|Sunday, 17 February 2019|
The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English, 01-05-16
From: The Hellenic Radio (ERA) <www.ert.gr/>
NEWS IN ENGLISH ERA 5 - THE VOICE OF GREECE
16/5/2001 2:43:00 μμ
 Weather forecastSunny weather is forecast throughout the country. Winds northerly, light, turning moderate in the Aegean.
In Attica temperatures will range from 13-28 degrees Celsius in Thessaloniki from 11-26 degrees Celsius and on the islands from 14-24 degrees Celsius.
 Parliament passed draft bill on upgrading of technological institutesThe majority of the parliament yesterday voted in favour of the draft bill for the upgrading of technological institutes. However, 43 Pasok deputies among them deputies Gerasimos Arsenis and Spiros Vougias - who had expressed reservations - were absent.
University deans mainly object to Article #1 which provides for two parallel sectors in tertiary education - the university and technological sectors.
In the meantime most universities remain closed, while the university senates will meet on Friday to decide on whether to accept the en masse deans' resignations.
Following a meeting with representatives of university deans yesterday, opposition ND leader Kostas Karamanlis called for the withdrawal of the draft bill and stressed that his party backed the inclusion of technical colleges into tertiary education, but only on condition that they would undergo evaluation and would receive more staff and funds.
 Nationwide strike on Thursday, May 17thTrade unions are making feverish preparations for the 24-hour nationwide strike on Thursday, May 17th, called by the General Confederation of Greek Workers and the Civil Servants union. The confederation is sticking to its demands for tripartite funding of the state pension system, pointing out that the reserves will be used up in 2005,not after 2012, as stated by National Economy Minister, Yiannos Papantoniou.
Among those striking on Thursday will be employees from the public transport sector, civil servants, teachers, taxation officers, state doctors, lawyers, bank clerks, taxi drivers and journalists.
Due to the general strike mobilisations, the Olympic Airways has scheduled one flight per destination.
In the meantime, the presidium of the General Confederation of Greek Workers met with the Secretary of the GCP, Aleca Papariga and the President of the Coalition of the Left and Progress Party, who stressed their strong objections to the government's policies as they are not aimed at the redistribution of funds and the fair distribution of burdens and benefits.
 Greek government, effective work in the combat of crime and terrorismThe government is working effectively and at a rapid pace to handle terrorism and crime.
While receiving the annual report of the National Human Rights Committee, by its President Aliki Maragopoulou, Prime - minister Simitis underlined the need for the protection of human rights within the efforts to combat crime. Mr.Simitis stressed that modern society should form a strong shield for the protection of social rights in order to further safeguard the peoples' freedom.
At the same time in Washigthon, the American Secretary of State, Colin Powell expressed his absolute support and confidence in Greece's ability to handle the threat of terrorism effectively and organise safe Olympic Games in 2004.
 Olympic Games 2004 preparationsThe construction of the Olympic village was the focus of yesterday's meeting between Prime-minister Simitis and Labour undersecretary Hristos Protopapas.
In the meantime, yesterday the members of the Pan Hellenic Volunteers' union - recently founded in Athens - stressed the importance of volunteer work in the organisation of the Olympic Games.
 Cyprus first among other candidate for admission to the EU countriesIn relation to the course of negotiations, Cyprus came first among the candidate for admission to the EU countries at the EU Association Council.
Greek Foreign Minister Giorge Papandreou and his Cypriot counterpart Ioannis Kassoulidis expressed satisfaction at the holding of the EU-Cyprus Association Council after 4-years interruption.
In their statements, both Mr.Papandreou and Kassoulidis stressed that all the 15 EU Foreign Ministers clearly hold the Turkish-Cypriots responsible for the standstill of the intercommunity talks.
 Smog in Athens gradually reducingAccording to a comparative study on atmospheric pollution in Athens during the periods 1987-1993 and 1994-2000, released by Environment Minister, Kostas Laliotis yesterday, smog in Athens is gradually reducing.
 KYSEA meeting postponed for next weekThe scheduled for tomorrow meeting of the Defence and Economic Ministers government Council KYSEA has been postponed for next week. Earlier there would be a meeting of Prime-minister Simitis with Defence Miister Akis Tsihatzopoulos and Economics Minister Yianos Papantoniou.
However, yesterday Mr,Simitis met with Mr.Tsohatzopoulos and discussed in detail all issues pending since the last meeting of the KYSEA. These issues are related to the way the Defence ministry will contribute in covering public needs and the timely materialisation of the armament program.
 Rise in fuel pricesThe rise in fuel prices continues .Gasoline is expected to go up by 7 dr. per litter, unleaded gasoline by 6 dr. per litter while diesel by 2,5 dr. per litter.
The government's economic staff is highly concerned over the increases in the price of oil and vegetables as it might lead inflation rate up in June.
 The first ''Euro'' out in DecemberThe first Euro coins and bank notes will be out by mid December in order to give people enough tie to adjust to the single currency. The above were stated by Greek Minister of National Economy Yiannos Papatoniou after the meeting of the National Committee on the Euro that was held on Tuesday.
Mr.Papantoniou pointed out that the conversion of the drachma into the Euro will be made in all public agencies to the benefit of consumers and urged the trade companies to follow their example in the effort to avoid any speculation.
 The works of the first Clergy conference opened yesterday at the presence of Archibishop HristodoulosEducation Minister Petros Efthimiou addressed the conference and announced the upgrading of Clergy Academies.
 Health of political prisoners in Turkey in critical conditionThe Solidarity Committee for political prisoners in Turkey and Kurdistan gave an extraordinary press interview yesterday due to the critical health condition of 1660 political prisoners in Turkish prisons - who are on the 208th day of hunger strike.
Greek government spokesman, Dimitris Reppas said that no one could be satisfied at the conditions in Turkish prisons adding that the international community s exercising pressure for changes in Turkish prisons.
 Athens stock marketOn the Athens stock market, the general share index dropped by 0,97% to close at 3022 points.