|Thursday, 29 February 2024
The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English, 01-09-21
From: The Hellenic Radio (ERA) <www.ert.gr/>
NEWS IN ENGLISH ERA 5. THE VOICE OF GREECE
21/9/2001 1:15:00 μμ
Bush addresses the American Congress Simitis & Karamanlis against terrorism Additional measures for domestic flights Papandreou-Georgievski meeting Vasiliou has contacts in the USA and Britain 200 illegal immigrants detected off Ikaria No cars allowed to circulate in certain streets in 80 Greek cities tomorrow
 Bush addresses the American CongressGeorge W Bush has given the most crucial speech of his presidency, outlining the US campaign against terrorism in an address to both houses of Congress. He warned the Taleban in Afghanistan to surrender Osama Bin Laden and his followers immediately, or "share in their fate". But the Taleban ambassador to Pakistan said later that the Saudi militant would never be handed over; such a move would be an "insult to Islam". Mr Bush paid tribute to the acts of heroism of rescuers who had fought to save people from the ruins of the World Trade Center and Pentagon, which were hit by airborne suicide attacks on 11 September.
He also named those who he believed carried out the attacks, singling out Osama Bin Laden and his al-Qaeda organisation, whom he said had great influence in Afghanistan. Referring to foreing governments the American President called them to take sides and urged the American people to be "calm and resolute" while US armed forces embarked on a prolonged campaign against those responsible for the attacks on New York and Washington which left more than 6,000 people dead.
Additionally, he expressed the hope that life in New York would return to normal, assuring that the city would be re-built. The American President differentiated between the terrorists from the majority of the Arabs and Muslims, accusing the first of threatening the Arab countries, seeking the destruction of Israel and wishing the expulsion of Christians from Africa.
He also stressed that any regime supporting terrorism would be considered hostile and anounced that a ministry of Domestic Security would be created. Today, Mr. Bush is going to meet with the Japanese Prime Minister Yunisiro Koizoumi in Washington. Islamic militants in Pakistan are pushing for a nationwide strike to oppose the government's pledge to back the US in a campaign against the Afghan Taleban for sheltering Osama Bin Laden. Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf pledged to co-operate with Washington in trying to capture Bin Laden, whom it says is behind last week's attacks in New York and Washington. Correspondents say Pakistan is critical to the US campaign and the strike will be an important barometer of public opinion.
"The government's hasty decision doesn't enjoy support of the people," said Qazi Hussain Ahmed, chief of the Jamaat-e-Islami, or the Islamic Party. From its side, Iran anounced that it will not allow the American Airforce to use its air space, while the Secretary General of the Arab Association excluded any Arab participation in the operations if Israel took part in them. In the meantime, European Union leaders, who are having an extraordinary summit meeting in Brussels today within the framework of a joint European policy, are going to take measures against terrorism The Belgian Prime Minister, who is presiding the European Union presently said that the extraordinary European Union meeting must underline the need for adopting a European policy against terrorism, which will be covering at the same time the political, diplomatic and economic dimensions of the problem.
Participating in the meeting from the Greek side will be Prime Minister Costas Simitis and Foreign minister Yorgos Papandreou. Moreover, the Belgian Premier will call on the 15 European Union leaders to send a message of reasurance to the Stockmarkets, which seem to be holding well despite the terrorist attacks, but which are on the alert to face any problems. Finally, the European Union leaders will be called on to verify the European Unions support to the the American people and leadership following the terrorist attacks on September 11. Meanwhile, European Union Justice and Interior ministers approved yesterday tough new anti-terrorist measures, including an EU-wide search and arrest warrant. Work on the new measures started two years ago, but was speeded up after last week's attacks in the US thrust the issue to the top of the political agenda. A total of 37 measures were pro posed, and will be passed to an emergency summit of EU heads of state on Friday.
Later in Washington, the EU and the United States agreed to co-operate in a broad coalition "to defeat terrorism". Moreover, American Secretary of State Colin Powel and his Belgian counterpart and European Union High Commisioner Xavier Solana also examined the combatting of terrorism yesterday. On a relative development, the 15 European Union Finance ministers will discuss in Belgium today about the economic repurcussions in Europe caused by the terrorist attack against the USA on September 11 and try to find ways to deal with the world recession, which will also affect the European Union.
However, Greek National Economy minister Yiannos Papantoniou has assured that although no substancial changes should be expected in the Greek economy, changes in the budget could not be ruled out. Meawhile, yesterday was one of the worst days for Stock Markets all over the world due to the instability caused from the terrorist attack against the US. The General Share Price Index of the Athens Stock Exchange dropped yesterday by 5,08%, while the leading index of shares in both New York and London also suffered further heavy blows. US shares slumped a further 383 points, bringing its total losses this week to more than 1,200 points or about $1.2 trillion. French and German stock markets were also substantially lower, primarily because of the same fears over US retaliation and the impact on the global economy.
Paris's Cac 40 closed 151 points lower at 3,738 while Frankfurt's Dax ended 232 points down at 3,810. Asian markets had already closed lower, ending three days of stability. Overnight, Japan's leading Nikkei index moved 154 points lower to 9,785 while Hong Kong's Hang Seng index fell 240 points to 9,317.98. US Treasury Secretary Paul O' Neill and Federal Reserve chairman Alan Greenspan have told the US Congress that no one can tell how deeply the economy has been affected by the terrorist attacks.< BR> In his prepared remarks, Mr Greenspan said that although in the short term "much economic activity virtually ground to a halt," the long-term economic prospects "have not been significantly diminished by these terrible events". Mr Greenspan warned that the shock of September 11 "by markedly raising the degree of uncertainty about the future, has the potential to result in a pronounced disengagement from future commitments." In Frankfurt the report of the European Central Bank, which was released yesterday, states that the terrorist attacks will bring a short-term blow on economic development and at the same time will lead to the decrease of inflation due to the drop of oil prices.
 Simitis & Karamanlis against terrorismPrime Minister Costas Simitis chaired a government meeting yesterday and discussed about the forming of a crises centre related to terrorism. Mr. Simitis stressed that Greece was against terrorism, adding at the same time that human rights and constitutional order should be protected. From his side, addressing the New Democracy Political Council yesterday, party President Costas Karamanlis pointed out that his party was supporting the USA and the International Community in their struggle against international terrorism.
 Additional measures for domestic flightsTransport minister Christos Verelis met with representatives of Airlines and decided that extra measures be taken in domestic flights immediately. At the same time, an event took place at Attiko Theatro in Galatsi, Athens yesterday, where the Athens Municipality with its Symphony Orhestra expressed its support to the American people.
 Papandreou-Georgievski meetingForeign minister Yorgos Papandreou met with the Prime Minister of the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM) L. Georgievski in Thessaloniki yesterday and discussed about the peace process in Skopje and the joint effort for combatting terrorism. Mr. Papandreou informed Mr. Georgievski that the European Union did not wish the peace process to stop, while the two men agreed to cooperate so as to combat terrorism from which the Balkans suffer.
 Vasiliou has contacts in the USA and BritainDuring his contacts in the USA and Britain, the head of the Cypriot negotiating team Yorgos Vasiliou discovered that Cyprus accession process to the European Union enjoyed support, while disatisfaction prevailed against the Turkish-Cypriot representative Rauf Denktash and Ankara because of their negative stance in relation to the resumption of the Cyprus proximity talks. Commenting on the statements of the former CIA director, Mr. Vasiliou said that no American or other European country officials have referred to problems related to Cyprus accession process to the European Union, due to Cyprus alleged relations with Osama bin Laden or due to allegations regarding money laundering.
 200 illegal immigrants detected off Ikaria200 illegal immingrants on board a wooden vessel were detected south-west of Ikaria at 01:30 local time this morning by the port authorities, which collected the illegal immigrants and transferred them to Vathi, Samos.
 No cars allowed to circulate in certain streets in 80 Greek cities tomorrowMore than 80 Greek cities will participate in tomorrows commemoration for a European Day Without Cars. Cars will not be allowed to circulate in cental streets and avenues during certain hours of the day, while the people will be allowed to use the public transport for free.