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The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English, 05-02-24

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

From: The Hellenic Radio (ERA) <>


  • [01] Pope's Health Worsens
  • [02] Olympiacos Wins and Qualifies
  • [03] Agreement to Disagree
  • [04] ND in the Lead
  • [05] Government Attacked Over DEI
  • [06] Pensioners on the March
  • [07] Stormy Developments in Justice
  • [08] Vote of Confidence for Qurei
  • [09] Development in Epirus
  • [10] 2006 World Cup Tickets Snapped Up
  • [11] Farewell to the Drill
  • [12] Barbie Versus Teddy
  • [13] Spring in your Wardrobe

  • [01] Likely to undergo tracheotomy Pope's Health Worsens

    24 Feb 2005 22:30:00

    By Vagelis Theodorou

    Sources: Reuters, FNA, BBC

    A new turn came on Thursday evening for the health of Pope John Paul II, who was yesterday admitted to Gemelli Hopsital in Rome. Citing doctors treating the Pontiff, Italian news agency ANSA reported that the leader of the Catholic Church is likely to undergo a tracheotomy in order to help his respiratory functions. In addition, private television channel SKY TG24 reported that the 84-year-old Pope had been taken into surgery to have X-rays taken, and will undergo a tracheotomy, while no further information was given "out of respect for the Pontiff." In any case, information on the exact condition of the Popes health is still unclear, as an official statement will be released on Friday.

    Official Statement Expected

    Speaking on SKY TG24, Dr Giovanni Urso, a specialist in lung infections, stressed that there was an increased danger of lung infection after the tracheotomy, especially considering Parkinsons disease, from which the Pope has suffered for the last 13 years, which was already weakened his respiratory system.

    The Vatican has announced simply that the leader of the Catholic Church is suffering from influenza, an illness which kept him at Gemelli Hospital for about ten days at the beginning of February.

    Translated by Millie Williams

    [02] Olympiacos Wins and Qualifies

    24 Feb 2005 21:53:00

    By Vasilis Kalpinos

    With a good set-up and closed defence, Olympiacos took the ticket to qualify to the next round, even scoring a second win against the French team. The reds were well prepared and left room for the yellow side, and as their defence was in almost no danger at all, they took the opportunity and scored the goal. The goal that sealed the qualifier for Bajevics team was scored by Ieroklis Stoltidis in 67.

    Few Good Moments

    Olympiacos defence and Sochauxs attempts to attack were the initial features of the first half. For the first fifteen minutes, both teams were in the centre, although the French team were slightly better, even though this did not help them. The good moment for Lacombes team came in 18 with Zairi trying a good shot and Nikopolidis reacting in the right way.

    From then on, the red team balanced out the situation and tried to come out with a counterattack. This brought their first good phase in 22 with Okkas catching a header, which, however, turned out to be too weak and was easily blocked.

    There were not many good moments of play for either team, and nothing in particular came for the rest of the half, and they went to the changing rooms with the score at 0-0.

    Qualifying Goal

    In the second half, Sochaux tried to come out more strongly, as they desperately needed the goal that would put the game on equal footing. Despite this, they were unable to succeed in their final efforts, and the good team line-up by Bajevic meant that Olympiacos did not face many difficulties.

    Up till 67, there were not many highlights. In that minute, Stoltidis sent his team and fans soaring, as after a pass from Georgatos and confusion in the French teams defence, the red teams midfielder shot straight into the goal.

    That goal gave wings to the Piraeus team, as they had secured their chance to qualify. Nothing changed as the match went on, as Sochaux did not take advantage of any play to score a goal, and with great maturity and presence of mind, the guest team held onto their win and qualify.

    Referee: Markus Nobs (Switzerland)

    Yellow cards: Diawara, Pitau, Santos, Djordjevic, Schurer, Mavrogenidis, Georgatos

    The teams:

    Sochaux: Richert, Potillon (61 Daf), Diawara, Monsoreau, Mathieu, Isabey, Pitau, Boudar&#232;ne (88 Lonfat), Zairi (73 Regnier), Menez, Santos

    Olympiacos: Nikopolidis, Mavrogenidis, Kostoulas, Schurrer, Anatolakis, Stoltidis, Maric (90 Kafes), Georgatos, Okkas (80 Castillo), Rivaldo (85 Giovanni), Djordjevic)

    Translated by Millie Williams

    [03] Meeting between Bush and Putin Agreement to Disagree

    24 Feb 2005 21:17:00

    By Vagelis Theodorou

    Sources: - Reuters- C

    The meeting between US President George Bush and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin took place in a friendly atmosphere, despite their recent disagreements on Irans nuclear programme. The two men met in Bratislava in Slovakia, the last stop on the US Presidents European tour, and they agreed on nuclear issues, as well as the right to disagree without upsetting the atmosphere of friendship and cooperation. Mr Bush expressed his concern over the progress of democratic reform in Russia, while their were also a few unforeseen moments, when the US President, probably owing to the cold, forgot custom and did not remove his black leather gloves when shaking hands with Mr Putin and the Russian PM.

    Concern from Bush

    The meeting focused on dealing with nuclear terrorism, on which a bilateral agreement has already been signed, as well as Washingtons admonitions over the establishment of democracy in Russia and the wider region of Eastern Europe, which drew a reaction from Moscow.

    Particular resentment was caused by the statement by the American president that it is impossible for Russia to back down on the matter of democratic reform.

    Mr Bush recognized that Russia is in a transition period, but he stressed that strong countries are built with the development of democratic institutions, protection of minorities and Press freedoms, concluding: "I could share with Mr Putin my concerns over the fact that Russia is pledged to respect universal principles."

    "Russia has chosen democracy," was Mr Putins answer to the admonitions of his American counterpart.

    Differences on Nuclear Issues

    "We bear special responsibility for the security of nuclear weapons so that it is not possible for them to fall into the hands of terrorists," said the joint American and Russian statement, which was released at the end of the talks between Bush and Putin.

    It was announced that the US and Russia would continue to develop cooperation regarding the possibility of responding to nuclear or radioactive threats, while American and Russian agents will exchange technological information regarding the safety of nuclear installations and will hold talks with other states that have nuclear weapons.

    Finally, the two presidents agreed that Iran and North Korea should not have nuclear weapons and the US pledged to cooperate to allow Russia to enter the World Trade Organisation this year.

    Translated by Millie Williams

    [04] National study by Metron Analysis ND in the Lead

    24 Feb 2005 20:08:00

    By Annita Paschalinou

    A significant lead for ND in both voter intention and the likelihood of a win emerges in a nationwide study conducted by Metron Analysis. In voter intention, the ruling party is ahead of PASOK by four percentage points, while in the likelihood of a win, the difference is quite noticeable, with the difference approaching 29 points (ND 50.7% against 21.9% for PASOK). The Prime Minister himself appears to be in a strong position. On the question of who is considered most suitable as prime minister, Kostas Karamanlis is ahead with 42.5 against 29.8% for George Papandreou.

    Vote of Confidence in the Government

    In voter intention, New Democracy leads with 37.9% against 33.9% for PASOK. KKE follows with 6.6%, then comes SYN with 3.7%, LAOS with 2.9% and not stated 14.9%.

    New Democracy also has a clear lead in the likelihood of a win with 50.7% against 21.9% for PASOK. On the question of who amongst the political leaders is considered most suitable as prime minister of Greece, Kostas Karamanlis is ahead with 42.5 George Papandreou follows with 29.8%, Aleka Papariga with 2.6%, Giorgos Karatzaferis with 2.1%, Alekos Alavanos with 1.5%, while 15.9% of interviewees answered noone.

    PM's Popularity Very High

    Furthermore, the prime minister enjoys an exceedingly high level of popularity. According to the opinion poll, Kostas Karamanlis is ahead with 60.1% in citiens positive opinions, and he is followed by the president of PASOK with 56.8%, Alekos Alavanos with 39.4%, the general secretary of the KKE with 35.2% and Giorgos Karatzaferis with 23.4%.

    39.2% of citizens who took part in the survey declare that they trust an ND government with Kostas Karamanlis, against 30.3% for a PASOK government with George Papandreou.

    35.7% of people asked express satisfaction with Kostas Karamanlis, and 18.5 with Geroge Papandreou. 36.3% of interviewees are dissatisfied with the prime minister, while for George Papandreou the percentage is 45%.

    Karolos Papoulias Widely Accepted

    The survey also showed that the President of the Hellenic Republic Konstantinos Stefanopoulos is viewed positively, while Karolos Papoulias is also widely accepted.

    81.4% of those questioned agree with the choice of Papoulias for the position of President of the Hellenic Republic, while 95.2% view positively or probably positively the presidential term of Konstantinos Stefanopoulos.

    As for PASOKs pending convention, on the question of how much the work and stances to be decided there interest citizens, the rate of interest stands at 30.4%, while very little or not at all is the reply from 66.6%. The nationwide survey was conducted from 10 to 21 February, using a ballot box, with 2193 citizens participating.

    Translated by Millie Williams

    [05] File with non-transparent cases in court Government Attacked Over DEI

    24 Feb 2005 19:15:00

    By Annita Paschalinou

    Christos Papoutsis launched an attack on the government, whom he accused of accepting and covering initiatives by DEI Chairman Ioannis Palaiokrasas. This came in the wake of the resignation of Nezis from the position of Executive Manager of the company. PASOKs Production and Trade representative blamed the government for the situation in the electricity company DEI, stressing that their policy is forcing all the upper echelons of public administration to resign. Asked about the issue today, alternate government spokesperson Evangelos Antonaros referred to the announcements made by the Minister for Development Dimitris Sioufas and the Chairman of DEI, Mr Palaiokrasas.

    File with Non-Transparent Procedures

    Announcing his resignation yesterday, Stergios Nezis cited problems with the Chairman of DEI, speaking of "continual disfunction in the company which is exclusively caused by the untoward interventions of the Chairman of the Board in the administration of the company."

    Shortly after Stergios Nezis resigned, the Chairman of DEI, Palaiokrasas announced that he had submitted a file with cases regarding problems with the function of the company in the past to the authorities. The large file is said to contain information on DEI contract awarding with non-transparent procedures.

    He underlined that he had done his duty, given that conditions of total transparency are a choice of the central government.

    Translated by Millie Williams

    Related News:

    Resignation and Irregularities in DEI

    [06] Meeting with Alogoskoufis on Wednesday Pensioners on the March

    24 Feb 2005 17:43:00

    By Vivian Papastefanou

    There will be a meeting with the Minister for the Economy, Giorgos Alogoskoufis next Wednesday for pensioners, who today held a rally and protest march in Athens, demanding that the minimum pension be set at 960 euros. Similar rallies were also held in other Greek cities. Trade unionists underlined in their speeches that 70% of pensioners, which means about 800 thousand people, receive a pension of less than 500 euros, and that these increases mean an increase of 0.4 to o.7 euros per day. In addition, they underlined that although they had informed Mr Alogoskoufis ten days in advance, he refused to meet them and referred them to the general secretary of the ministry, citing other matters requiring attention. Besides an increase in the minimum pension, the pensioners also demand an annual heating benefit of 500 euros, an increase in the tax-free base, freeing of prices on basic consumer products, a decrease in personal contributions in purchasing medicines and that retrospective payments to LAFKA be submitted without requiring individual court orders.

    Translated by Millie Williams

    [07] Stathis to testify on Friday Stormy Developments in Justice

    24 Feb 2005 17:26:00

    By Annita Paschalinou

    Revelations on the corrupt gangs in the justice sector are coming to light one after the other. By decision of the Supreme Judiciary Council of Civil and Criminal Justice, First Instance Justice Antonia Ilia, who had been referred by the High Court on the question of definitive dismissal, has been suspended. The basis for this move stems from the fact that she has not submitted a financial audit for four years (2000 to 2004). At the same time, the High Court Plenary Session decided to dismiss a First Instance Justice from Thiva, while a disciplinary investigation has been ordered into a First Instance Justice based in Volos. Justice workers are determined to proceed with purging the Justice sector. "Corrupt justices will be removed with no trace of leniency," declares the Union of Judges and Prosecutors.

    Dismissal for Thiva, Investigation for Volos

    First Instance Justice of Thiva Mr Papadoukakis is charged with negligence in the examination of interrogator Konstantina Bourboulia regarding her handling of ATHEX cases.

    In addition, High Court Judge Petros Kakalis ordered a disciplinary investigation into a First Instance Justice based in Volos, who appears to have demanded large amounts for tracts of land that belonged to Makrinitsa Monastery and which were destined for Olympic works.

    Chrisafenia Zigouri is closely related to the lawyer Nikos Emmanouilidis, who in the past handled several cases for Iakovos Giosakis.

    In the meantime, on Friday Leonidas Stahis, who is accused of bribery and money-laundering, is to face the interrogator.

    Determined to See Purging

    Earlier, the Union of Judges and Prosecutors expressed their revulsion at the unfortunate revelations in the justice sector in a Press Conference.

    It was clarified that these are isolated incidents that do not concern the majority of the judicial body, which consists of people with an increased sense of responsibility.

    They also announced that the corrupt justices would be removed with no trace of leniency.

    The Union also called upon the government, the NCRT, the Personal Data Protection Authority, Lawyers Unions, institutions and ordinary citizens to protect the Justice Sector.

    Translated by Millie Williams

    [08] Vote of Confidence for Qurei

    24 Feb 2005 14:00:00

    By Despina Hristopoulou

    Sources: BBC - ANA

    Ahmed Qurei will remain as the countrys Prime Minister, after receiving a vote of confidence from the Palestinian Parliament, which also approved the new cabinet. However, Qurei succumbed to pressures from MPs and replaced Yasser Arafats old guard with new faces. The voting ended the crisis that had erupted within Fatah, as they demanded new people in the Government. President Mahmoud Abbas is now expected to be able to commence the reform of Palestine, which has been plagued by corruption, while at the same time he will continue peacemaking efforts with Israel. Veteran negotiator Saeb Erekat was dropped from the new cabinet, while one of the few familiar faces is Nabil Shaath, who will become deputy Prime Minister and Information Minister. Furthermore, Nasser al-Kidwa, the Palestinians UN representative, will take over as Foreign Minister, while reformist Finance Minister Salam Fayyad will continue in the same post.

    Translated by Vicky Ghionis

    [09] Individual development body to be created Development in Epirus

    24 Feb 2005 14:11:00

    By Anna Kourti

    A basic aim is to make use of Epirus comparative advantages through funding from the third CSF and programmes within the legislation on development. This was stated by the Minister for the Economy, Mr Giorgos Alogoskoufis in a meeting on Thursday afternoon with parliamentarians from ND and PASOK. Some of the 11 MPs from both ND and PASOK for the Epirus area proposed that an individual development body should be created, with increased responsibilities. The MPs visited Mr Alogoskoufis at the Economy Ministry. In the meantime, the meeting of the Committee for Privatisation is currently underway. Mr Alogoskoufis will visit Epirus on 3 and 4 March and will then meet with the MPs again.

    "The discussion was with regard to infrastructure in rural Greece and ways to mobilize the private sector. In Epirus we can try out the outward-looking model for our Economy. The governments priority is to do everything possible through the third CSF and the development law in order for rural Greece to develop," stated Mr Alogoskoufis.

    Translated by Millie Williams

    [10] 2006 World Cup Tickets Snapped Up

    24 Feb 2005 15:02:00

    By Ilias Papaioannou

    The German organizers of the 2006 FIFA World Cup are getting positive messages regarding the sale of tickets. Already a year before the event, the demand by fans has surpassed $ 2 million. As per the organizers, they have already received 319,874 orders out of the 2,198,462 tickets available. Furthermore, in some matches, the demand has surpassed the amount of tickets available, as is the case with the final; however, there are still a lot of tickets available for the preliminary games. It is also worth noting that the orders come from 176 counties, with 96% coming from Europe, and 5% from Germany.

    Translated by Vicky Ghionis

    [11] Artificial tooth enamel closes cavities Farewell to the Drill

    24 Feb 2005 18:08:00

    By Vagelis Theodorou

    Sources: New Scientist

    One reason why we avoid going to the dentist has to be the notorious drill. After all, very few people manage to remain calm when they sit in the dentists chair with the mouth open and see the "terrifying" tool. No more shall patients be afraid, and the doctors job shall be made easier with a paste of artificial tooth enamel, created by a research team at FAP Dental Institute in Tokyo. Dr Kazue Yamagishi and her team have created a paste with hydroxyapatite, the material of which natural enamel is made, which can repair small tooth cavities, without needing to use drills and resins.

    Easy but Dangerous

    Mouth bacteria produce acid that corrodes tooth enamel. When the decay is at its first stages, cavities are too small to be filled with resins and the dentist needs to use the drill to widen the hole.

    The paste from FAP Institute his made up of hydroxyapatite crystals, a hard, calcium-based substance that constitutes the material tooth enamel is made of. This makes the drill redundant, as the crystals are incorporated in the tooth structure and can effectively seal small cavities in just 15 minutes.

    Nevertheless, this method is as dangerous as it is effective. Dentists must take especial care, as the paste is so acidic that it can be extremely painful if it comes in contact with the gums.

    Translated by Millie Williams

    [12] Barbie Versus Teddy

    24 Feb 2005 18:58:00

    By Vagelis Theodorou

    Berlin is living at the fever pitch of the Olympic Games. The next Winter Olympics may be in 2006 in Turin, but in the German city the Winter Olympic Games for Toys will be held on 6 March. Barbie and the teddy bears will compete in a series of events, trying to win a place on the podium. Among others, the beloved childrens toys will compete in ski jumps from a sloping bar, a kind of canoe-kayak and an original kind of chasing game, Yetigate. Naturally, the performances of the cuddly athletes will depend on their "handlers" who have to outdo themselves and their rivals.

    Good luck to all, and may the best toy win!

    Translated by Millie Williams

    [13] Female fashion secrets Spring in your Wardrobe

    24 Feb 2005 20:21:00

    By Vagelis Theodorou

    The weather is getting warmer, moods are changing and Spring sets its own light rules in female clothing. "Banish the hard edges this spring and show your prettiest look," could be the slogan of the great fashion houses, which presented their ideas for Spring 2005 in the fashion weeks in Milan, Paris and New York. Skirts in bright colours, such as coral and turquoise, chunky white jewellery at the neck, metallic bags, in big sizes like boxes, with platform shoes are some of the must haves of the prettiest season in the year.

    Big Skirt

    Spring on this years catwalks calls for skirts down to at least the knee, with chic trousers, such as those presented by Armani. Slogan from all designers: Volume on bottom!

    Skirts are to be long, with many incarnations: embellished on the back, bell-shaped, with tulle underlays or even with pleats. The magic part of this idea is that it flatters the figure and is a unique chance for every woman to acquire a piece that today is probably not in her wardrobe.

    Get one of these skirts, advise the fashion houses, combine it with off-shoulder tops, tight cardigans or boxy jackets, and you are sure to be amazing!

    As for the colour: white, "explosions" with flowers, turquoise, coral, lilac, light orange and of course the all time classic; jeans.

    On the other hand, designers such as Armani suggest trousers for those who wish to show off their legs. What do they recommend for Spring? Trousers that dont go below the knee, in black or a biscuit-hued beige.

    Of course, there are still those "heretics" who insist on an extremely revealing miniskirt, or see-through dresses.

    Slim Waist

    The designers idea is a simple one: the top part of the body must be clearly slimmer than the bottom half, or be balanced, showing off an hourglass look. This can be helped with flat shoes, that go nicely with big skirts.

    To help you achieve that look, designers suggest cardigans and knitted jumpers, tie front or big-sleeved tops.

    Also on the catwalks are cardigans embellished with sequins, cropped jackets and blazers.

    What do designers recommend for the top? Use your imagination and experiment, wearing for example a mohair coat in a juicy cherry colour, with a big collar.

    Bright Colours, Metals, Platforms

    Dress in turquoise from head to toe, say most designers, making this colour a must for the Spring wardrobe.

    There is also space for coral, lemon yellow and soft white, which combine easily with all clothes in warm shades.

    Large, obvious bags in silver or gold hues, in mock crocodile or snake skin are among the must haves of accessories.

    At the same time, designers recommend impressive, chunky necklaces, as well as ballerina or platform shoes. And if you find chunky shoes a bit heavy, then go for flat sandals and moccasins, which are both practical and fashionable this Spring.

    Translated by Millie Williams

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