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Athens News Agency: News in English, 09-09-24
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From: The Athens News Agency at <http://www.ana.gr/>
 Papandreou chairs SI presidium meeting in NYNew York (ANA-MPA/P. Panagiotou) - Greek main opposition PASOK leader and Socialist International (SI) president George Papandreou chaired a meeting of the SI presidium on Wednesday night, in a conference hall at the United Nations headquarters in New York, while he also had a series of bilateral meetings with world leaders and personalities taking part in the annual UN General Assembly meeting.
Papandreou further attended a reception for leaders attending the General Assembly hosted by former US president Bill Clinton, who wished Papandreou 'good luck' in the October 4 general elections in Greece and also expressed his desire to take part again in the Symi Symposium.
The annual Symposium, which was launched in 1998 on the island of Symi under the aegis of the Andreas Papandreou Foundation, is a think tank/retreat that brings together leading academics, entrepreneurs, politicians, religious leaders, diplomats, scientists, and activists for the purpose of developing progressive policy solutions to global challenges.
In press statements after the SI presidium meeting, Papandreou explained that the session was held on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly, and focused on two overriding issues facing humanity today: climate change and the global financial crisis.
He said he considered it an SI success that all the socialist and socialdemocrat parties have now put at the core of their policies the issue of confronting the ecological destruction with specific proposals, "which we will have the opportunity to present at the Copenhagen summit in December", referring to the UN Climate Change Conference 'Copenhagen 2009'.
He also considered as n SI success the fact that the SI-sponsored Stiglitz Commission, chaired by US economist and recipient of the 2001 Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences and a former Senior Vice President and Chief Economist of the World Bank, for the purpose of charting a roadmap for emerging from the present global financial crisis, "is submitting (to the UN General Assembly) very specific proposals for changes, for protection of the citizens, working people, small and medium size enterprises (SMEs), which proposals will also be sent to the G20 meeting being held here in the United States these days (the two-day G20 summit opens in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania on Thursday)".
Papandreou noted that both these two major issues converge on a single, very simple target: to change the present growth model with its replacement by a new developmental model, a new pact that puts the human being, the citizen, the family at the center, and reconciles production and economic growth with nature and the environment.
"This means that we need to take radically different decisions on the manner of governance of our planet, our economies and the financial-credit system. We can't be salvaging the credit system and the banks on the one hand, and on the other say that we will freeze salaries, pensions, social benefits for the working people and the real economy," Papandreou elaborated.
A general conclusion reached by the relevant SI commissions, but also all the progressive, socialist parties, is that an economic structure needs to be created that will redistribute the wealth, but also the burdens so that they will fall on the shoulders of those who can carry them, in order to have an economy that is founded on equality, social cohesion, quality, and therefore viability, Papandreou said. "I believe that these conclusions are important for our planet, just as they are very important for Greece as well".
SI Presidium meeting
The reports of two SI ad hoc working groups were presented during the presidium meeting.
The one report was by the Stigliz Commission of Experts on Global Financial Issues.
The second report was by SI Commission for a Sustainable World Society, co-chaired by former Chilean president and the UN secretary general's special envoy on climate change Ricardo Lagos and Swedish former prime minister Goran Persson.
These reports are the outcome of a year of systematic work by the two Commissions, which will lead to "valuable conclusions" also for the 'green growth' model.
The discussions also focused on the problem of climate change (global warming) ahead of the Copenhagen summit, the latest developments regarding the global financial crisis, and the socialists' priorities with respect to the G20 summit.
The SI presidium further adopted a resolution that will be sent to the G20 summit.
The presidium meeting was also attended by invited guests including heads of state and government, foreign ministers and heads of international organisations.
Caption: Main opposition PASOK leader and Socialist International (SI) president George Papandreou chaired a meeting of the SI presidium on Wednesday 23 September 2009 in New York. ANA-MPA/DIMITRIS PANAGOS
 Illegal immigrants spottedANA-MPA/Thessaloniki Police, acting on a tip-off, located a truck transporting a total of 28 illegal immigrants shortly before midnight Wednesday near the village of Profitis.
The truck driver initially refused to stop when flagged down by police for a check, and later abandoned the truck, in which 28 illegal immigrants from Iraq, Pakistan and Bangladesh were hidden.
 Five detained in terror probeANA-MPA/Four people were detained for questioning by the police counter-terrorism squad late Wednesday night after the discovery earlier in the afternoon of an alleged urban terrorist safehouse in the northern Athens district of Halandri.
Explosives, pressure cookers, such as those used in recent bomb attacks in Athens, and printed material were reportedly found in a one-storey residence.
According to reports, authorities believe the cache of explosives and bomb-making materiel is connected to the self-styled anarchist cell dubbed the "Conspiracy of Fire Cells - Nihilists Sect", and possibly to another group, while the findings were sent to a crime lab.
Police moved in on the residence following a bomb attack, just before noon on Wednesday, outside the apartment belonging to former top PASOK party minister Gerassimos Arsenis and his wife, PASOK MP Louka Katseli.
The home-made bomb generated a weak explosion outside the 4th-storey apartment in the upscale Kolonaki district, causing only material damage.
The device, which detonated at 11:42 a.m., had been placed in the entrance hallway of the apartment building, on Tsakaloff street.
Roughly 20 minutes earlier, an unidentified individual called a local newspaper and television station to warn of the explosion.
Caption: ANA-MPA file photo
 Tsipras speaks in HalkidaCoalition of the Left, Movements and Ecology (Synaspismos) party leader Alexis Tsipras, addressing a rally in the city of Halkida in eastern Greece on Wednesday evening, expressed confidence that the people of the Radical Left Coalition (SYRIZA) are determined and optimistic.
Tsipras said that "the day after the elections will find us stronger, more effective and, of course, more mature" for new struggles," while expressing concern over the increase in unemployment.
The Coalition leader also said that we are not merely experiencing the failure of the government of the New Democracy party, we are experiencing the failure of an economic model, of an entire economic policy and philosophy.
Caption: ANA-MPA file photo of Synaspismos party leader Alexis Tsipras
 KKE rally in PeristeriCommunist Party of Greece (KKE) Secretary General Aleka Papariga, addressing a rally in Peristeri, western Athens municipality, on Wednesday evening, called for the strengthening of the party's election ticket.
"On Sunday night the capitalists must feel from a shiver to panic over the increase in KKE's election percentage," Papariga said.
Papariga called for backing for KKE because "it is the only party that tells the people the truth, namely that either it will be with the monopolies or with the people, that the working classes will have to decide either for better days or find themselves with their backs against the wall."
Caption: Communist Party of Greece (KKE) Secretary General Aleka Papariga, addressing a rally in Peristeri, western Athens municipality, on Wednesday 23 September 2009. ANA-MPA/ Christos Zouliatis
 EcoGreens policy platformEcologists-Greens presenting their policy platform on Wednesday, stressed the need for "green" exit routes from the current economic crisis and presenting a vote for the Eco-Greens as a "vote of conscience" that would bring to Parliament much-needed environmentalist ideas.
The party's platform underlined a target to create 100,000 'green' jobs and noted that "in conditions of austerity, we become doubly poor if the quality of our life depends chiefly on our purchasing power".
In addition to outlining the party's environmental policy, the EcoGreens referred to the goal of creating an open society without exclusions and discrimination, stressing that the "lack of rights for immigrants seriously harms Greeks".
The declaration ends with an appeal to voters not "to give another blank cheque" to one of the large parties.
"We ask citizens for a vote of conscience in favour of the Ecologists-Greens, a vote that links their concern for the environment with immediate solutions for the economy, quality of life, rights and extending democracy," said party spokesman Nikos Chrysogelos.
Ecologists -Greens top ranking officials present their policy platform on Wednesday 23 September 2009, at a press conference held in Athens. ANA-MPA/SYMELA PANTZARTZI
 ASE opening: DeclineEquity prices were declining at the opening of trade on Thursday on the Athens Stock Exchange (ASE), with the basic share price index down 0.84 percent, standing at 2,589.61 points at 10:45 a.m., and turnover at 14.9 million euros.
The biggest gains were in Travel and Recreation, up 0.76 percent; Personal and Household Goods, up 0.35 percent; and Commerce, up 0.18 percent.
The biggest losses were in Health, down 2.90 percent; Telecommunications, down 1.50 percent; and Technology, down 1.27 percent.
The FTSE/ASE 20 index for blue chip and heavily traded stocks was down 0.88 percent, the FTSE/ASE MID 40 index was down 0.81 percent, and the FTSE/ASE-80 small cap index was down, 0.32 percent.
Of the stocks moved, 18 were up, 58 were down, and 29 were unchanged.
 Athens Newspaper HeadlinesThe Thursday edition of Athens' dailies at a glance
The discovery of a terrorist safehouse in the northern Athens suburb of Halandri on Wednesday and political parties' assessments of the one-on-one debate between prime minister Costas Karamanlis and main opposition PASOK leader George Papandreou Tuesday evening, dominated the headlines on Thursday in Athens' newspapers
ADESMEFTOS TYPOS: "Terrorists' safehouse discovered".
APOGEVMATINI: "Terrorists arrested - Counter-terrorism squad raids safehouse in Halandri and houses in Galatsi and Exarchia".
AVGHI: "PASOK transfers the STAGE 'regime' exclusively to the private sector - Gift to employers".
AVRIANI: "Several insurance companies will be closed - The owners have spent the people's money for their own purposes".
ELEFTHEROS: "Karamanlis' next pre-election steps".
ELEFTHEROTYPIA: "The trick with the STAGE - Karamanlis claims that it is an EU-funded program are belied".
ESTIA: "The truth about taxation - What was not said by the ND and PASOK leaders".
ETHNOS: "Gloom and grumbling in ND after Karamanlis' 'shipwreck' in the TV debates".
KATHIMERINI: "Dramatic reduction in state revenues".
LOGOS: "The final countdown to elections has begun - ND's and PASOK's strategy on new basis".
NIKI: "George (Papandreou) states: EU is not a bogyman and warns: I will clash with (EU Commissioner for economic and monetary affairs Joaqin) Almunia".
RIZOSPASTIS: "No more time wasted - Vote for Communist party for relentless battle".
TA NEA: "Succession dogfight in ND in the shadow of Olympic Air-Aegean Airlines conflict".
TO VIMA: "The 10 days of the dauphins - Prediction of defeat in general elections accelerates the developments in ruling New Democracy (ND)".
VRADYNI: "Terrorists were preparing attacks against politicians - Police's major blow against terrorism".
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