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Athens News Agency: News in English, 09-06-24

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] Meeting on illegal immigration
  • [02] Targeted policies to combat unemployent
  • [03] U.S. Deputy Secretary of State Steinberg to attend OCSE Corfu meeting
  • [04] Foreign Ministry confirms arrest of Greek journalist in Iran
  • [05] Iberoamerican Literature Festival opens in Athens
  • [06] Pineios River is drying up
  • [07] UN on FYROM name talks
  • [08] ASE opening: Decline
  • [09] Athens Newspaper Headlines

  • [01] Meeting on illegal immigration

    A meeting on illegal immigration and issues concerning public order will be chaired by Alternate Interior Minister responsible for Public Order, Christos Markoyannakis, on Wednesday at the Ministry with the participation of representatives of the political parties.

    On Tuesday, Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis was briefed by Employment Minister Fani Palli-Petralia, who later told reporters that reforms of the IKA pension and healthcare fund, the country's largest, dominated the meeting.

    She said a relevant draft bill is ready for tabling in the first Parliament summer recess session.

    Additionally, measures to combat unemployment were also discussed.

    The minister acknowledged an increasing rate of joblessness for the first trimester of 2009 due to the economic crisis, while pointing to more encouraging news in April and May, namely, 23,000 more hirings that firings in April and 54,000 more hirings in May than firings.

    Caption: ANA-MPA file photo of Interior Ministry in Athens

    [02] Targeted policies to combat unemployent

    Main opposition PASOK party spokesman George Papaconstantinou suggested targeted policies to combat unemployment noting, that "it is a phenomenon that is created by the current economic conjuncture and accrues from correct or wrong policies".

    "Today, a policy against unemployment should be targeted especially on the youth, as are the proposals we have tabled for a four-year reduction of social security contributions," stressed Papaconstantinou, and charged that the government does not have a policy on employment, while he also spoke of an "economy that is extremely vulnerable to the crisis".

    [03] U.S. Deputy Secretary of State Steinberg to attend OCSE Corfu meeting

    WASHINGTON (ANA-MPA/T.Ellis) - U.S. Deputy Secretary of State James Steinberg said here on Tuesday that he would represent his country at the informal OSCE foreign ministers' meeting, due to convene on the Ionian island of Corfu this week, instead of US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who recovers from a recent elbow surgery.

    On his part, State Department spokesman Ian Kelly said that Clinton, following instructions by her doctors, decided not to travel to Europe during the next days. He added that Secretary Clinton had a telephone conversation with her Greek counterpart Dora Bakoyannis to express her regrets for not being able to attend the Corfu meeting.

    [04] Foreign Ministry confirms arrest of Greek journalist in Iran

    Foreign ministry spokeman Grigoris Delavekouras, confirmed on Tuesday the arrest of a Greek journalist in Iran and stressed that suitable demarches are being made for a favourable end to be given to the issue soon.

    Replying to a relevant question by the press, the spokesman said that "we confirm that a Greek journalist who was working in Iran has been arrested, at the end of last week, by the Iranian Authorities. The Foreign Ministry, from the very beginning, has been in contact with his family. We have made all the suitable demarches at all levels, and we are in constant contact with the Iranian Authorities to enable a favourable end to be given to this issue soon."

    [05] Iberoamerican Literature Festival opens in Athens

    The 1st Iberoamerican Festival of Literature in Greece, (Festival LEA - Literature in Athens) opens in Athens on Wednesday at the ęTechnopolisĽ at 100 Pireos street in Gazi, and runs through Saturday, organised by the Intercultural Center of the City of Athens, the Cultural Magazine Sol Latino, the Institute for Intercultural Development, The Institute of Migration Policy, and The Greek-Colombian Association.

    Festival LEA‚s slogan is ?Three languages, three voices, one heart?, making reference to the Spanish, Portuguese, and Greek languages, and honors three authors: Nobel Prize winner Gabriel Garc?a M?rquez representing the Spanish language, Nobel prize winner Jos? Saramago representing the Portuguese language, and well recognized in the Iberoamerican world Petros M?rkaris for the Greek language.

    Petros Markaris will attend the opening ceremony, the ambassador of Portugal, Alfredo Duarte Kosta, will represent the novelist Jose Saramago, and Flavio Vargas, Director of activities of the Gabriel Garcia Marquez New Journalist Foundation, will represent the novelist Marquez.

    The activities during the Festival are geared towards public of all ages who will have the opportunity to get to know the richness of the Latin American, Portuguese, and Spanish authors. They include book presentations, artistic performances, fiestas, documentary screenings, workshops and round-table discussions.

    The artistic performances include concerts by the great Greek singer who pioneered Latin music in Greece, Aliki Kagialoglou, the Argentinean soprano Daniela Toberig, the beautiful Cuban voice, Yammi and her group Joel and La Cucaracha, the charismatic Cuban singer Manolo Vega, the fantastic Uruguayan singer Janeth Capuya, and the unique Mexican singer Martha Morele?n.

    Also, the Latin Club ‚Enzzo de Cuba‚ will hold a party every night, featuring the DJ‚s Association ‚Salsa Amigos‚, and professional dancing groups such as Amor Latino and Salsa Caliente. Every night dance groups will provide spectacular shows with great flavor and choreographies, the Academy of Tango will transport you to Buenos Aires‚ streets, the Spanish group ‚Sentimientos‚ will presente to you Spanish Flamenco, and the group ‚Abada Capoeira‚ will take spectators to the mystic Brazil.

    Festival LEA further presents unique documentaries based on authors such as Pablo Neruda, Gabriel Garc?a M?rquez, Pesso and Cavafy, and a special documentary on Greek Mythology by Pedro Olalla, while the theatrical group Okypous and the Portugues actor Andre Magia will tell stories daily from each of the participating countries.

    The LEA Festival will also have daily workshops for childen, parents and teachers, whose objective is to encourage reading, through activites such as story telling and painting with the participation of professional teachers who will provide expert advise on how to promote reading since early age: Colombian teacher Margarita Guerrero and Spanish story teller Pablo Albo.

    For poetry lovers LEA will also have a space with the Spanish poet Juan Vicente Piqueras, an original contemporary Spanish voice, the Greek poet Konstantinos Vadrachanis, the artist and Cuban poet Yoel Soto, and the Portuguse actor Andre Maia.


    For the first time in Greece, two exhibitions will be on display, in three different languages, which are the result of two local and international contents: illustrations and paintings.

    More information and the full program may be found on the web pages and .

    The Festival is under the auspices of the Ministry of Culture, the embassies of Argentina, Venezuela, Brazil, Cuba, Spain, Mexico, Uruguay, Panama, Peru, Portugal, Chile, and the Honorary Consulate of Colombia in Greece.

    [06] Pineios River is drying up

    Pineios, the third river in Greece in terms of length and which crosses the plain of Thessaly in the mainland, is drying out in certain areas causing alarm to local people considering that it is still early summer.

    The dramatic decrease in its water volume is caused by the fact that millions of cubic meters of water are used to irrigate roughly 8,000 hectares of cultivated land and meet the water supply needs of residential areas.

    The scientific community has warned that the situation will deteriorate further with each passing year given that both the water reserves that are renewed by winter rain and snowfall as well as the permanent water reserves are being exhausted. Scientists have also underlined that the dramatic decline in the water level of the aquifer is a proof that the water reserve level is dropping due to increased farming activities and called for immediate change in the region's water policy.

    The 216 km-long Pineios River has its springs in the mountain range of Pindus, in the northwest and a number of tributaries flow into it before it empties into the Aegean Sea, northeast of Tempe Valley in central Greece.

    Caption: Pineios dried riverbed shown in a photo taken from inside a irrigation pipe. ANA-MPA/VASSILIKI PASCHALI

    [07] UN on FYROM name talks

    NEW YORK (ANA-MPA/P. Panagiotou) - An announcement issued by the UN Secretariat on Tuesday stressed that the UN special mediator in talks between Greece and the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM), Matthew Nimetz, following his meeting in Geneva on Monday with the representatives of the two countries, said that the meeting took place in light of his upcoming visit to Skopje and Athens and that "they discussed in depth issues that have been functioning so far as a drawback in finding a mutually acceptable solution."

    The announcement also mentioned that "Mr. Nimetz will continue the discussion regarding the name, in accordance with UN resolutions," adding that the main purpose of the meeting was to prepare for the meetings in Skopje on July 6-7 and Athens on July 8-9 and "for us to see whether there is ground for achieving an agreement on this issue."

    Caption: ANA-MPA file photo of UN special mediator Matthew Nimetz.

    [08] ASE opening: Decline

    Equity prices were declining at the opening of trade on Wednesday on the Athens Stock Exchange (ASE), with the basic share price index down 0.12 percent, standing at 2,164.72 points at 10:45 a.m., and turnover at 14.2 million euros.

    Individual sector indices were mixed, with the biggest losses in Insurance, down 2.82 percent; Food & Beverage, down 1.43 percent; and Financial Services, down 1.24 percent.

    The biggest gains were in Health, up 2.46 percent; Public Utilities, up 1.64 percent; and Personal & Household Goods, up 0.56 percent.

    The FTSE/ASE 20 index for blue chip and heavily traded stocks was down 0.32 percent, the FTSE/ASE MID 40 index was up 0.56 percent, and the FTSE/ASE-80 small cap index was up 0.15 percent.

    Of the stocks moved, 39 were up, 41 were down, and 19 were unchanged.

    [09] Athens Newspaper Headlines

    The Wednesday edition of Athens' dailies at a glance

    The closing of daily newspaper Eleftheros Typos, the increase in the state deficit and SYRIZA (Synaspismos-led parliamentary alliance) leader Alekos Alavanos' decision to finally remain at the helm of the parliamentary group, dominated the headlines on Wednesday in Athens' newspapers.

    ADESMEFTOS TYPOS: "Major the problem in the Media...after the closing of Eleftheros Typos".

    APOGEVMATINI: "Eleftheros Typos' shut-down is a dreadful development in the media sector".

    AVGHI: "Alavanos decided to remain as the leader of the SYRIZA parliamentary group".

    ELEFTHEROS: "Two former ministers call on Karamanlis to dismiss the arrogant ministers from the government".

    ELEFTHEROTYPIA: "Media enterprises playing power games".

    ESTIA: "Alarm bell sounds for the Media - Newspapers' circulation is falling dramatically".

    ETHNOS: "Clash over early general elections - Government accuses main opposition PASOK party leader George Papandreou for the...lack of governance".

    KATHIMERINI: "Deportation is the only solution for Greece - Government persists on the amendment on illegal migrants".

    LOGOS: "Unemployment in Greece reached 9.3 percent in first-quarter 2009".

    NIKI: "Domino effect in the Media - Eleftheros Typos newspaper's closure will bring rapid developments in media".

    RIZOSPASTIS: "New antisocial proclamations with EU stamp".

    TA NEA: "Revolutionaries Sect (urban guerrilla group) proclamation shocks: 'You know our next target'."

    TO VIMA: "Ruling New Democracy (ND) honorary president Constantinos Mitsotakis gives advice to Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis - They met on Tuesday at the Maximos Mansion (government headquarters)".

    VRADYNI: "Special examiner on SIEMENS slush funds case summons Theodoros Tsoukatos (PASOK former Prime Minister Costas Simitis' financial advisor) for testimony".

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