|Monday, 11 December 2023|
The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English, 03-12-03
From: The Hellenic Radio (ERA) <www.ert.gr/>
 Weather forecastCloudy weather is forecast throughout the country with scattered showers over the eastern mainland and northern Crete. Winds variable, moderate to very strong, turning gale force in parts of the Aegean. Temperatures in Athens will range between 11-15 C and in Thessaloniki from 09-13 C.
(3/12/2003 8:07:00 μμ)
 PM Simitis addresses Foreign Press AssociationGreek Prime Minister Costas Simitis put an end to the succession scenarios in the governing Socialist Party of PASOK during today's press conference with Foreign Press Association in Athens today.
Mr. Simitis clarified he will lead PASOK in the next elections which he underlined would be held in April or May 2004 and added he is not interested in assuming any of the under formation posts in the European Union.
Mr. Simitis assured that the 2004 Athens Olympic Games will be safe, stressing that there is international cooperation on the issue.
Mr. Simitis sent a message to Turkey, saying that its position regarding the Cyprus issue will affect its European prospect considerably and noted characteristically that Turkey's EU accession could not be under discussion, while an issue like the Cyprus issue remains open.
(3/12/2003 8:09:00 μμ)
 Olympic Games security examinedThe security of the 2004 Olympic Games will be closely examined this evening during a meeting at Maximos Mansion that will be presided by PM Simitis. According to information, details of a large-scale preparedness exercise will be tabled expected to take place during the beginning of the year.
(3/12/2003 8:11:00 μμ)
 Forest bill tabled in ParliamentThe tabling today of a highly controversial new bill on forests that critics claim will eliminate over 3.5 million hectares from Greece's officially protected - but rapidly shrinking - sylvan expanses is presently underway in Parliament's Plenary Session.
According to the draft legislation, prepared by the Ministry of Agriculture, the official designation of forestland will only apply to areas larger than 0.3 hectares, 25 percent of which is covered by trees. On Monday the government added an amendment to the forest bill under which fines for such trespasses of the law will be indefinitely frozen.
The Minister of Agriculture Giorgos Drys defended the proposed freeze on fines, which he said would cease once new maps are drawn up in the beginning of 2004 defining which parts of the country are considered forests.
(3/12/2003 8:13:00 μμ)
 ND leader meets with Athens Mayor Dora BackoyianniThe course towards the national elections, political developments and ND's candidacy lists were discussed today during a meeting between the leader of the ND party, Kostas Karamanlis and Athens mayor, Dora Backoyianni. Mrs. Backoyianni reiterated she would participate in the country's central political scene once her tenure as mayor is completed
(3/12/2003 8:15:00 μμ)
 Church of Greece to respond to Fanari on Dec 12thThe position of the Church of Greece concerning the Ecumenical Patriarchate's response to the proposal for the solution of the problem with the election of Metropolites in the 'new countries', was referred to the standing holy synod of the Church of Greece that will be held from December 9-12. According to information, the Ecumenical Patriarchate rejected the proposal of the Church of Greece.
(3/12/2003 8:17:00 μμ)
 Olympic flights according to schedule on ThursdayAll Olympic Airways fights will be carried out according to schedule Thursday despite the continuing strike by flight attendants and stewards using temporary staff to fill in for striking attendants. The only changes expected will be the merging of six flights towards Thessaloniki, Iraklion and Dusseldorf to three.
(3/12/2003 8:19:00 μμ)
 Israel fumes at U.S. over peace planIsrael's right-wing government fumed today at U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell's decision to meet authors of a symbolic Middle East peace pact that it has rejected as capitulation to Palestinian demands. Hailed by dozens of former world leaders as a brave peace initiative, the Geneva deal would require Israel to hand over lands it occupied in the 1967 Middle East war and share sovereignty over Jerusalem to create a Palestinian state.
(3/12/2003 8:22:00 μμ)
 US may have just missed catching Saddam lieutenantThe U.S. military said today, troops may have just missed catching the second most wanted man in Iraq after Saddam Hussein despite seizing important targets among 54 suspected guerrillas held in a major raid. More than 1,000 soldiers scoured the small town of Hawija near the northern oil hub of Kirkuk on Tuesday but failed to find Saddam's right-hand man, Izzat Ibrahim al-Douri.
(3/12/2003 8:26:00 μμ)