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The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English, 02-02-27
From: The Hellenic Radio (ERA) <www.ert.gr/>
 NEWS IN ENGLISHTHE VOICE OF GREECE
27/2/2002 2:34:00 μμ
 Weather forecastSunny weather is forecast in all parts of the country, with scattered cloud in the west and north. Winds southwesterly, light to moderate. Sunshine in Athens with temperatures between 7C and 17C. Same in Thessaloniki with temperatures from 2C to 15C.
 Private insurance companies - supplementary role in the reformed social security systemIn his speech yesterday at the meeting of the Union of Private insurance companies, Finance Minister Nikos Christodoulakis implied that the government was willing to give private insurance companies a supplementary role within the context of reforms of the social security system.
Addressing the same event, Development Minister Akis Tsohatzopoulos underlined that the cooperation of private insurance companies was necessary for the reform of the social security system.
Insurance companies call for increases in the vehicles insurance sector which they consider unrpofitable .
The social security issue and changes in the taxation system will be the focus of talks during today s meeting between Prime - minister Simitis and Finance Minister, Nikos Hristodoulakis.
 Draftbill providing for companies in the stock market to invest in sectors beyond their activitiesIn the meantime, a draftbill providing for companies in the stock market to invest in sectors beyond their activities will the tabled in the parliament s plenum today. In another development, an Athens public prosecutor has ordered a preliminary enquiry to determine whether the initiative by the Kathimerini publishing group and its owner Aristidis Alafouzos to invest money raised on the stock market in ocean -going shipping rather than publishing violates bourse regulations.
Submitting to the parliament a question on vested interests ,the President of the Coalition of the Left and Progress, Nikos Konstantopoulos calls the Prime - minister to respond whether the government intends to set a ceiling on state supplies and set up a National Competition Committee and an interparty parliamentary committee to inspect the management of the 3rd community support framework.
 Pasok and main opposition ND party lowering tones in confrontation.Both the government and the main opposition ND party have lowered tones in their recent confrontation. T
he General secretary of the Pasok party, Kostas Laliotis stressed that the ruling Pasok party says no to polarisation and tension in the political life , promising a battle for smooth democratic and progressive development aimed to resolve the problems of modern Greece. Government spokesman, Hristos Protoppapas accused the ND party for the recent tension in the political climate , stressing that the ruling Pasok party was dargged into the war of words to defend itself over the insulting speeches voiced by the ND party leader, Kostas Karamanlis. Commenting, the ND party spokesman said that Prime-minister Simitis has decided to reverse tactics after his failure to polarise public dialogue and divide the Greek people adding that the ND party has dediced not follow the Pasok party s tactics for polarisation after a meeting chaired by its leader , Kostas Karamanlis.
After his meeting with the Pasok party, general secretary , Kostas Laliotis , the leader of the Renewal Left party, Nikos Bistis said that talks for a cooperation of the center-left forces will begin when time is ripe.
 Prime-minister convinced , Athens ready in time for the 2004 OlympicsFollowing a meeting yesterday of the Ministerial Committee for the Olympiad , Prime-minister Simitis expressed the conviction that Athens will be ready in time for the 2004 Olympics. Problems related to accomodation of guests will be dealt with the extension of the existing hotels and the inclusion of more hotel units in the relative contract.
 Routes to all Aegean islands by 2003Merchant Marine Minister, Giorgos Anomeritis has reassured that there would be no Greek island without sea connection by 2003 even if the Ministry would have to oblige shipping companies to cover certain routes. So far shipping companies have not expressed interest in covering routes to 25 islands in the Aegean sea.
 Cyprus EU admission according to time-tableFollowing his meeting with Cyprus President Glafkos Kleridis, Spanish Prime - minister Jose Maria Aznar - whose country holds the EU rotating presidency - reconfirmed that the time-table for Cyprus admission to the EU would not change regardless of the outcome of the direct talks in the Cyprus issue.
The UN Security Council has given a deadline till July for the Greek-Cypriot and Turkish- Cypriot communities to reach an agreement.
 Prison inmate, Grigorakos died of poisoning.The death of 28 - year - old prison inmate Theodoros Grigorakos on January 27 was the result of poisoning and not an acute pulmonary inflammation as initially suggested by an autopsy, authorities announced on Tuesday.
Justice Minsiter has ordered the speeding up of interrogation procedures to find whether prison guards bear any responsibilities.
 Athens stock marketShare prices ended in yesterday ' s session sharply higher with sentiment on the Athens Stock Exchange improved, reflecting a positive climate in international markets.
Strong buying for smaller and medium-sized capitalisation stocks helped push share prices up and the general index above the 2,400 level.
The general share index ended 2.11 percent higher at 2,406.80 points although turnover remained low at Dr 35.8 billion, or 105.1 million euros.
 U.S praises Saudi plan for peace in METhe U.S and Israel praised the Saudi plan for peace in the ME. Saudi Crown Prince Abdullah suggested all Arab nations recognise Israel if it withdrew from lands occupied after the 1967 war and Jerusalem and an end to Israeli settlement. But the latest moves to calm the ME conflict were marred by fresh violence. A Palestinian was killed and two other injured in a refugee camp in the West Bank early this morning.