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The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English, 05-01-26

The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Hellenic Radio (ERA) <www.ert.gr/>

CONTENTS

  • [01] "The State Should Not Break the Law"
  • [02] Plan to Improve Road Safety
  • [03] Public Order at Maximos
  • [04] Series of Explosions in Iraq
  • [05] Possible Meeting of Sharon and Abbas
  • [06] Israel and Palestine Agreement
  • [07] World Economic Forum Opens
  • [08] Kontominas on the Sale of Nova Bank
  • [09] Sailing Towards Success
  • [10] Greek Cup: Xanthi Match Postponed
  • [11] Invitation to "Legionnaires" in Greek National Team
  • [12] Da Vinci Code Written on the Walls
  • [13] Hormones Behind the Wheel
  • [14] Greece Trails Behind in Internet Use
  • [15] All for Love
  • [16] Lucky Lottery Ticket
  • [17] ERT's Aid Concert
  • [18] Prefecture of Ioannina Dressed in White

  • [01] Karamanlis, "No More Irregularities" "The State Should Not Break the Law"

    26 Jan 2005 21:38:00

    By Tina Valaoura

    Sources: ANA - NET

    During an event hosted by NDs Secretariat for Womens Issues, the PM referred to the issue with the farmers among other things. Mr Karamanlis stressed that the State ought to respect, uphold and not break the law. He also pointed out that the government is putting an end to the irregularities of the past and the injustices, which greatly burdened the farmers, while he called on everyone to engage in self-restraint. Speaking in front of female party voters, the PM also referred to the government policy that aims to improve the position of women, saying that a four-point action plan is being implemented. The four points include: efforts to support the participation of women in decision making centers; change of stereotypes regarding gender differences; combating family violence; and evening out inequalities in business activity and the employment market.

    Proceeding with Structural Changes

    During his speech, Mr Karamanlis stressed his determination to proceed with structural changes and the necessary reforms.

    "The public finances are extremely burdened; the economy does not have the structure or infrastructure required by the new era; the public administration is facing chronic pathogeneses that cannot continue anymore," mentioned the PM, while he described 2005 as a crucial year for the progress of Greece.

    The main aim of the government is the implementation of a new economic and development policy. As per Mr Karamanlis, a new tax system that facilitates businesses has already been implemented, as well as a new development law that finances the development of old and new businesses up to 55%, while the bill for the creation of a new constitutional framework for business licence issuing has been prepared and will be submitted to Parliament. Furthermore, the absorption of Community funds has been expedited, while a plan for equal development of all sectors throughout the country is being implemented.

    The PM was accompanied by his wife Natasha, while the Speaker of the Parliament, the Mayor of Athens, MPs and party members also attended the event.

    Translated by Vicky Ghionis

    [02] In Liapis' Meeting with other Ministers Plan to Improve Road Safety

    26 Jan 2005 14:50:00

    By Anna Kourti

    Sources: ANA

    Heavy fines for violations of the Highway Code and decriminalization of other violations are included in the National Plan to Improve Road Safety. The plan was determined in the meeting at the Ministry of Transport and Communications, which was chaired by the Minister Michalis Liapis, and in which the general secretaries of all other Ministries involved participated, as well as the President of the Greek Ambulance Service, EKAV. The latest proposals will be submitted to the government committee, which will also make the decisions. "We hope that with the measures being taken, the aim of reducing the number of road accidents by 50% will be achieved by 2010," stressed Mr Liapis.

    Funds for Safety

    Furthermore, it was decided that there should be coordinated sensitizing and informing of public opinion and joint funding from all jointly-responsible Ministries with mutual advertising campaigns.

    In the context of implementing the measures, the following aims are highlighted:

    Securing of earmarked funds for Road Safety Regular briefing of Parliament and continuous evaluation of the Road Safety Plan strategy Submitting of proposals

    Minister of Transport Michalis Liapis put emphasis on three points

    1. This effort should receive approval from the Prime Minister 2. The role of Parliament is upgraded in the direction of implementing road safety measures 3. A secretariat is to be formed to coordinate the relevant Ministries.

    Translated by Millie Williams

    [03] Meeting between Karamanlis and Voulgarakis Public Order at Maximos

    26 Jan 2005 13:40:00

    By Vagelis Theodorou

    As part of cooperating with the members of the Cabinet, the Prime Minister Kostas Karamanlis met today with the leaders of the Ministry of Public Order. As we came out of Maximos Mansion, Giorgos Voulgarakis announced that there would be full restructuring of the Greek Police, with the creation of a body of police for the environment, as well as the reinforcement of the Fire Service, with more personnel hired. During February, the first department of Highway Traffic Police will start operations, while there will be an immediate reordering of service to guard public figures. "Our aim is to be close to the citizens, and we will achieve this," stressed the Minister. In the meantime, in an Press conference, the Chief of the Hellenic Police, lieutenant general Giorgos Angelakos, presented the priorities for 2005.

    Police Priorities

    The aims of the police in order to contend with crime in 2005 were presented by the Chief of the force in a Press conference at Attica Police Headquarters.

    The aim of the Hellenic police force is to have an overt police presence, to detect more criminal activities, reduce road accidents and strengthen the feeling of security among civilians.

    Among the important points of the new anti-crime policy is the expansion of the neighbourhood watch programme and daily rounds of police security checks in all prefectures across Greece.

    As Mr Angelakos stated, the experience gained from the Olympic Games will be put to use, while the planning of anti-crime policy is based on realistic elements in order to be effective. At the same time, the Chief of the Police hid not hide the fact that there are shortages amongst personnel, and he has asked the government to fill the gaps. Finally, to put the programmes into practice there will be internal transfers and restructuring in order to provide the required force.

    Translated by Millie Williams

    [04] At least eight dead Series of Explosions in Iraq

    26 Jan 2005 10:06:00

    By Betty Savourdou

    Sources: ANA

    Concern is increasing with the continuing attacks in various cities in Iraq, just four days before the scheduled elections. In the bloodiest attack on Wednesday, seven Iraqis were killed when a car packed with explosives detonated in front of a police station in Kirkuk. Earlier, another car exploded in front of a government building in the centre of Tikrit, resulting in the death of one Iraqi and the injury of two others. Another car-bomb went off on the road leading to Baghdad international airport, while an American military convoy was going by, although there is no information on casualties. The organisation lead by Abu Musab al Zarqawi threatened to strike the American and Iraqi forces again before the elections, calling on Iraqis not to approach the polling stations.

    Three Attacks in Kirkuk

    The chief of police in Kirkuk, General Turhan Yusef, announced that "three policemen, two soldiers and two civilians were killed and three policemen were injured in the attack against the police station."

    Furthermore, he stated that another car packed with explosives detonated in a marketplace in the Riyadh district of western Kirkuk, although he was not in a position to give details of victims.

    General Yusef also spoke of the explosion of another car-bomb, while an American convoy was on the road, in a village 50 kilometres west of Kirkuk.

    "We Have Warned You"

    The organisation lead by Abu Musab al Zarqawi threatened to strike the American and Iraqi forces again before the elections, calling on Iraqis not to approach the polling stations.

    In an announcement by the organisation on a website the organisation said "Woe to you, woe to you Iraqis! Do not approach the centers of the infidels and of corruption. We have warned you. Enemies of Allah, get ready. Fortify yourselves as you please. We have men who love death as much as you love life. The fate of the enemies of Islam, the Americans and Allawis soldiers, is death!"

    Translated by Millie Williams

    [05] Three-Year-Old Palestinian Girl Killed Possible Meeting of Sharon and Abbas

    26 Jan 2005 07:24:00

    By Betty Savourdou

    Sources: ANA

    The Israeli PMs ban on diplomatic contacts with the Palestinian Authority and the newly elected President, Mahmoud Abbas, after six Israelis were killed in the Gaza Strip, has been lifted. According to sources, Sharon and Abbas are expected to meet either on Wednesday or Thursday afternoon. According to a high-rank Israeli official, who wished to remain anonymous, the army will not launch extermination operations against Palestinian fighters, in the areas where the Palestinian Police can assure law and order. In the meantime a three-year-old Palestinian girl was killed from Israeli gunshots in a central part of the Gaza Strip. The Israeli newspaper Haaretz, in its website, mentions that Palestinian fighters launched Kassam rockets against southern Israel, from Gaza.

    Extra Forces in Central and Southern Gaza

    Late on Tuesday, Security officials from the Israeli and Palestinian side made an agreement, in which extra Palestinian forces will be developed in central and southern Gaza, the soonest possible. It is noted that last Friday, Mahmoud Abbas ordered the placement of 2,000 policemen on the northern part of Gaza, in order to counter rocket launches by Palestinian fighters against Israeli targets.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    Related News:

    Israel and Palestine Agreement

    [06] An Important Step Towards Peace Israel and Palestine Agreement

    26 Jan 2005 00:17:00

    By Annita Paschalinou

    Sources: REUTERS

    On Tuesday night, an important step towards a ceasefire in the turbulent Middle East was taken. Palestinian officials announced that an agreement was made with the Israeli army, as to develop added forces in central and southern Gaza, in order to counter any forthcoming attacks against Israel. Officially, Israel has not confirmed the information, but high-rank government officials state that they will support Mahmoud Abbas attempts to end the violence in the area.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    [07] In Davos, Switzerland World Economic Forum Opens

    26 Jan 2005 17:44:00

    By Mary Lou Tzempelikou

    Sources: BBC, ANA

    Under draconian security measures and with temperatures well below zero more than 2000 political leaders and businessmen started to gather at Davos in order to take part in the World Economic Forum. The event will start with a speech by British Prime Minister Tony Blair, who is expected to concentrate on plans for the development of Africa and climate change. This years five-day Forum will touch on a wide range of topics, as the issues raised by those participating will range from post-election Iraq to the economic power of China and the political situation in Iran. At the same time, approximately 100,000 people are expected to gather at Porto Allegre in Brazil for the World Social Forum, also known as "anti-Davos." Along the same lines, there will be scheduled protests held in Vienna, Berne, Davos and Basle, where the local police force has already made 84 arrests.

    The start of talks in Davos came on Wednesday morning with a presentation by the World Health Organisation (WHO) on the efforts that have been made to provide access for more than 3 million people to drugs used in the treatments of AIDS.

    Apart from Mr Blair, more than 20 political leaders are expected to gather at Davos. Among these will be the French President Jacques Chirac, who will participate in the convention through a live video link, as the bad weather has not allowed him to go to Switzerland.

    Also at the Swiss resort will be the Chancellor of Germany, Gerhard Schroeder, the President of the Commission Manuel Baroso, the Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and the presidents of South Africa, Tabo Mbeke and of Nigeria Olusegun Obasanzo.

    For the first time, the newly-elected leaders of the Ukraine and of the Palestinian Authority, Viktor Yushchenko and Mahmoud Abbas respectively, will participate.

    Owing to the transitional political stage in America, no official American representatives have been recorded. However, the former Democrat candidate from the recent elections, John Kerry, as well as former American President Bill Clinton will attend. The latter has been charged by George Bush with concentrating aid for the victims of the tsunami.

    Translated by Millie Williams

    [08] Kontominas on the Sale of Nova Bank

    26 Jan 2005 16:32:00

    By Mary Lou Tzempelikou

    Sources: ANA

    One day after their sale, Dimitris Kontominas spoke about the sale of 50% of his shares in Nova Bank. In statements on Wednesday, Mr Kontominas noted that the purchase of the bank by a large European banking group, Millennium BCP, "confirms the existence" of Nova Bank on an international level, as the "prototype bank" distinguished itself "in its operation, in the provision of services and in the appearance of branch offices." Mr Kontominas notes that the design of Nova Bank took place "based on the most advanced European banking models, and its philosophy was based on the vision of how a contemporary finance and credit organisation should operate." He went on to add: "No one has managed to copy the model of the wonder-bank, as many people called it, which is why all of us who contributed to its creation and operation should be proud: this means the administration, the board, but also each ordinary employee."

    Translated by Millie Williams

    Related News:

    Kontominas Leaves Nova Bank

    [09] Sailing Towards Success

    26 Jan 2005 18:52:00 (Last updated: 26 Jan 2005 23:49:13)

    By Vasilis Kalpinos

    The Greek National Handball Team scored its second consecutive win in the mens World Championship in Tunisia, thus taking a step closer to qualifying. The Greeks played well enough to scoop a 26-21 victory (15-9 halftime) over the easiest opponent in its group, Angola, while it set the foundations towards qualifying. The Greek team appeared somewhat tired, following last nights amazing effort and great win over France, but it still managed to get what it needed. This was the third match for Group A and it took place in Rades.

    Comeback after Slow Start

    The Greek team was somewhat sluggish in the beginning. Owing to fatigue after the match with France and the lack of concentration due to the easy supposedly opponents, Angola was leading in the 14 by 6-5.

    Schefverts yelling, however, as well as the awakening of the Greeks, contributed greatly to a turnaround and with 5 goals in a row, Greece took the lead. From that point onwards, the Greek boys appeared stress free and managed to hold a comfortable lead.

    In the second half, the team really took off and at one stage it was ahead by 9 goals.

    However, some errors towards the end closed the gap to 24-20, but Angola did not threaten Greece after that, and the match ended with a score of 26-21.

    One In, One Out

    Nikos Grammatikos rejoined the team and played in the World Championship for the first time. The Greek player had not participated in the two previous matches due to injury.

    On the other hand, Savvas Karypidis was not included in the lineup for the second time running, as he continues his medical treatment, while Alexis Alvanos also stayed on the bench, due to a sprain on his left leg.

    The score per 10-minute intervals (Greece first): 5-4, 9-6, 15-9 (halftime), 18-10, 23-15, 26-21.

    GREECE (Schefvert): Kaffatos, Chrysopoulos, Voglis 3, Tzimourtos, Vasilakis 5, Zaravinas 1, Samaras 1, Balomenos 4, Kokolodimitrakis 1, Grammatikos 1, Zivulovic 6, Chalkidis 2, Sanikis 2.

    ANGOLA (Pirgov): Faustino, Muachissengue, Pascoal 1, Macureia, Antonio, Nascimento 1, Kamuanga 1, Neto 3, Pereira 6, Marcal, Dias 1, Teodoro 2, Z. Pereira 5, Lopes 1.

    The Greek team will have a rest day tomorrow, along with the other Group A teams, while it is scheduled to play against Canada on Friday (17:15)

    Schefvert Not Happy

    In statements he made after the game, the Greek National Teams coach, Ulf Schefvert, appeared satisfied with the victory, but not with his teams performance. The coach stressed that the team did not play well and that the performance was abysmal.

    "We have not reached that level, where we can feel confident that we have easy matches. My players were not interested in doing something better: to play well. Angola deserves congratulations. The Greek team was a big zero. I had a feeling that we would not play well. I hate these sort of games, that seem easy, but are not. We are not thinking of the game against Tunisia yet, we have the match against Canada first."

    The Greek players also admitted that they performed badly, despite the victory. Dimitris Kaffatos noted, "We just played to win," but he went on to add that no one should relax now, as things will get tough.

    Assistant coach Jose Nascimento talked on behalf of Angola during the press conference. "The Greeks thought that they had an easy game to play. We were optimistic throughout the match , we tried hard and did not quit at any point."

    Group in Shambles

    The other Group A game between Tunisia and France ended in a tie, thus turning things upside down in the Group. The match ended with a score of 26-26 and the two teams shared the points. So, no conclusions can be drawn from the standings so far and Greece can secure a place in the top three provided it defeats Canada in the next match, while it will also have to receive a point in the match against Tunisia.

    Group A (Rades)

    Greece Anglola 26-21

    France - Tunisia 26-26

    Denmark - Canada 52-18

    Ranking (After 3 Matches)

    Denmark 6

    Tunisia 5

    Greece 4

    France 3

    Angola 0

    Canada 0

    Overview of Championship

    Group B (El Menzah)

    Slovenia - Algeria 33-28

    Russia Czech Republic 25-21

    Kuwait - Iceland 22-31

    Ranking (After 3 Matches)

    Russia 6

    Slovenia 6

    Iceland 3

    Czech Republic 2

    Algeria 1

    Kuwait 0

    Group C (Sfax)

    Croatia - Australia 38-18

    Argentina Japan 25-27

    Sweden Spain 26-33

    Ranking (After 3 Matches)

    Spain 6

    Croatia 6

    Sweden 4

    Japan 2

    Argentina 0

    Australia 0

    Group D (Sousse)

    Germany Qatar 40-15

    Egypt Brazil 24-20

    Serbia-Montenegro Norway 25-24

    Ranking (After 3 Matches)

    Germany 6

    Egypt 4

    Serbia-Montenegro 4

    Norway 4

    Qatar 0

    Brazil 0

    Translated by Vicky Ghionis

    [10] Greek Cup: Xanthi Match Postponed

    26 Jan 2005 17:08:00

    By Dimitris Alexopoulos

    The heavy rain, which has turned the Xanthi pitch into swamp, forced the referee Kasnaferis to halt the match of the local team against Egaleo, for the round of 16 in the Greek Cup, after 21 minutes of the match had been played and the teams were level in the score, with no goals scored. According to the regulations, the remaining 72 minutes of the game will be played tomorrow and the two teams must turn up with the same players. Before the start of the game, Mr Kaznaferis conducted a quick evaluation of the pitch and initially judged that the match could go ahead, as at that time the storm had eased off. Unfortunately, he turned out to be wrong, as the rain started again shortly afterwards, which meant that the game had to be halted.

    Translated by Millie Williams

    [11] Invitation to "Legionnaires" in Greek National Team

    26 Jan 2005 12:13:00

    By Ilias Papaioannou

    With the well known recipe of Greek players competing in foreign championships who in summer were crowned European Champions, the German coach of the Greek national football team, Otto Rehhagel will form his team at Karaiskaki Stadium for 9 February against Denmark in the crucial match of the preliminary round of the 2006 World Cup. The coach of the Greek team called on 14 players who compete in foreign teams: Michalis Kapsis (Bordeaux), Traianos Dellas (Roma), Thodoros Zagorakis (Bologna), Giorgos Karagounis (Inter), Stelios Giannakopoulos (Bolton), Vasilis Lakis (Crystal Palace), Zisis Vryzas (Thelta), Panagiotis Fyssas (Benfica), Giorgos Seitaridis (Porto), Angelos Charisteas (Ajax), Vasilis Tsiartas (Koln), Kostas Halkias (Portsmouth), Giannis Amanatidis (Kaiserlautern), Sotiris Kyrgiakos (Rangers).

    Tickets Now Available

    The historic triumph of the Greek team on the pitches of Portugal and its first ever win of the title of European Champion has frequently caused chaos amongst Greek fans, who queue for hours to secure the magic little paper to watch Greek national matches.

    Regarding the upcoming match against the "Vikings", the tickets are available as of today, and each fan has the right to buy up to two tickets after showing his identity card. The tickets will be sold for 25, 20 and 15 euros at ticket offices in Korai Square, at the Olympic Stadium (Irini Station) and at Karaiskaki Stadium, which will open from 10:00 to 16:00

    Translated by Millie Williams

    [12] Perhaps that's where he met Mona Lisa Da Vinci Code Written on the Walls

    26 Jan 2005 00:07:00

    By Annita Paschalinou

    Sources: Reuters

    Could Leonardo da Vinci ever have written on the walls? He could have done, claim Italian researchers, who announced that in the monastery of Santissima Annunziata in Florence, they discovered a laboratory of his. A studio with 500-year-old frescoes and a secret room where the artist studied human anatomy. Researchers claim that in the specific monastery, it is highly likely that Leonardo da Vinci met the most mysterious woman in the history of art, Mona Lisa.

    The Supposition of the Italian Researchers

    Roberto Manescalchi, the leader of the research team, is positive. "It seems illogical that it is only in 2005 that we have found the studio of one of the most significant painters in the world. But it is true," he stresses, presenting as proof the written evidence: frescoes on the monastery walls.

    500-year-old frescoes, some of which depict birds and are very similar to sketches by the man who was ahead of his time, the great painter, sculptor and great scientist and inventor, Leonardo Da Vinci.

    Roberto Manescalchi thinks that Da Vinci became an assistant at the studio, and that it is perhaps there he had met Lisa Gerardini, a likely model for the Mona Lisa.

    He actually leaves open the possibility that they met while he lived at the monastery between 1501 and 1502. "We are still investigating, there are still many Da Vinci manuscripts that have not been found," he stresses.

    Far Fetched

    Many people are skeptic over the scenario of the Italian researchers. Among these is James Beck, professor in history of art at Columbia University in the U.S. "This is an investigation still in its early stages," he states, stressing that the case is not convincing enough.

    The rooms with the frescoes, which are not yet open to the public, are on the upper floors of the monastery, which these days is used by the Institute of Military Geography.

    Translated by Millie Williams

    [13] Why do some women drive badly? Hormones Behind the Wheel

    26 Jan 2005 13:58:00

    By Viki Keleri

    Sources: BBC

    Quite a few male drivers accuse women of making mistakes behind the wheel. Their biggest complaint is that women drivers do not know how to park and have a bad sense of direction. Now, however, the representatives of the fair sex have a very strong weapon to deflect the negative comments. Their ally is science, which has shown that bad driving on the part of many women is probably caused by the fact that they did not receive the necessary amounts of testosterone as embryos in the womb, thereby arming them with a good excuse, should any men complain. This conclusion was reached by researchers at the University of Giessen in Germany, after prolonged study, casting doubts on the macho myth.

    Testosterone is the Key

    The scientists at Giessen University subjected 40 volunteers to tests to determine their abilities in numerical and verbal expression and spatial awareness.

    The results showed that female volunteers who had lower levels of testosterone also performed less well in spatial awareness and orientation.

    The men had better results in all the tests, even when compared to women who had normal levels of the hormone.

    The researchers also studied the length of the fingers of the participants, measuring the ring finger and the index finger. Amongst women, these two fingers are usually the same length, while amongst men the ring finger tends to be longer.

    It turned out that the women whose ring fingers were shorter than usual were those who had low levels of testosterone and weak spatial awareness.

    Nonetheless, as Petra Kempel, the leader of the research team stresses, nothing is yet entirely certain.

    She described the research as limited, as hormonal examinations of the participants were not repeated and no account was taken of the womens menstrual cycle, which affects hormone levels in the body. So, until the results can be verified, take care with your parking!

    Translated by Millie Williams

    [14] Greece Trails Behind in Internet Use

    26 Jan 2005 14:43:00

    By Mary Lou Tzempelikou

    Sources: SEPE, ANA

    Discouraging statistics were published on Tuesday regarding the percentage of Internet use in Greece. According to data studied by the Federation of Hellenic Information Technology & Communications Enterprises (SEPE), Greece is at the bottom of the list in EU member-states regarding Internet use, as only 20% of Greek households use the Internet, whilst the average in the European Union is 47%. This can also be seen amongst businesses, as there are very few businesses which use computers and the Internet. To deal with this, SEPE proposes, in collaboration with the Information Community, an action plan which will assist efforts to spread Internet use in Greece. During the presentation of the study, the reasons why the Internet is hindered were mentioned and proposals were made, which must be put into practice in order for Greece to reach the EU average in Internet use.

    Why Greece Comes Last in Internet Use

    Four basic reasons were given for the restricted use of the Internet by Greeks:

    Political Environment: Delay on the part of the state to implement e-government, and an educational system which delays in adopting new technology Economic Environment: The Greek Economy is characterized by a lack of real competition in telecommunications Social Environment: Social ignorance, lack of technological culture, as well as the dominant use of the English language in Internet contents Technological Environment: Restricted domestic infrastructure and a lack of services in Greek on the Internet

    Among other things, reference was made to the negative stance of media towards the Internet.

    Who are the Net-People?

    Results of recent studies regarding the percentage of computer and Internet use amongst the general population aged from 15 upwards, showed the following:

    2001

    2003

    PC Use

    20.8%

    27.1%

    Internet Use

    10.6%

    19.9%

    As for 2004, according to the studies, there was a significant reduction in the growth rate, both in the use of computers and of the Internet.

    SEPE's Proposals

    According to SEPE, it is necessary to have an action plan for the development of the Internet in Greece, in order to give a clear picture of the situation, but also to inform and activate all bodies involved for the further development of the Internet.

    The total cost of the action plan for the next three years reaches 86.36 million euros, for which the recommendation is that it should be covered by various bodies (Ministries and the National Communications and Post Commission (EETT)).

    Among other things, action is recommended to increase the demand for and offers of new IT and communications, as well as the development of the possibilities and skills in the use of this technology by all people, the promotion of broadband access to the Internet, the assistance of individual initiative and the promotion of state modernization through this new technology.

    SEPE considers that the proposed action will make it possible for Internet use to increase in Greece, which, according to SEPE, "is a one-way path for Greek society and the Economy," The Commission also considers that: Any delays will have unpleasant and probably irreversible consequences," while they add that the successful implementation of the measures "will bring Greece one step closer to Europe, and will place the Greek Economy in a stronger road to development."

    Translated by Millie Williams

    [15] They reached the very edge for her love All for Love

    26 Jan 2005 12:53:00

    By Viki Keleri

    If you were to be in love with two people at the same time and had to deny one of your loves, what would you do? Would you put yourself in the difficult position of having to choose, or would you let them choose? The beautiful Chinese girl from Hong Kong did not even think twice about it. She had given her heart to two men and she could not leave the love of either of them to wither away from her soul. So, she convinced them to compete with each other to win her. Her lovers, blinded by their adoration of her, accepted the challenge and immediately searched for the process which would put an end to the love-share.

    Dying for Love

    Their idea was admittedly original. They would dive into the freezing water of the River Wuyang in the Province of Zeyang, and whoever managed to stay in the longest would win the hand of the fateful Chinese girl.

    However tough the challenge seemed, their love left no room for hesitation.

    The two lovers went into the water up to chest height, while their beloved acted as referee.

    However, once 40 minutes had passed, one of the men lost consciousness. Then, his rival, together with the girl, dragged him out of the river and attempted to revive him.

    However, it was already too late. The unfortunate lover had died, losing not only the battle for love, but also for life.

    Translated by Millie Williams

    [16] Lady Luck on Their Side Lucky Lottery Ticket

    26 Jan 2005 11:45:00

    By Viki Keleri

    When they played the National Lottery, on New Years Eve, for good luck, they did not know what was in store for them. The twelve employees, from Derby, Great Britain, thinking it was impossible for them to win, did not bother to check if their numbers were the winning ones, and threw out their ticket. But lady luck had other plans for them! The ticket was one of the three winning New Years lotteries, which means that the 12 friends won 5,000,000 pounds. They may have never found out that they had won, if they didnt hear that the one out of the three lucky winners was being sought out for.

    Lucky Employees' Donation

    Only after the above incident did they start realizing what had happened, and started to look for the ticket.

    They looked everywhere, made a mess of their offices and after hours of constant searching they found it lying in the bottom of a waste-paper basket.

    If they waited any longer they may have not become millionaires.

    However, in order to thank lady luck for standing by them, they decided to donate 21,000 pounds to charity.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    [17] Thousands of Greeks Sent a Message of Hope ERT's Aid Concert

    26 Jan 2005 23:26:00

    By Tina Valaoura

    Melodies full of hope and a swarm of people engulfed the Olympic Stadium on Wednesday night. Thousands of men, women and children of all ages united their voices with those of fifty acclaimed artists, singing old and new songs, and spreading a Greek melodious message of solidarity to the millions of victims of the tragedy in SE Asia that marred the year that went by. With this concert, which was broadcast live from TV station NET and radio station ERA, ERT concluded its efforts to support the people stricken by the tsunami. The effort commenced with a Telethon and continued with two Teleauctions. In all cases, the citizens of Greece proved that they can transform their kindheartedness to hope for life, a fact that was applauded by the UN. It is worth noting that the concert will be released on CD, while proceeds from all sales will be donated to the same cause.

    Humane Melodies Sweep the Globe

    It was a night full of emotions, melodies and warmth. Words cannot describe the compassionate atmosphere in the Olympic Stadium on Wednesday night. Fifty well-known Greek artists performed much-loved songs, covering a wide range of the Greek music spectrum and embracing the people who sang along for hope. The applause was constant throughout the evening. Cherished, unforgotten and symbolic songs were succeeding one another, inspiring the audience from the floor and the stands within the stadium to sing along. All artists, musicians and everyone present had glowing red hearts pinned on their lapels, adding a special note of love to the ambience.

    Dionysis Savvopoulos was there first to sing, while many more great artists of all musical genres followed, under the applause of the 17,000 spectators. This was the first time ever that nearly all top Greek artists shared the same stage, an unprecedented event for Greek music standards. The singers were accompanied by ERTs Contemporary Music Orchestra, with 70 musicians on stage and conducted by Andreas Pylarinos. The host of the event was journalist Maria Choukli.

    The artists who participated were the following:

    Gerasimos Andreatos, Ilias Andrianopoulos, Eleftheria Arvanitaki, Melina Aslanidou, Gerasimos Andreatos, Giannis Vardis, Petros Gaitanos, Dimitra Galani, Glikeria, Fotini Darra, Vasilis Dimitriou, Pantelis Thalassinos, Aliki Kagialoglou, Melina Kana, Stefanos Korkolis, Giannis Kotsiras, Stamatis Kraounakis, Manolis Lidakis, Kostas Makedonas, Socratis Malamas, Giannis Markopoulos, Lavrendis Machairitsas, Dimitris Mitropanos, Manolis Mitsias, Thanos Mikroutsikos, Dimitris Basis, Giorgos Dalaras, Dimitris Papadimitriou, Vasilis Papakonstantinou, Elli Paspala, Orfeas Peridis, Mimis Plessas, Thanasis Polikandriotis, Nikos Portokaloglou, Alkistis Protopsalti, Andonis Remos, Dionisis Savopoulos, Spira-Spira, Paschalis Terzis, Trifono, Marios Tokas, Dionisis Tsaknis, Manolis Famelos, Maria Farandouri, Marios Frangoulis, Petro-Loukas Chalkias and Michalis Chatzigiannis.

    In his brief speech, ERTs President, Christos Panagopoulos, thanked the artists, the orchestra, the social bodies and the agencies that assisted in ERTs initiatives, as well as the audience and all the Greek citizens, who, as he said, contributed from their savings to help gather the amount of 20 million euros. Mr Panagopoulos concluded by wishing everyone well, while he urged them to continue their generosity.

    The message from the UN Under-Secretary-General and emergency relief coordinator, Jan Egeland, came next. Addressing the organizers of the Telethon, as well as the people of Greece, in the sole statesmen he made to a UN country individually, he thanked all the Greeks both personally and on behalf of the UN for converting their empathy to an action that saves lives and gives hope to those who need it. At the same time, he recognized the significant role that Greece has played in this global humanitarian effort, stressing that the UN encourages Greeces participation in this, as well as other humanitarian operations in every corner of the globe.

    Translated by Vicky Ghionis

    [18] Temperature to Drop in Next Few Days Prefecture of Ioannina Dressed in White

    26 Jan 2005 19:41:00

    By Anna Kourti

    It has been snowing heavily all over the Prefecture of Ioannina, as well as in the town since this afternoon. The prefect office has issued an announcement, banning all trucks over 10 tonnes from traveling on any national or regional roads. All schools throughout the prefecture will remain closed tomorrow, while the Ioannina Airport was closed down and all flights were grounded. In the meantime, the football match between PAS Giannina Agrotikos Asteras for the Third National League, which was taking place in the Ioannina Stadium, was stopped in the 39. Furthermore, major problems have been caused in the Prefecture of Ilia due to the strong winds that have been blowing in the area. The meteorologists are forecasting snow, rain and strong winds for the next few days.

    Traffic Comes to a Halt

    Drivers traveling on national and regional roads are facing serious problems, while dozens of snowploughs are moving all over the prefecture in an effort to clear the roads from snow. Specifically, traffic is hindered on:

    The Ioannina-Igoumenitsa National Highway, at Rodotopi, as large trucks slipped on the snow and traffic came to a halt, while traffic movement is hindered all along the rest of the road, even with snow chains The Ioannina-Preveza National Highway, at Kanetta, where traffic is being gradually stopped and long queues of cars have been formed in both directions The Ioannina-Trikala National Highway, where trucks are not allowed to travel, while snow chains are required for all other vehicles, including buses The Ioannina-Kozani and the Ioannina-Kakavia National Highways Vehicles are not allowed to travel on any roads leading to mountainous villages

    Strong Gales in Ilia

    Winds reaching 10 on the Beaufort scale have caused serious problems all over the Prefecture of Ilia. Power lines have come down and as a result many areas are experiencing power cuts. Near Amaliada, the roof of the factory Olympia, which packages farming products and is located along the Pyrgos-Patra National Highway, has caved in due to the gales. Three small fishing boats sank in the port of Katakolo due to the high seas. Furthermore, ferries traveling from Killini to Zakynthos and from Rio to Antirrio have docked.

    Drivers traveling on many parts of the regional road network are experiencing problems, due to fallen trees.

    Translated by Vicky Ghionis


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