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Athens News Agency: News in English, 09-06-05

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

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

CONTENTS

  • [01] Interview with PASOK leader Papandreou
  • [02] Policeman seriously injured in April shootout dies
  • [03] Policeman seriously injured in April shootout dies
  • [04] Blocking of Karavelas' joint accounts with his children ordered by examining magistrate on Siemens affair
  • [05] Minor explosion at Tax Bureau office in Psychico claimed by ENEDRA group
  • [06] World Environment Day
  • [07] Tsipras speaks in Patras
  • [08] ASE opening: Rise

  • [01] Interview with PASOK leader Papandreou

    A main opposition PASOK victory in Sunday's European Parliament elections will be a major reversal of the correlation of political forces and the political landscape, which will accelerate the political developments, PASOK leader George Papandreou said in an interview with ANA-MPA just two days before the elections.

    Papandreou also said that national elections couldn't be held off for long, regardless of whether prime minister Costas Karamanlis wanted them or not. He intimated that the expiration date for the process would be the Presidential election, stressing that it would be better if President Karolos Papoulias' re-election came from a parliament with a "fresh popular mandate".

    The main opposition leader spoke of a "complete failure" of the governance of New Democracy that was harmful to the country, adding that "the account of Mr. Karamanlis' term in office is particularly distressful for Greece and the Greek people", and as a consequence the Euroelections were compulsorily rendered a referendum for the rejection of the country's current course, in order to "open the door to hope" and to turn page.

    Commenting on the government's accusations of "populism and irresponsibility" on his part, Papandreou countered that "irresponsibility is not fulfilling the promises you have made".

    Regarding the measures he would take to confront the economy's problems, the PASOK leader said that "in the economy and politics, there are always choices", adding that he will fight for his choices, which will be 'painful' for those 'favored' by the present government.

    Papandreou said that he put the public interests above everything else, adding that he was in a position to do this because he was not dependant on anyone, whereas Karamanlis acts like "a hostage of interests and anomies".

    Caption: ANA-MPA file photo of main opposition PASOK leader George Papandreou

    [02] Policeman seriously injured in April shootout dies

    30-year-old police officer seriously injured during a shootout with a pair of armed suspects two months ago died on Friday from his wounds.

    The policeman, Spyros Theodorou, was shot by at least one man during a routine check on what turned out to be the former's accomplice, an incident that occurred in the central Kypseli district.

    Theodorou remained hospitalised in an Athens hospital's ICU since the shooting on April 3.

    "I would like to express my sincerest grief and condolences to the family of the slain officer, Spyros Theodorou, who fell in the line of duty," Deputy Interior Minister Christos Markoyiannakis said upon being informed of the officer's passing.

    [03] Policeman seriously injured in April shootout dies

    30-year-old police officer seriously injured during a shootout with a pair of armed suspects two months ago died on Friday from his wounds.

    The policeman, Spyros Theodorou, was shot by at least one man during a routine check on what turned out to be the former's accomplice, an incident that occurred in the central Kypseli district.

    Theodorou remained hospitalised in an Athens hospital's ICU since the shooting on April 3.

    "I would like to express my sincerest grief and condolences to the family of the slain officer, Spyros Theodorou, who fell in the line of duty," Deputy Interior Minister Christos Markoyiannakis said upon being informed of the officer's passing.

    [04] Blocking of Karavelas' joint accounts with his children ordered by examining magistrate on Siemens affair

    Special examining magistrate Nikos Zagorianos, who is heading an ongoing bribery and money-laundering investigation involving Greek state contracts awarded to the German multinational Siemens, late Thursday night ordered the blocking of the joint bank accounts held by former Siemens Hellas executive Christos Karavelas, a fugitive from Greek justice, and his daughters.

    The order applies to accounts held jointly by Siemens scandal suspect Karavelas with his two adult daughters, his underage daughter, and a younger son.

    [05] Minor explosion at Tax Bureau office in Psychico claimed by ENEDRA group

    A minor explosion occurred in the first hours of Friday at the entrance of the Tax Bureau (DOY) office in the municipality of Psychico, north of Athens, while a warning call to a daily newspaper had preceded, claiming the attack on behalf of a group calling itself the "Armed Revolutionary Action" (Enopli Epanastatiki Drassi, ENEDRA, the acronym of which is also the Greek word for ambush).

    The explosion, which was minor in intensity, occurred at 3:00 a.m. at the entrance to the DOY on central Kifissias Avenue.

    Ten minutes earlier, an anonymous caller phoned the Eleftherotypia daily, claiming the attack on behalf of ENEDRA and warning that a bomb had been planted at the entrance to the DOY.

    Police were unable to cordon off the area in time, as the call to the newspaper had come just minutes before the explosion, but managed to halt traffic along Kifissias Avenue.

    The blast caused minor material damage outside the DOY.

    Police counter-terrorism squad members, who collected debris and remnants from the explosion, said later that the bomb comprised approximately half a kilo of explosive material, of which only 100-150 grams exploded, a detonator, a battery and a time switch, placed in a cooking pot.

    The syndesmology of the bomb is reminiscent of that used by ENEDRA in its first attack, again against a DOY office in the southern suburb of Argyroupolis on January 23, 2007. The Argyroupolis bomb had been hidden in a pressure cooker placed in a bag, and a warning call had again preceded the explosion.

    The group re-emerged on March 3, 2008 when it claimed a failed bomb attack against a building belonging to the Attica Region Forests Directorate on central Messogion Avenue in Neo Psychico in a warning call to a newspaper. The Messogion bomb half a kilo of gel dynamite, a detonator, battery and clock. But only the detonator exploded in that attack. The dynamite did not go off because it had become damp.

    Counter-terrorism squad officers believe that ENEDRA is the continuation of the Popular Revolutionary Action (Laiki Epanastatiki Drassi-LED) group that emerged after the 'November 17' terrorist group and has been defunct since end-2006.

    [06] World Environment Day

    World Environment Day celebrated is an opportunity for awakening and greater awareness on environmental protection issues, sustainable and viable development and the restoration of the balance between man and the natural environment, the government and parties announced on Friday.

    "The effort is joint and continuous and demands collective effort to create environmental awareness, particularly among the children, thus contributing to the formulation of a new attitude and way of life characterized by a sense of responsibility toward the environment, making everyday an Environment Protection Day," Interior Minister Prokopis Pavlopoulos said.

    Archbishop Ieronymos of Athens and All Greece, in his message, stressed that it is "a blessing from God" that the people have realized that "our Planet is our Home" and that it should be protected and saved.

    "June 5, should be a day of celebration and global gratitude to God, the creator of planet Earth, as well as to all those environmentally aware people worldwide for all they do to solve the ecological problem we are faced with," the Archbishop underlined.

    Two-day events will be hosted by the Central Union of Municipalities and Communities (KEDKE), the City of Athens and NGOs at the Goudi Park in east Athens on the occasion of the World Environment Day.

    [07] Tsipras speaks in Patras

    Coalition of the Left, Movements and Ecology (Synaspismos) leader Alexis Tsipras spoke at a rally organised by SYRIZA (the SYN-led parliamentary coalition) in the major portal city of Patras, northwestern Peloponnese, on Thursday night.

    Tsipras said that the solution for exiting the crisis is unity of the Left and ecology parties.

    "Unity of the Left with Ecology is the only way to avert the big plan they are preparing, namely of passing the immense weight of the crisis exclusively to the working people and the environment," Tsipras warned. That unity, he continued, "is an urgent response to the crisis, with the focus on protection of workers' rights, protection of the envionment, expansion of the social state, the civil and social rights".

    "We have called on the Communist Party of Greece (KKE) and the Ecologists-Greens party, and also on (main opposition) PASOK's grass roots," he said, adding however that "we know it is difficult to receive a positive response from the political forces we addressed ourselves to ahead of the Euroelections".

    The KKE, he continued, was "entrenching itself and exhausting its rhetoric in its effort to prove that it is the only Left in the country, while the Ecologists have opted to gather up votes of loose affinity or loose protest, but they can accomplish very little for the environmental cause in that way".

    After the elections, Tsipras said, every issue must be put on the table "A big part of society is aware of the need for unity and now is the hour for the major reversal in order to change the landscape in Greece and Europe".

    The SYN leader further stressed that the future belongs to the working classes and the youth, adding that no one can defeat that hope.

    Referring to Sunday's Euroelections he said that there is no such thing as an indifferent vote because there is no such thing as an indifferent society.

    Caption : ANA-MPA file photo of Synaspismos leader Alexis Tsipras

    [08] ASE opening: Rise

    Equity prices were rising at the opening of trade on Friday on the Athens Stock Exchange (ASE), with the basic share price index up 1.30 percent, standing at 2,369.20 points at 10:55 a.m., and turnover at 26.2 million euros.

    Individual sector indices were moving mostly upward, with the biggest gains in Travel and Recreation, up 2.74 percent; Technology, up 2.69 percent; and Industrial Products, up 2.18 percent.

    The biggest losses were in Insurance, down 1.70 percent; Food and Beverages, down 0.87 percent; and Chemicals, down 0.74 percent.

    The FTSE/ASE 20 index for blue chip and heavily traded stocks was up 1.50 percent, the FTSE/ASE MID 40 index was up 1.68 percent, and the FTSE/ASE-80 small cap index was up 0.80 percent.

    Of the stocks moved, 91 were up, 32 were down, and 34 were unchanged.


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