|Saturday, 16 February 2019|
The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English, 00-12-13
From: The Hellenic Radio (ERA) <www.ert.gr/>
NEWS IN ENGLISH ERA-5 THE VOICE OF GREECE
13/12/2000 3:13:16 žž
 EU summit meeting in NiceThe final decisions of the 15 EU leaders at the recent summit meeting in Nice, opened up a new chapter and new prospects on the European Union's course.
The Greek government as well as the other European governments appear satisfied at the outcome of the meeting, while there is a general estimation that balances have not been upset.
Government spokesman, Dimitris Reppas, expressed satisfaction at the outcome of the summit, stressing that Greece has achieved its goals, stressing that the right of veto on issues related to foreign policy, shipping and financing of programmes has not changed.
Mr.Reppas also expressed the government's satisfaction over the number of Eurodeputies representing Greece and hailed the EU - Turkey accession partnership, which - as he said - was positive for Greece.
On his part, the former president of Cyprus and head of the EU- Cyprus negotiation team, George Vasiliou, expressed satisfaction at the outcome of the EU summit in Nice, stressing that it has clearly defined Cyprus equal treatment with the other candidate countries for membership.
Meanwhile, the Honourary President of the New Democracy party, Konstantinos Mitsotakis, stated that Greece defended its interests in the best way. It should be noted that the ND President, Konstantinos Karamanlis, described the outcome of the summit as a sore compromise.
In the meantime, Archbishop Christodoulos of Athens and All Greece has launched a strong attack against the EU French presidency stressing that all efforts were made to eliminate the Christian religion from the chart of human rights voted in Nice. He also said that a wave of atheism was sweeping Europe nowadays.
 ET3: 2nd radio program will continue broadcasting its short wave programYesterday, the President of Greek State Radio and Television, Panagiotis Panagiotou, assured the Parliamentary committee for Hellenes abroad that there was no intention of stopping ET-3 , second radio program which broadcasts on short waves throughout the world.
Mr Panagiotou added that there was a misunderstanding, due to the reorganisation of the transmitters.
 November 17: ‘errorist organisation new proclamationThe terrorist organization " November 17" in a proclamation sent last night to the daily newspaper "Eleftherotypia", explained the reasons for the recent assassination of the British official Steven Saunders. The proclamation also reveals that the terrorists used a G-3 gun ,stolen from the Vyronas Police Station in 1988 .
The "November 17 " organization also claimed that Saunders was its most important target in its 25 year-long action.
 Dora Bakoyianni calls American media to approach with objectivity isolated issues of terrorism in GreeceIn the meantime, in her spech yesterday at the National Press Club in Washinghton, former Culture Minister, Dora Bakoyianni, called American officials competent on Greece's affairs to realise the increased sensitivity of public opinion in Greece on the issue of terrorism after the assassination of Steven Saunders.
In parallel, she called American Mass Media, covering isolated issues of terrorism, to approach the problem with seriousness ,responsibility and objectivity because a wrong picture of Greece far from reality was sometimes formed.
 Three trillion dr allocated for an operational program on the technology of informaticsWithin the efforts to modernise the country and facilitate people in their every day life, the government has allocated 3 trillion dr. to finance an operational program linked with the technology of informatics.
Addressing an event organised by the Ministries of National Economy and Public Administration, Prime- minister, Kostas Simitis, urged businesses to turn to new technologies.
 Surplus of 765 dr. on this year's state budgetAccording to an announcement of the Finance Ministry, the revenue of this year's state budget, has a 765 billion drachmas surplus in the 11 month period -January to November.
 Green light for further reduction of interest ratesCommercial banks have been given the green light to go ahead with a new descalation in interest rates, following the decision of the Monetary Committee to reduce the interbank interest rate by 0.75% .
 Athens stock marketOn the Athens Stock exchange yesterday, the general share price index went down by 1,96 % to close 3.612,66 points.
 Further reductions in fuel prices as from midnight ThursdayNew reductions in the price of fuel is expected as from midnight Thursday. Gasoline and heating oil will go down by 14 dr per litter while diesel oil by 12 dr. per litter.
 The parliament passed the articles on lay-offs and flexible working hoursThe parliament yesterday passed with 138 votes in favour and 128 against the articles of the draft bill on labour relations concerning lay-offs and more flexible working hours. Thirteen Pasok party deputies were absent while the deputy of the prefecture of Xanthi Mr.Stolidis voted present .
 Social security systemGovernment spokesman, Dimitris Reppas, yesterday announced that the government will take up initiatives regarding legal issues pertaining to the social security, by the end of the first six months of 2001.
Mr Reppas made it clear that a study on social security reforms will be entrusted to a foreign firm, pledging that social security rights will not be affected.
 Greek and Polish UN observers in Georgia are expected to be released todayThe two UN observers - Greek captain, Efstathios Kokkinidis, and a Polish officer, colonel, Zbigniew Blehats - kidnapped by Abhazian guerrillas in the neutral zone between Georgia and Abhazia last Sunday, are expected to be released today, following marathon negotiations between the kidnapers and officers of the army of Georgia.
The contacts took place at the neutral zone created by the Abhazi autonomists and the Georgian forces, while the kidnapers gave assurances that the two observers are well and promised to free them as agreed.
 Meeting between National Defence Minister and ND party Honorary PresidentNational defence minister, Akis Tsochatzopoulos, and the honorary president of the New Democracy party met yesterday and discussed issues concerning Greek-Turkish relations with emphasis on the confidence building measures in the Aegean as well as the recent developments in the Balkans.
Mr Mitsotakis said he was satisfied at the meeting which took place at his own initiative.
Asked whether they discussed the armed forces' armament program and especially the issue of the purchase of Euro fighter jets, Mr Mitsotakis replied negatively.
 National Defence Minister on an official visit to BelgradeNational Defence Minister, Akis Tsohatzopoulos, will pay an official visit to Belgrade tomorrow for talks with his Yugoslav counterpart, Slobodan Krapovic, on the two countries bilateral relations, as well as the situation in the region with emphasis on the latest crisis in southern Serbia.
The Greek minister will also meet with the Yugoslav president, Vojislav Kostunica, who will brief him on the efforts of the new Yugoslav leadership to rejoin the international community.
 Unicef telemarathonThis year's Unicef telemarathon dedicated to the children in the streets, organized together with Greek State Radio and Television was far beyond expectations.
People of all ages, sex or profession, responded to the call and offered more than 180 million drachmas.
During the telemarathon, Unicef's telephone centre received more than 4,000 calls.