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Athens News Agency: News in English, 09-02-15

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] Papandreou addresses supporters in Kalamata
  • [02] Greek economy grew by 3% in '08
  • [03] Fundraiser for Gaza children
  • [04] Greek Superleague results

  • [01] Papandreou addresses supporters in Kalamata

    Main opposition PASOK party leader George Papandreou on Sunday again demanded early elections this June to coincide with European Parliament elections, calling on the prime minister to declare elections and to agree on a consensus candidate for president of the republic.

    Papandreou, who spoke to supporters in the southeastern port city of Kalamata, charged that PM Costas Karamanlis is ignoring his demands.

    "PASOK doesn't call for elections for its own sake but for the country's sake. If we only cared for our party's interests we would let the government to fall apart, day after day. We only want to avoid the worst," he said, adding that "even if the following day is difficult we are ready to deal with it."

    He called on the people to "hold their head up high" and to know that there is hope for the country, while referring to the government he said it should "step back for Greece to pass; let the people speak".

    He criticised the government as having failed in all sectors and was critical over government's policy in agriculture and on public sector spending.

    "The country is in the midst of a crisis and needs to increase public investments, and the government has not only reduced them but has not taken advantage of even a single euro of the 4th CSF, leaving the country unprotected before the global economic crisis."

    Papandreou referred to the major and necessary reforms that must be made in the country, such as decentralisation, a new development model based on "green" development and an investment in human resources.

    He promised to create a "just state", pointing out that markets do not adjust themselves because this is a recipe of destruction. He also promised that Greece will recover its credibility in Europe, the Balkans and internationally, because PASOK's government will be a credible negotiator.

    "We can unite Greeks with a radical programme and we will be the winners of this battle," he concluded.

    Caption: Main opposition PASOK party leader George Papandreou addresses his party supporters in Kalamata. ANA-MPA/NIKITAS KOTSIARIS

    [02] Greek economy grew by 3% in '08

    The Greek economy grew by 3.0 pct in 2008, down from 4.0 pct in 2007, according to provisional figures published by the National Statistics Service on Friday.

    The statistics service, in a report, said the economic growth rate in the fourth quarter of 2008 was 2.6 pct, down from 2.9 pct in the previous quarter, while on a quarterly base, economic growth rate in the October-December period was 0.3 pct, slightly from 0.5 pct in the third quarter.

    The statistical service attributed the slowdown in the growth rate to a significant decline in investments, mainly because of a major decrease in building activity in the country, while consumption fell strongly as a result of limited credit expansion to households.

    Greece's finance ministry, in an updated Stability and Growth programme submitted with the European Union, envisages a growth rate of 1.1 pct this year.

    Eurostat also said on Friday that the Greek economy grew by 2.6 pct in the fourth quarter of 2008. The EU executive's statistics agency said that Greece (3.0 pct), Slovakia (2.7 pct), Czech Republic (1.0 pct) and Austria (0.5 pct) were the only EU member-states with positive growth rates.

    In the Eurozone, the economy shrank by 1.2 pct, while in the EU-27 GDP was -1.1 pct, compared with a 0.2 pct decline in the US.

    [03] Fundraiser for Gaza children

    A special fundraising event to collect money for the children of beleaguered Gaza was held at the Dais Theatre in Maroussi, Athens on Sunday evening, beginning with an opening address by Health and Social Solidarity Minister Dimitris Avramopoulos. The money donated will be handed over to the UN agency for Palestinian refugees, UNRWA, which will be in charge of ensuring that it is delivered to where it is most required.

    Introducing Avramopoulos, correspondent Maria Karhilaki recounted her own experiences in the Palestinian territories, stressing that Gaza was one of the most densely populated regions in the world and that nearly half the population was under 18.

    Avramopoulos stressed that our response to events in Gaza was a "measure of the world's civilisation" and stressed that for all people in Europe and in Greece it was a "message of our responsibility".

    The event was organised by the Institute of Preventive Medicine, Environmental and Occupational Health 'Prolepsis', with the assistance of the 'CCC family' based in Athens and its Palestinian owners.

    Caption: ANA-MPA file photo of Health Minister Dimitris Avramopoulos

    [04] Greek Superleague results

    Olympiakos Piraeus retained its 14-point lead over the second place teams over the weekend by downing Aris Thessaloniki 2-1 at home on Saturday in a match that left the visitors furious with several referee calls.


    Levadiakos Livadia - PAOK Thessaloniki 0-3

    Panionios Athens - Ergotelis Crete 0-0

    AEK Athens - Tharasyvoulos Athens 1-0

    Olympiakos Piraeus - Aris Thessaloniki 2-1

    OFI Crete - Asteras Tripoli 1-1

    Panserraikos Serres - Xanthi 1-0

    Panthrakikos Komotini - Larissa 0-1

    Iraklis Thessaloniki - Panathinaikos Athens 0-0

    STANDINGS after 22 matches


    PAOK 43


    AEK 38

    LARISSA 34

    ARIS 31


    XANTHI 28

    IRAKLIS 26





    OFI 18



    Caption: Panathinaikos midfielder Sotiris Ninis (L) and Iraklis' defender Giorgos Ioannidis (R)at the match Iraklis -Panathinaikos on Sunday 15 February at Kaftantzoglio Stadium of Thessaloniki

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