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Athens News Agency: News in English, 11-02-25

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] Greeks evacuated from Libya return safely
  • [02] Shipping dominant in China talks
  • [03] ASE opening: stocks down
  • [04] Athens Newspaper Headlines 

  • [01] Greeks evacuated from Libya return safely

    (ANA-MPA) All three C-130 military transport planes sent to Libya returned safely to Athens airport in the early hours of Friday, carrying upward of 200 Greeks and Cypriots evacuated from the strife-torn country. Among those brought back was a member of staff from the Greek embassy in Tripoli with gunshot wounds in the shoulder and leg.

    The first C-130 to return from Tripoli landed late on Thursday night with 88 Greeks on board, who described the situation in Libya as "tragic" and stressed their relief to be home. Foreign ministry general secretary Ioannis Zepos underlined the difficulties in the operation to ensure their safe return, including the difficulty they had boarding the planes.

    (ANA-MPA) The second and third C-130 planes, carrying 83 evacuees from Tripoli and 45 evacuees from Surt, respectively, arrived shortly after midnight.

    The injured man, who had been shot on Wednesday afternoon, arrived in the second plane and was taken straight to hospital. Authorities said that his condition did not engender concern.

    Deputy Foreign Minister Dimitris Dollis, who had travelled out to Libya on the C-130s in order to coordinate the evacuation operation, spoke of harrowing scenes "not easy to describe" and warmly praised the Greek armed forces for their assistance in returning Greek nationals home.

    (ANA-MPA) "It is not easy to describe the scenes we saw and the way in which our people managed to hold out these days. I am proud of my country," he said.

    Ten Greeks are still trapped in a location deep in the Libyan desert, along with a group of Cypriots and other EU citizens. The Greek government is currently making efforts in coordination with the governments of other countries to ensure their safe return.(ANA-MPA)

    More details on the subscriber's page of ANA-MPA | Subscription request form


    [02] Shipping dominant in China talks

    BEIJING (ANA-MPA) -- Chinese government Vice-President Zhang Dejiang this week expressed Beijing's appreciation for the assistance Greece has offered in the evacuation of thousands of Chinese nationals from strife-plagued Libya, with the first evacuation vessels reaching Crete on Thursday.

    Zhang Dejiang made the statement during a meeting in Beijing with visiting Greek Maritime Affairs, Islands & Fisheries Minister Yiannis Diamantidis, in the presence of China's Transport Minister Li Shenglin.

    Diamantidis concluded his closely watched week-long visit to China and a series of high-profile contacts with Chinese leadership on Wednesday, with talks focusing on the implementation of a five-billion-dollar development fund for Greek shipowners to build new vessels in Chinese shipyards. The latter agreement was first broached by the Greek and Chinese prime ministers in Athens last October.

    Diamantidis met with China's Vice-Foreign Minister Fu Ying and the heads of three of China's biggest banking groups, Bank of China, China Development Bank and Ex-Im, as the prospect of increasing the fund to 10 billion dollars was also raised by the bank executives if demand by Greek shippers dictates greater funding. Chinese bank officials also promised the most competitive lending rates in the world, according to reports, while also pledging to promote investments in Greece by their clients.

    In other contacts, Diamantidis signed a bilateral "action plan" with Chinese Transportation Vice-Minister Weng Mengyong, an initiative that foresees financing for ocean-going shipping enterprises, bilateral cooperation in the sector as well as in maritime education. The Greek minister also visited the headquarters of the China Classification Society (CCS), where he was met by CCS President Li Kejun.

    Finally, Diamantidis was received by Cosco President Capt. Wei Jiafu at the multinational's headquarters in Beijing, with talks directly centring on boosting Cosco's presence at the port of Piraeus -- where it holds a major and ground-breaking concession -- as well as elsewhere in the east Mediterranean nation. (ANA-MPA)

    "The (Piraeus) PCT terminal project opens up a new chapter for Cosco's presence in Greece, as we are becoming a more significant operator of container terminals in the world. Our commitment to make Piraeus a better trans-shipment hub in the region is based on the long term, and we aim to achieve a win-win situation with our Greek partners," Wei said, adding:

    (ANA-MPA) "China and Greece are both influential maritime nations. With a globalised economy and prospering trade relations across continents, we see modern shipping routes are functioning like a new Great Wall on the sea, one that links China and Greece in a very unique and extraordinary way."

    Caption: Greek Maritime Affairs, Islands and Fisheries Minister Yiannis Diamantidis (L) with Cosco President Capt. Wei Jiafu in Beijing on Tuesday, Feb. 22, 2011. ANA-MPA / STR

    More details on the subscriber's page of ANA-MPA | Subscription request form


    [03] ASE opening: stocks down

    Equity prices were declining at the opening of trade on Friday on the Athens Stock Exchange (ASE), with the basic share price index down 0.23 percent, standing at 1,596.94 points at 11:30 am, and turnover at 22.82 million euros.

    Individual sector indices were mixed, with the biggest losses in Commerce, down 0.98 percent; and Travel, down 0.83 percent.

    The biggest gains were in Insurance, up 3.16 percent; and Mass media, up 1.97 percent.

    The FTSE/ASE 20 index for blue chip and heavily traded stocks was down 0.27 percent, the FTSE/ASE MID 40 index was down 0.04 percent, and the FTSE/ASE-80 small cap index was up 0.4 percent.

    Of the stocks traded, 29 were up, 33 were down, and 26 were unchanged.

    More details on the subscriber's page of ANA-MPA | Subscription request form


    [04] Athens Newspaper Headlines

    Further wage cuts and austerity measures demanded under the updated Memorandum for the loans to Greece and events in Libya were the main front-page items in Athens dailies on Friday.

    The Friday edition of Athens' dailies at a glance

    ADESMEFTOS TYPOS: "Libya plunged in 'blood bath' by Gaddafi".

    AVGHI: "A noose of 50+27 billion euro by 2015".

    AVRIANI: "State attempted to 'snatch' country's strongest private bank by extortion".

    DIMOKRATIA: "Search for Gaddafi's treasure in Athens".

    ELEFTHEROS: "Merkel literally 'shredded' George".

    ELEFTHEROS TYPOS: "New cuts in public sector to benefits and basic pensions".

    ELEFTHEROTYPIA: "A 'No. 4 axe' to wages, pensions, health care. The memorandum's targets for the next three months".

    ESTIA: "We are reduced to Euro-beggars".

    ETHNOS: "Ten 'commandments' for the 25 billion in 'Memorandum No. 4'".

    IMERISSIA: "Threat of a oil depression. Fears of an explosion of inflation in Greece"

    KATHIMERINI: "Additional measures of 1.8 billion euro during 2011".

    NAFTEMPORIKI: "EU Commission demanding the planning of a new harsh policy"

    NIKI: "European Commission doesn't back up 'czar' over 50 billion" (articles claims Finance Minister George Papaconstantinou was forced to admit the failure of the memorandum on Thursday.

    LOGOS: "Additional measures to satisfy the 'Troika'".

    PARASKEVI+13 (weekly): "Government policy 'torn down'"

    RIZOSPASTIS: "Sea of striking masses. All the country with PAME"

    TA NEA: "Austerity extended. Memorandum 4 marks continued austerity until 2015 at least".

    VRADYNI: "'We failed' but the fault lies with ...Hatzipetris". (reference to Greek saying, which means to seek to lay blame for problems on unspecified others, rather than named individuals.

    More details on the subscriber's page of ANA-MPA | Subscription request form

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