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The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English, 99-10-08

The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Hellenic Radio (ERA) <ert.ntua.gr/>

CONTENTS

  • [01] GREEN LIGHT FOR GREECE'S ENTRY TO EMU
  • [02] GOVERNMENT CAUTIOUS ABOUT TURKEY'S EU CANDIDATE STATUS
  • [03] TURKISH BOMB ATTACK CONDEMNED
  • [04] WASHINGTON TALKS ON A CYPRUS SETTLEMENT
  • [05] MEASURES TO HELP EARTHQUAKE VICTIMS
  • [06] ADDITIONAL TAX RELIEF MEASURES ANNOUNCED
  • [07] GREEK PRESIDENT TO GO TO TEHRAN
  • [08] GREEK-MALTESE COOPERATION AGREEMENT SIGNED
  • [09] CYPRIOT MILITARY EXERCISE ENDS

  • [01] GREEN LIGHT FOR GREECE'S ENTRY TO EMU

    According to the national economy minister, Iannos Papantoniou, the decision by the EU's economic and monetary committee to withdraw its recommendations regarding Greece's public deficit meant that Greece was just one step short of entry to European economic and monetary union. The decision will be finalised at the Ecofin ministers meeting in Brussels on 8th November. Meanwhile the inflation rate for September is reported to have remained at 2%. The governor of the Bank of Greece, Loukas Papadimos, said the adjustment of interest rates depended not only on the current rate of inflation, but also - and more importantly - on its predicted course in the future.

    [02] GOVERNMENT CAUTIOUS ABOUT TURKEY'S EU CANDIDATE STATUS

    The Greek government views the European Parliament's recent decision to grant Turkey status as a candidate for EU membership as a positive step. The government spokesman, Dimitris Reppas, said that although the resolution had given Turkey the possibility to submit an application for membership of the EU, it also clearly indicated the European Parliament's reservations regarding Turkey's course towards Europe, since it saw that Ankara was not fulfilling the criteria laid down in Copenhagen. Greece's opposition parties have expressed their objections to the move.

    [03] TURKISH BOMB ATTACK CONDEMNED

    In a separate development, the Greek foreign ministry spokesman, Panayotis Beglitis, yesterday condemned a bomb attack on the Zografio Lyceum in Constantinople, and called on the Turkish authorities to take all the necessary steps to arrest the perpetrators. He said the Turkish authorities were obliged to protect Greek organisations and institutions in Turkey and to safeguard the assets of ethnic Greeks.

    [04] WASHINGTON TALKS ON A CYPRUS SETTLEMENT

    Speaking at the annual assembly of the Greek-American organization Hellenic Leadership taking place in Washington, the US presidential envoy for Cyprus, Al Moses, said he would do his best to ensure that substantive talks on a Cyprus settlement were resumed between the Cypriot president, Glafkos Kliridis, and the Turkish-Cypriot representative, Rauf Denktash. Mr Moses emphasised that the present status quo was unacceptable and that the US continued to support the creation of a bi-zonal, bi-communal federation. Meanwhile, following his hour-long meeting with White House director, Joe Podesta, the Greek foreign undersecretary, Grigoris Niotis, said Washington would continue its efforts for the opening of substantive negotiations on a Cyprus settlement. Mr Niotis pointed out that the Americans hoped Ankara and the Turkish-Cypriots would eventually change their stand.

    [05] MEASURES TO HELP EARTHQUAKE VICTIMS

    Progress in the implementation of measures to help those hit by last month's earthquake in Attica will be discussed at party leader level in parliament today. The government's special emergency committee has decided to go ahead with the compulsory purchase of 70 plots of land to set up schools whose buildings were damaged in the earthquake. The task of drawing up a census of individuals, households and businesses hit by the earthquake begins tomorrow. The supply of food to the victims of the earthquake now living in tents, and the financial management of its distribution, will be taken over from today by the ministry of the interior, in collaboration with the municipal authorities concerned.

    [06] ADDITIONAL TAX RELIEF MEASURES ANNOUNCED

    The economy undersecretary, Giorgos Drys, has submitted a number of modifications to the government's taxation bill. The level of untaxable income is being increased for people with special needs and the inhabitants of small islands, and the rate of tax for small- to medium-sized businesses in these areas will be reduced. Meanwhile from January next year it will be possible to submit Value Added Tax declarations via the Internet.

    [07] GREEK PRESIDENT TO GO TO TEHRAN

    The Greek president, Kostis Stefanopoulos, is to pay an official visit to Iran from 12th to 15th October, at the invitation of his Iranian counterpart, Mohamad Hatami. He will be accompanied by the foreign minister, Giorgos Papandreou, the agriculture minister, Giorgos Anomeritis, and a large delegation of businessmen and journalists.

    [08] GREEK-MALTESE COOPERATION AGREEMENT SIGNED

    A cooperation agreement in the air transport sector was signed yesterday by the Greek prime minister, Kostas Simitis, and his Maltese counterpart, Edward Fenek Adami. In statements he made after the meeting, Mr Simitis referred to the excellent relations between the two countries and to the possibility of cooperation in many sectors. He also underlined Greece's support for Malta's entry to the EU.

    [09] CYPRIOT MILITARY EXERCISE ENDS

    The Cypriot national guard's military exercise, code-named Nikiforos, was successfully completed yesterday afternoon. Greek air and naval forces also participated in the exercise.
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