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Athens News Agency: News in English, 08-04-29

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] Karamanlis and Putin discuss energy cooperation
  • [02] Horse marathon for Lake Koronia

  • [01] Karamanlis and Putin discuss energy cooperation

    MOSCOW (ANA-MPA - S. Goutzanis) Greek Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis was received by outgoing Russian President Vladimir Putin on Tuesday for a meeting that highlighted strategic relations between Greece and Russia in energy cooperation. Karamanlis is currently in Moscow for a working visit.

    "The invitation that you extended to me, at what is for you an emotionally charged time, underlines the strategic relations between our countries and the friendship that binds them," Karamanlis said in statements made after meeting Putin in the Kremlin, referring to the Russian president's imminent departure from the presidential office on May 7.

    He said the talks with Putin had reviewed the very good cooperation between Greece and Russia in recent years, while adding that they would "lay the foundations for further dynamic cooperation in all areas".

    In addition to bilateral issues, Karamanlis said that he and Putin had also exchanged views on international affairs.

    According to the Greek premier, the Russian president had made an invaluable personal contribution to developing ties with Greece and bilateral relations would continue to deepen at the same rate after Putin assumes his new position as Russia's prime minister.

    Putin referred to the important energy projects being carried out in collaboration with Greece, noting that "this cooperation is very important and will contribute to the energy security of Europe and of Greece".

    He commented on the economic ties between the two countries, saying that the overall turnover in trade transactions approached three billion dollars.

    The Russian president added that the two countries placed special emphasis on environmental issues and were in constant contact over international affairs.

    "We rely on the positive role that Greece has always played in relations between Russia and Europe," Putin said at one point.

    The Russian leader stressed that Karamanlis will also be meeting his successor Dmitri Medvedev and emphasised that he was handing over the presidency against a background of major growth for the Russian economy and a stable political situation domestically.

    "Our bilateral relations will continue to improve," Putin added, expressing certainty that the new Russian president would prove a "good and reliable partner".

    "I know that you monitor relations between Greece and Russia very closely and you can be sure that these will continue along the same lines in the future," he concluded.

    Medvedev will be assuming his duties officially on May 7, while the next day the State Duma (Lower House) will be expected to ratify the presidential proposal and elect Putin prime minister.

    According to the Kremlin programme, the meeting with Karamanlis, who is expected back in Athens on Wednesday, was among Putin's last with foreign leaders in his presidential capacity.

    Caption: ANA-MPA file photograph taken during Greek Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis' previous visit to the Kremlin and his meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin in December 2007.

    [02] Horse marathon for Lake Koronia

    The 5th Horse Racing Marathon "Egnatia" will take place during the May 3-4 weekend in the Lake Koronia region, east of Thessaloniki in northern Greece. The event is held in order to raise public awareness about the ecological crisis at Lake Koronia and ways of alleviating its repercussions. Roughly 100 horses will participate in the 28km-long horse endurance race on Sunday. The initiative was undertaken six years ago when "pollution was so severe that our horses refused drinking water from the lake or even cross it," said a local resident and horse owner. The event is seen as a last-ditch effort to sensitize people to the environmental crime being committed at Lake Koronia and is hosted by the Langada local authority, the ministry of Macedonia-Thrace and the Hellenic Equestrian Federation. Lake Koronia is facing a serious ecological crisis due to pollution from agricultural and livestock run-off and from industrial effluents, which has resulted in a high concentration of toxins that is compounded by declining water levels due to inadequate rainfall and unseasonally high temperatures in recent years.

    Caption: ANA-MPA file photograph of a horse and rider at Lake Kerkini in 2007.

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