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The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English, 05-06-02

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

From: The Hellenic Radio (ERA) <>


  • [01] Discussions Reached Dead End
  • [02] All in their Hands
  • [03] The Restricted Web Zone
  • [04] Evidence Points to "Revolutionary Struggle"
  • [05] Dead-end for Rubbish
  • [06] Next to Children with Neuromuscular Disorders
  • [07] Tragic Flight in Sudan
  • [08] UK Freezes Referendum
  • [09] German Press Over Dutch "No"
  • [10] Reaction for Bag Charge
  • [11] Sapanis Officially in AEK
  • [12] Comet Threatens Earth
  • [13] Rod Stewart Daddy Again
  • [14] Nikas Failed the Checks

  • [01] Meimarakis-OTOE Meeting Discussions Reached Dead End

    02 Jun 2005 16:09:00

    By Vagelis Theodorou

    On Thursday, the discussions between ND Secretary, Vagelis Meimarakis and the presidency of the Federation of Greek Banking Employees (OTOE), at the partys offices, were fruitless. At the same time, the bank employees have called a 48-hour strike on June 7 and 8, reacting to the forthcoming reforms of the government on the social security issue. In the discussion, which lasted for more than an hour, the unionists repeated their position of a private social security organisation, while Mr Meimarakis stated that it would be better if the employees belonged to a public social security organisation. "The dialogue has to continue," stated ND Secretary, while OTOE President, Dimitris Tsoukalas spoke of a war against the government. In the meantime, President of SYN, Alekos Alavanos, who met with the OTOE presidency, spoke of a sale of public property including banks.

    Warn of Mobilizations

    "The social security of the banks has to be solved," stated the Prime Minister after the end of his meeting with Public Administration Specialists Committee, on Thursday morning. "We want a dialogue, but we cannot continually postpone and transfer the burdens onto the next generation," concluded Mr Karamanlis.

    After the OTOE meeting, Mr Meimarakis stated that the dialogue in order to find consensual solutions is continuing, and it is natural for a discordance of views to exist, refuting that the government is in war with the employees.

    "We are in a war and this will be proved with the strike," stated Mr Tsoukalas and added "we are participating in a dialogue, because a dialogue can take place even in great wars." "We will not sign decisions that include time and age racisms," stated the OTOE President expressing the evaluation that the government is on the side of the bankers.

    In the meantime, President of SYN expressed his partys support to the strike announced. Moreover Mr Alavanos criticized the government that it operates as an auction house that sells public property, while it transfers the burdens and the debts of the banks to IKA and the taxpayers.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    Related News:

    Progress and Reforms

    Changes in OTE, ATE and OPAP

    ΟΤΕ and ΟΤΟΕ at the Focus

    [02] All in their Hands

    02 Jun 2005 22:19:00

    By Vasilis Kalpinos

    Everything seems to be ready for the Greek Mens Football team, which will play in Turkey on Saturday for the preliminary round of the FIFA World Cup. Among the good news is that Kostas Chalkias is back in action after todays last training in Athens at the sports facilities of Agios Kosmas. The Greek goalkeeper completed his training as per normal and was thus included in the delegation that will travel for Turkey tomorrow in view of Saturdays match.

    Plans for the Lineup

    From then onwards, Otto Rehhagel is thinking of the lineup at the quite difficult match against Turkey on Saturday. By the looks of it, the German coach has probably already made up his mind for Saturday.

    Antonis Nikopolidis will be standing under the post, while Basinas will replace injured Dellas with Kyrgiakos and Kapsis by his side in defence. Seitaridis and Fyssas will undertake the tasks of right and left back half respectively, Karagounis and Katsouranis will be playing at the centre, Giannakopoulos will take the place of left half, Charisteas of right and Vryzas will be at the heart of the offense.

    *** The scheduled visit of the Greek Men's Football Team at the Patriarchate has been cancelled. The reason was there was not adequate time to hold it.

    Translated by Sofia Soulioti

    [03] Security for Children Using the Internet The Restricted Web Zone

    02 Jun 2005 18:41:00

    By Annita Paschalinou

    Sources: Associated Press

    ICANN (Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers) has planned the creation of a virtual restricted zone in the Internet of websites containing pornographic content. The company is licensed, among others, for the technical coordination of Internet pores, and suggests that pornographic sites, which constitute a 12 billion industry, to change their suffix to .xxx.

    Expensive Zone

    The purchase of the new addresses will begin in autumn and will last until winter, while its cost is calculated to 60 dollars a year, ten times more expensive in relation to .com suffixes.

    It is evaluated that the restricted zone will be a security lock for childrens surfing on the Internet, since it will allow relative filter software to be more effective.

    Many say that the expensive web zone will not be preferred by the pornographic sites, as some will prefer to remain in the familiar and inexpensive .com suffixes.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    [04] Behind the Explosion at Ministry of Employment Evidence Points to "Revolutionary Struggle"

    02 Jun 2005 14:28:00

    By Vagelis Theodorou

    Sources: ANA- NET

    The origin of the explosive device that blasted outside the Ministry of Employment on Piraeus 38-40 Street, on Thursday morning and caused damage to neighboring buildings, belong to the organization "Revolutionary Struggle," has been found. The police authorities are concerned that the event will be followed by another terrorist action and for a final claim of responsibility, since no organization has taken up responsibility up to now. An official of the Anti-Terrorism Squad that attended the meeting over the case in the Ministry of Public Order presided by Giorgos Voulgarakis, stated to the Athens News Agency, that this is a serious case and it is a miracle that no one was injured, because houses windows, stores and apartment buildings shattered in a wide range. The services of the Ministry will remain closed on Thursday and Friday, while the government condemned the bomb explosion.

    Government Condemns Act

    As the bomb squad concluded, it was an explosive device consisting of a clock, a common detonating fuse, a 9-watt battery and a large quantity of ammonia dynamite.

    According to the Greek police officials, the origin of the bomb is identical to the one used in 2003 at the Hellenic Army Academy where a policeman was injured, and the responsibility was taken by the organization "Revolutionary Struggle," with a telephone call to Eleftherotipia newspaper. The same organization first appeared in May 2004 with the triple attack at the Kallithea police station.

    "The government condemns the action but the institutions are not terrorized," underlined government spokesperson Thodoris Rousopoulos adding that the government is not concerned and a relative investigation is underway.

    The Ministry of Employment also condemned the attack. "In a powerful democracy, institutions are not terrorized, do not give up and are not influenced from such cowardly actions," stated its announcement.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    Related News:

    Explosion outside Ministry

    [05] Ano Liossia Refuge Dump Remains Closed Dead-end for Rubbish

    02 Jun 2005 11:36:00

    By Athina Saloustrou

    The tonnes of accumulated rubbish threaten to suffocate Athens, prompting concerns over public health, as the Ano Liossia refuge dump remains closed, following the decision of the local municipal authority, which is reacting to the transfer of sewage sludge from Psitalia. The director of the First Instance Prosecutions, Mr Papangelopoulos, intervened last night, asking for the refuge dump to be reopened in order to protect public health. He further stressed that the law will apply in all directions, while today, he called all the relevant bodies to his office. "No one has the right to break the law or extort the citizens," declared Public Works Minister Giorgos Souflias. He further added that the fact that that 3,500,000 citizens are at the mercy of a refuge dump constituted a crime. Mr Souflias also reminded everyone that the operation of refuge dumps comes under the jurisdiction of ESDKNA (association of Attica municipal and local authorities), which forms part of the Interior Ministry, while the Public Order Ministry is only responsible for the Psitalia sewage sludge. "There is no other solution, while none of those who are protesting ever offered an alternative proposal," he underlined.

    Furthermore, following the decision of the Supreme Administrative Court, EYDAP (Athens Water Supply and Sewerage Company) has the legal right to transfer the sludge to the refuge damp and the method proposed, ie creation of landfields, is the best, while it is also recognised internationally. "We will not just be dumping the sludge in the refuge dumps, as it will then be processed and the new by-product created from the landfields would be used to redevelop 90 acres of refuge dumps, where trees will be planted," added the Minister.

    Ina addition, yesterdays meeting between Public Order Minister Giorgos Souflias, the Mayor of Ano Liossia and the President of ESDKNA bore no fruit. The Minister recommended that the sewage sludge be processed in Ano Liossia and the by-product to be used for the redevelopment of the dump. On the other hand, ESDKNA President Giorgos Mastorakos suggested the processing take place in Psitalia and then be transferred to Ano Liossia. However, the contractor who was assigned the venture is reacting to this, as it would increase the cost by 20 euros per tonne of rubbish.

    Moreover, the Supreme Administrative Court also issued a decision, whereby the sewage sludge is to be transferred temporarily to Ano Liossia, since at the moment it is posing an environmental threat to the Saronic Gulf. However, employees are saying that the refuge dump is overloaded with rubbish. In the meantime, three of the Supreme Administrative Courts advisors are questioning the Public Order Ministry over three environmental studies concerning the construction of three new refuge dumps in Keratea, Grammatiko and Fyli.

    The citizens of Ano Liossia and Petroupoli are participating in protests and are standing by their municipal authority. Today, Mayor of Athens Dora Bakoyannis met with the ESDKNA President. Mrs Bakoyannis declared that it was imperative for all sides to participate in discussions, while she described the Public Order Ministrys decisions foe the sewage sludge as an improvement. Furthermore, she asked for the Ano Liossia dump to be reopened.

    In the afternoon she will participate in a TEDKNA (Local Union of Municipalities and Communities of Attica) meeting, which will also be attended by the ESDKNA President. Meanwhile, during a public meeting in Ano Liossia, it was decided that a protest and march towards Parliament take place on Tuesday.

    Translated by Vicky Ghionis

    Related News:

    Refuge Dump has Closed

    [06] Next to Children with Neuromuscular Disorders

    02 Jun 2005 21:15:00

    By Vicky Keleri

    Sources: NET, NET Radio 105.8, ANA

    A group of children with neuromuscular disorders from the MDA HELLAS association met today with the President of the Hellenic Republic. The meeting was held after the children voiced their wish to meet the first citizen of Greece in person and talk to him about their problems. Karolos Papoulias responded to their proposal immediately and willingly. The President of the centre Vana Lavida thanked the President for welcoming the children and informed him that the first Unit for children with such disorders is operating for two years now in the Agia Sofia Children's Hospital, while she also expressed her wish for a second Unit. In a letter she sent to the President of the Hellenic Republic, 12-year-old Alexandra asked him to help intensify research on neuromuscular disorders.

    A few minutes after reading the letter, Mr Papoulias pledged before all to try hard. "We are all waiting for medicine's progress in great hope and I am certain that in a short period of time which however nobody can determine now- we will have found those medications that will free children of these disorders and give them the possibility of a new life," stated Mr Papoulias. Following, the President was photographed with all the children in the Presidential Mansion's grand hall.

    Translated by Sofia Soulioti

    [07] Five Dead and 29 Injured Tragic Flight in Sudan

    02 Jun 2005 15:00:00

    By Vagelis Theodorou

    The flight of a private Sudanese company had a tragic ending when an Antonov passenger aircraft crashed during its take off from the airport, in Khartoum. The aircraft was boarded with 34 passengers and a 6-member crew, from which 5 were killed and 29 were seriously injured and are being hospitalized in Khartoum. The aircraft belonged to private company Marsland, which performs routes in the interior of the country and was en route to El Obeid, in central Sudan and following in El Fasher, in Darfour. As it was made known, the passengers were Sudanese, while the first evidence indicated that the accident was caused by an engine malfunction, which resulted in the aircraft to crash at the side of the runway, shortly after its take off.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    [08] As Per Foreign Office Sources UK Freezes Referendum

    02 Jun 2005 15:17:00

    By Athina Saloustrou

    As per Foreign Office sources, UK Foreign Secretary Jack Straw is expected to freeze the European Constitution referendum in the United Kingdom on Monday. Straw will speak before Parliamentarians on Monday following the French and Dutch "No." As per the same anonymous high-ranking sources, the Foreign Secretary is to announce that the bill allowing the organisation of the British referendum will freeze indefinitely. In the UK, no referendum can take place without a law providing for its holding. The British referendum was due for Spring 2006, but an exact date was not set.

    Translated by Sofia Soulioti

    Related News:

    German Press Over Dutch "No"

    Commission: Enlargement Continues

    French Press Over Dutch "No"

    [09] EU Constitution Viewed Dead German Press Over Dutch "No"

    02 Jun 2005 13:43:00

    By Athina Saloustrou

    The Dutch "No" to the EU Constitution offers a clear view on the difficulties to be encountered by the EU, reports the German press today, while some newspapers view the Constitution as dying. "The overwhelming majority of votes of protest during this weeks two referendums gives a fair idea of the difficulties Europe has to deal with," as per Berliner Zeitung. "When the Left, the Liberals, the Greens and the Right denounce the EU Constitution means that the negative attitude does not only emanates from the domestic policy," reports the newspaper. The sophisticated content of the European Constitutional Treaty along with the weak campaign conducted by the Dutch government are to be held accountable for the victory of "No" in yesterdays referendum, explains Suddeutsche Zeitung. The referendum in the Netherlands is indicative of how insane it is to vote for a 500-page text. Unlike France, many voters did not know how to vote. A "Yes, but " or an " Unless" would have been much better than a single "Yes" and "No", as per SZ. "How can anyone hold a clear view on such a sophisticated Constitutional Treaty, let alone if it has not been read before? The dispute, the populism and some unreliable information can account for this massive No , SZ added.

    Translated by Areti Christou

    Related News:

    French Press Over Dutch "No"

    Strong Blow

    [10] EKPOIZO Says Yes to Fabric Bags Reaction for Bag Charge

    02 Jun 2005 19:01:00

    By Annita Paschalinou

    Reactions to SESME's proposal to charge customers for plastic bags are beginning to take the form of an avalanche. Veropoulos supermarket chain has differentiated its stance from SESME's Board, stressing that free plastic bags are a matter-of-course for all customers. The company went on to stress in an announcement that it "does not nor will burden its customers with the cost of plastic bags. What is more, the particular proposals voice the views of the Board, where we do not participate." At the same time, Consumers' Association "The Quality of Life" (EKPOIZO) is in favour of the proposal, asking the state to promote a policy friendlier to the environment.

    EKPOIZO Asks for Fabric Bags

    The Consumers' Association, although estimating that behind all these ecological worries all of the sudden lies the transfer of the fine imposed by the Competition Committee, calls on the state to cease the chance and implement a policy friendlier to the environment with the promotion of fabric instead of plastic bags.

    Translated by Sofia Soulioti

    [11] Sapanis Officially in AEK

    02 Jun 2005 16:26:00

    By Dimitris Alexopoulos

    For the next three years, Miltos Sapanis will be wearing AEK's shirt with the two-headed eagle on it. Panathinaikos' left midfielder that had agreed to sign with AEK as early as January, finally signed his contract today for 2+1 years. With a brief announcement, AEK simply stated the facts officially. "AEK FC administration agreed with Miltos Sapanis for a cooperation of 2+1 years," read the announcement. 29-year-old Sapanis started his career in 1994 in Naoussa, where he played in 81 matches (until 1997) scoring three goals. He was transferred to Panileiakos in 1997 and stayed there until 2001, playing in 74 matches and scoring 14 goals. The next stop of his career was Panathinaikos, where he played in 42 matches, scoring 8 times.

    Ready for a New Career

    Miltos Makridis appeared to be completely satisfied by the positive outcome of his transfer and stated he is ready for a new career in AEK.

    Shortly after AEK's official announcement, the experienced midfielder said on AEK's website: "I am very pleased with my transfer to AEK. A year ago we had talked with Demis Nikolaidis, but at that time it wasn't feasible to join the team. But that's OK. As they say, better late than never. AEK has improved greatly over the last year and seems to be on the right track. I would like to thank the administration and technical staff for putting faith in me and I will do anything in my powers to prove them right."

    At the same time, AEK announced the acquisition of Vasilis Pliatsikas. The 17-year-old midfielder playing for Chaidari signed a three-year contract.

    What is more, AEK FC also announced that Milen Petkov is no longer part of the team. As the relevant announcement read, the Bulgarian midfielder broke his contract, while "AEK FC wants to thank him for his contribution to the team so far and wish him good luck in his career."

    Translated by Sofia Soulioti

    [12] Where Is Superman When You Need Him? Comet Threatens Earth

    02 Jun 2005 16:43:00

    By Despina Hristopoulou

    A comet has been added to the list of objects that could potentially hit Earth. According to the list drawn up by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), Comet Catalina 2005 JQ5 is the largest of the 70 objects now being tracked. In fact, the impact will be so forceful that could be equivalent to 6 billion tonnes of TNT. However, you dont have to worry nor lose your sleep over it. Chances of such an impact are very low and become even lower as observations continue. The overwhelming majority of potential Earth impactors are asteroids. However, the aftermath of a comet impact is clearly worse, since comets are bigger, move faster and a potential collision with Earth could have devastating results. Unlike asteroids, their orbits are not always accurate and many times they remain undiscovered until they are very close to Earth.

    We Can Never Be Sure

    Comet Catalina was found by the Catalina Sky Survey, one of the six automated large-scale search programmes for near-Earth asteroids.

    When it was first spotted on May 6, it was thought to be an asteroid. However, when scientists observed fuzziness in the image, a fact indicating ice and dust, it was reclassified as a comet.

    On May 26, the JPL discovered that Catalina could possibly be on a collision course with Earth, but there was only one chance in 300,000 of a strike on June 11, 2085. In fact, given the comet is estimated at 1 kilometre in size, the impact produced will measure 6 gigatons.

    Astronomers expect the addition of further observations to the calculations to rule out any possibility of a collision, as happens with most newly-seen objects.

    But that hasn't quite happened yet. The comet's predicted path will literally hit Earth right on target, since it is expected to pass within 400km of the Earth's centre at the location where it will be around that time. However, nobody can pinpoint the exact timing or whether the Earth's and the comet's orbits will coincide, a fact which drops the chances of an impact to one in 120 million. Still, we can never be sure, since comets are unpredictable.

    Another One Sets His Eyes on Us!

    The only other comet included in the JPL list was added in 2003 but was quickly removed because observations ruled out a possible impact.

    However, in 1992, before the JPL list was drawn up, another comet, Swift-Tuttle, was discovered with more than zero chances of hitting Earth. Additional observations during Swift-Tuttles passage, thanks to the publicity surrounding the possible impact, made it possible to rule out the possibility of an Earth impact anytime in this millennium. However, Swift-Tuttle is on an orbit that will almost certainly cause it to crash into the Earth or the moon eventually.

    Translated by Sofia Soulioti

    [13] Rod Stewart Daddy Again

    02 Jun 2005 17:24:00

    By Despina Hristopoulou

    60-year-old rock singer Rod Stewart will be daddy again, for the seventh time, as his 34-year-old girlfriend Penny Lancaster is expecting their first child. "This is no surprise for Penny and I, since we both want to start our own family," said the legendary rocker and added that the news made him "really happy and proud." However, the best news is that "Penny is feeling great, she is very happy and radiant more than ever," stressed Stewart. The couple is together for over six years and will be getting married next Spring (2006), while the baby is expected to be born in December. Stewart has six more children from previous marriages and relationships. 41-year-old Sarah Thubron from his relationship with Susannah Boffey, 25-year-old Kimberly and 24-year-old Sean from his first marriage to Alana Stewart. 17-year-old Ruby from his relationship with Kelly Emberg and lastly 13-year-old Rene and 10-year-old Liam from his marriage to Rachel Hunter.

    Translated by Sofia Soulioti

    [14] Tones of Cured Meats Confiscated Nikas Failed the Checks

    02 Jun 2005 14:26:00

    By Athina Saloustrou

    EFET confiscated and destroyed eight and a half tones of cured meats of various kinds, after a check at the NIKAS GROUP plant at the 15th km of Thessaloniki Polygyros highway. As per todays EFET announcement, following the check conducted, 8,687 kilos of various kinds of cured meats were found inappropriate to be given to consumption, and lacking in additional packaging and labeling. Inspectors are expected to issue a report to bring the company to the judicial authorities, and to impose any administrative sanctions. The check took place in the context of the precautionary checks conducted by EFET. The chairman, Ioannnis Vlemmas, declared that the precautionary checks programme will be intensified, and called all businesses to observe the legislature.

    Translated by Areti Christou

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