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Athens Macedonian News Agency: News in English, 16-11-25

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] Tsipras: The second program review will close without compromising our values
  • [02] No issue of a fourth bailout program for Greece, says ECB's Coeure -press
  • [03] Major clean-up operation at Moria hotspot after Thursday's fires

  • [01] Tsipras: The second program review will close without compromising our values

    The ongoing negotiations between Greece and the institutions will conclude without compromising the government's values, Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras told representatives of trade bodies, during a speech to inaugurate the 24th Panhellenic Trade Fair "Eastern Macedonia-Thrace" in Komotini.

    "This government doesn't sign blank papers and the second program review will end without compromises in our values," he said.

    Commenting on the review, he said he expects "very positive messages" from the Eurogroup on the ongoing negotiations and a debt write-off.

    "We expect the next days to receive very positive messages from the Eurogroup on the country's negotiations with our partners and the European institutions, messages that concern a debt write-off, which forms part of the difficult agreement achieved last summer, to which we adhere to unswervingly and now expect our partners to respect," he said.

    Tsipras noted that stabilizing the economy and returning to growth is in the near future for the county and pointed to the "more than positive" economic data and optimistic forecasts for the future.

    "We find ourselves in the last meters of a very difficult road and our aim is to reconstruct the country productively," he said, adding that those who have borne the brunt of the crisis must be supported.

    Commenting on migration, the prime minister said the EU-Turkey deal must be "faithfully respected", noting that communication channels between Greece and Turley must remain open. "Our people are fighting a battle for the European values that our European partners have forgotten and our people are demonstrating the road of human values."

    Taking at jab at Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's recent comments concerning the Lausanne Treaty, Tsipras said the country's borders are not disputed and cannot be redefined.

    Turning his attention to the region of Xanthi which he toured on Friday, Tsipras said the government's presence in Thrace will not be temporary but will receive a permanent character with the creation of a second prime minister's office in Thessaloniki.

    "I would like to assure you that our presence today will not be a passing presence. I come to Northern Greece to launch tomorrow the prime minister's office in Thessaloniki, which will be the prime minister's view on northern Greece," he said.

    Tsipras said he was glad his visit to Thrace coincided with the opening of the trade fair, which he said has become an institution for the region in the past two-and-a-half decades and expressed his hope it will serve as a tool for future development by supporting local producers and products.

    "The aim of our presence in Thrace today is to be briefed without mediators about the problems of the region and the ways to support it," he said, adding that after six years of recession, the country and society need growth. "But growth cannot be merely statistic data for economists but actions in the daily lives of the people. What this country needs is jobs," he noted.

    [02] No issue of a fourth bailout program for Greece, says ECB's Coeure -press

    There is no issue of a fourth bailout program for Greece but it is vital for the country to succeed in the third program, Executive Board member Benoit Coeure reportedly told Greek newspaper Efimeritha ton Syntakton in an interview which will be published on Saturday.

    Asked about the ongoing second program review, the ECB official said talks remain open on all aspects of policies and lowered expectations for a deal at the Eurogroup on December 9, noting that the meeting "will provide a good opportunity for registering the progress made and determining the timetable to complete the review."

    Coeure also confirmed the differences in views among the institutions on the size of the primary surplus in the talks about Greek debt and described the participation of the International monetary Fund (IMF) in the Greek program as a "factor of credibility".

    According to the paper, the ECB official said he's in favour of debt relief and that the full implementation of the program must be accompanied by a series of debt relief measures in the framework of the Eurogroup agreement on May 25.

    Concerning the inclusion of Greek bonds in the European Central Bank's (ECB) quantitative easing program, he noted the bank's board will base its assessments on the internal analysis which will be conducted, while taking into consideration other issues concerning risk management, before taking its final decisions.

    Coeure also noted the need to continue reforms and fiscal consolidation in Greece in a way that "promotes growth" and is geared towards cost cutting and not tax increases.

    [03] Major clean-up operation at Moria hotspot after Thursday's fires

    Municipal clean-up crews on the Aegean island of Lesvos were racing against time on Friday to clear away the debris after Thursday nights fires and to get the Moria refugee and migrant camp back into working order before the onset of rains expected on Friday night.

    In the light of day, it also became clear that the blaze started by the explosion of a cooking gas canister was only one of many, and that fires had been started in at least 10 locations within the camp. According to police, the camp was only saved because there had been on wind on Thursday night, otherwise it would have burnt down from end to end. Due to overcrowding, with 4,500 people now residing within the camp, the tents are pitched very close together and touch each other, so that flames spread very rapidly.

    Other investigators also suspect some fires were set deliberately by migrants living in the camp, especially Africans, using small gas canisters.

    According to one police officer, authorities on the island had considered such an outcome "pre-ordained".

    "We didn't know when it would happen but we knew that it would happen. I hope that we are proved wrong about the worst that we say is coming if the camp at Moria is not decongested and the delinquent migrants who live there, next to women and children from countries ravaged by the wars in Asia, are not immediately removed," one local police officer told the Athens-Macedonian News Agency (ANA).

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