|Tuesday, 19 February 2019|
The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English, 99-08-20
From: The Hellenic Radio (ERA) <ert.ntua.gr/>
 CHAOS PREVAILS IN TURKEYChaos prevails in Turkey, following Tuesday's devastating earthquake, measuring 7.8 on the Richter scale, as the number of dead is now over 7,085 and the injured over 33,022. There are fears that these figures will increase in the next few days, as many thousands of people are still missing.
The head of the country's largest seismological institute, Mehmet Ali Isikara, who had earlier urged the people to stay away from their homes for the next 24 hours, has revised his prediction of another impending powerful tremor in north- western Turkey.
People can go back to their normal daily routine, he said. The governor of Bursa had also urged the city's population of two million people to stay away from the city. Meanwhile the Turkish press is blaming both the government and building contractors for the major destruction, while relatives of the victims are accusing the political and military authorities of inefficiency and inertia.
Ankara continues to address pleas to the international community for medical and pharmaceutical supplies, tents, bedding, communication systems and vehicles to meet the needs of the injured and the homeless. So far, more than 80 planes have landed in Turkish airports carrying 2,000 rescue team members and aid from abroad. Greece was one of the first countries to send relief aid.
The first part of humanitarian aid from the Greek Red Cross arrived in Constantinople yesterday. However, the dispatch of blood will be delayed, since the Turkish authorities have notified the Greek health ministry that there is no available space to keep it. The Holy Synod of the Church of Greece has announced that churches throughout the country will pass the plate to collect money and deposit it in a bank account. The sum will then be sent to the Ecumenical Patriarchate in Constantinople for the victims of the quake.
 NEW ARCHBISHOP OF AMERICA ELECTEDYesterday, the Holy Synod of the Ecumenical Patriarchate in Constantinople elected unanimously metropolitan bishop Dimitrios of Vrestheni to the post of Greek Orthodox Archbishop of America. Earlier, the Synod had accepted the resignation submitted by Archbishop Spyridon of America and posted him to the Metropolis of Chaldea.
The new Archbishop of America is expected to arrive in Fanari, Constantinople today, for his investiture. Archbishop Christodoulos of Athens and All Greece has said that the election of the new Archbishop of America was an excellent choice. Foreign undersecretary responsible for issues of Greeks abroad Grigoris Niotis said that the election of the Metropolitan of Vrestheni as the new Archbishop of America was a very important decision and called on the Greek community of America to rally round his person.
 PRIME MINISTER MEETS INDUSTRIALISTSPrime minister Kostas Simitis yesterday met with the board of the association of Greek industries with the participation of development minister Evangelos Venizelos and discussed issues of employment, the energy policy and curbing prices.
 EDUCATION MINISTER SAYS SCHOOL YEAR WILL RUN SMOOTHLYEducation minister Gerasimos Arsenis expressed the conviction that the new school year will run smoothly, following his meeting yesterday with the prime minister on education issues. However, Mr Arsenis ruled out the possibility of going back on the educational reform.
 NEW AMERICAN AMBASSADOR EXPECTED IN NICOSIAThe new American ambassador to Cyprus, Donald Balder, is scheduled to arrive in Nicosia today. Mr Balder, who is succeeding Kenneth Brill, will present his credentials to president of the Cyprus republic Glafkos Kliridis next Monday. He will also have contacts with the two communities on Cyprus with the aim of resuming the dialogue for a Cyprus solution. Meanwhile, the American state department's new coordinator for the Cyprus issue, Thomas Weston, is expected to arrive on the island in the next few days.
 MIKIS THEODORAKIS TO BE PROPOSED FOR NOBEL PEACE PRIZE200 Greek intellectuals have taken up an initiative to nominate well-known Greek composer Mikis Theodorakis for the Nobel peace prize in April 2000. The official announcement will be made during the Festival "Prespes '99", due to be held from August 27 to 30. Prime minister Kostas Simitis and his wife Dafni, many cabinet members, deputies and the culture ministers of Serbia and Skopje will most probably attend the festival.
 ATHENS STOCK EXCHANGE DOWN 1.48% YESTERDAYThe general share price index on the Athens stock exchange dropped yesterday by 1.48%, closing at 4,785.56. In the parities, the US dollar closed at 310.35 drachmas, the German mark at 167.024 drachmas and the euro at 326.670 drachmas.
 XENOKRATIS PLAN IN EFFECT TO FACE NEW HEAT WAVEThe Xenokratis plan has been put into effect again in view of the latest heat wave in Greece. Hospitals, prefectures, regional departments and municipalities have been placed on the alert to face emergencies. Elderly persons and high-risk groups have been advised to stay at home.
 LARGE ANTI-GOVERNMENT RALLY IN BELGRADEIn Belgrade, a large anti-government demonstration was staged yesterday with the participation of over 100,000 people who were calling for the resignation of Yugoslav president Slobodan Milosevic. Leader of the Serbian Renewal Movement Wuk Draskovic and leader of the Democratic party Zoran Gigic also participated in the rally.
Meanwhile in Kosovo, the UN interim commander Frenchman Bernard Kouchner did not rule out the possibility of re- deploying Serbian forces in the province for the protection of the local Serbian population. Yesterday, two Italian soldiers were wounded by unidentified gunmen in the city of Jakovica, Kosovo, in the course of a bomb attack against a Serbian Orthodox church.