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The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English, 05-02-21

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

From: The Hellenic Radio (ERA) <>


  • [01] On the Hunt for Phantom Fugitive
  • [02] Search for Vavilis Intensifies
  • [03] Bush's Wide-Ranging Speech
  • [04] Tall Babies Earn More Money
  • [05] Supreme Audit Council in Church
  • [06] Papandreou: "Condemnation of Neo-Conservatism"
  • [07] Scandal in Larisa General Hospital
  • [08] Investigation Over Harriri's Murder
  • [09] New Agency to Replace SDOE
  • [10] Bajevic Uncertain over Future
  • [11] Four Fans in Jail
  • [12] Stefanidi Flies to the World Record
  • [13] Space Shuttles Return
  • [14] Entertainment in the WC
  • [15] Gambling for Town's Debt

  • [01] Vavilis' Surrender or Arrest Matter of Days On the Hunt for Phantom Fugitive

    21 Feb 2005 18:14:00

    By Tina Valaoura

    The authorities considers that the case of Apostolos Vavilis arrest will be over by the end of the week. The search continues with concentrated efforts, as his actions are being revealed. The Police is searching for him within the country as well as overseas while emphasis is given to the apartment in Holargos where the fugitives fingerprints were found and identified. Nikodimos Farmakis has testified on the case, and stated that he had visited the apartment once but stated that he was unaware that it was rented in his name. Retired policeman Giannis Triantafillakis today also testified to the Supreme Court Prosecutor Dimitris Linos.

    Farmakis and Triantafillakis Testify

    During his three-hour testimony today at the Police Headquarters, deposed Archimandrite Nikodimos Farmakis stated that he had visited the apartment last August in order to speak with Vavilis, whom he had been introduced as a monk named Rafail and was not aware of his actions.

    He stated that he had met Vavilis with Triantafillakis, in 2001 at Jerusalem.

    The last time he contacted him was last October in order to discuss the Magna Grecia Foundation of Southern Italy.

    It is noted that Mr Farmakis fingerprints were not found in the Holargos apartment.

    According to information the Police has located another three apartments in the area of Holargos, that Vavilis had lived in at some point.

    The first apartment was on 15 Miltiadou Street under the name of Cohen, the second in 7-9 Doridos Street with the same name and the third on Pavlos Melas Street.

    The owner of the apartment was also called in to testify at the Police Headquarters and as he stated the house was rented by a bearded man wearing everyday clothes and his characteristics match Vavilis. He also said that the man identified himself without showing him an identification card.

    After his testimony Archimandrite Nikodimos Farmakis exited the Police Headquarters.

    Triantafillakis Testimony

    Retired policeman Giannis Triantafillakis testified at the Prosecutor of the Supreme Court Dimitris Linos for an hour. Mr Triantafillakis supported that he received the document from the fugitives mother and evaluated that Vavilis is possibly overseas and wants to surrender, if there are guarantees that he will have a fair trial. According to Mr Triantafillakis, Vavilis is afraid to go to prison as in the past he was attacked by his prison mates as he was cooperating with the Police. According to information, he stated that the fugitive is afraid to surrender and has doubts as to whether he will have a fair trial.

    The Minister of Justice Anastasis Papaligouras, on the case of Vavilis and as to how near to his arrest are the authorities stated the following: "I do not intend to make such evaluations. The point is that at this time the Greek state and Justice can assure a fair trial for every citizen and Apostolos Vavilis."

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    Related News:

    Search for Vavilis Intensifies

    [02] Triantafyllakis Provided Clarifications Search for Vavilis Intensifies

    21 Feb 2005 13:23:00 (Last updated: 21 Feb 2005 21:04:48)

    By Vivian Papastefanou

    Sources: NET 105.8

    At a time when scandals keep rocking the Church, the police are trying to locate Apostolos Vavilis, who is also wanted by Interpol. Around noon, retired military officer Giannis Triantafyllakis appeared before the Supreme Court Prosecutor, Mr Dimitris Linos, in order to provide clarifications regarding his close friends controversial letter, which Triantafyllakis handed in himself. The Director of Athens Prosecutions, Dimitris Papaggelopoulos, also arrived promptly at Mr Linos office.

    Triantafyllakis' Clarifications

    During his testimony, Mr Triantafyllakis claimed that he received the letter through Apostolos Vavilis mother, while he also said that he is not aware of Vavilis whereabouts, but believes he is overseas.

    Referring to the apartment in Holargos, he clarified that Apostolos Vailis had drawn up the lease on behalf of Archimandrite Nikodimos, nee Nikolaos Farmakis.

    As per the Director of Athens Prosecutions, Dimitris Papaggelopoulos, who was present at the hearing, it is quite possible that Giannis Triantafyllakis, as well as Apostolos Vavilis mother, will be called to testify before Examiner Eleni Sotiropoulou in the next few days, and maybe even tomorrow. Mrs Sotiropoulou has already commenced a preliminary investigation on behalf of the Athens Prosecutions. Mr Papaggelopoulos also added it is quite possible that in a matter of days, Vavilis will turn himself in.

    Translated by Vicky Ghionis

    Related News:

    Vavilis' House Searched

    [03] Sends A Message to Moscow Bush's Wide-Ranging Speech

    21 Feb 2005 18:09:00

    By Annita Paschalinou

    Transatlantic relations in the context of current issues, such as peace in the Middle East, Syria, Iran and Iraq were in the epicentre of the first speech by Bush on European ground. The American President spoke of an era of unity in U.S. and European relations and described peace in the Middle East as a top priority, something when achieved will have positive results for the general area. His references on Russia where extremely interesting. George W Bush called on Moscow to make more democratic reforms, stating that this issue should be in the epicentre of discussions between Russia, the EU and the U.S.

    For Iraq, Iran and Syria

    Today, from Brussels, George W Bush send a friendship message to the European people, asking them to overcome any past disagreements and to invest in a new era in transatlantic relations. "This was a temporary disagreement, but no power in the world will ever separate us again," he stated and underlined that the U.S. wishes to have a strong Europe by their side and a powerful ally in the attempts for peace and democracy in the world.

    In reference to Iraq, he called on the established democracies to give tangible political, economic and security assistance to the worlds newest democracy while on the issue of Syria he asked to stop the occupation of Lebanon and to make greater attempts to destroy the powers that support the violence in Iraq and want to destroy the hopes for peace among the Palestinians and Israelis.

    In reference to Iran, he underlined that the issue is completely different from Iraq, because as he said at this time they are in the first stage of negotiations. He called on Tehran to stop abetting terrorism and manufacturing nuclear weapons adding that the U.S. is closely cooperating on the issue with France, Germany and Great Britain in order for a diplomatic treaty to arise.

    Message to Moscow

    His references to Russia are also of importance. George Bush sent a message to Russia to reinvestigate its commitments for the reinforcement of democracy and the rule of law, reforms which as he said "we recognize that they cannot be made within a night." "We have to remind Moscow that our alliance is for a democratic Press, a strong opposition and changes in power and of a rule of law," he stated.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    [04] Research by British and Finnish Scientists Tall Babies Earn More Money

    21 Feb 2005 17:37:00

    By Vagelis Theodorou

    Sources: BBC

    British and Finnish scientists claim that they have discovered an interesting parameter concerning our income. According to a research published in the scientific journal Archives of Disease in Childhood, middle-aged men who measured more than 80 cm when they were babies earn 50% more money than those who at the age of one measured less than 72 cm. As the researchers state, the results indicate the close relationship between physical and emotional development. " There are too many babies who are not being given the opportunity to thrive and that will have an effect on their future development," stated the Head of the scientists Dr David Barker and called on the parents to realize that the first year of a babys life is very important.

    First Year is Critical

    In the research 4,630 baby boys that were born from 1934 to 1944 were studied. Girls were not included in the research since the women of that generation are in their overwhelming majority housewives. Following, the height of one-year-old babies was compared to the income they earned as adults during the 90s.

    According to the results of the research and taking into account the social status, every two cm of height correspond to 3.5% of their income. The babies who were late developers had a lower educational background

    Also short babies were more likely to take up manual labour. A 44% of babies, which measure under 72 cm were workers, as opposed to one out of five babies that measured over 80 cm.

    "The quality of food and health of a baby does have consequences on mental as well as physical development," stated Edward Melhuish, professor of human development at Londons Birkbeck College. "Generally, people of a higher social class tend to be taller than those from a lower social class," concluded Mr Melhuish and agreeing with the results of the research.

    Previous researches have connected growth during childhood with the future career however they have investigated growth at least until primary school.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    Related Links:

    Archives of Disease in Childhood

    [05] Panteleimon-Kallinikos to Provide Explanations Supreme Audit Council in Church

    21 Feb 2005 16:14:00 (Last updated: 21 Feb 2005 19:53:13)

    By Tina Valaoura

    Sources: NET, NET 105.8

    The Continuous Holy Synod convened today to mainly discuss the measures for catharsis in Church. The convention concluded with decisions regarding a timeframe for the implementation of the measures and a request to the Justice Minister to proceed with a legislative regulation for the formation of a Supreme Audit Council. Meanwhile, the Synod Hierarchs asked the Metropolitan Bishop of Attica, Panteleimon, to provide explanations regarding an article that appeared in the Press, according to which he is alleged to own an offshore company. They also asked the Metropolitan Bishop of Piraeus, Kallinikos, to clarify the information pertaining to Archimandrite Nikodimos Farmakis. In the meantime, the Archbishoprics spokesperson, Archimandrite Epiphanios Economou handed in his resignation, which was not accepted by the Archbishop.

    The Measures Ratified by the Synod

    The Holy Synod discussed the measures that were adopted by the Hierarchy on Saturday, and it was decided that they would be reviewed and sent to the government for legislative regulating. Regarding the measures that do not require legislative regulating, a circular will be sent to all Metropolitan Bishops for their immediate implementation.

    Furthermore, the necessary actions towards the government, regarding the Archbishops proposal for the formation of a Supreme Audit Council, were made. The Councils aim will be to investigate all allegations against Hierarchs and make recommendations to the Holy Synod. The relevant document will be sent to the PM. The measure received 61 votes in favor, out of the 71 present.

    The measures that the Synod approved, concern the following:

    -the speediness of all proceedings in the Church Justice -the introduction of Judicial advisers, with a three-year term, in Ecclesiastical courts -the right to vote for the two lower class clergy in the Episcopal courts -the submission of a means test of Metropolitan Bishops in the Synod, tax statement and E9 every year -the founding of the School of Ecclesiastical Education -the abolishment of exemption of military service for monks and clergy

    At the same time the Synod requested explanations from Metropolitan Bishop Panteleimon, in relation to articles stating that he owns an off-shore company in Tortola Island, in the Caribbean, the transfer of money overseas and that his 18 bank accounts. However, according to an announcement by the company, Panteleimon was only a share holder.

    Explanations were asked by Piraeus Metropolitan Bishop Kallinikos over Archimandrite Nikodimos Farmakis who was sighted with Apostolos Vavilis in Jerusalem.

    Moreover, the Continuous Holy Synod was also informed of another case, this time regarding the Metropolitan Bishop of Peristeri, Chrysostomos. As per the allegations, Mr Chrysostomos was using members of the clergy for business not relating to their obligations.

    Finally, Archimandrite Serafim Metzelopoulos was appointed as new head-secretary during todays meeting.

    Epiphanios' Resignation Rejected

    The resignation of Father Epiphanios comes as a reaction to the latest revelations by the Metropolitan Bishop of Zakynthos, Chrysostomos. As per Chrysostomos, Epiphanios had dealings with a fugitive from justice, who accepted money in exchange for tapes containing discussions incriminating another members of the clergy. His resignation though, according to an announcement by the Archbishopric was not accepted.

    It is worth noting that the Continuous Holy Synods spokesperson, Mr Dorotheos, clarified today that the file that was sent a few days ago to the competent Synod committee relates to the Metropolitan Bishop of Zakytnhos. However, it does not contain any tapes of photographs, but only his judicial dispute with a reporter.

    Papaligouras, "The State will Contribute if Asked"

    The alternate government spokesperson, Evangelos Antonaros, who was asked to comment on the latest developments, described the allegations concerning both the Metropolitan Bishop Panteleimon, as well as Archimandrite Epiphanios, as an internal Church matter.

    "The State authorities investigate matters relating to Greek Justice," clarified Mr Antonaros, while he also stressed, "The Government applauds all the measures implemented for catharsis and combating unpleasant incidents in the Church."

    The Greek Justice Minister, Anastasis Papaligouras, referred to the major issue of catharsis in the Church, on the sidelines of a Bi-Ministerial BSEC (Black Sea Economic Cooperation) Summit.

    Mr Papaligouras clarified that the initiative for clean-up measures belongs to the Church. "If the State is invited, then it will contribute in every possible way," he noted.

    Translated by Vicky Ghionis

    Related News:

    Amid Disputes and Scandals

    [06] Papandreou: "Condemnation of Neo-Conservatism"

    21 Feb 2005 19:22:00

    By Mary Lou Tzempelikou

    The President of PASOK, Giorgos Papandreou described Sunday as "a great day for PASOK and Greece," commenting on the turn-out of the partys friends and members in the election process for the emergence of conference participants. Upon entering the meeting of the Secretariat of the National Reconstitution Committee Mr Papandreou said that the peoples participation showed that changes in PASOK are taking place with "the power of the citizen." Mr Papandreou made reference to the Socialist win in Portugal evaluating that Jose Socrates election symbolizes "the condemnation of neo-conservatism and the rebirth of socialist powers in Europe." Alternate ND government spokesperson Evangelos Andonaros answer was harsh as he stated "Mr Papandreou is in a state of wishful thinking."

    Mr Papandreou made parallel reference to the economic practices followed by the outgoing government in Portugal with Greeces government policy and noted: "I think that the Greek citizen, just as the Portuguese citizen sees the logic of shocks in the economy, without a future, with party interests that affect the family budget."

    Mr Adonaros stated "in Greece, Greek citizens vote and not Portuguese," commenting on the reference made by Mr Papandreou.

    It is noteworthy to say that on Monday the Secretariat of the PASOK National Reconstitution Committee convened, on the subject of the approval of the texts of declaration and political positions of the party in view of the Convention. The meeting was made in a positive climate due to the large turn-out in the election process and also due to the Portuguese election results.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    [07] Money Embezzlement Case Revealed Scandal in Larisa General Hospital

    21 Feb 2005 22:28:00

    By Viki Keleri

    Sources: ΝΕΤ RADIO 105.8

    The Minister of Health speaking in an PASOK health interpellation discussion in Parliament, on Monday night, revealed evidence of a great mismanagement scandal. It concerns money embezzlement from the Head of the Outpatients Clinic Nestoras Antoniou. According to the Health Ministrys inspectors evaluations the sum exceeds 300,000 euros a year. Mr Antoniou, who has already been suspended and committed to the Prosecutor, used duplicate receipts for examinations from different social security funds.

    Swords Crossed Over Fold-Up Beds

    Mr Kaklamanis made reference to the issue of the fold-up beds, saying that it was achieved in three months something which did not happen in PASOKs 20 years of rule and the next step will be taken at Thessalonica hospitals.

    From their side PASOK MPs who made the interpellation supported that Mr Kaklamanis approaches health matters as communicative and not substantial issues. They also accused him of raw administrative interference in the doctors work in order for fold-up beds to be countered.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    [08] Asks the European Union Investigation Over Harriri's Murder

    21 Feb 2005 20:48:00

    By Viki Keleri

    The Ministers of the EU asked for the immediate conduct of an investigation for whoever is behind the bomb attack which cost the life of former Lebanon PM Rafik Harriri. In a common statement the leaders of the diplomacy of the "25" asked for a speedy international investigation, which will shed light to the conditions and the responsibilities of the bomb explosion, which they strongly condemn. In the meantime, British Foreign Minister Jack Straw noted that there are many suspicions over the involvement of Syria in Harriris murder.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    [09] New Agency to Replace SDOE

    21 Feb 2005 17:32:00

    By Mary Lou Tzempelikou

    The structure and operation of the newly formed Special Audits Agency (YPEE), which will be replacing the Economic Fraud Squad (SDOE), has been set. According to the Economy and Finance Ministry, the operation of YPEE is already underway. Economy Minister Giorgos Alogoskoufis signed the relevant Presidential Decree draft, regarding the organization of the new Agency. YPEE will include upgraded audit mechanisms, while it will be a more contemporary and flexible agency. It is worth noting that SDOE has been abolished, based on the clauses of Article 30 of the Tax Law, which was voted for recently (Law 3296/2004). The aims of the new Agency include combating financial crimes, large-scale tax evasion and illegal trading, as well as combating networks involved in illegal activities, specializing in modern forms of illegal transactions with the help of electronic means, the Internet and new technologies.

    Translated by Vicky Ghionis

    [10] Bajevic Uncertain over Future

    21 Feb 2005 16:03:00

    By Dimitris Alexopoulos

    Olympiacos defeat in Crete from Ergotelis has caused a chain reaction in the team. Dusan Bajevic who faced the furious fans when his team reached Herakleion Airport, before the teams training session, met with Giorgos Louvaris with his initiative today, to whom he explained that he has reached his tether. According to information that has not been confirmed, the coach submitted his resignation to the Vice President, who was reserved to answer before he spoke with Sokratis Kokkalis. The developments are awaited after Olympiacos game with Sochaux on Friday for the UEFA Cup.

    "I Cannot Continue"

    The Serbian Greek coach who later on held a training session with his players, reportedly said to the FCs Vice President that "he cannot continue under these circumstances in Olympiacos."

    Bajevic mainly made reference to the bad relations with the Latin American players, the constant arguments, the stance of a part of fans which demand his withdrawal and has resulted to uncertainty from his part. They also discussed the poor performance of Olympiacos and the fact that the team seems to not have powers in the most critical time of the Cup.

    Giorgos Louvaris reportedly said that Bajevic should continue his work and from then on he will inform Sokratis Kokkalis.

    Everything depends on the decision that the President of Olympiacos, who has supported him up to now, will take.

    An important development may not come up in the next few days, as the game with Sochaux is coming up. In order to go forth to a change of coach, he should first find a replacement for Bajevic.

    In reference to Giovanni, the issue has not been closed yet. Last week the player did not participate in a training session and there is dissatisfaction over his attitude.

    It is expected at some point that the player will submit his views, even though in similar cases in the past Sokratis Kokkalis demanded a rallying of powers in order for the year to finish.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    [11] Four Fans in Jail

    21 Feb 2005 20:09:00

    By Dimitris Alexopoulos

    The Justices verdict was harsh for four out of the six fans arrested in the Pancretan Stadium after the end of Olympiacos vs. Ergotelis. The Herakleion Court abiding by the new strict law concerning violence in stadiums charged four Olympiacos fans with imprisonment and restraining orders, according to which a year after their release they cannot attend Olympiacos games, while every 1st and 15th of every month they have to appear at their local Police station. All charges are appealable.

    The Sentences

    More specifically Theodoros Maroulis and Ioannis Foufoulopoulos were sentenced to 15 month imprisonment and a 3,000 fine. Alexandros Papadopulos was sentenced to 12 months and a 3,000 fine. Manousos Georgitsakis was sentenced to 6 months and a 3,000 fee.

    As far as the other two fans that were arrested, one was released since he was not identified and the other, who was underage, will be taken to Juvenile court.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    [12] Stefanidi Flies to the World Record

    21 Feb 2005 14:41:00

    By Ilias Papaioannou

    As of yesterday, the Greek girls and junior womens records in pole vault are history. During the international "Athens 2005" meeting in Peania, Katerina Stefanidi, the 15-year-old champion from Filothei Sports Club, achieved the best pole vault performance worldwide in junior women with a jump at 4.37m. Meanwhile, she equaled the Greek womens record, which belonged to Georgia Tsiligiri since 23 February 2002. It is worth noting with this amazing jump, the youngest athlete of the meeting reached the limit for the European Indoors Championship in Madrid.

    Translated by Vicky Ghionis

    [13] First Launch on May 15 Space Shuttles Return

    21 Feb 2005 14:59:00

    By Vagelis Theodorou

    Sources: BBC- Reuters

    NASA is a step before the restart of its missions, two years after the tragic accident of Columbia space shuttle. As NASA announced, Discovery will be launched on May 15 with a seven member crew, until the recommendations by the accident investigation board are concluded. "The challenge right now is closure of an awful lot of paper. The vehicle cant launch until all the paperwork is done," said NASAs associate administrator for space operations Bill Readdy. The accident board has recommended 15 changes in the security systems, before the new space shuttle is launched.

    Security Tests

    The launch of the Discovery is programmed from May 15 until June 3 and a few days later the space craft will connect with the International Space Station (ISS). A month later, between July 12 and 31 NASA has programmed the launch of Atlantis, also destined to ISS.

    The basic aim of the first mission is for the new systems and safety protocols that NASA has developed the last two years to be checked, after a recommendation by the accident board.

    According to the accident boards verdict Columbias left wing was punctured by a piece of falling foam insulation from the external fuel tank, at lift-off and the shuttle disintegrated 16 days later as it attempted to return through Earths atmosphere.

    Based on the changes recommended, the external fuel tank was redesigned, the crew has been equipped with a kit for repairs of the exterior, while the check of the craft from NASA will be made by grounded and in orbit telescopes and radars.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    Related Links:


    Columbia Accident Investigation Board

    [14] Entertainment in the WC

    21 Feb 2005 18:06:00

    By Vagelis Theodorou

    A Japanese company promises that every visit in the toilet will be a pleasant experience. Toto Ltd., following technologys demands designed Neorest Z series toilet, which plans to make the call of nature unforgettable. The series dos not include anything different than any other common toilet. The secret is in your discretion and hides a little above the flusher. With a press of a button the first international device which releases fragrance and plays music will function! The fragrances and music can change according to the season. For example, in springtime you can fill your WC will a scent of lavender and in summertime with a scent of sea, while reading magazines or solving a cross-word puzzle. The cost of the toilet is user friendly and is priced at 2,320 euros!

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    Related Links:

    Toto Ltd.

    [15] Gambling for Town's Debt

    21 Feb 2005 15:32:00

    By Vagelis Theodorou

    In the German town Blumberg, near the Swiss border, the council funds are close to depletion and the debts are overwhelming, since they account for 2500 euros per every one of the 10,660 residents. So, the local officials called forth all their shrewdness and finally found a way to increase the towns revenues. Well, they did not try to attract investments, or resort to borrowing, but they decided to gamble! Specifically, two officials are using private funds to play in a lottery twice a week. Local finance officer Thomas Lauble said, "The most important figures in my week are now the seven numbers drawn each Wednesday and Saturday in the national lottery." Furthermore, in order to stop anyone from accusing them of pocketing any winnings, they also signed an agreement, making it clear that any money gained from the lottery will go into the community treasure chest. "A big win cannot be factored into the community finances, but a few million euros would bring welcome relief," said the another councillor.

    Well, in the good of public interest, we wish them good luck!

    Translated by Vicky Ghionis

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