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The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English, 05-06-03

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

From: The Hellenic Radio (ERA) <>


  • [01] PM in Ministry of Mercantile Marine
  • [02] Seeking A Collective Solution
  • [03] Caught in the Act!
  • [04] Weather has Gone Wild
  • [05] Main Shareholder Freezes
  • [06] Floods Kill Hundreds
  • [07] Speedy Reshuffle
  • [08] Bloody Clashes
  • [09] Commission: Enlargement Continues
  • [10] Double Wage to DEKO Employees
  • [11] Focus at Broadband
  • [12] Alarm is Over

  • [01] Mercantile Marine A Priority for Government PM in Ministry of Mercantile Marine

    03 Jun 2005 12:14:00

    By Athina Saloustrou

    This morning, during his visit in the Ministry of Mercantile Marine, in the context of his visits to all the Ministries, the Prime Minister explained the aims of the government policy in the area of Mercantile Marine. As Kostas Karamanlis stated, "Mercantile marine is a main priority for the government," and stated that it will go forth with new reforms in order to become more competitive internationally. He added that mercantile marine is a national chapter, a prime supporter of the economy, and employs thousands on land and sea. The Prime Minister making reference to the work that has been done until now stated that the Marine Policy Council has been activated in order for the problems to be countered through dialogue, consent and cooperation.

    Wireless Connection

    He also stated that with the Ministrys interventions, 21 Greek seamen were repatriated, and bills that concern nautical training, diving tourism and ports are ready to be submitted in Parliament.

    The Coast Guard has been equipped with modern apparatus, noted Mr Karamanlis, while making reference to coastal navigation he stated that the citizens have established the safe transport system and service of the island throughout the year. In closing, the system of wireless connection of the Ministrys computers, which will be soon connected with Coast Guard Headquarters and ports, was presented.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    [02] Government's Meetings Over Social Security Seeking A Collective Solution

    03 Jun 2005 11:36:00

    By Athina Saloustrou

    The social security of banks is running the stretch, on the subject of a collective solution, since Minister of Economy Giorgos Alogoskoufis is making consecutive contacts with the Greek Banks Union, the Hellenic Federation of Bank Employees Unions (OTOE), and Emporiki Bank employees. Earlier, he met with the presidency of the Greek Banks Union. The subject matter of the meeting was the briefing of the bankers over the governments positions in relation to the social security of banks. At noon, Mr Alogoskoufis will meet with the presidency of OTOE and at 14:00 with representatives of the Emporiki Bank Employees Union. In the event that common ground is not found, the government is decided to go forth to a legislative amendment over the social security in Emporiki Bank and the Agricultural Bank of Greece, in which other banks are welcome to join. "We have to face the social security of banks, we want a dialogue, but there is not enough time," noted the Prime Minister yesterday, stating the governments decisiveness to go forth with progress and reforms, even without the consent of the employees, towards to interest of the whole. President of OTOE, Dimitris Tsoukalas stated to NET 105.8 that "isolated solutions to the social security issue do not pay off." Earlier, representatives of Bank Employees Unions attended a meeting that took place at NDs offices, in Charilaos Trikoupis Street.

    PASOK Supports OTOE

    "If the government wants to create a white hole in the deficits of the banks social security organizations, it cannot do so against the interest of the employees," stated Evagelos Venizelos following the end of the meeting. The PASOK MP supported the positions of OTOE and opposed the transfer of economic burdens to IKA, stating that this goes against collective contracts and will create a state of unconstitutionality and a turn from community law. "The government wants to show that it can take initiatives," commented Mr Venizelos.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    Related News:

    Discussions Reached Dead End

    Progress and Reforms

    [03] Caught in the Act!

    03 Jun 2005 10:28:00

    By Vagelis Theodorou

    Everyone has definitely heard of women who cheat on their husbands with the best man, or vice versa. In the case of a bride and her best man in Varazdin, Croatia, their unbridled lust for each other caused them serious trouble. The illegal couple could not hold their horses during the wedding party, and at some point they went to the toilets to have sex. Unfortunately, Lady Luck was not on their side. At the time the couple was in cloud nine, a friend walked in and caught them in the act! The bride was so upset that she had a muscle spasm and the couple got "stuck". Unable to be pulled apart, and after being ridiculed before the guests, doctors turned up to transport the "glued" pair to the local hospital, where the bride was given an injection to relax her muscles, freeing the best man from her lock. As for the groom, being in high spirits, he asked the guests to stay and celebrate his upcoming divorce!

    Translated by Areti Christou

    [04] June has Arrived with Hail and Floods Weather has Gone Wild

    03 Jun 2005 08:29:00

    By Athina Saloustrou

    A wave of bad weather with extreme conditions struck many areas of western Greece. In Giannena, basements and roads flooded, and a hailstorm destroyed crops, while inhabitants of the villages of Vasiliki and Logades lived through hard times. The firemen rescued a First Aid National Center (EKAV) crew that had been swept away by a torrent, while an Amtrak was used to rescue a 65-year-old stockbreeder. The Fire Department in Aigio received 150 calls, while the inhabitants of Kalavryta and Akrata faced great problems, as landslides to the local rail track caused damage, but OSE crews are already working for the repair of the route. Problems were caused in Attica by the sudden rainfall.

    Problems in Attica

    The roads flooded, sweeping away garbage that was accumulated in the bins, due to the closure of the Ano Liosia refuge dump. Gullies were blocked, while in many areas of the capital cars were immobilized. The Fire Department received many calls for flooded basements and stores.

    The extreme weather conditions are expected to subside during the next hours. The meteorologists forecast a temporary change of scenery, but next week rainfalls are expected once again.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    [05] After Deletion of Paragraph 2 of the Legislature Main Shareholder Freezes

    02 Jun 2005 19:59:00


    PASOK and ND accepted the amendment, which postpones the implementation of the main shareholder bill until October 31, 2005. KKE and SYN voted the amendment down. PASOK agreed with the governments amendment after the deletion of Paragraph 2 of the legislature that states, "with a common decision by the Minister of State and the Minister every special, detailed and technical matter that concerns amendments of the previous paragraph is amended." Parliamentary PASOK spokesperson, Charis Kastanidis had asked of the deletion of the paragraphs that, as he said, gave a right to the Minister for under-the-table understandings with the Greek National Council for Radio and Television (NCRTV), for the issue of certificates. "I do not have the slightest hesitation to delete the second paragraph if your vote depends on the issue," answered Prokopis Pavlopoulos.

    Tension in the Discussion

    The Minister of Interior, answered to the criticism that he agreed to a legislature, not taking into consideration the community law.

    As he noted, in Brussels, the Karamanlis government defended the bill and the Constitution, as opposed to the previous government that had concealed two warning letters of the Commission.

    On his part, Charis Kastanidis asked for the creation of a new bill after an understanding with the Opposition, noting, "the government today receives the result of its imprudent insistence."

    Evangelos Venizelos made harsher criticism. After the easy deletion of the second paragraph, claimed PASOK MP, the government has to resign.

    At the same time, KKE MP, Elpida Pantelaki spoke of a political hypocrisy from the two big parties, as the Euroconstitution that was voted by both, foresees that community law prevails over the national Constitution.

    From his side, Orestis Kolozov, asked for the bill to not be postponed until the negotiation with the Commission is concluded.

    On his part, SYN MP Fotis Kouvelis stated that the counter of the issue should have been different, underlining that the Commission did not ask for an amendment of the bill but the non-implementation of the Constitutional plan.

    "You should have taken the case to the European Court and not shown submission," he said to governments MPs.

    Rousopoulos-Kaklamanis Dispute

    Earlier, tension was apparent between Minister of State and former President of Parliament, Apostolos Kaklamanis when Mr Rousopoulos underlined Mr Kaklamanis phrase that "businessmen infest the past, PASOK and the country."

    Mr Kaklamanis accused him of changing his words around, noting that even then businessmen infested PASOK and now infest ND, but did not have the courage, as Mr Rousopoulos, to put them in their place. Answering Mr Rousopoulos called on Mr Kaklamanis to show him a single point that he had distorted his words.

    Tension was caused when PASOK MP Kimon Koulouris, on the occasion of the Rousopoulos-Kaklamanis dispute that deprived him of speaking, verbally attacked former Parliament President, Apostolos Kaklamanis saying that he should understand that he is not on his own in the room and that he should respect the other MPs.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    [06] Floods Kill Hundreds

    03 Jun 2005 11:23:00

    By Betty Savourdou

    Sources: ANE

    At least 71 people were killed and 58 reported missing in the wake of torrential rainfalls that ripped Central and Southwest China this week. More than 200,000 people had to flee their houses. The extensive floods washed away more than 67,000 houses, while 30,000 animals were lost, says the Ministry of Civil Affairs in its announcement on the Internet. The longest list of victims, which include 49 dead and 42 missing, has been reported in the province of Hunan, and the rest of the victims in the provinces of Sichuan and Guizhou. The Ministry believes that economic losses will reach 300 million dollars, since thousands of hectares of cropland have been destroyed.

    Translated by Areti Christou

    [07] "Non" Put Sarkozy Into Power Speedy Reshuffle

    03 Jun 2005 09:56:00

    By Athina Saloustrou

    President Jacques Chirac has appointed "committed to political discipline" Philippe Douste-Blazy as the new Minister of Foreign Affairs, while Nicolas Sarkozy, leader of the governing party, has been appointed as Minister of Internal Affairs. Sarkozy will also hold the office of "Ministre d' Etat" (minister of state), which makes him the government's number two under Prime Minister Dominique de Villepin. This radical reshuffling, thanks to which PM de Villepin's political opponent Nicolas Sarkozy was included in the new Cabinet, was triggered by French voters' "Non" to the European Constitutional Treaty on Sunday May 29.

    Political Preparations

    Many senior members of the previous government remain in the cabinet. Former Foreign Minister Michel Barnier is among the few senior figures to have been left out. Michele Alliot-Marie has kept the defence portfolio. Thierry Breton has held on to finance and Jean-Louis Borloo to labour. The new junior minister for European Affairs is Mr Chirac's long-time spokeswoman Catherine Colonna, while Pascal Clement has been appointed as minister of Justice and Gilles de Robien, formerly transportation minister, became the new minister of Education and Research. The new government's top priority will be to tackle with the huge problem of unemployment.

    Translated by Sofia Soulioti

    [08] Bloody Clashes

    03 Jun 2005 09:41:00

    By Betty Savourdou

    Sources: ANE

    At least 70 people were killed in tribal clashes in the region of Duekoue in western Ivory Coast on Monday and Thursday, announced the Administrative Reform Minister, Eric Kahe, who did not rule out the likelihood that death toll would rise even more. The clashes between the Muslim tribe of Dioula from the northern country with the neighbouring countries, as well as the native Guere tribe of Duekoue, are the worst to be reported in the country for months. Kahe pointed out that not all victims' bodies have been found since the region is forested and filled with cocoa plantations.

    Translated by Areti Christou

    [09] Warnings Towards Romania and Bulgaria Commission: Enlargement Continues

    02 Jun 2005 13:30:00

    By Athina Saloustrou

    EU Enlargement will continue despite the fact that the French and Dutch voters rejected the European Constitution. This is what the European Enlargement Commissioner, Oli Rehn, said today. "We are definitely aware of the blues of the Enlargement, who are popular with the public opinion and significantly influenced the referendums" mentioned Rehn to journalists in Brussels. "We will continue the Enlargement policy underlying the necessity to strictly observe the accession criteria, and to better inform our citizens regarding the overall Enlargement balance," he added.

    Insufficient Pre-accession Reforms

    Rehn made it also clear that he will send letters to Bulgaria and Romania warning them of the insufficient pace of their pre-accession reforms.

    "The letters of warning will be focusing on obvious failures of the two countries reforms," commented Rehn.

    Bulgaria and Romania are due to enter the EU in 2007. However, their accession may be postponed for a year if they fail to apply the agreed reforms, which aim at fighting against corruption, reinforcing the judicial as well as the administrative system and increasing security in the borders.

    Translated by Areti Christou

    Related News:

    French Press Over Dutch "No"

    Strong Blow

    [10] According to a Supreme Court Ruling Double Wage to DEKO Employees

    03 Jun 2005 07:23:00

    By Betty Savourdou

    Sources: ANA

    The Supreme Court ruled that Public Utilities and Services (DEKO) and the business of the broader Public Sector, at the end of the year, have to give a wage increased by 100% to the employees that are not given a summer leave that they are entitled to, thus overturning the previous legislature. The decision of the Plenary Session is expected to be published in the summer.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    [11] With Especially Positive Results Focus at Broadband

    02 Jun 2005 14:17:00

    By Despina Hristopoulou

    Sources: ANA

    The Special Secretariat of the Information Society in close cooperation with the information and communication market, including OTE is promoting broadband as a driving force for economic development. After the special predictions of the development bill for investments in broadband infrastructures and services, concerning the reinforcement of offers, the demand for new broadband departments is expected to be mobilized. The Special Secretary for Information Society, Professor Vasilis Asimakopoulos stated the positive result on the citizens, the telecommunications and information market and OTE, and the improvement of faster Internet connection and broadband.

    Definition of Broadband

    For the citizen, broadband is a combination of electronic services capable of:

    Electronic transactions with Public Services. Faster and more secure with data sent from the home or the office i.e. submission of tax statement etc. Electronic economic transactions through alternative networks of services with easiness, speed and security i.e. Internet banking. Employment by distance, through tele-employment methods. Electronic health services. Units of treatment and care to underprivileged groups and citizens in distant areas through tele-medicine. Information and entertainment. Watching movies through a selection of an electronic movie library, the choice and immediate purchase of desired music through electronic music stores, timely electronic ticket reservation for shows, theatre and sports games without queues etc. Better and inexpensive communication with the capability of a phone conversation in combination with image at practically zero cost through new means and others.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    Related Links:

    [12] Alarm is Over

    03 Jun 2005 07:49:00

    By Betty Savourdou

    Sources: ANA

    The suspicious package, addressed to the Australian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Alexander Downer, which forced the Canberra authorities to close off certain services of the Parliament, did not contain dangerous substances. The package that contained white powder reached the Postal Service of the Parliament, while one of the employees was decontaminated. The area is not located at the building where the members of Parliament reside, but another part of the complex. However, the MPs were not forced to evacuate their offices, and PM John Howard remained in the building where he had a series of contacts.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    Related Links:

    Parliament of Australia

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