|Saturday, 16 December 2017|
Athens Macedonian News Agency: News in English, 12-11-24
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From: The Athens News Agency at <http://www.ana.gr/>
 Tsipras: Government suffered defeats at EU SummitAMNA/ The Greek government "suffered defeats" at the recent EU Summit, main opposition SYRIZA leader Alexis Tsipras said on Saturday, accusing Prime Minister Antonis Samaras of being the only EU leader not setting out conditions, not negotiating and not demanding, and of being incapable of safeguarding the national interests.
Speaking in Peristeri, Tsipras said that Europe was reaching its limits with its consecutive failures to take decisions, and opined that the hour has come for the Greek people to take into its own hands the dynamic negotiations for the country and to rise to the forefront of a major upset in all of Europe.
 PASOK criticises EU summit failure to reach budget decisionAMNA/ Instead of strengthening European integration, the crisis weakened it, the PASOK party said on Friday of the EU Summit meeting that ended on the same day without agreement on the EU budget.
"The fruitless result of the European summit meeting on the EU budget and the multi-annual financial framework [2014-2020] shows that the experience of the crisis has weakened the process of European integration, instead of strengthening it," the party said in its announcement.
"Unfortunately, all this is insufficient in responding to the needs of European societies, especially of those that are at the forefront of the crisis," it said, adding the hope that Eurozone leaders "understand that following the European Council's failure it is vital to present a convincing result for Greece in Monday's Eurogroup meeting."
 KKE: EU-IMF compromise on tranche possibleAMNA/ The Communist Party of Greece (KKE) opined that a compromise between the eurozone and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) over the outstanding tranche of the EU/IMF bailout loan to Greece is possible, but disbursement of the tranche and extension of Greece's and a restructure of the Greek debt without new Memorandums for the working people is impossible.
In an announcement, the party also said that KKE leader Aleka Papariga will address a political-cultural event marking the 94th anniversary of the party's founding on Sunday at the Peace and Friendship Stadium near Piraeus.
 Eurogroup talks on Greek debt to prepare for Monday's meetingBRUSSELS (AMNA/V.Demiris) - Eurogroup chairman Jean-Claude Juncker announced in Brussels on Friday evening that he has convened a Eurogroup finance ministers working meeting by teleconference on the Greek debt for Saturday.
Speaking after the end of a European Union Summit, Juncker underlined the need for a decision being taken on Greece during Monday's eurogroup meeting, adding that Saturday's teleconfernce, "which is not expected to take any decision", aimed at preparing for Monday's Eurogroup meeting.
Juncker also said that ha held talks with Greek Prime Minister Antonis Saparas and German Chancellor Angela Merkel on the Greek problem.
Guy Schuller, a spokesman for Jean-Claude Juncker,had earlier denied that a meeting will be convened, in reply to a question from the AMNA.
 PM: Efforts for EU funding to continueBRUSSELS (AMNA / M. Spinthourakis, M. Aroni) - No agreement was reached on the EU's multiannual financial framework (2014-2020) at the summit meeting and the talks will continue at another summit early in 2013, Prime Minister Antonis Samaras told the press in Brussels on Friday.
Reporting on the results of the summit at a press conference, Samaras noted that EU leaders had come closer in their respective positions but in the end failed to agree.
Concerning the amount of cohesion funds for Greece, which were projected to amount to 11.2 billion euros, Samaras said the Greek side had fought for a special clause. He also announced that European Council President Herman van Rompuy had proposed raising this amount by 20 percent.
The EU budget for 2007-2013 called for a 40 percent reduction in funds to Greece, Samaras said, because of the overall budget decreases for EU countries for 2014-2020 and because the expansion of the EU to eastern European countries meant there were more claimants to the funds.
One of the problems was also that each country's funding totals were based on 2007-2009 figures, before the crisis and recession hit Greece.
"The battle is continuing and we are striving to get more funds," Samaras added, noting that he was cooperating with other countries that had shared interests in terms of the EU budget.
The Greek premier also stressed the efforts underway to secure disbursement of the next tranche of EU-IMF financial aid to Greece, saying that he had had a succession of talks with his European counterparts and EU officials, as did Finance Minister Yannis Stournaras, and that talks will continue up until the last meeting before next Monday's Eurogroup meeting on Greece's debt.
He noted that Greece was no longer being treated as a 'scapegoat' that was to blame for everything, but now had several warm supporters.
Official sources noted that Samaras had spoken with IMF chief Christine Lagarde and US Secretary of the Treasury Timothy Geithner by phone, which he planned to continue.
 2012 Kouros Awards for Entrepreneurship presentedAMNA/
The 2012 annual Kouros Awards for Entrepreneurship were presented during a ceremony in Athens, with the awards going to entrepreneurs who have distinguished themselves in innovation, development, the international arena, social contribution and smart business ideas, organized for the 18th consecutive year by the Hellenic Entrepreneurship Association.
Supporting Greek entrepreneurship is a national need in order for the country to return to recovery orbit, Association president Constantinos Evripidis, said at the ceremony, noting: "It is the duty of the state to support entrepreneurship, and it can achieve this. Solutions exist, such as tax incentives, simplified procedures, and the formulation of a steady and smooth operational environment."
The Development and Innovation Award, presented by deputy development and competitiveness minister Notis Mytarakis, went to Apostolos Kakkos, founder and CEO of Lambda Helix.
The award for Performance in the International Economic Arena, presented by deputy finance minister Christos Staikouras, went to Pyramis Metallurgy S.A. and Pyramis Deutschland Gmbh CEO Nikos Bakatselos.
The Social Contribution award, presented by parliament president Evangelos Meimarakis, went to the Hellenic Business Administration Association (EEDE).
The "Stelios" Haji-Ioannou award for Young Entrepreneur of the Year, presented by Haji-Ioannou himself, went to Revekka Pitsika of the Athens-based 'People for Business'.
The Green Dreams-Green Entrepreneurship award went jointly to Eurobank EFG alternate CEO Dr. Vassilios Theoharakis, founder and chairman of the board of the nanotechnology firm Nanophos S.A. and Dr. Ioannis Arabatzis, CEO and co-founder of Nanophos
 Three arrests in Ancient Olympia Archaeological Museum theftAMNA/
Three people were arrested on Saturday in the western port city of Patras for the February theft at the old Archaeological Museum of Ancient Olympia in which some 65 exhibits were stolen, and two more individuals are wanted.
Two hooded thieves broke into the Archaeological Museum of Ancient Olympia on the morning of February 17 and made away with approximately 65 exhibits after attacking the woman guards she was turning off the alarm system to enter the building and take up her shift, holding her at gunpoint as they tied her to a chair and gagged her, then broke the glass of the display cases, grabbed the antiquities and fled.
The thieves fled with some 65-68 ancient bronze and clay artifacts, mostly votive offerings and all of great value, and also a gold ring.
The suspects were initially taken in for questioning on Saturday, after a large number of antique artifacts were found in their possession, and after the items were identified as stolen articles from the Museum the three were subsequently arrested.
Police arrested two residents of Patras aged 50 and 36 and a 41-year-old man from Athens, and two more Patras residents aged 58 and 33 are wanted, while police are continuing investigations for the possible involvement of others in the theft.
The arrests arose after police investigations of all antiquity smuggling cases they have solved, in the belief that antiquity smugglers were in contact with individuals wishing to sell ancient artifacts that had been stolen from the museum, sources said.
The same sources said that a police officer, posing as a prospective buyer, succeeded in approaching one of the perpetrators and setting up a meeting with him at a Patras hotel. When the suspect tried to sell the officer the gold ring stolen from the Museum for 300,000 euro, the policeman attempted to arrest him but the suspect pulled out and threatened him with a gun. Other police officers on hand intervened and arrested the suspect, while the two other suspects were arrested in the hotel premises.
During questioning the suspects revealed the spot where they hiding the stole artifacts in a rural area some two kilometers outside the town of Ancient Olympia.
After a count and identification of the artifacts found in the suspects' possession, archaeologists will ascertain whether any of the stolen objects from the Museum are missing, and in what condition the artifacts are. The artifacts have tentatively been dated to the Geometric and Classical Periods.
Alternate Culture Minister Costas Tzavaras later praised the "discovery and arrest of the perpetrators of the theft at the Museum of Ancient Olympic and the recovery of the stolen items" as "an important success that arose from the harmonious and efficient cooperation among the Ministry's services and the Greek Police (ELAS)".
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