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Athens News Agency: News in English, 09-12-13

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] Athens lights environment-friendly Christmas tree, launching holiday events
  • [02] Athens Newspaper Headlines

  • [01] Athens lights environment-friendly Christmas tree, launching holiday events

    The City of Athens launched its Christmas and New Year events at Syntagma Square with the traditional lighting of its Christmas tree and a spectacular fireworks show.

    Athens Mayor Nikitas Kaklamanis marked the start of the City's events and urged everyone to spread a little more optimism, compassion, sensitivity and love in order to experience the true meaning of Christmas.

    Minutes before the lighting, Mayor Kaklamanis said a few words regarding the unique Christmas tree that adorns Syntagma Square this year.

    "This year, the tree of the city of Athens is one of a kind. It is not just an environmentally friendly tree made from recycled and recyclable materials, nor is it a real tree cut from a controlled plantation that will simply be recycled after the holidays," he said.

    "It is a tree created from natural trees. 250 natural fir trees and their roots have made up our tree this year. And the best part? These trees - which will be watered here for three weeks - will be planted in Attica's most fire-ravaged areas after the holiday season, this way acquiring new life themselves and in turn giving life to the Basin‚s residents," he explained.

    "In this way we would like to send a message, in practice as well, to the residents and visitors of our city: that the City and the Environment are one and that it is up to all of us to protect the environment by changing our habits to help our city, our country and our planet to breathe," Kaklamanis stressed.

    The Mayor of Athens did not neglect to thank the City‚s employees who all contributed to the city‚s festive appearance and he particularly thanked the workers from the electrical and sanitation departments.

    Concluding his brief greeting, Mayor Kaklamanis set a date for next year to switch on the lights of the Christmas tree together with all Athenians: "Be certain that next year, all together, you and I, I and you, will be here again to light the Christmas tree".

    Syntagma Square was then filled with lights and colours, while the City of Athens Philharmonic and the City of Athens Music Ensembles group De Stijl, under the guidance of its chairman and well-known composer and saxophone player Yiorgos Katsaros, played for the hundreds of the people who turned out for Athens' first celebration of the holiday season.

    [02] Athens Newspaper Headlines

    Athens' Sunday newspapers at a glance

    The economy and the government's planned measures, and the social security system were the main front-page items in Athens' Sunday newspapers.

    ADESMEFTOS TYPOS: "100 professions in the Tax Bureau's vise".

    APOGEVMATINI: "New plan for salaries, pensions".

    AVGHI: "Papandreou pendulum".

    AVRIANI: "The DEKO (public utilities and state organisations) and State real estate to be sold".

    ELEFTHEROS TYPOS: "Nightmare report: the social security system's 'secret' debts at 600 billion euros".

    ELEFTHEROTYPIA: "Two blind dates - The dialogue on the economy is opening with the cards closed - Reservations over (Tuesday's) meeting of party leaders on transparency".

    ETHNOS: "George's (prime minister Papandreou) wager on the economy, counter to the recommendations - He disregarded the pressure and reversed the predictions of harsh measures".

    KATHIMERINI: "Experimentation in the midst of the crisis - Papandreou disregards the EU and the markets, and persists with his pre-elections program".

    LOGOS: "The hour has arrived for painful measures on the economy - Prime minister to make his announcements on Monday".

    NIKI: "Absolution for the scandals".

    PARON: "We're both changing and sinking - George's (Papandreou) lack of willpower shaking the government".

    Realnews: "End to tax exemptions - Explosive recommendation in Papandreou's hands".

    RIZOSPASTIS: "PAME strike on December 17 against the front comprising capital, EU, government, ND, GSEE and ADEDY, for the satisfaction of our needs".

    TO VIMA: "Papandreou plan for the crisis and the economy - The pressure, the recommendations and the prime minister's decisions".

    VRADYNI: "Who will be affected by the mergers of social security funds - Sweeping changes to the social security system".

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