|Monday, 19 February 2018|
Athens News Agency: News in English, 10-01-19
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From: The Athens News Agency at <http://www.ana.gr/>
 Hikes in toll ratesToll fees rose by 10-20 cents as of midnight Monday on the Athens-Patras national highwayalong the Elefsis-Rio stretch of the highway . The price for cars is set at 2.90 euros. Increases in toll rates for certain buses and trucks went into effect at midnight on Sunday on the Athens-Thessaloniki highway from the Afidnes toll station to the Tragana toll station.
Hikes in toll fees are also expected to be applied soon on the Corinth-Tripolis highway after the conclusion of ongoing road upgrade works.
 Deputy Environment minister on energyDeputy Environment, Energy and Climatic Change Minister Ioannis Maniatis on Monday discussed the prospects of joint Greek and American activities in the region of Southeastern Europe and possibilities of closer cooperation between Greece and Egypt in the energy sector with American Deputy Environment Minister Dr. Kerri-Ann Jones and Egyptian Electricity and Energy Minister Dr. Hassan Ahmed Younes.
The meetings took place on the sidelines of the World Future Energy Summit Conference in Abu Dhabi.
Maniatis also met with the General Manager of the International Renewable Energy Sources Organisation Helene Pelosse and cooperation was agreed in utilising experts for the implementation of renewable energy sources projects and the conservation of energy in the wider Mediterranean region.
 Athens mayor, party leaders address KEDKE meetingAthens Mayor Nikitas Kaklanmanis, addressing the annual meeting of the Central Union of Municipalities and Communities of Greece (KEDKE) on Monday, said that local administration "clearly desires a new administrative reform but also seeks what is owed by the central administration." He also referred to the programme concerning 20,000 jobs for the unemployed, that had been scheduled with the previous government's Employment ministry.
Communist Party pf Greece (KKE) Secretary General Aleka Papariga said that her party opposes the government's "Kallikratis" plan because such changes, as was also proved with the "Kapodistrias 1" plan, are not productive and requested that the mayor and the Regional Council be elected by the municipal councils with proportional representation.
Popular Orthodox Rally (LAOS) party leader George Karatzaferis called for the programme's postponement for four years since there is no money for its implementation and so that it can be examined better.
Radical Left Coalition (SYRIZA) Parliamentary Group president Alexis Tsipras called for a united and integrated administrative reform of the state with radical tax reform for local administrative institutions.
Lastly, Interior Minister Yiannis Rangoussis analysed the programme in detail. He stressed that it is a turning point in the history of local administration that is taking place after a long period of maturing of the local administration movement, as well as many changes, postponements, hesitations and delays on the part of the state.
 Farmers block border stationsFarmers continue their protests in northern Greece and in Thessaly, central Greece, with motorists being forced to use secondary provincial roads.
Farmers in the prefecture of Kilkis blocked traffic at the Doirani border station on the border with fYRoM, while a decision will be made later in the evening on whether they will set up blockades at the Ormenio customs post with Bulgaria. Tractors remained at Nea Triglia site in Halkidiki, while traffic was obstructed at the Vogatsiko section in Kastoria and at the Krystallopigi intersection on the Greek-Albanian border.
The border post of Promachonas with Bulgaria was closed by protesting farmers in Serres Prefecture.
Agriculture and Food Minister Katerina Batzeli Monday said the "government opts for fair and viable solutions through a dialogue open to all and not for short-lived settlements," pointing out that the "payment of state subsidies, without a planning and lacking a structure in support of the agricultural economy, will have no real effect on the farmers' income."
Inviting protesting farmers to a dialogue, Batzeli said the farmers' issue does not concern "two sides but the society as a whole and all social partners".
Batzeli made the statement in response to the demands made by protesting farmers, who have set up roughly 20 tractor roadblocks along the national road network.
 Christofias meets party leadersCommunist Party of Greece (KKE) Secretary General Aleka Papariga, speaking after holding talks with Cyprus President Demetris Christofias on Monday, said that "unfortunately, things are developing badly not only because in the long run there are those, international officials, who do not desire a substantive solution to the issue of Cyprus and because the role of Turkey is being upgraded geostrategically with the latest developments and this longlasting international problem is being involved in the struggles of the pipelines, as well as with competition between European and American forces."
Papariga added that "we support the efforts of the Cyprus presidency so that the solution which will be provided should secure a united state with one international personality, there should not be the sperm of the present or future partition in the solution of the Cyprus issue and in this direction we shall move with solidarity both towards the Greek Cypriots and the Turkish Cypriots and on our part we shall give all that we can. For a just solution to be given at last. Being aware that the things are difficult, but we shall not lay down our arms."
The Cyprus president also met with Popular Orthodox Rally (LAOS) party leader George Karatzaferis, who stated afterwards "at this moment the President of the Republic of Cyprus is waging his own struggle in the ring. We must all be beside him to support, to call, to raise his spirit because I think that any other move of doubting does not create optimism for a good result."
President Christofias also held talks with Radical Left Coalition (SYRIZA) Parliamentary Group President Alexis Tsipras, who said after their meeting that "we had the opportunity of being briefed by President Christofias on the latest developments on the issue of Cyprus and the intensive talks with (Turkish Cypriot leader Mehmet Ali) Talat."
Tsipras added that "we expressed our steadfast support for the efforts of the Cyprus government for the finding of a just and viable solution."
The Cyprus president met at last with Parliament President Philippos Petsalnikos who said afterwards that the Cyprus problem was still the "big national issue of Hellenism in its entirety."
"The solution should be within the framework of UN's Security Concil resolutions and in accordance to European Union values and principles," Petsalnikos added.
Caption: Cyprus President Demetris Christofias (L) meets Communist Party of Greece (KKE) Secretary General Aleka Papariga (R) in Athens on Monday 18 January 2010. ANA-MPA/KATERINA MAVRONA
 Quake in western GreeceA moderate quake measuring 5.2 on the Richter scale was recorded at 17:56 (local time) on Monday in western Greece.
The quake's epicentre was located in the region of western Evpalio, 160 km west-northwest of Athens. The quake was particularly felt in the port city of Patras, Nafpaktos and the wider region.
Several aftershocks were recorded but no damages were reported.
Caption: ANA-MPA file photo
 Athens Newspaper HeadlinesThe Tuesday edition of Athens' dailies at a glance
The Eurogroup's go-ahead and reservations on Greece's new Stability and Development program, an adverse report on the Greek economy by Deutsche Bank, and the farmers' protests with roadblocks along the national highways, were the main front-page items in Athens' dailies on Tuesday.
ADESMEFTOS TYPOS: "22 roadblocks by farmers paralyze the country, as the government calls them to a dialogue".
APOGEVMATINI: "Poverty on the horizon - Eurostat: 20 percent of residents in Greece facing poverty level".
AVGHI: "Government discussing additional harsher measures with Brussels, most likely as of June".
AVRIANI: "Deutsche Bank fears default of Greek economy, as Papaconstantinou (finance minister) tries to convince the Europeans on the Stability Program".
CHORA: "The Germans bombarding the Greek economy - New adverse report by Deutsche Bank".
ELEFTHEROS: "They're searching for graft-takers in the state hospitals - Doctors, nursing staff, administrative staff targeted".
ELEFTHEROS TYPOS: "Upsets in property transfers - The tax will be calculated in accordance with the commercial value, and not the objective value, of the property".
ELEFTHEROTYPIA: "The roads are opening, with one billion euros - Farmers: Roadblocks increase, government calls for dialogue".
ESTIA: "Shameful data on the parental property gifts - Government bears huge blame".
ETHNOS: "Piranhas in the fuel market, as the civil war in the distribution ring rekindles".
IMERISSIA: "Yes, with asterisks (notes) from Brussels for Stability program - (Eurogroup president and Luxembourg prime minister Jean-Claude) Juncker: The measures are in the right direction, but not completely adequate".
KATHIMERINI: " 'Stroke' from the farmers' roadblocks - Problems caused to the national road network and movement of goods".
LOGOS: "Greece in a farmers' vise - The protest escalates".
NAFTEMPORIKI: "Stifling supervision in management of the public sector".
NIKI: "Domino effect of unrest - Social explosion on the threshold, fear of generalised poverty".
RIZOSPASTIS: "Blockade by the poor-middle income farmers on the policy of reinforcing the big-time farmers and merchant-industrialists".
TA NEA: "Six-month 'test', and new taxes on the horizon - Stability Program approved, with reservations".
TO VIMA: "8-9 percent tax on transfers of old real estate properties - New measures being mulled".
VRADYNI: "Roadblocks everywhere - Greece cut in 4 - Stability Program 'scissored' by the EU".
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