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Athens News Agency: News in English, 09-08-06

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] August Full Moon events
  • [02] OSCE chief on Georgia
  • [03] ASE opening : Rise
  • [04] Athens Newspaper Headlines

  • [01] August Full Moon events

    The August full moon has always been a special event in Greece, as it is the time when the moon is so close as to give the impression that one only has to reach out to touch it.

    In recent years, the Culture Ministry has established a tradition of opening up a large number of the countries archaeological sites, monuments and museums throughout the country on the night of the August Full Moon.

    This year's August Full Moon tonight, Thursday, will also feature musical and theatrical performances and other cultural events at 43 sites.

    The sites will be open for the Full Moon from 7:00 p.m. to 1:30 a.m., while a handful of sites will remain open until 3:00 a.m.

    Performances will be staged at the Archaeological site of Marathon, the Archaeological Museum of Megara, the National Archaeological Museum and the Numismatics Museum in Attica prefecture; the Archaeological Museum of Patras, Ancient Corinth, Ancient Nemea, Ancient Sicyon, Mystras, Ancient Olympia, the Archaeological Museum of Tripolis, the Methoni and Pylos Castles, and the Archaeological Museum of Messinia in the Peloponnese, as well as a number of sites in Macedonia, Epirus and the Ionian Islands, Thessaly, the islands of the Northern Aegean, Crete and the rest of the country.

    The Athens Acropolis, Poseidon's Temple at Sounio, the archaeological sites of Dodoni and Delos and a large number of museums and other sites will also be open, but without accompanying events.

    Caption: ANA-MPA file photo of a concert in Herode Atticus Theatre in Athens under the Full Moon

    [02] OSCE chief on Georgia

    Foreign minister Dora Bakoyannis, the Chairperson in Office of the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), on Thursday expressed concern over the continuing tension in the areas affected by the August 2008 conflict in Georgia, a year after the conflict, and called on all sides to refrain from actions and statements that could further destabilize the situation.

    She also stressed that the OSCE remains involved in George with the aim of enhancing security in the region, and was working towards finding a solution that will enable the OSCE's continued presence there.

    "Almost a year after the beginning of the conflict, we are facing a highly sensitive time," she said. "Wounds are still raw, and the region remains fragile and volatile. Lives were lost during and after the conflict, and people who were forced to flee their homes lack the support they need to be able to return and to live in dignity."

    Bakoyannis stressed that the OSCE remained involved in Georgia and hoped to ensure a strong presence for the Organization in the country in order to help strengthen security in the region.

    "The OSCE is committed to helping to create lasting peace and security for the benefit of all peoples," she said.

    Bakoyannis said she regretted that the OSCE Mission to Georgia had to close earlier this year after working to improve the region's stability since 1992. The Mission's mandate expired at the end of 2008, and the Greek Chairmanship suspended negotiations to seek consensus around a new mandate in May, following months of intensive talks. At the end of June, the mandate for an OSCE deployment of unarmed military monitoring officers to Georgia expired and the Mission was closed.

    "We remain focused on finding a solution that will enable the OSCE to have a strong presence in Georgia, and we hope that despite the difficulties so far, we will be able to find consensus on a format for such work. The Chairmanship's status-neutral proposal for the mandate remains on the table," she said. "Such a presence is needed now more than ever. I have said it often, and I will say it again: We need more OSCE in the region, not less."

    Bakoyannis said the OSCE was still working to improve security in the region, noting that the Organization is co-chairing the Geneva Discussions along with the United Nations and the European Union.

    "The Geneva Discussions are the only forum where all parties meet and discuss security and stability as well as humanitarian concerns," she said.

    "Thanks to these discussions, there has been progress on important humanitarian matters, such as delivery of gas. The OSCE is also promoting joint efforts to improve the water supply with a view to ensuring access to potable and irrigation water by all populations. In addition, the OSCE is helping to facilitate meetings of a joint incident prevention and response mechanism, which enables regular contact between the sides for sharing information and discussing security concerns. We are committed to continuing these efforts and achieving results," Bakoyannis said.

    Caption: ANA-MPA file photo of Foreign Minister Dora Bakoyannis and Chairperson in Office of the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE).

    [03] ASE opening : Rise

    Equity prices were rising at the opening of trade on Thursday on the Athens Stock Exchange (ASE), with the basic share price index up 0.57 percent, standing at 2,403.97 points at 10:45 a.m., and turnover at 26.5 million euros.

    Individual sector indices were moving upward across the board, with the biggest gains in Public Utilities, up 2.72 percent; Raw Materials, up 1.55 percent; and Banks, up 1.36 percent.

    The biggest losses were in Health, down 6.22 percent; Telecoms, down 3.30 percent; and Personal and Household Goods, down 0.48 percent.

    The FTSE/ASE 20 index for blue chip and heavily traded stocks was up 0.86 percent, the FTSE/ASE MID 40 index was down 0.55 percent, and the FTSE/ASE-80 small cap index was up 0.16 percent.

    Of the stocks moved, 66 were up, 37 were down, and 244 were unchanged.

    [04] Athens Newspaper Headlines

    The Thursday edition of Athens' dailies at a glance

    Election speculation and measures against unemployment dominated the headlines on Thursday in Athens' newspapers.

    ADESMEFTOS TYPOS: "While the government shields enterprises to avert layoffs, main opposition PASOK opposes everything".

    APOGEVMATINI: "The people hired in public sector during the term of ruling New Democracy will be fired if PASOK becomes government".

    AVGHI: "Prosecutor will investigate Defence Ministry's decision to construct residences in the army camps in a protected zone on Mt. Hymettus".

    AVRIANI: "FinMin George Papathanassiou accused PASOK for ruthlessness and irresponsibility".

    ELEFTHEROS: "Turkey's plans for our islets".

    ELEFTHEROTYPIA: "300,000 unemployed abandoned".

    ESTIA: "Extra time to curtail the public deficit is a double edged sword for the Greek economy".

    ETHNOS: "Government plays hide and seek over the early elections".

    KATHIMERINI: "Maximos mansion (government headquarters) wants to put a full stop to early elections scenarios".

    RIZOSPASTIS: "Mockery and deception of unemployed and labourers", referring to a PPC-Employment Ministry agreement for state-subsidised PPC hiring of 2000 unemployed with one-year contracts, for a period of two years.

    TA NEA: "Sudden 'beheading' in Armed Forces".

    TO VIMA: "According to OECD report the black economy in Greece reached 65 billion euros".

    VRADYNI: "Landmark decision on combating unemployment - Employment Minister Fani Palli Petralia - PPC agreement on hiring of 2,000 unemployed".

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