|Tuesday, 28 November 2023|
The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English, 04-01-13
From: The Hellenic Radio (ERA) <www.ert.gr/>
 U.S. troops kill 4 Iraqi civilians, chopper crashes13/1/2004 8:45:00 μμ
American soldiers killed at least four Iraqi civilians today in a town at the heart of the anti-U.S. insurgency while a U.S. Apache helicopter crashed nearby, probably after being hit by ground fire. Paul Bremer, the U.S. administrator of Iraq, said attacks on the coalition had come down dramatically and plans to hand over power to Iraqis were well under way, although it would not be possible to hold elections before the June 30 deadline.
A U.S. Army foot patrol came under rocket attack in the town of Falluja, west of Baghdad, after a noisy anti-American protest and the soldiers killed at least four civilians when they returned fire, including an elderly woman, witnesses said.
 Soviet-built plane crashes near Tashkent airport, 37 dead13/1/2004 8:40:00 μμ
A Soviet-built Yakovlev-40 airliner crashed this evening on approach to the Uzbek capital Tashkent, killing all 37 passengers on board. Light fog covered the area, but officials said visibility was acceptable for flying.
Local news reports said the plane belonged to the national airline, Uzbekistan Airways, and had been on an internal flight from Termez on the Afghan border.
 UN will accept no major change in Cyprus blueprint13/1/2004 8:38:00 μμ
UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan has replied to Cypriot President Tassos Papadopouloss call to resume mediation on the Cyprus issue, saying that he will do so when both sides show the necessary political will to hold talks on the basis of his plan to reunify the island in time for Cypruss EU accession on May 1.
Papadopoulos, who is to visit Athens on Sunday, wrote to Annan on December 17, reiterating the Greek Cypriots wish to resume talks whenever Annan summoned the two sides. U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan has ruled out major changes to the U.N. blueprint for the reunification of Cyprus if agreement is to be reached by May 1, when the island is due to join the European Union. The Cypriot government said today that a letter President Tassos Papadopoulos had received from Annan made clear that both sides on the divided island must show commitment to the basic principles of his plan if negotiations were to resume.
 New ALCO poll shows diminishing ND lead over Pasok13/1/2004 8:36:00 μμ
A nationwide poll presented today that 2,000 voters showed the New Democracy party leading by a 2.4 point margin compared with a more than seven point lead before Simitiss announcements. The figures mark a sharp turnaround in less than a week of of voter preferences and perceptions of PASOKs electoral chances with Papandreou at the helm.
The ALCO poll showed Papandreou leading New Democracy leader Kostas Karamanlis by 46.3 percent to 39.5 percent as a preferred candidate for prime minister.
 Interior Minister withdraws article for electoral district segmentation13/1/2004 8:35:00 μμ
During todays discussion in parliament for the electoral law, the Minister of the Interior, Kostas Skandalides withdrew the article that foresaw the segmentation of large electoral districts. Many Pasok officials had expressed disagreement over the bill while opposition parties had requested its complete withdrawl.
 PM Simitis states certainty on Papandreou victory13/1/2004 8:33:00 μμ
During his speech to Pasok candidate parliament deputies, Prime Minister Kostas Simitis said that with its new leadership, PASOK would win the March 7 elections and added the change secures the continuation of a modern and strong Pasok in the years to come.
Mr. Simitis also underlined, that Pasoks course until 2008 will venture with new reforms, which will be aimed at citizens and will focus on regional development and local societies.
 British Labour Party deputies hail Papandreou's candidacy13/1/2004 8:32:00 μμ
Four deputies of Britains Labor Party, among them, former deputy foreign minister Keith Vaz, submitted a resolution to the British Parliament today welcoming the candidacy of Giorgos Papandreou for Pasoks leadership and hailing his role as foreign minister. The deputies extended their best wishes for success during the upcoming elections to Mr. Papandreou.
 G.Papandreou addresses Pasok candidate parliament deputies13/1/2004 8:30:00 μμ
During his address of Pasok party candidate parliament deputies today candidate party leader Giorgos Papandreou made praising references to Kostas Simitis and Andreas Papandreou, while he also proceeded with self-criticism regarding the policies followed by PASOK. Mr. Papandreou also sent a political message regarding a new type of governance referring to it as one of an open society.
Speaking in his first joint appearance with Prime Minister Kostas Simitis after PASOKs Central Committee extraordinary meeting, Mr. Papandreou also said that the climate in the countrys political scene has changed and stressed the existence of panic in the right-wing main opposition party of New Democracy, which has been compelled to review its pre-election tactics and strategies, he noted.
Mr. Papandreou pointed out that PASOK is a political party of change, underlining that under Mr. Simitis leadership major advances were made and continue to be made such as the countrys accession into the EMU, the major technical projects, local administration reform, Cyprus EU accession, Greeces successful EU Presidency, and the feverish preparations for the Athens 2004 Olympic Games.
Mr.Papandreou, proposed that all political parties should cosign the declaration for the Olympic Truce on February 25 when distinguished Olympic Movement officials will be in Greece.
 Weather Forecast13/1/2004 5:57:00 μμ
Light clouds are forecast in all parts of the country, with showers mainly in the west. Winds westerly, light to moderate, turning strong in the south. Temperatures in Athens will range between 8-17 C and in Thessaloniki from 5-12 C.