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The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English, 05-08-27

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

From: The Hellenic Radio (ERA) <>


  • [01] Curtain Call for Summer Sales
  • [02] Cyprus: "Turkey Contradicts Itself"
  • [03] Polish Recognition of FYROM
  • [04] Thriller with Copilot's Journal
  • [05] New Arrest for London Attacks
  • [06] (Dis)Agreement in Principle
  • [07] They Escaped Abu Ghraib
  • [08] Mystery Over Negotiations
  • [09] Beach Volleyball Duo Earn Gold
  • [10] Let the Championship Begin
  • [11] Premier with A Tie
  • [12] Giorgos Mouzakis Passed Away

  • [01] Sales End and Trading Hours Begin Curtain Call for Summer Sales

    27 Aug 2005 18:58:00

    By Athina Saloustrou

    Summer sales end today, while the stores new trading hours, which on Monday through Friday will be close at 21:00 and Saturday at 20:00, premiered. Already, the big businesses proceeded in the extension of trading hours, starting with their central stores. However, there are strong reactions by small-middle sized companies and trade employees, while many collective actions took place, as did incidents as a way of expressing their opposition to the new regime. On the other hand, the consumers welcomed the changes. In the meantime, special offers begin in stores nationwide and will last for at least 10 days, on Monday. Many businesses did not sell all of their summer clothes stock, and thus prices will be especially attractive.

    Conditions for Special Offers

    In order for problems to not arise in market operation, the Athens Trade Association reminds the following:

    The special offers on specific products cannot continue for over ten consecutive days. The products old and new price has to be clearly indicated in visible parts of the store, and always in parts that the available products are displayed in. A new offer on the same product is not allowed, as sixty days should pass since the previous one. The Manager of every store must inform the Trade Directorate of the Local Prefecture Administration and the Trade Association over its offers at least a day before it commences.

    The Athens Trade Association advises the strict adhering to the bill, as in any opposing case a fine of 500 to 50,000 euros will be imposed, according to the seriousness and the frequency of the violation.

    Premier with Incidents

    As of today, stores will be open until nighttime during the week, with the exception of Sunday, giving the chance for consumers to make their purchases at any given time of the day. The extension of trading hours was inaugurated by department stores and small-middle sized companies are expected to adopt it at a later date.

    Already, six big chains and department stores in Athens and other regions have began the selective application of the new trading hours, while the owners of smaller stores decided to operate with the already existing. The General Confederation of Small and Middle Sized Businesses (GSEVEE) stated its opposition to the new measure, claiming that it favors department stores. Trade employees also are concerned over the reform.

    Actually, tension was apparent at 17:00 at the entrance of two department stores in Kifisias Avenue, in Abelokipoi and in Patision Avenue, in Kato Patisia, when 60 trade employees of the Athens Association, protesting over the bills implementation, closed off the entrances in order to obstruct the purchases of consumers.

    Incidents followed and ended with the intervention of Police forces, which lined up between the two fighting groups.

    The administrations of the two department stores made public that they will remain open until 20:00, but members of the All Workers Militant Front (PAME), who had gathered outside their entrances obstructing shoppers, stated that they will remain in their posts.

    The new measure is non-binding. The local Trade Associations in cooperation with the Prefectures will decide if they will adopt it according to their needs and the busyness of the area.

    As the Minister of Development had stated, the businesses that will adopt the extended trading hours will be inspected, in order for the employees rights to be respected.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    Related News:

    Premier for New Trading Hours

    [02] By Saying "Yes" to the Protocol and "No" to Cyprus Cyprus: "Turkey Contradicts Itself"

    27 Aug 2005 18:31:00

    By Athina Saloustrou

    Feverish diplomatic contacts are taking place in Athens and Nicosia, in view of the EU Permanent Representatives meeting, on August 31, as well as the informal EU Foreign Ministers Council on September 1-2. French President Jacques Chirac asks that the issue of the non-recognition of Cyprus by Turkey be discussed between the European partners, two months before the programmed start of the accession negotiations between Ankara and Brussels, on October 3, 2005. In the meantime, the legal view of the Cypriot Republic is that Turkey with its statement of not recognising Cyprus contradicts the signing of the Customs Union Protocol with the 10 new EU Member-States. As Cypriot Foreign Minister Giorgos Ioakovou stated, four professors of foreign Universities agree with the above view, and were asked by the Cypriot government to study the legal implications of the Turkish statement.

    The Cypriot FM added that a number of the European partners express the view that Turkey is unacceptable, while others believe that the one-sided statements of Ankara policy are of no substance, and propose that this be included in the counterstatement of the European Union if there is unanimity.

    "The government is closely observing the situation being formed by Ankaras insistence to not recognise the Cypriot Republic, and will made its decisions when it has a clear picture over how the different European powers will voice their views and following will systemise its actions," stated the Minister. Mr Iakovou also said that the government is eagerly awaiting the dictum of the European Union Legal Council that will be submitted in the EU Permanent Representatives meeting in Brussels.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    Related News:

    Merkel Unleashes Head-on Attack

    Diplomatic Actions in Cypriot Issue

    [03] Polish Recognition of FYROM

    27 Aug 2005 16:27:00

    By Tina Valaoura

    The government of Poland publicized its decision to use FYROMs Constitutional name, the Republic of Macedonia, in its bilateral contacts with Skopje. However, in a discussion with FYROMs Embassy in Warsaw it made clear that it will continue using the name FYROM in an international context.

    On the issue, Foreign Ministry spokesperson Giorgos Koumoutsakos stated that over the last years many European countries, such as France, Germany, the UK and others are using this tactic, which is the use of the UN recognized name in international relations and international organisms, such as the European Union, and at the same time the use of the Constitutional name in bilateral contacts.

    Moreover, Mr Koumoutsakos reminded that the EUs view on the name issue is for a jointly accepted solution to be found. "Only such a solution can help FYROMs course in fulfilling its desire to access Euroatlantic institutions," he noted. On his part, PASOK Chief of Political Security and Defence Christos Papoutsis, commenting on the issue, noted that the ND governments foreign policy creates dangers and restricts horizons, the power and the position of Greece in the EU and international events.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    [04] Tsolakis Denies Allegations Thriller with Copilot's Journal

    27 Aug 2005 16:13:00

    By Athina Saloustrou

    According to an article in Cypriot newspaper Fileleftheros, the Authorities have the journal of the Helios Boeings copilot Pabos Charalabous. As per the newspaper, the journal was recognised by the relatives of the copilot, and is in the hands of the Air Accidents and Incidents Investigative Committee, which is evaluating it, a fact that is denied by its President Akrivos Tsolakis who stated to NET 105.8 "I have nothing in my hands." The day after the accident the copilots son, Giannis Charalabous, revealed of the journals existence. As his father had stated, he recorded all the problems presented in the Helios aircraft in the journal, and had noted that if it is found it will give many answers to the mystery of the air tragedy.

    On his part, Cypriot Transport Minister Charis Thrassou stated earlier that he has not received formal information over the finding of the journal, and noted that unofficially he had learned that the journal could eventually have been found in the latest investigations in Grammatiko, however he awaits formal information by the Greek Transport Ministry.

    In the meantime, as per sources, it is confirmed that the German pilot, whose body was identified yesterday by DNA testing, was not in the pilots cabin according to the location it was found in. Actually, as the new evidence of the Committee indicated there was a technical malfunction in the aircrafts decompression system.

    In closing, the identification procedure of the 118 victims of the Grammatiko tragedy was completed yesterday, while the bodies of three passengers have not yet been found. As per information, during the investigations in Grammatiko bones were found 500m from the crash scene, which as per the coroners it is expected that they will be tested on Monday, in order to confirm their connection to the missing 3 Cypriots. The investigations in Grammatiko will continue next week.

    Chatzigeorgiou's Allegations Continue

    The Cypriot Transport Minister commented on the issue of allegations by the Director of Authorisation of the Civil Aviation Authority, Charalabos Chatzigeorgiou over omissions and neglect, and stated, "All his claims will be investigated and evaluated." The Authorisation Director had stated that during the last ten months checks were not made in airplanes, even if important sums of money were paid in by Helios, Cypriot Airways and the affiliated company of charter flights Eurocypria.

    With the exception of Haravgi, all other Cypriot newspapers harshly criticise Transport Minister Charis Thrassou over his previous statements, with which he replied to the allegations of the Civil Aviation Authority employee Charalabos Chatzigeorgiou over neglect and omissions in the Department. The headlines of two newspapers, Politis and Machi, are indicative of the above as they write: "Audacity Beyond Measure" and "Audacity Leads to No Results", and add that the Minister of Transport "instead of giving answers only made personal attacks."

    Newspaper Alitheia writes: "Documents that Point to Thrassou are a Two Headed Monster-Minister Cannot Answer", while Simerini writes "Thrassou did not convince anyone and wiped his hands clean. He cast shadows and did not give answers." On its part Fileleftheros states: "Thrassou Replied with Blows to Chatzigeorgious Credibility." The newspaper also includes a statement by Mr Chatzigeorgiou who said: "I cannot participate in this system."

    Today, Mr Thrassou in his statements mentioned that all of Mr Chatzigeorgious allegations and evidence will be submitted to the Parliamentary Transport Committee.

    He also said that many of Mr Chatzigeorgious sayings over the Department are correct, but added "he gave many misguiding evidence over departments he is not affiliated with."

    He made special reference to the issue of flight inspections and repeated that they are not conducted on the aircrafts but on the crews. Making reference to the letter sent to him by Mr Chatzigeorgiou last November, in which the state of the Civil Aviation Authority is depicted, Mr Thrassou said it did not contain anything over flight inspections.

    However, he avoided stating what his actions were after the delivery of the letter, saying that he will testify to the Parliamentary Transport Committee.

    Mr Thrassou said that the above evidence cannot be connected with the air tragedy stating " the compass turns away from the investigations over the causes to other issues with sayings heard and published." "Whoever has evidence should submit it to the relevant bodies, in order for their evaluation and for all to take up responsibility." Mr Thrassou repeated that Chatzigeorgiou wanted the removal of the British experts that were employed in the Civil Aviation Authority and his further promotion.

    Asked to comment on the reasons of Mr Chatzigeorgious resignation from his service in Greece, the Minister stated that he has information according to which he did not resign but was dismissed.

    On his part, Mr Chatzigeorgiou said that his statements two days ago that no flight inspection was made in any airplane for the past ten months are valid.

    On the issue of insinuations over his past, Mr Chatzigeorgiou said that he resigned from the Greek service as his degree was cancelled due to health reasons.

    He also rejected the fact that he received an important pay rise or promotion from the Ministry of Transport, saying that he received a 3% pay increase as it was foreseen in the contract.

    The President of the Greek National Civil Aviation Authority, Vasilis Alevizopoulos, confirmed that Mr Chatzigeorgious contract with the Service was not renewed over health reasons.

    Mr Thrassou answering to a relevant question, stated that Mr Chatzigeorgiou will not be dismissed from the Cypriot Authority or be penalised over his public statements, adding that Mr Chatzigeorgiou is free to continue his tactics, but advises him to give the evidence to relevant bodies in order to avoid further confusion.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    Related News:

    New Findings

    [05] New Arrest for London Attacks

    27 Aug 2005 12:54:00

    By Tina Valaoura

    Al Algerian wanted by British authorities as part of the investigations for the July 7 attacks in London, is in the hands of the Thai Police over the past days. According to an article in The Nation, Atamnia Yasin, aged 32, who was arrested last Wednesday in Bangkok for possessing 180 counterfeit French and Spanish passports, is thought to be the man who had supplied the suicide bombers with forged passports. The police are planning to publicise his picture, a decision made following a request of the British embassy to Bangkok.

    The Police started investigating the case when 452 counterfeit European passports were found at the International Airport of Bangkok. Authorities still have not decided whether to keep Yasin in Bangkok, in order to collect more evidence that will help investigations or turn him over to the British police.

    Translated by Sofia Soulioti

    [06] Definitive Sunni Answer on Sunday (Dis)Agreement in Principle

    27 Aug 2005 11:05:00

    By Tina Valaoura

    There seems to be no end to the thriller of marathon negotiations for the new Iraqi Constitution. After endless talks that lasted until late last night, the Iraqi leaders reached an "agreement in principle" over a draft, which will be submitted to Parliament for adoption within the next two days. However, the situation continues to remains fluid. The Speaker of the Parliament clarified the agreement is not final nor will it be before Sunday, while some Sunni Arabs have even rejected this claim. If a decision is not made until Sunday, talks will come to an end and a final draft based on Shia and Kurd proposals will be open for a referendum in October without having the support of Sunni representatives.

    The Thorns of the Constitution

    Sunni Hajim al-Hassani told Reuters that speakers of the Shia majority suggested some amendments to the already existing draft in order to respond to Sunni demands and now Sunnis will have to give a definitive answer. As he added, the most important thing is that these amendments referred to those issues that troubled Sunnis the most, like the federal nature of Iraq. As Shia President of the Iraqi Constitutional Committee stated last night, the guarantees given were not satisfactory. However, Saleh al Mutlaq, one of the Sunni negotiators' heads, underlined that all those tihings offered are miles away from what has been asked and urged Iraqis to reject the Constitution in the upcoming referendum.

    What Sunnis fear is that the federal regime in Iraq could lead to the independence of Shias in the south, like with the Kurds in the north, a situation that would jeopardise among other things their interests in these oil producing areas.

    Earlier, a spokesperson for alternate Shia Prime Minister Ahmed Salabi stated there was an agreement between the Shia and Kurdish government parties to allow the Parliament decide on the mechanisms for the establishment of federal areas after the December elections.

    Translated by Sofia Soulioti

    [07] They Escaped Abu Ghraib

    27 Aug 2005 13:23:00

    By Tina Valaoura

    One thousand Iraqis regained their freedom, leaving the Abu Ghraib prison in Baghdad behind. The release of 1,000 prisoners happened in three days, from 24 to 27 August, and after the US army reviewed their cases.

    The released, as per a US army announcement, are not guilty of violent crimes, use of bombs, torture, kidnapping or murders, they belong to different communities of the country and had been taken to the Abu Ghraib prison from various detainment facilities around Iraq.

    Translated by Sofia Soulioti

    [08] Mystery Over Negotiations

    27 Aug 2005 00:42:00

    By Vicky Keleri

    There is still conflicting information whether there has been an agreement on the new Iraqi Constitution. According to the spokesperson for alternate Iraqi Prime Minister Ahmed Salabi, negotiators working for the Constitution reached an agreement with the support of the main religious and national groups. However, others implicated in negotiations deny the news, including Parliament Speaker Hajim al Hassani.

    Translated by Sofia Soulioti

    [09] Beach Volleyball Duo Earn Gold

    27 Aug 2005 17:20:00

    By Vasilis Kalpinos

    Vaso Karadasiou and Vicky Arvaniti stepped up at the top of Europe. In the European Beach Volleyball Championships in Moscow, the Greek duo defeated Dutch Rebecca Kadijk and Merel Mooren 2-0 (21-17, 21-14), thus earning the gold medal, and therefore becoming European Champions. The two Greek athletes will share the money prize of 17,000 euros. Earlier in the semi-final, Karadasiou and Arvaniti had defeated Germans Stephanie Pohl and Okka Rau 2-0 (21-18, 21-14).

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    [10] Let the Championship Begin

    27 Aug 2005 15:42:00

    By Stathis Petropoulos

    The 27th Professional Football Championship opens today with two matches, but the first round comes down to tomorrows derby between Panathinaikos and Olympiacos. At 19:45 Kallithea welcomes Egaleo in the match that will officially open the new football season and both teams are naturally after a positive result. Neither of the two teams is facing problems and we can only wait and see which of the two will get the most points for a good start.

    The Battle of the North

    In the other match of the day, Xanthi will play against renewed very promising PAOK at 21:00. PAOK impressed with their performance in the friendly matches of the summer, as well as with their transfers, but will have to do without the valuable services of Udeze and Iliadis tonight. However, over 1,000 fans will be there to boost their team in repeating last year's win. Having that in mind, Karageorgiou is planning to deploy the same line-up, which helped PAOK prevail over AEK. On the other hand, Mantzourakis is likely to put his faith in the eleven players that played against Kastoria.

    The Rest of the Matches

    That's it for today, as the mass premiere will be on Sunday with four matches, including the much-anticipated derby between Panathinaikos and Olympiacos at 21:00 at the OAKA stadium. Apollo Kalamaria welcome OFI in one of the early matches of the day (18:45) that will not be televised, while Akratitos will play versus Iraklis in Liossia at the same hour. At 21:00, Panionios and Larissa will have their own premiere under the shadow of the great derby, in a match with no fans at all. The first round of the 27th Professional Football Championship will be completed on Monday at 21:00 with AEK playing in Peristeri to face their bad karma, Chalkidona.

    Translated by Sofia Soulioti

    [11] Premier with A Tie

    27 Aug 2005 22:12:00

    By Vasilis Kalpinos

    The game that commenced the 1st Division Championship between Kallithea and Egaleo ended without a winner emerging. The final score of the match was 1-1 with the visitors opening the score in the 35 with Tsatsos and following Tsigas, a substitution, to tie in the 47. The game had two facades, one with strong showdowns and poor performances in the first half, while the game greatly improved in the second half.

    First Opportunity Goal

    The first half was not very qualitative, since both teams seemed lost and played quite reservedly. All the showdowns remained in centre field and the goal opportunities were minimal. In one of the aforementioned, Egaleo opened the score in the 35 when Fotakis, Nikolopoulos and Fotakis played around with the ball, and the latter with a diagonal kick across the pitch sent the ball in the nets, thus scoring the first goal of the Championship and ending the first half.

    Tie Straight Up

    Kallitheas coach Mladenov, wanting to make the team more aggressive, since Lazanas was hopelessly alone, substituted Tsiga in the place of Petkovic. This change was put immediately in effect, since the Greek forward upon entering the pitch with a strong kick scored 1-1. Actually, two minutes later he nearly scored a second goal but his header went out.

    Seeing Egaleo stumble in the beginning of the second half, the teams coach, Vazakas, decided to take out a forward, which was Nikolopoulos and to put in a midfielder, Stefanidis, in order to conquer centre field. However, Kallithea had a firm hold in the pitch, and the many lost opportunities indicated the above. Initially, in the 64 Tsigas attempted to score but Edousei blocked his shot on the goal line, and in the 70 when Sibide blocked his header. In the 88, referee Finokaliotis whistled a penalty when Telkinsky fell, with the help of Sidibe, but following the linesman changed his decision, which will be talked about. The score did not change until the end of the game and remained 1-1.

    Referee: Finokaliotis (Athens)

    Yellow Cards: Tzorbatzakis, Jasek-Maric

    KALLITHEA: Bartzokas, Belegrinis, Tzorbatzakis, Venetis, Vokolos, Tsiolis (78 Telkiyski), Jasek, Petkovic (46 Tsigas), Munziri, Passas, Lazanas (70 Koutsospiros).

    EGALEO: Sidibe, Liapakis, Edousei, Omo, Psomas, Tsatsos (61 Chloros), Maric (78 Chonos), Fotakis, Manousakis, Agritis, Nikolopoulos (51 Stefanidis).

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    [12] Breathed his Last Aged 83 Giorgos Mouzakis Passed Away

    27 Aug 2005 18:12:00

    By Athina Saloustrou

    Today, music composer Giorgos Mouzakis breathed his last aged 83. Giorgos Mouzakis composed and set more than 450 songs to music, thus being affiliated with the golden era of variety theatre in the 50s, while he has been described as the king of the genre. In 2003, the President of the Republic awarded him for his 60-year contribution to Greek music. Giorgos Mouzakis was born on August 15, 1922, in Metaxourgeio, Athens and made his first appearance as a trumpeter in 1938 and his first recording in 1946. His funeral will take place on Tuesday at the 2nd Athens Cemetery.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

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