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The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English, 05-07-20

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

From: The Hellenic Radio (ERA) <>


  • [01] Disputes Over Trading Hours
  • [02] Day of Remembrance and Tribute
  • [03] Royal Farm
  • [04] Suicide Attack in Baghdad
  • [05] Fire in Messinia
  • [06] Booby Trapped Car Exploded

  • [01] Bill Will Be Voted On Principle Tomorrow Disputes Over Trading Hours

    19 Jul 2005 23:23:00 (Last updated: 20 Jul 2005 12:20:40)

    By Despina Hristopoulou

    Sources: NET 105.8

    The discussion in Parliament for the Bill on extending trading hours continues with disputes and amidst collective actions. The Opposition is making a commitment that it will repeal the bill when it takes up power, while PASOK is asking the government to for a nominal vote. KKE and SYN have also stated their opposition to the reform. The bill will be voted with a nominal vote on principle on Wednesday morning, when there will be a discussion on the Articles, which will be completed on Thursday. In relation to the reform, Minister of Development Dimitris Sioufas noted that what is being enacted is a context of trading hours for the country, which is not binding, thus the government states that this is an honest reform for tradesmen. He also stated that the rights of the employees in trade will be protected, and announced a systematic check and supervision from the Labour Inspectorates.

    Exchange of Accusations

    Mr Sioufas lashed out against the Opposition saying "in the era of great changes and great speeds PASOK is transforming to what Eleftherios Venizelos had said, which is that is a slow moving part of the country," and added "the people that say yes to everything have become politicians that say no to everything." The Minister called on PASOK to demand a nominal vote, and for the ones that oppose the renaissance of the trade to be recorded.

    PASOK MP Anna Diamantopoulou replied to the description of Mr Sioufas saying, "it took your party fifty years to recognize and realize that Eleftherios Venizelos was a reformer." Mr Sioufas also commented on the statement of PASOK President George Papandreou, who said that he will repeal NDs bill when his party takes up power, by saying "you will have to wait many four-year terms to materialize your threat. You want a stagnant society on everyones expense."

    Mrs Diamantopoulou replied "you only want an authoritarian reform entitled backwards and right." Mr Sioufas answer was "you remain adhered to the past and to denial."

    Reactions by the Opposition

    Earlier ND rapporteur Giorgos Kontogiannis noted that the government will go forth, enforcing rules in the lawless market and protecting the consumer and the employees. On his part, PASOK rapporteur Christos Protopapas spoke of a deregulation and an authoritarian choice that no one agrees with, underlining that when PASOK takes up power it will ban the bill and achieve a new powerful social agreement, as it had done in 1997, which will serve the market and the consumer.

    KKE rapporteur Nikos Gatzis accused the two big parties of the same neo-liberal policy that serves big interests, saying, "the government follows the footprints of the previous one and brings forth a new wave of anti-populist measures."

    SYN rapporteur Asimina Xirotiri stated that the reform for the broadening of trading hours finds the employees and all opposition parties opposed to it, while she accused the government of attempting a full frontal social collision.

    On his part, independent MP Stefanos Manos repeated his view for the complete freeing of trading hours. Furthermore, he accused the government of going forth with an insignificant reform while he criticized PASOKs reactions.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    Related News:

    Actions Over Trading Hours

    [02] "Greece Wont Forget" Day of Remembrance and Tribute

    20 Jul 2005 11:20:00

    By Mary Lou Tzempelikou

    Sources: ANA

    Thirty-one years have passed since the day Turkish troops invaded Cyprus. In his message, Prime Minister Kostas Karamanlis stressed that "for Greeks, the 31st anniversary since the Turkish invasion is a day of remembrance and tribute," as well as "a perfect occasion to reflect upon planning future actions." The Prime Minister also added that "Greece wont forget," thus confirming its commitment to support the Cypriot people and help achieve a viable solution regarding the Cypriot issue. KKE also issued an announcement for the black anniversary, accusing the USA and NATO for "steering the junta coup," while referring to the Annan Plan, KKE supported it "was trying to legalise the results of the invasion and occupation by establishing two dominating states." Events of remembrance are held around free Cyprus.

    Cyprus Remembers

    Today, Cyprus honours the memory of the dead from the Turkish invasion with memorial services and remembrance events.

    At 05:20, the time when Turkish troops had invaded the island, sirens sounded in all Cypriot cities and flags were flying at half-mast.

    Church bells will toll in mourning at 12:00 for 15 minutes, while events will continue throughout the day with demonstrations planed by political parties and groups.

    In the morning, a memorial service was held in the presence of Cypriot President Tassos Papadopoulos at the Makedonitissa Tomb for all the fallen officials and soldiers, while another memorial service was held a while later at the Church of Panagia Phaneromeni, next to the green line. After the service, Mr Papadopoulos stated:

    "Thirty one years is a long time, as everyone says, but time will not pressure us to accept a solution that will not ensure the physical and national survival of Greeks in Cyprus."

    The Greek Government was represented by Tourism Minister Dimitris Avramopoulos, while the Greek Parliament sent a delegation and PASOK was represented by National Council Secretary Mariliza Xenogianakopoulou.

    Translated by Sofia Soulioti

    [03] Peasants Declared Their Farm Independent State Royal Farm

    20 Jul 2005 10:08:00

    By Mary Lou Tzempelikou

    In world History, we have heard of many oppressed peasants, who stood up for themselves asking for the abolition of taxes, more privileges or the redistribution of land in order to live a better life. In Australia however, a family of farmers went too far. The protagonists of our story are the Rigoli family with their farm and the Australian government, to which the Rigolis refused to pay taxes. Father Virgilio Rigoli declared his property an independent kingdom, which he even named "Principality of Ponderosa" thus declaring himself Prince of Ponderosa. The "Prince" supported by his two sons, announced the ATO (Australian Tax Office) they are not willing to pay any more taxes.

    Three Princes in Court

    In fact, they decided to inform the Australian tax office they would never pay taxes again, even sending a letter to the competent agency, signed by the younger son "His Royal Highness, Little Joseph Rigoli."

    "I do not recognise nor will I ever recognise the government of Australia," read the letter, which the ATO did not find funny and thus decided to take the entire royal family to court.

    During the preliminary hearing, it was revealed that the family earned $6.9 million between 1991 and 2000, a fact that justifies their decision to come up with this way to avoid paying taxes.

    It all started on July 4, 1994, when the Rigolis issued their own Declaration of Independence, which was even posted on the Internet, and then erected high fences around the 24-hectare kingdom.

    However, they didn't stop there, as a self-respecting kingdom should have its own trench and the princes even run passport checks to those coming in an out of the Principality of Ponderosa.

    Justifying their stance, the three "princes" told the court Ponderosa was a manifestation of their resentment towards the Department of Agriculture for bulldozing their fruit crop.

    The court is yet to issue a ruling, as the procedure continues, while it yet remains unknown whether the royal family will be fine with royal penalties.

    Translated by Sofia Soulioti

    [04] 10 Dead - 22 Injured Suicide Attack in Baghdad

    20 Jul 2005 09:46:00

    By Anna Kourti

    Ten people lost their lives and 22 were injured in a suicide attack in Baghdad. As per local authorities, the suicide bomber was standing in line along with other recruits outside a recruitment centre at a deserted airport in Mutana, near the Iraqi capital, and at some point triggered the explosives he was carrying on him.

    Translated by Sofia Soulioti

    [05] Inhabited Areas in Danger Fire in Messinia

    20 Jul 2005 10:52:00

    By Anna Kourti

    The fire that broke out at 00:00 in the forested area of Metaxada, Messinia, is still in progress. According to information, the fire broke out in twelve different inaccessible locations of the fire and quickly grew big, thus endangering inhabited areas in Metaxada and Maniaki. At this hour, the fire has been limited to the forest but the Fire Service is facing many problems trying to put it out. In the meantime, the fire that broke out on Tuesday noon at the location of Pigadia on Mt Taygetos was finally placed under control.

    Translated by Sofia Soulioti

    [06] Near a School Booby Trapped Car Exploded

    20 Jul 2005 08:23:00

    By Anna Kourti

    Six people lost their lives and 15 more were injured when a booby-trapped car exploded near a school in Srinangar, the summer capital of Kashmir. Sepapratist group Hizbul Mujahideen in Kashmir claimed responsibility for the hit in Srinangar. A man contacted the local news agency, claimed to represent the group and assumed responsibility for the booby-trapped car attack at the heart of the city. The group did not clarify whether it is a suicide attack. As per the first evidence, a suicide bomber drove the car behind a military vehicle and then blew himself up. "The army informed us that five soldiers were killed and over 10 were injured, including one in critical condition," stressed a police spokesperson.

    The attack occurred near a school directed by a Christian mission, but no children were endangered. It is noted that over the past 16 years Indian Kashmir has often become a theatre of attacks by Islamite separatist rebels.

    Translated by Sofia Soulioti

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