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Athens Macedonian News Agency: News in English, 15-05-03

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] Lafazanis: Greece must chart an alternative course leading towards 'new socialism'
  • [02] Shops open for mid-season sales Sunday, amid protests
  • [03] Tourism minister opens Nafplio's 2nd Mediterranean Yacht Show
  • [04] Work to repair damage at looted Zominthos dig to begin on Monday

  • [01] Lafazanis: Greece must chart an alternative course leading towards 'new socialism'

    ANA-MPA -- Greece must cut loose from memorandums, austerity and neoliberal ideas and chart an alternative course toward a "new socialism" - one going beyond the failures of "real existing socialism," Productive Reconstruction Minister Panagiotis Lafazanis said in an interview with Sunday's "Kathimerini". According to Lafazanis, it was not enough for Greece to draw a line to protect some entitlements but it also "urgently needed a positive and very cohesive progressive package-programme, which will give priority to reducing debt, providing strong liquidity to the economy and growth with a productive orientation." He warned against SYRIZA trading in its values, principles and promises in exchange for "a brief and uncertain stay in government," and said the party was better off giving up power if it was unable to achieve its goals. The minister also supported the construction in Greece of a Russian natural gas pipeline starting at the Greek-Turkish border and reaching the borders of the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, to supply central Europe.

    [02] Shops open for mid-season sales Sunday, amid protests

    ANA-MPA -- Most shops in central Athens were open on Sunday, under laws allowing Sunday opening during the mid-season sales, despite reactions on the part of the Federation of Private Employees of Greece against the measure and demonstrations organised by dozens of workers at intervals along the Ermou shopping high street. Trade unionists stood before department stores and obstructed the entry of customers in some places but no tension was recorded as a result. The majority of shops opened around noon, when a half-marathon in Athens was coming to its close, and the streets in the area were flooded with people, though few appeared to be interested in shopping and the majority headed for cafes instead. Retailers were determined to look on the bright side, however, placing their hopes in a long-awaited economic upturn, and that hefty discounts reaching as high as 70 pct will revive the consumers' desire to spend. Shopkeepers were advised not to open by the National Confederation of Hellenic Commerce (NCHC), whose announcement spoke of "a proven certainty through the statistical evidence that we will be faced with yet another unnecessary and failed Sunday". NCHC President Vassilis Korkidis called the Sunday opening measures "a failed experiment" and said the mid-season sales were adopted specifically for the purpose of adding two more Sundays "because they are held at the wrong time, due to the arrival of new merchandise, and undermine the regular sales at the end of each season." "There is no point in evaluating its results, nor even in protesting against a measure that has discredited itself on its own," he added.

    [03] Tourism minister opens Nafplio's 2nd Mediterranean Yacht Show

    ANA-MPA -- Tourism Minister Elena Kountoura underlined the importance of tourism for Greece's economy and the need for stability so that "we can have the number of tourists we wish," while inaugurating the 2nd Mediterranean Yacht Show in the historic coastal town of Nafplio, a former capital of Greece. The minister attended the inauguration ceremony on Saturday evening and highlighted a significant increase in tourism in recent years, with record numbers of arrivals, while noting that bookings in the first three months of 2015 indicated that these levels will be matched or even improved upon in the current year. She outlined Greece's strategic goals in tourism, such as extending the tourism season, opening up new markets, codifying tourism-related legislation and attracting new investments, as well as targeting multi-themed tourism. The Mediterranean Yacht Show provides an opportunity for travel agents to meet the crews of luxury yachts and arrange for their lease by high-profile and wealthy visitors to Greece. This year's show will run until May 6 and has more boats entering than last year's exhibition, bringing many more travel agents and visitors to Nafplio.

    [04] Work to repair damage at looted Zominthos dig to begin on Monday

    ANA-MPA -- Greece's culture ministry has announced that work will begin on Monday to restored damage caused by illegal digging carried out by looters at the Zominthos archaeological site, on Mount Psiloritis on Crete. According to experts, there are signs that the site was vandalised and disturbed. In an announcement issued on Sunday, the ministry reported damage in three of the 42 rooms uncovered by the official archaeological excavation. It said the illegal diggers had gone through the floor and destroyed a section of the southern wall of one room, that the base of a pillar found on the site had been moved and broken, while in rooms 35 and 26 there were signs of disturbance and illegal digging. The ministry's deputy general secretary Maria Andreadaki-Vlazaki paid a visit to the site on Saturday and a decision was made with the head of the antiquities ephorate and the head of the dig to begin work to restore the damage immediately.
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