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Athens Macedonian News Agency: News in English, 13-07-27

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] Defence Minister to visit United States next week
  • [02] Mini-heatwave forecast on Monday, Tuesday

  • [01] Defence Minister to visit United States next week

    ANA-MPA -- Defence Minister Dimitris Avramopoulos is due to visit Washington next week, in what is regarded as a key trip ahead of a meeting between Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras and U.S. President Barack Obama at the White House on August 8, as well as the currently volatile situation in the Middle East.

    Avramopoulos has accepted an invitation from U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel to visit the United States and is due to meet his U.S. counterpart at the Pentagon on Tuesday (10:00 p.m. Greek time).

    Their talks are expected to cover a series of issues pertaining to bilateral relations, military cooperation and security, the situation in the eastern Mediterranean and events in the Middle East.

    Analysts point to recent signs that Greek-U.S. relations are going through a high point, including Obama's references to Greece as a "valuable friend and ally" and the general view of Greece as a strong factor for stability in the surrounding regions, in spite of its current economic problems.

    Avramopoulos and Hagel are expected to discuss matters concerning Greece's neighbourhood, including the Balkans, Turkey, Egypt, Syria and the Middle East, and to examine ways to boost strategic cooperation and reaffirm Greek-U.S. strategic relations in the defence sector and in EuroAtlantic structures. The Greek minister will also brief Hagel on Cyprus' decision to go ahead with a process for joining the Partnership for Peace.

    After meeting Hagel, Avramopoulos will lay a wreath at the Pentagon monument for the victims of 9/11 and visit the chapel for the 'Heroes of America' in order to sign the visitors' book.

    During his U.S. visit, the Greek minister will also attend a ceremony at the Arlington cemetery and place a wreath at the monument of the Unknown Soldier, have meetings with members of the U.S. Senate and Congress and attend a ceremony at the Holocaust Museum, where he will sign an agreement between the museum and the Greek defence ministry.

    [02] Mini-heatwave forecast on Monday, Tuesday

    ANA-MPA -- Temperatures are expected to soar in Greece over the next few days, climbing as high as 39C by Tuesday in the first mini-heatwave of 2013. Greeks throughout the country have responded by flocking to the seaside to escape the searing heat, especially those living in urban areas.

    High temperatures will start to rise from Monday, when they are forecast to reach 37-38C, especially in western parts of the cuntry, before peaking at about 39C on Tuesday. The hottest regions will be in Attica, central Greece, Thessaly and urban areas that are not near the sea.

    This is the first time that temperatures will climb so high this summer, though meteorologists say the phenomenon will not last long enough to be classed as a full-blown heatwave, which requires at least three days of high minimum and maximum temperatures.

    In fact, Saturday and Sunday are expected to be slightly cooler than Friday by one or two degrees, as a result of northerly breezes, and temperatures are expected to subside again from Wednesday.

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