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Athens Macedonian News Agency: News in English, 12-04-16

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <http://www.ana.gr/>

CONTENTS

  • [01] Tsohatzopoulos remanded in custody
  • [02] Defence minister reassures Greek troops in Afghanistan
  • [03] Fewer passengers for coastal shipping over Easter holidays

  • [01] Tsohatzopoulos remanded in custody

    AMNA--Former minister Akis Tsohatzopoulos was remanded in custody on Orthodox Easter Monday after appearing before examining magistrate Gabriel Mallis to answer to charges of money laundering, specifically of kickbacks that he received in order to approve the purchase of the TOR-M1 missile systems and submarines for the Greek Navy.

    Tsohatzopoulos had begun his testimony at noon on Monday and was questioned on a memorandum he delivered to the magistrate.

    Sources said the former minister under successive PASOK governments had denied the charges against him concerning the armaments contracts, noting that these were approved by the Government Council for Foreign Affairs and Defence (KYSEA), while he has reserved the right to present his defence concerning the TOR-M1 case at a later date.amna

    Tsohatzopoulos will be held at a jail in police headquarters on Monday because jails are shut due to the holiday and will be transferred to a prison on Tuesday morning.

    [02] Defence minister reassures Greek troops in Afghanistan

    AMNA--In a message to Greek troops stationed with NATO forces in Kabul, Greek Defence Minister Dimitiris Avramopoulos on Easter Monday assured them that the ministry was taking action to ensure their safety while in Afghanistan. The statement was made in the wake of an attack on the Allied forces' base in Kabul, including a building housing Greek troops, on Sunday.

    "The political and military leadership of the National Defence ministry concern themselves with ensuring that the completion of your mission and your stay occur in secure living conditions but also a constant improvement of conditions there," he said.

    According to defence ministry sources, the attack had not targeted the Greek building specifically but occurred in the context of coordinating attacks by the Taliban against government buildings, military targets and embassies to declare the start of spring hostilities.amna

    The attack ended without injuries while the area was calm on Monday.

    In a message on Monday, however, Coalition of the Radical Left (SYRIZA) Parliamentary group leader Alexis Tsipras repeated his standing position in favour of withdrawing all Greek troops from Afghanistan and the country's exit from NATO.

    [03] Fewer passengers for coastal shipping over Easter holidays

    AMNA-The economic crisis, combined with the increase in the price of coastal shipping tickets, as well as the strike by the Panhellenic Maritime Federation on Tuesday and Wednesday were the main factors leading to the decrease in coastal shipping passenger travel this year that, according to assessments, will exceed 40 percent.

    Ship sailings were far fewer compared to last year since companies, due to the increase in the price of coastal shipping fuel and the cost of ship maintenance went ahead with a decrease in the mumber of sailings.amna

    Moreover, many passengers chose to have their Easter holidays on continental Greece due to the cost and the strike. According to Greek coast guard data, a total of 146,759 passengers left the ports of Piraeus, Lavrio and Rafina on Good Monday, Good Thursday and Good Friday last year as against 106,799 this year.


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