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Athens Macedonian News Agency: News in English, 16-11-01

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

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

CONTENTS

  • [01] State minister welcomes ND's decision to propose a candidate for NCRTV chief
  • [02] Violation of minority rights a 'minefield' for Albania's European course, Athens warns
  • [03] Seven funds express interest in Attica Bank's NPLs

  • [01] State minister welcomes ND's decision to propose a candidate for NCRTV chief

    State Minister Nikos Pappas welcomed New Democracy's initiative to propose a candidate for the new board of the National Council for Radio and Television (NCRTV), the country's TV regulator, saying it shows there's room for consensus.

    "We are on a path of convergence in setting up the NCRTV and that is very positive for the issue and for the country's political life," Pappas said during an interview with channel "E".

    "ND's proposal sends a message to other political forces that there's real room for convergence," he said, without commenting on ND's candidate. "I welcome ND's position to propose a person as president of NCRTV, there's room for ND to move from 'present' to 'Yes," he added, referring to the vote that took place on Monday night in parliament where the main opposition voted "present", thus blocking the election of the previous candidates.

    Pappas insisted on keeping just four nationwide broadcasters but added that because there is a tendency towards a consensus, "if the number of the channels is crucial for the opposition, we can examine a regulation which would require the NCRTV to agree on their number."

    [02] Violation of minority rights a 'minefield' for Albania's European course, Athens warns

    Reacting to the planned demolition of 19 homes belonging to ethnic Greeks in Albania's Himara region, the Greek foreign ministry on Tuesday again warned that proceeding with such actions will jeopardise Albania's European perspective.

    "Official Albanian agencies cannot claim urbi et orbi that minority rights are respected throughout Albanian territory at the same time as they are being violated in practice, creating a minefield for the country's European course," a Greek foreign ministry announcement said.

    Albania's leadership was confusing its own mistaken understanding of history with Albania's commitments arising from international law and the body of European laws concerning the protection of the ethnic Greek minority in Albania, which was native and had established rights, the foreign ministry said.

    The actions of Albanian authorities pointed to the existence of an organised plan to violate the rights of the Greek minority, "with the events speaking for themselves," the ministry claimed. It noted, among others, that demolition notices as part of a plan for the redevelopment of Himara were all sent to individuals of ethnic Greek origin.

    "Yesterday's statements by Albanian officials smack of an outdated logic that directly conflicts with current standards for the protection of minority rights in modern, democratic and European countries," the announcement continued.

    The ministry was responding to an Albanian foreign ministry announcement on Monday, which said that there was no discrimination with respect to the law and that the legal procedures followed by the Himara municipality were all "transparent and in accordance with current legislation."

    Greece had urged Albanian authorities on Sunday to cancel the demolition order giving residents five days to quit their homes and begin meaningful consultations with the owners concerning Himara's redevelopment plans.

    "If Albania sincerely wishes to join the European Union, it should demonstrate in practice that it functions according to the principles of the rule of law, protecting the rights of all its residents regardless of their nationality and origin, against abuses and illegal acts," the Greek foreign ministry had added.

    [03] Seven funds express interest in Attica Bank's NPLs

    Seven funds expressed interest in managing Attica Bank's mostly businesses' non-performing loans (NPLs), which amount to about one billion euros, according to sources on Tuesday.

    The same sources said the funds will also invest about 70 million euros to fully cover the bank's capital needs, which emerged following last year's stress tests. In the following days the offers made by the funds will be assessed in order to come up with a preferred investor by the end of November.


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