|Tuesday, 11 March 2014|
Athens News Agency: News in English, 09-09-20
Athens News Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article
From: The Athens News Agency at <http://www.ana.gr/>
 PM: Victory lies in the hands of ND votersIn an interview with the Sunday newspaper "Apogevmatini tis Kyriakis", Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis again accused main opposition PASOK of sending "conflicting" messages concerning its plans on major issues, particularly important matters of foreign policy.
The premier noted Greece's stance at the NATO Summit in Bucharest concerning the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM), pointing out that Greece's NATO allies had adopted Athens' position that the dispute with FYROM over the name issue must be resolved before that country could join the Alliance.
"That was a very major achievement of our foreign policy and that is our final position," he stressed.
Karamanlis also emphasised the major international energy agreements made by ND governments, saying that he counted these among its "great successes".
On economic issues, the premier said that the 500 euros given by the government to lower incomes in 2009, in spite of a general freeze on wage increases, was much more than that promised by PASOK and that the government intended to continue the same policy next year.
He stressed that the key for ND's victory in the upcoming elections was for the party's supporters to stand by its side and for "no vote to be lost".
Addressing a pre-election rally in the northwestern Greek city of Ioannina on Saturday night, Karamanlis said that Greece was at the most crucial turning point since the democracy was restored after the fall of the junta in 1974. The New Democracy government had chosen the path of responsibility and had clearly informed the Greek people about the difficult decisions that must be taken, he added.
"The citizens must know the truth, they must know everything. There is no room for evasiveness or for "rounding" things up. There are no pleasant recipes. There are no easy solutions available," Karamanlis noted, to add that the promises being made by main opposition PASOK were "fake".
According to the premier, the programme outlined by PASOK would cost some 20 billion euros and involve massing borrowing at huge cost, which would have to be paid by future generations.
Karamanlis accused Papandreou of failing to address the real dilemmas of the economic crisis and the measures that needed to be taken, cloaking his intentions with pleasant-sounding phrases and "sacrificing everything on the altar of the party".
"He cannot continue talking about everything and not saying anything," Karamanlis added.
Underlining that victory lay in the hands of ND's supporters, he urged voters not to "give away their votes," and for everyone to be present at the October 4 elections in order to ensure that ND emerged victorious.
Caption: ANA-MPA file photograph of Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis addressing a pre-election rallly during the 2009 election campaign.
 Ecologist-Greens present state deputy ticketThe Ecologists-Greens party on Sunday presented its deputy of state ticket for the upcoming elections on October 4.
The list is headed by Maria Piniou-Kalli, founder of the Athens Medical Rehabilitation Centre for Torture Victims, followed by Ilias Katsoulis (director of the Greek magazine Science and Society), actress Lydia Koniordou, biologist and environmentalist George Katsadorakis, enviromentalist Georgia Valaora, mechanical engineer Yiannis Tziolas, Ecologists-Greens executive secretariat member Yiannis Paraskevopoulos, Iraklio Ecological Intervention founder-member Aristidis Papadakis, director Sofia Papachristou, teacher of illiterate gypsy populations Vasiliki Tsakiri, and civil engineer Thanassis Kokkinos.
The final and 'honorary' position on the list is occupied by the Eco-Greens MEP Michalis Tremopoulos.
In a statement after the presentation of the list, Piniou-Kalli noted that "the presence of the Ecologists-Greens in Parliament is absolutely essential for democracy, the protection of human rights and the environment".
 Dionysus myth a clue to ancient neonatal care?Ancient Greeks may have had considerable knowledge about how to care for premature babies, according to an analysis presented on Sunday during the 15th Hellenic Conference on Perinatal Medicine taking place in Thessaloniki. This was posted by doctors from Agios Savvas oncological hospital in Athens, working in collaboration with private colleagues in Hania.
In an essay entitled "Mythological description of an incubator", the doctors say that the description given in ancient myths of the birth of the god Dionysus and how he was cared for very closely approximates the requirements for an incubator used in modern hospitals.
According to some versions of the myth, Dionysus was born prematurely in the eighth month of pregnancy and had a low birth weight. He was carried by the god Hermes to Mount Nysa and delivered into the care of the Hyades, the nymphs of warm rain, that placed him in a cave having all the requirements of an incubator - an air filter, double lining and protection from draughts.
The ancient myth-makers did not, of course, describe technological appliances or fixtures but rather natural items that appear to serve an equivalent purpose. The 'air filter' is a stand of pines planted by the Hyades at the entrance of the cave, the 'double lining' is formed by the branches of a virgin vine and the small god is protected from draughts by a covering of thick-leaved ivy. Combined, these served to maintain a warm and slightly moist - in other words thermically neutral - environment for the newborn.
The above is all in the realm of myth and may only indicate a flight of the imagination by some bolder story-teller of antiquity, rather than evidence that the ancients knew how to care for premature babies. According to the doctors, however, it would be a strange coincidence if the makers of the myth had hit upon the requirements needed without this knowledge having arisen from some specific experience or practice of the time.
Caption: ANA-MPA file photograph of an ancient sculpture depicting the god Dionysus.
 KKE vote strengthens workersCommunist Party of Greece (KKE) General Secretary Aleka Papariga on Sunday renewed her appeal to voters to strengthen the "popular movement" by casting their vote for KKE during the October 4 general elections.
"KKE is not the unknown 'X' factor, nor an unpredictable factor in developments and support for its election ticket will on the day after the elections be converted to a strengthening of the popular struggle, a unifying, radical and popular trend of struggle and political opposition," she said in statements to the press from KKE's headquarters in Perissos.
Papariga said that a vote for KKE would ensure that October 4 brought the emergence of a "trend that does not submit to extortionist dilemmas, that has steadfast positions on issues of post-electoral cooperation, that has a clear and specific policy and adapts to the new without changing course."
She addressed her message to labouring classes that had voted for New Democracy in the previous elections and PASOK voters, especially "left-wing, progressive and radical voters that had found themselves fighting alongside KKE in the 70s and 80s but later parted ways".
KKE's leader also warned against the 'trap' of absention, saying that this essentiall supported conservative policies.
"Though the opening of the ballot box lasts only a minute, its consequences last several years, since the goal of plutocracy and the parties that serve it (ND and PASOK) is a recovery from the crisis by intensifying the degree of exploitation of the workers," she stressed.
Caption: Communist Party of Greece (KKE) General Secretary Aleka Papariga speaking during a press conference held at KKE headquarters in Perissos on Saturday. ANA-MPA - Manolis Pakias.
 Tsipras visits PatissiaCoalition of the Left, Movements and Ecology (SYN) party leader Alexis Tsipras on Sunday paid a visit to the Drakopoulos Villa in the inner Athens district of Patissia, which local residents are campaigning to have converted to a public recreational area. During the visit, Tsipras stressed the importance of local movements by active citizens in efforts to protect the environment.
Accompanied by a group of candidates running on the ticket of the Coalition of the Radical Left (SYRIZA) alliance, Tsipras said the Greek capital had dozens of "environmental wounds" but also dozens of local movements actively campaigning for a better quality of life and fighting to save remaining green spaces from the diggers and bulldozers.
SYN's leader accused the main parties of overlooking the struggles of ordinary people as they fought over power.
"In PASOK they are busy cutting out ministerial suits for the day after and at ND they are jostling for the best position on the day after. No one is thinking about the day after for a society that is forgotten, that is suffocating, a society that demands and will demand," he said.
Caption: Coalition of the Left, Movements and Ecology (SYN) party leader Alexis Tsipras during a visit to the Villa Drakopoulos in the Athens inner city district of Patissia on Sunday, to support local groups campaigning for its conversion into a recreational grounds. ANA-MPA - Evi Fylaktou.
Athens News Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article