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Athens News Agency: News in English, 09-08-02

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

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

CONTENTS

  • [01] Papandreou: Country sinking deeper into crisis
  • [02] FM: Aegean provocations pointless

  • [01] Papandreou: Country sinking deeper into crisis

    Main opposition PASOK party leader George Papandreou stressed on Sunday, in an article appearing in his party's website, that the government is sinking the economy together with the country deeper in the crisis, charging that this "slide" is the product of petty politics and early election speculation and a lack of transparency.Papandreou again returned to the issue of early elections, this time outlining a dilemma: "Whether we change or we sink is today timelier than ever. Our worst nightmares are turning into reality.A new government that will immediately start the country's restoration is today more urgent than ever.

    "PASOK will take over the government in an extremely difficult juncture, which is the result of the disastrous choices of the current government. We are standing before the challenges with responsibility. We do not give promises that we cannot fulfill but we will not moderate our ambitions. It's not the time only for a better administration but the time for major changes. We have the volition, the plan and the people to make them a reality," he said.

    He added that PASOK is absolutely in line with the view that the country's interests demand immediate general elections, adding that a change of course is necessary "with a new government and the re-election of a worthy president of the republic", warning that the protracted election-mongering "has hurt the country".

    Meanwhile, in an interview with a Sunday weekly, Papandreou expressed certainty that his party will emerge from general elections with a self-sufficient majority.

    Asked to comment on claims that in order to become prime minister, he must "if not come to terms, at least speak with non-institutional interests", Papandreou firmly replied: "Manipulation of the political life by no one. Rallying together on common national causes, yes; serving lawless interests, no..."

    Papandreou further ruled out the prospect of governmental cooperation with ruling New Democracy because "we are on opposite shores".

    [02] FM: Aegean provocations pointless

    Violations of Greek national airspace and overflights of Greek islands by Turkish military planes are pointless provocations that contravene international law and will not change the status quo in the Aegean, Greek Foreign Minister Dora Bakoyannis sternly warned, as quoted in an interview by the Turkish mass daily "Hurriyet".

    "Overflights by Turkish fighter planes 300 metres above Greek isles in the Aegean, such as Agathonissi, will neither change the status quo in the Aegean nor prove that Turkish claims in the Aegean are valid," Bakoyannis said, adding that they are just simply unnecessary provocations towards Greece.

    Bakoyannis also referred to the closed Halki seminary and the Ecumenical Patriarchate, as well as the Ankara Protocol.

    Regarding an invitation by her Turkish counterpart, Ahmet Davutoglu, to visit Ankara, the Greek foreign minister thanked Davutoglu again for the invitation, noting that the appropriate time for such visit was being examined, while she stressed that the two countries must not discontinue talks, even on the issues on which they cannot agree.

    Caption: ANA-MPA file photo of Foreign Minister Dora Bakoyannis


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