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Athens News Agency: News in English, 09-05-24

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <http://www.ana.gr/>


  • [01] PM: Target is leading Greece out of crisis
  • [02] PASOK leader addresses rally in Lamia
  • [03] Super League playoffs results

  • [01] PM: Target is leading Greece out of crisis

    Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis addressed a party rally in the city of Tripoli, in the Peloponnese, on Sunday, saying that trust is a source of strength and stressed that the government's aim is to lead Greece out of the crisis and that "succeeding is our commitment and we shall succeed."

    Karamanlis said that top priority is being given to the sectors that are affected. Farmers, low wage earners, low pension earners, the unemployed and young people.

    The prime minister further said that the economy is the top priority and national interest comes above all, adding that "we are aware of problems. The heaviest burden, is the public debt left by the governments of PASOK."

    "We have a deep sense of the problems. The first being unemployment, that was 3 percent in 1981 and which PASOK delivered to us at 11 percent (in 2004). Those responsible for the problems are promising everything to all," Karamanlis noted.

    He accused main opposition PASOK party leader George Papandreou of "defaming the country and of slipping to insults," while noting that "in PASOK they have dared terming as barbarians all who do not vote for PASOK."

    Karamanlis wondered whether PASOK's leadership "is in contact with reality" and "if it has a sense of responsibility" stressing that "until when will populism be an obstacle for national interest."

    "We took difficult decisions that guarantee a result, however," he said and added that the government performed a considerable task, promoted reforms, provided integrated strategic planning and launched a big public investments programme.

    "Our aim is to support the financially weaker. We are scheduling a special programme for young men and young women to acquire professional training with a full salary and security. We have scheduled unprecedented programmes to support small and medium-size enterprises and, for the first time, the programme also concerns self-employed professionals, doctors, lawyers and others," he added.

    Karamanlis mentioned that the public investments programme totals 19 billion euros and that the Peloponnese has a considerable share of it, adding that as a result of regional planning 900 projects have been scheduled and financed with 800 million euros and 670 have been completed.

    The prime minister also referred to the wildfire sufferers in the Peloponnese and stressed that with the special fund and with the contribution of 92,000 donors, 800 homes are being rebuilt and restoration will not be delayed.

    He also revealed that the government has gone ahead with the preparation of a plan for the regions affected amounting to 2.5 billion euros and underlined that the goal is the revival of all of the Peloponnese.

    "We know that the year is difficult. It requires a sense of social responsibility. It requires all of us to shoulder part of the cost to enable the country to exit from the crisis," Karamanlis concluded.

    [02] PASOK leader addresses rally in Lamia

    Main opposition PASOK leader George Papandreou addressed a pre-election rally of supporters in Lamia, central Greece, on Sunday evening, pledging his party's "rediness to change Greece".

    "On June 7, we vote for a change in course which will lead the country to salvation in the next general elections whenever they take place," Papandreou told his audience, two weeks ahead of the Euroelections.

    The PASOK leader asked from voters and his party's members and officials to "be ready, active and be mobilised in order to achieve an overwhelming majority, which is currently being shaped."

    Papandreou defended what he calls the dilemma of the upcoming Euroelections, "Socialism or Barbarism", underlining at the same time that "in the hard struggle which PASOK is today waging, it does not place (ruling) New Democracy (ND) voters on the opposite side, because we want the ND voter to be on our side, since we do not separate citizens, we do not polarise society but we are instead sheping a new consensus for great changes."

    Expanding on his "Socialism or Barbarism" slogan, Papandreou said among other things "the policies that make the rich richer and the poor poorer constitute a social barbarity, closing down the Parliament in the middle of the night and in an arbitrary manner in order to go to the write off of scandals, this is an institutional barbarity, policies that allow factories to poison rivers and forests to be burnt constitute a barbarism."

    "The government has lost its contact with reality, with the citizen and its problems and it is now losing its contact with its own voters. This government has nothing else to offer to the country," the main opposition leader charged.

    He also called on the government to "state clearly what new taxes is preparing to impose after the Euroelections and what new burdens it intends to add to the Greek family's shoulders."

    "What is at stake, in these elections, is crucial and clear: Are we going to reward with our vote or our abstention those who are responsible for all that we are now experiencing or are we going to shape with our vote the new course which the country needs," Papandreou noted.

    Referring to strictly European issues, the PASOK leader said that Socialists were asking for a reform to be brought to the Stability Pact "in order to have public productive and social expenses exempted from the assessing of deficits."

    "The neo-conservatives are asking from us to raise our hands, to bow our heads, to resign. I have toured all of Greece and I have not seen a single Greek who wants to bow its head. What neo-conservatives call 'impossible' it is what we call 'possible'," Papandreou concluded.

    [03] Super League playoffs results

    Panathinaikos Athens thrashed PAOK Thessaloniki 4-1 at the Athens Olympic Stadium and AEK Athens drew 0-0 away with Larissa in soccer Super League playoffs played on Sunday.

    Scoring for Panathinaikos were Karagounis (36' pen.), Gabriel (40'), Salpingidis (59') and Petropoulos (90'+), while Anastasakos scored for PAOK (63').

    Larissa was left with 10 men in the whole of the second half after Iglesias was sent off and also missed a penalty in the first half with Para.

    Panathinaikos heads the playoff standings with 15 points and is followed by AEK with 12, PAOK 6 and Larissa 1.

    The top position in the playoffs leads to participation in European Champions League qualifying rounds.

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