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Athens News Agency: News in English, 10-09-30

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] Government's clash with truckers toughens
  • [02] ND leader calls for rallying of forces
  • [03] Citizen's card issue
  • [04] ASE opening: Marginal rise

  • [01] Government's clash with truckers toughens

    The Parliamentary Economy Committee has ratified the controversial amendment by the Justice ministry by which those refusing to fulfill the commitments resulting from their requisitioning will be punished with imprisonment, while the possibility is also provided for the Transport minister to remove the license for exercising a profession from truckers not complying.

    The amendment was voted against by the opposition parties, denouncing both the process of its introduction with the urgent procedure as well as its essence.

    Justice Minister Haris Kastanidis said that "despite the intense dialogue and despite the fact that the government was extremely careful and did not think of penal aspects from the consequences of requisitioning, the owners of public use trucks, are continuing not to provide their services, they are keeping out of use the requisitioned means and vehicles, creating huge problems in the supplying of the market, according to the market officials."

    The amendment imposes a minimum three-year prison sentence on anyone who owns, uses or possesses a requisitioned property or good and refuses to comply with or carry out the obligations arising from the requisition order. For those that repeatedly carry out the same offence, the penalty can rise to five years.

    Furthermore, offenders may also be stripped of their licence to operate the item or provide the service in question.

    Refusal to comply is defined as not performing the specific orders of an appropriate public body and not carrying out transport or other kind of work in the normal fashion in which the economy functions or abandoning the requisitioned item or using it to obstruct traffic or generate a "common need".

    Finally, in cases of emergency and urgent and unforeseeable need the appropriate minister can assign the task or public service normally performed under licence to be performed by private vehicles, machinery and other means.

    In a report justifying the addition of the rider to an unrelated bill, the government said that it dealt with acute problems created by the refusal of "specific professional groups whose personal services have been requisitioned or who are owners of requisitioned items to respect the Constitution and the basic functions of law and order and society".

    In addition to the prison sentences, the amendment also gives authorities powers to take away the licence for a profession or service of common use on the grounds that the licences were issued to meet important public and social needs and serve the public interest.

    More details on the subscriber's page of APE-MPE | Subscription request form

    [02] ND leader calls for rallying of forces

    ANA-MPA/Main opposition New Democracy (ND) party leader Antonis Samaras, addressing Wednesday the party's enlarged Executive Secretariat, which is functioning as an Election Struggle Committee, called on the party's forces to rally in light of the local government elections.

    "I call on all of you to rally. I shall watch all of you because I want all of you by my side in the front line," he said, addressing his cadres.

    He added that "the political climate is changing after the Thessaloniki International Fair. ND's message is becoming understood. The people are being convinced, ND and its proposals constitute the main bearer of hope."

    Samaras requested from his cadres rallying, unity, extroversion because, as he said, "at a time of the most relentless austerity, when pensions and salaries are being cut, shops are closing down, unemployment is soaring, small and average size enterprises and large businesses are at their limits, in short at the most crucial conjuncture of the past 50 years, when the people want us by their side, I am determined not to allow neither discussions in backcorridors, nor gossip, behind the closed doors of offices."

    "Whoever wants to offer weapons to the rival must assume his responsibilities," Samaras warned.

    More details on the subscriber's page of APE-MPE | Subscription request form

    [03] Citizen's card issue

    ANA-MPa/The main axes of the "citizen's card", which will be provided for public debate in the coming days, were discussed in a wide meeting chaired by Prime Minister George Papandreou at the Maximos Mansion on Wednesday.

    According to reports, the card will be used for all of the citizen's transactions with the state and for social services in particular.

    The card will also be used as a travel document for destinations within Schengen.

    According to the same reports, the government is orientated towards extending the uses of the card to uses for the private sector as well, such as transactions with banks.

    The same sources said that there is no question with personal data and that their full protection is anticipated.

    The "citizen's card" is expected to start being available as of December 2011 and will gradually replace the police identity card.

    More details on the subscriber's page of APE-MPE | Subscription request form

    [04] ASE opening: Marginal rise

    Equity prices were rising at the opening of trade on Thursday on the Athens Stock Exchange (ASE), with the basic share price index up 0.03 percent, standing at 1,467.15 points at 11:00 am, and turnover at 9.053 million euros.

    Individual sector indices were mixed, with the biggest gains in Technology, up 0.60 percent; and Financial Services, up 0.77 percent.

    The only losses were in Travel and Recreation, down 0.88 percent; and Media, down 2.14 percent.

    The FTSE/ASE 20 index for blue chip and heavily traded stocks was up 0.05 percent, the FTSE/ASE MID 40 index was down 0.09 percent, and the FTSE/ASE-80 small cap index was down 0.08 percent.

    Of the stocks traded, 22 were up, 24 were down, and 24 were unchanged.

    More details on the subscriber's page of APE-MPE | Subscription request form

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