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Athens News Agency: News in English, 09-10-10

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

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

CONTENTS

  • [01] Fifth anniversary of election of Alexandria Patriarch
  • [02] Nicosia welcomes Papandreou positions on Cyprus, Turkey
  • [03] Marine life the treasure of the Greek sea

  • [01] Fifth anniversary of election of Alexandria Patriarch

    CAIRO (ANA-MPA/N. Katsikas) - Greek Ambassador to Cairo Ioannis Alexiou Zepos, who is also the Foreign Ministry's new Secretary General, attended Friday's celebrations in Alexandria marking the 5th anniversary of the election of Patriarch of Alexandria and All Africa Theodoros II, who was elected unanimously on October 9, 2004, the 124th Patriarch of Alexandria.

    Zepos was honoured by the Primate of Alexandria with the Grand Cross of Apostle Mark for his contribution regarding his presence in Egypt so far, since he is concluding his mission as Greek ambassador in Egypt.

    The Patriarch of Alexandria called on the Foreign Ministry's new secretary general to convey his love and appreciation to Prime Minister George Papandreou, as well as the promise that the Patriarchate of Alexandria and Hellenism in Egypt will continue to defend "Thermopylae" in Egypt and the rest of Africa.

    [02] Nicosia welcomes Papandreou positions on Cyprus, Turkey

    NICOSIA (ANA-MPA - A. Viketos) The Cypriot government on Saturday expressed satisfaction with the statements made by Greek Prime Minister and foreign minister George Papandreou regarding the Cyprus issue and Turkey's EU accession progress after his meeting with Turkish Premier Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

    Cyprus government spokesman Stefanos Stefanou described the Greek prime minister's positions as "crystal clear and specific", both in terms of his support for the efforts of Cyprus President Demetris Christofias for a solution and in clarifying to the other side that "there is no plan B".

    [03] Marine life the treasure of the Greek sea

    The Greek seas are a home to several protected species of large marine animals that are threatened with extinction, such as sharks, dolphins, seals and turtles - including some large whales, according to the environmental organization "Archipelago".

    The more than 18-meter-long sperm whale, which weighs roughly 50 tons, is the most common whale species found in the Greek seas with a current population that numbers less than 2,500 adult members and dropping. A smaller whale species that forms small groups is also common in sea regions with large depths.

    Most of the 47 different species of sharks found in the Mediterranean live in the Greek seas and face an increased risk of extinction due to the rising demand for their fins. Sharks are being captured alive and their dorsal fin is cut off before they are thrown back into the sea, with minimal chances of survival.

    The dolphins, sea turtles and seals found in the Greek seas are also threatened with extinction. Sea turtles, with the "Caretta-caretta" loggerhead being the most widely known species, are faced with great risks - especially during the summer months when many of them are killed by speedboats, or drown after being caught in fishing nets.

    Another endangered species is the Monachus monachus monk seal, whose global population numbers approximately 450 members, with over half of them living in Greek seas.

    Equally important but lesser known to the general public are the 'meadows' of Posidonia oceanica, a species of seagrass, and various types of corals.

    Both are threatened because their regions have not been mapped and no one knows exactly which areas need protection.

    The seagrass meadows are home to more than 300 species of flora and 1,000 species of fauna. Equally high in biodiversity are the coral reefs that need more than 7,000 years to form and, if destroyed, take centuries to be restored.


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