by Liapis, who stressed that support of this top European institution, which encourages the consolidation of a "common theatrical language among the European peoples" did not simply meet fully the ministry's strategy but was also one of its fundamental components.

    The prize for New Theatrical Realities was shared by Polish director Krzysztof Warlikowski for "Cleansed", and by the Rimini Protokoll Theater group (Germany's entry) for their production of Stefan Kaegi's "Mnemopark".

    "The awards, I fell, add a gray strand to the recipient's hair...I've been searching my hair since yesterday as I was preparing to receive the award," joked the 45-year-old Warlikowski, who enthused the public with his avant-garde production of Sarah Kane's play.

    The event was organised and hosted by the National Theater of Northern Greece.

    The Europe Theatre Prize was created in 1986 as a pilot programme of the European Commission and it has been recognised by the European Parliament and Council as a "European cultural interest organisation". The Union of European Theatres and the European Theatre Convention are associate and supporting bodies; other associate bodies are the International Association of Theatre Critics, the Mediterranean Theatre Institute and the International Theatre Institute UNESCO.

    Caption: Greek Culture Minister Michalis Liapis (L) hands over to French director Patrice Chereau (R) the 12th European Theatre Prize on Sunday 13 April 2008 in Thessaloniki.ANA-MPA/MEGAPRESS

    [03] Sahara dust covers Greece

    The northern Sahara Desert dust that covered the entire country over the past few days is starting to pull away, while the National Weather Service (EMY) has predicted rains and northerly winds, which are expected to clear the skies from the whitish haze.

    The phenomenon is not an unusual one and when the weather is rainy it is experienced as mud rain. According to meteorologists, the whitish color skies is the result of particles of dust from northern Africa that remain trapped in the humid atmosphere due to the unusually high temperatures for the season, coupled by southerly winds.

    This time its duration was longer due to the persistent southerly winds, which carried the dust as far north as Thessaloniki.

    The situation will improve on Tuesday but the phenomenon is expected to be repeated again at the end of the week, meteorologists said, adding that there is no hazard for the public, while only those with pulmonary diseases or asthma should be more careful.

    Meanwhile, a new cleaning method will be used in the Thermaikos Bay, Thessaloniki, for the removal of objects that have piled up on the sea bed, contributing to its pollution.

    A ?side scan sonar? device, used by the local Frogmen Club to map the bottom of the sea, will locate objects weighing up to a ton in order to be removed following an initiative undertaken by the Ministry of Macedonia-Thrace.

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