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The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English, 05-04-11

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

From: The Hellenic Radio (ERA) <>


  • [01] Bush's Recommendations to Israel
  • [02] The Last Goodbye
  • [03] Dieting in Jail
  • [04] Cutting-Edge Bill
  • [05] No Change in Opening Hours of Public Sector
  • [06] In-Depth Investigation
  • [07] China and India Bridge Differences
  • [08] Eight Days to the Conclave
  • [09] Bloody Attack in Samara
  • [10] Triple Kamikaze Attack
  • [11] Lebanese Government Formation Delayed
  • [12] EU Constitution in Parliament, on Tuesday
  • [13] The Growth of Tourism
  • [14] Alogoskoufis in Brussels
  • [15] Living with Spam

  • [01] Bush-Sharon Meeting in Texas Bush's Recommendations to Israel

    11 Apr 2005 22:29:00

    By Despina Hristopoulou

    Sources: BBC- ANA

    U.S. President George W Bush repeated his support in the Israeli PM, Ariel Sharons plan for withdrawal from Gaza, during the Press interview, which followed the meeting of the two men in Texas, and at the same time asked for the non-expansion of Jewish settlements in the West Bank. President Bush described the Sharon plan, which will clear out all the Jewish settlements from the Gaza Strip and parts of the West Bank, as "a brave initiative," and at the same time expressed his concerns over Israels recent decisions to expand its settlements around Jerusalem, describing this move as a clear violation of the road map regulations. As he said, the U.S. will continue to remind Israel of its duties, but he did not make clear if the U.S. is planning to take measures if Israel continues with the new plan. He also asked of the Palestinians to support Sharons plan and to destroy the armed Palestinian organizations, as it is stated in the road map.

    Sharon Supports an Independent Palestine

    From his side, Ariel Sharon committed to destroying all illegal Jewish settlements, underling that Israel will respect all of its commitments as they emerge from the road map. Also, the Israeli PM supports the creation of an independent Israeli state, the borders of which will be in the West Bank and are guaranteed.

    "We, as the Palestinians do also, wish that they will be self-governed in their own state which will have guaranteed borders in the West Bank, next to Israels borders, in peace and security," stated Mr Sharon. He also called on the Palestinian President, Mahmoud Abbas to act against violence, after the attacks that took place on the weekend against Israeli settlements and positions in Gaza.

    Sharon Should Listen to Bush's Demand

    From its side, the Palestinian Authority called on Ariel Sharon to carefully listen to George W Bushs demand. Speaking to Reuters Palestinian negotiator, Saeb Erekat stated the following: "I hope that Prime Minister Sharon will follow President Bushs demand for colonial activities to end as I believe this is the key to everything."

    Mr Erekat added that the proposal for the creation of two states could be undermined if Israel continues the expansion of Jewish settlements in the occupied Arab land and continues building the wall in the West Bank.

    Also, the Palestinian Authority accused the American President of "legalizing" Jewish settlements, after Mr Bushs statement that it is "unrealistic" to expect a return to the 1949 borders between Israel and the West Bank.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    Related News:

    Sharon in the USA

    [02] To the Sir of Greek Music The Last Goodbye

    11 Apr 2005 18:17:00

    By Anna Kourti

    The great singer Grigoris Bithikotsis burial took place today at the Athens A Cemetery and attended by many people, artists and politicians. His coffin was accompained by his close associates while the people clapped on. The words "thank you" were uttered to him by his close friends and associates, who had admired the Greek popular singer and his songs for all these years. Representatives of the political world also said their last goodbye. This weekend, thousands of people and well-known artists arrived in the chapel of the Athens Cathedral to say goodbye to the Sir of Greek music.

    They Were All There

    His wife Metaxia, their son Grigoris, his two daughters from his first marriage, Anna and Tasia, his grandchildren, singers Kaiti Grey, Mary Linda, Vicky Moscholiou, Michalis Menidiatis, Dimitris Mitropanos united as one said their last goodbyes to the Sir of Greek music, a title that "was not awarded to him, but was conquered by his worth."

    Among the crowd were Pitsa Papadopoulou, Manolis Mitsias, Vasilis Tsitsanis son, Markos Vamvakaris son, Dionisis Savvopoulos, Kostas Makedonas and many other popular Greek artists.

    "You loved the Greek song and the song loved you. You loved poetry and poetry loved you. You loved Greece and it loved you as well by singing. You have managed the impossible. You have beaten death," were Mikis Theodorakis farewell words read by Bithikotsis son Grigoris, since health reasons did not allow Mikis to attend the funeral. The coffin was held by Giorgos Dalaras, Giannis Parios, Dimitris Mitropanos, Giannis Kotsiras, Vasilis Papakonstantinou and Dimitris Basis.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    Related News:

    Goodbye Sir

    National Grief for Great Greek Singer

    Grigoris Bithikotsis Passed Away

    [03] Dieting in Jail

    11 Apr 2005 14:49:00

    By Vagelis Theodorou

    Living conditions in jail are not always the best, so a 34-year-old Romanian decided to change that. Gheorghe Florea, who was serving a two-year sentence for theft, sued the jail he was detained in, because the food had too much fat, which affected his health. He also complained that he was being held in a smokers cell. The head of the prison, Marius Hiliban, said the prisoners complaints were ungrounded. While he did say that he would look into the food issues, he did clarify that there jail did not offer smoking and non-smoking cells. Anyhow, Florea was transferred to another cell and seems to be happier now.

    Translated by Vicky Ghionis

    [04] For the Olympic Facilities Cutting-Edge Bill

    11 Apr 2005 16:47:00

    Sources: NET 105.8 - ANA

    On Monday, Alternate Culture Minister Fani Palli-Petralia met with the president of the Athens Commerce and Industry Chamber, Drakoulis Fountoukakos, in the context of discussions with social bodies concerning the new bill for the Olympic facilities, which will be submitted in Parliament in the next few days. Mrs Petralia described the bill as non-bureaucratic and cutting-edge, while she stressed that it aims to create new jobs and attract investments. On the other hand, Mr Fountoukakos pointed out that the bill is moving towards the right direction, underlining that the important thing is that a coordinated and in-depth study is being conducted. Synaspismos asked for the withdrawal for the bill, stressing that "If the things provided for by the bill are implemented, the result would be more buildup areas in a city that is already suffocating from the lack of parks."

    SYN's Reactions

    SYNs Ecology department mentioned that the bill aims to pass the Olympic facilities on to private companies and get around the control of the Supreme Administrative Court, as well as any bodies or institutions responsible for administrating public property.

    As per the announcement, Local Government, the citizens, as well as the Ministry of Public Order are missing from the bill, while the sole responsibility lies with the Athens Organization.

    Translated by Vicky Ghionis

    [05] No Change in Opening Hours of Public Sector

    11 Apr 2005 19:49:00

    By Despina Hristopoulou

    Sources: NET RADIO 105.8- ANA

    There is no issue of expanding opening hours in the public sector, stated Minister of the Interior, Prokopis Pavlopoulos, during todays meeting of the Central Committee for the observation and application of the growth program "Thiseas" for first degree OTA, in the Interior Ministry. Also the Minister stated that the government is solving the problem of the citizens exchanges and services with the function of KEP, morning and evening and on Saturday. Mr Pavlopoulos noted that the "Thiseas" program, its application of which will begin mid-April, is being materialized with the criteria of the future role of OTA. "It is known that the 5th Community Support Framework is the Prefectures program and OTA, while the role of the central state is remote and executive. We should prepare the Prefectures and OTA towards that direction. Thus the "Thiseas" program will have the growth prospect that gives OTA the capability to receive all the money that belong to it, but mainly to plan its growth initiatives according to the needs to the local societies," stated the Ministers to the journalists after the end of the meeting.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    [06] Briefs on Prisoners' Deaths to Reopen In-Depth Investigation

    11 Apr 2005 17:48:00

    By Betty Savourdou

    Sources: ANA

    On Monday, the director of Piraeus First Instance Prosecutions, Grigoris Peponis, ordered a thorough investigation into all briefs relating to deaths of detainees in Korydallos Prison and especially the death of 25-year-old Kyriakos Asvestas from drug overdose. Mr Peponis appointed Prosecutor G. Moraitis as head of the investigation, which is to be conducted by the Piraeus police station. The Prosecutor will have to decide whether the prison staff bore any responsibility, while he will also have the right to recall any witnesses he considers as important regarding the death of Asvestas.

    Translated by Vicky Ghionis

    [07] China and India Bridge Differences

    11 Apr 2005 14:36:00

    By Tina Valaoura

    Sources: ANA- BBC

    In 1962 they had to engage in a short war and since then 43 years have passed before China and India finally agreed on a treaty for the resolution of the dispute over the areas bordering the Himalayas, a matter that has concerned them for many decades. Today, the treaty was sealed, during the visit of Chinese MP, Wen Jiabao to India. Today, Mr Jiabao and his Indian counterpart, Manmohan Singh signed the document that designates the road map with the steps for the resolution of the disputed border which measures 3,550 km in New Delhi and which has not been formally designated.

    In a common announcement the two countries state that the goal is the formal resolution of the problem with peaceful and friendly consultations and without the use of any form of violence. In the announcement it is stated that until the dispute is definitely resolved the two sides have to keep in mind "the strategic and rational bilateral interests and the start of a mutual security," but without giving further explanations. It is understood that both sides wish for the issue to be quickly resolved which will lead to the development of the relations, primarily economic, between the two countries.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    [08] Unofficial Meetings Between the Cardinals Eight Days to the Conclave

    11 Apr 2005 13:04:00

    By Athina Saloustrou

    Sources: Le Monde

    The first unofficial contacts for the election of the new head of the Catholic Church commenced today in the Vatican. The 115 Cardinals two are not present due to health problems are discussing the details of the Conclave, which is scheduled to begin on 18 April. The Cardinals have already participated in six meetings so far, during which they discussed some organizational problems. Having 3500 journalists, who have already arrived in Rome to cover the election of the new Pontiff, to deal with, the 115 Cardinals decided to keep silent. As per Vatican sources, "They will not give any more interviews."

    Spiritual Experience

    John Allen, a correspondent for the newspaper National Catholic Reporter , said that this period of silence is necessary, so that the 115 voters could decide without any external interventions. He further added that the Cardinals are interested in protecting the Conclaves freedom.

    However, the Archbishop of Edinburgh, Keith OBrien, one of the younger Cardinals who will be participating in the Conclave, told BBC yesterday that the electoral process will be a spiritual experience, totally sealed off from the outside world and without any mobile phones or any other communication means. "I am sure that God will help us choose the right person, who will continue to guide us in the new millennium," stressed the Archbishop of Edinburgh.

    No Favourites

    The election of the new Pope, however, is open, since Vatican officials are insisting that there are no favourites. Some names have already appeared in the Press, including six Italian Cardinals and quite a few from Latin America. The truth, though, is that they are just guesses.

    Any pre-election campaign is forbidden, while the Cardinals are not allowed to discuss the pros of any candidate until the Conclave. The odds tip towards the election of an Italian Pope, who knows the people well, or a foreigner, who is close to the Vatican and speaks Italian. He would have to be extremely good in communicating, especially with the younger generation, as the International Youth Convention, which the new Pontiff is scheduled to attend, will be held in Cologne this coming August.

    Translated by Vicky Ghionis

    [09] Bloody Attack in Samara

    11 Apr 2005 22:01:00

    By Betty Savourdou

    Sources: ANA

    At least three Iraqis were killed while another 26 were injured, among them five children and one woman, in an attack on Monday night, by a car trapped with explosives. The attack took place in the neighborhood of Dhubat, in the eastern side of Samara, as a hospital source made known. The target of the attack was a U.S. motorcade that was passing by the main trade street of the town. Immediately after the attack, the U.S. military police closed off the road and later on the transport of the injured to a neighboring hospital was allowed.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    [10] "Romanian Journalists Are Alive" Triple Kamikaze Attack

    11 Apr 2005 17:28:00

    By Betty Savourdou

    On Monday, a triple suicide attack occurred outside of an American military base, in the town of Al Kaim, in western Iraq near the Syrian borders. American helicopters reached the area immediately and transported the tree injured marines. The organization of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi took responsibility of the attack with an announcement made in the Internet. However, the authenticity of the announcement is being investigated. In the meantime, the three Romanian journalists who were abducted on March 28, in Iraq are alive, according to statements made by the representative of the Romanian Presidency, Adriana Saftoiu.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    [11] Postponed Although Scheduled for Today Lebanese Government Formation Delayed

    11 Apr 2005 13:32:00

    By Athina Saloustrou

    New Government formation in Lebanon scheduled for today has been postponed due to "last minute obstacles," said a member of the outgoing Government to the French Press Agency. "The formation of a new government which was expected today was delayed by differences on the electoral law, and Karameh is trying to settle last minute obstacles," said the same government source. Omar Karameh had told reporters on Saturday that would announce the formation of new Government on Monday to Walid Jumblatt, one of the Opposition leaders. According to another source, the President of the country, Emile Lahoud, and the outgoing Minister of Internal Affairs Sleiman Frangieh objected to Karameh's wish to submit to parliament a new law that expands electoral constituencies. Lahoud, Frangieh and their Christian community's influential spiritual guide Maronite Cardinal Nasrallah Sfeir, have backed a law for smaller constituencies that would be more representative for minorities. The Karameh government resigned on February 28 under the weight of huge protests sparked by the assassination of Hariri as well as pressure from the international community and the anti-Syrian opposition. Now the Opposition asks for the formation of a new Government, which will be in the position to hold elections within the timeframe provided for by the Constitution, ie late May at the latest.

    Translated by Sofia Soulioti

    [12] Opposition Asks For Referendum EU Constitution in Parliament, on Tuesday

    11 Apr 2005 20:44:00

    By Betty Savourdou

    Sources: NET RADIO 105.8- NET- ANA

    The discussion over the bill for the ratification of the Euroconstitution starts on Tuesday, in the Parliamentary Plenary Session. From their side, three opposition parties ask for a referendum, with a document signed by 133 MPs, and it is headed by the PASOK President, the KKE General Secretary and the SYN President. In the meantime, on Monday morning, the NET Radio 105.8 program is dedicated to the new European Constitutional Treaty. In an exclusive interview to the radio station, President of the European Commission, Romano Prodi stated that the future in a world of globalization is only in a powerful Europe, since the countries, on their own, cease to exist.

    Thriller with French Referendum

    Up to now, the Euroconstitution has been ratified by five member states: Italy, Spain, Lithuania, Hungary and Slovenia.

    On May 29, the French referendum is expected with great interest, since the gallop polls indicate that the majority of the people are opposed to it.

    This is not about the Constitution but for a new European Treaty that leads the EU a step forwards, but not as the circumstances demand, stated Minister of Health, Nikitas Kaklamanis.

    The Euroconstitution advances the democratic function of the EU, and is a product of compromise but also a step forward, stated PASOK Secretary, Mariliza Xenogiannakopolou to NET Radio 105.8, and asked for a referendum to take place.

    The populist movement can be considered a terrorist very easily, stated KKE European MP, Diamanto Manolakou making reference to the solidarity article, which is foreseen by the Euroconstitution.

    The European Constitution legalizes the absence of an autonomous EU presence on foreign policy and defense issues, stated from his side President of SYN, Alekos Alavanos.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    [13] 60 Million Euros for Greece's Promotion The Growth of Tourism

    11 Apr 2005 21:32:00

    By Betty Savourdou

    Sources: NET RADIO 105.8- ANA

    Kostas Karamanlis made reference to the corporate growth of the tourist industry, speaking on Monday night to the General Assembly of the Association of Greek Tourist Enterprises (SETE). The Prime Minister also made reference to the great bet of fiscal adjustment and the decrease of the debt and deficit. Earlier, in the same event the relevant Minister, Dimitris Avramopoulos also spoke, and seemed optimistic over the Greek tourisms growth.

    "Reinstitution of Economy's Bona Fide"

    The Prime Minister explained the governments strategy in the area of tourism and noted that for the advertising promotion of the country abroad, for the first time, 60 million euros have been dispensed

    Mr Karamanlis underlined that the governments aim is for tourism is to exist 12 months a year, throughout the country and to be of high quality.

    Also, the PM accused the previous government for the problems that it accumulated on the Greek economy.

    The Greek people know that the country is facing serious problems in the economy and the countrys structures, and that it is burdened by great debts and big deficits, Mr Karamanlis said and noted "we did not try and do not try to conceal anything. We are telling the truth in every case. We are decided to reinstate the economys bona fide."

    From his side, Minister of Tourism, Dimitris Avramopoulos spoke of a ten-year prospect strategy for Greek tourism.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    Related Links:

    Ministry of Tourism

    [14] Alogoskoufis in Brussels

    11 Apr 2005 19:33:00

    By Tina Valaoura

    Today, Minister of Economy and Economics, Giorgos Alogoskoufis will arrive in Brussels in order to attend the Eurogroup and Ecofin meetings. In tomorrows Ecofin meeting it is expected that the reviewed Stability and Growth Pact will be approved, which last week received the green light from the European Commission. It is also expected that new praises will be made by the EU, for the economic policy and especially the recent tax measures that foresee the decrease in deficit.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    Related News:

    Commission Voices Satisfaction

    [15] American Survey Living with Spam

    11 Apr 2005 14:25:00

    By Vagelis Theodorou

    Sources: BBC

    Electronic junk mail seems to have become a part of everyday life, as per a survey by Pew Internet and American Life Project on US Internet users. According to the results, 52% of those asked described spam as a big problem, while 28% declared that they are receiving more junk mail than last year. However, the vast majority stressed that the deluge of spam has not made them use their e-mail less. "They are just learning to live with it," said Deborah Fallows, the researcher behind the study. Meanwhile, Ms Fallows referred to the increase in the use of filters and other programs, which act as a shield against unwanted e-mails.

    Tolerance Test

    According to the research, Internet users are starting to get used to spam, since 67% of those asked said they were annoyed by spam when online, as opposed to 77% last year.

    Furthermore, the number of people who used their e-mail less due to junk mail dropped by six percentile units (from 29% to 22%). Meanwhile, 53%, said that spam made them trust e-mail less, as compared to 62% 12 months ago.

    Ms Fallows attributed these results to the more effective methods of fighting spam. She further added that the figures revealed by the research also meant that predictions about people abandoning e-mail entirely because of spam were unlikely to come true.

    However, spam content also seems to be changing, as pornographic spam is being replaced by attempts that try to trick people into handing over financial details.

    Translated by Vicky Ghionis

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