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Athens News Agency: News in English, 10-09-05

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] Kallikratis plan a revolution in favour of citizens
  • [02] Papariga at KNE festival

  • [01] Kallikratis plan a revolution in favour of citizens

    By voting for the new local government institutions established in the upcoming local elections, Greek citizens will be saying 'yes' to the future and to the changes that would make Greece a different, better and fairer country, Prime Minister George Papandreou said on Sunday.

    In an unscheduled statement made after the announcement of PASOK-backed candidates in the regional and municipal government elections, Papandreou stressed these were not just another ordinary, run-of-the-mill election battle since the Kallikratis plan amounted to a "revolution in favour of the citizens, regions and the self-evident".

    The only condition for carrying out this revolution "is for all of us to join the battle to elect those who believe in the prospects of change in Greece and in local government, those who have the knowledge and the ability and believe in these prospects".

    The prime minister also stressed that he was speaking about "broader social, political forces" and that this was reflected in the choices announced by PASOK.

    Regarding the candidates backed by PASOK, Papandreou said that they were people that had the ability and deserved to shoulder the burden of this great change, adding that their success in the elections would determine whether Greece was able to go forward.

    According to the prime minister, it was a "great historic opportunity" that local communities and young people were able to participate in changing the state, changing the system for growth, modernising the welfare system, opening the educational system and innovatively highlight the modern Greek identity in products, services and tourism.

    Papandreou noted that he had disagreed with some of the views expressed at PASOK's National Council but fully identified with everyone's concern to building a better Greece and to defend the weak, those on low pensions and salaries and "those that are often hard hit by this crisis for which they are not responsible".

    "We are guided by the motto "the citizen first" and at the first possibility of a recovery we will concern ourselves with the problems of the weakest, helping and supporting so that there is security," he added.

    Concerning the results of the 9th session of PASOK's National Council and the 36th anniversary since PASOK was founded, Papandreou said the party was moving forward in accordance with its principles but changing so that it was able to serve these in the best possible way.

    He said the three-day National Council had once again proved that PASOK was a ground-breaking force, a body for dialogue and for processing innovative ideas and one that served values and was guided by principles that lit the way even in the darkest of circumstances, such as those the country had been going through in recent months.

    "The hardest days we have known since democracy was restored, since the foundation of our movement, resulting from the unplumbable depths of the previous government's irresponsibility," he said, adding that the country had never before been in such danger or faced such a great threat.

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    [02] Papariga at KNE festival

    Communist Party of Greece (KKE) General Secretary Aleka Papariga urged working-class people to join in fighting the dominant policies by casting their vote for KKE in the upcoming local government elections. She was speaking at the 36th KNE-Odigitis festival organised in Patras by KKE's youth group KNE.

    "We communist men and women don't make do with cries, propaganda lines and melodramatic descriptions of the major problems of the working people. We don't waste our energy on blind rage. We want to contribute so that people take their fate into their own hands, overcome doubts and fears and even prejudices that are built in from the earliest years in school, so that they realise and use their indestructible, live-giving, revolutionary strength".

    "Our goal is not to describe is to overthrow, to reverse this reality and put people on the path to social, popular prosperity," she added.

    KKE's leader also warned against abstention as a political message in the upcoming elections, stressing that this was a message that anyone could construe as they wished.

    According to Papariga, abstention was seen as giving up, inability to adopt a position, avoidance and pointless revenge.

    "Not only does it not punish, quite the opposite, it promotes a dangerous neutrality and prepares the ground even better for new policies against the working classes and the people.

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