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The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English, 05-09-07

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

From: The Hellenic Radio (ERA) <www.ert.gr/>

CONTENTS

  • [01] Allegations Refuted
  • [02] Thorny Issue for Arni
  • [03] Evacuating New Orleans
  • [04] "Butterfly" Proves Lethal
  • [05] Money Embezzlement in Panteios
  • [06] Emergency Landing
  • [07] Autopsy Shows Brain Anoxia
  • [08] Moussa Arafat Shot Dead
  • [09] OTE Enters Foreign Stock Markets
  • [10] They Go For Airbus
  • [11] National Elevation
  • [12] Egypt Votes

  • [01] By Economy Ministry Over Objective Values Allegations Refuted

    07 Sep 2005 12:29:00

    By Mary Lou Tzempelikou

    The aim of government policy is the purging of the construction field and the confrontation of tax evasion, without causing problems to Economy and the citizens, stressed Economy Minister Giorgos Alogoskoufis on Wednesday, refuting at the same time scenarios speaking of a huge increase in objective values. Mr Alogoskoufis announced a mild adaptation of objective values over the following months, stressing the Ministry has never made suggestions for their increase. The Economy Minister said the scenarios are a "systematic effort to create impressions" and ordered a Sworn Administrative Inquiry on the matter.

    Translated by Sofia Soulioti

    [02] Following the Historic YES of the Legislature Thorny Issue for Arni

    07 Sep 2005 12:06:00

    By Annita Paschalinou

    The Legislature of the state of California made history on Tuesday. The states Senate 41-35 vote in favour cleared the way for the states Legislature to approve without court order the bill that allows same-sex marriages. This development brought smiles on the faces of the gay community members, but earned California Governor a headache who has to decide whether to make the bill law. Los Angeles Times reported that Arnold Schwarzenegger intends to veto it.

    The Bill Sparks Disputes

    The bill redefines marriage as a civil contract between two persons, rather than between a man and a woman. Its supporters speak of an inalienable right and compare it to civil rights campaigns such as abolishing slavery and granting women the right to vote.

    On the other hand, its foes state that the bill runs contrary to the referendum conducted in California five years ago, when the Californians had expressed their support to a proposition opposing same-sex marriages in other states.

    Translated by Areti Christou

    [03] Following Mayor's Order Evacuating New Orleans

    07 Sep 2005 09:51:00

    By Mary Lou Tzempelikou

    Fearing epidemic outbreaks from the contaminated waters that have drenched the city, New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin ordered the forced removal of those residents who refuse to empty the city. Many residents refused to flee their houses, where they remain armed in fear of their properties being looted. "There are toxins in the water, gas leaks. We are fighting at least four fires. It is not safe," said in his effort to convince the residents of the ghost city to empty it. Meanwhile, the floodwaters have started to gradually subside only to reveal the true extend of the catastrophe. Bodies of the people who did not manage to survive the act of God keep appearing everywhere and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) rushed to bar reporters from escorting the rescue vessels searching for bodies lest they should release the footage of the hurricanes victims.

    Contaminated Waters Pose Health Risks

    The authorities warn that the bodies, the waste and the chemicals that have emerged on the stagnant waters drenching the city, are extremely detrimental to the health of the stranded residents, while in case the explosive materials gather in regions with gas leaks, explosions may be broken out.

    "God bless us," said New Orleans Mayor when referring to the last nightmarish scenario.

    The pumping out of the floodwaters and their channelling into the nearby tributaries has already commenced. However, this is to cause a huge ecological catastrophe due to the toxics contained in the waters. The citys authorities announced that 60% of the city is now under water as opposed to the 80% before the pumping out operation.

    Mike McDaniel, Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality secretary, said that the only solution is to pump the contaminated water straight into Lake Pontchartrain. The task of providing the city with fresh water remains mammoth, while Mr McDaniel stated that it will take years to restore the problem.

    Meanwhile, the White House asks for the approval of an additional aid package of 50 million dollars to restore the hurricane-battered areas, while US President George Bush said that he will head the investigation into the authorities response to the crisis. On its part, the Senate promised a "fair, constructive and two-sided inquiry."

    Translated by Areti Christou

    Related News:

    Nightmarish Estimation

    [04] Kyushu Island in Typhoon's Whirl "Butterfly" Proves Lethal

    07 Sep 2005 08:35:00

    By Annita Paschalinou

    Eleven dead, 90 injured, at least 14 missing and heavy damages in the wake of typhoon Nabi, which swept through cities in the south of Japan. Nabi, which means "butterfly" in Korean, has already faded into a tropical storm and is heading north and in particular it is expected to hit Hokkaido Island on Thursday. Nabi also hit South Korea, where four people are missing and extensive damages in crops have been reported.

    Heavy Damages

    The island of Kyushu in the south of Japan and the cities of Fukuoka and Isahaya were in the whirl of the typhoon. At least 6,000 houses were flooded, 52 were completely destroyed, while thousands of people have been transferred to safe shelters.

    Extensive power cuts were also reported. Television networks keep broadcasting pictures of rescue teams searching for survivors in wrecked houses and of people who are trying to clear mud out of houses, schools and other public buildings.

    Transport System is Severely Disrupted

    Nabi also disrupted the transport system.

    Shipping routes from Fukuoka to South Korea were disrupted, while at least 30,000 air passengers remained in the airports, for around 100 flights were cancelled.

    Problems were reported in the rail services as well. In Osaka, nearly 300 people spent their night on a train when the storm halted its route.

    Translated by Areti Christou

    [05] Money Embezzlement in Panteios

    07 Sep 2005 10:24:00

    By Annita Paschalinou

    18 people, including former deans, vice deans and executives of the Panteios University are referred to the Three-Member Court of Felony Appeals for embezzling 2.7 billion drachmas. According to the bill of indictment, these people will face trial for a series of felonies for embezzlement, since the above-mentioned sum was destined for research programmes from 1992 to 1998, but was instead used for purchasing luxury cars and other luxury goods with unknown receivers.

    Faced With a Series of Felonies

    Appellate Public Prosecutor Giorgos Bobolis found that the 18 people involved should be tried for fraud, embezzlement, breach of duty, false certification and forgery. Among the accused are former deans and vice deans Dimitris Konstas, Emilios Metaxopoulos, Panagiotis Getimis and Konstantinos Papathanasopoulos.

    The case was referred to Justice after diseased dean Ilias Sidiropoulos had filed a lawsuit based on findings over a series of mismanagement of the university's financial sources.

    Translated by Sofia Soulioti

    [06] Emergency Landing

    07 Sep 2005 09:51:00

    By Anna Kourti

    An Olympic Airlines ATR72 carrier, which was en route from Kavala to Athens, made an emergency landing on Wednesday morning due to engine failure. "OA951" flight departed from Kavalas airport at 6:45am, but a few minutes after its takeoff the pilot contacted Kavalas tower control and reported a possible failure in one of the two engines. The tower control instructed him to return to the airport, where he landed at 7:12am. The 65 passengers were facilitated with other Olympic Airlines flights, while the companys technicians rushed to the site to repair the damage.

    Translated by Areti Christou

    [07] Ahead of Toxicological Tests Autopsy Shows Brain Anoxia

    07 Sep 2005 09:46:00

    By Annita Paschalinou

    The autopsy on the 9-year-old boy from Crete that lost his life in an EKAB ambulance while being transferred to the University Hospital. The boy had undergone a tonsil operation in a private clinic, however, serious complications appeared. The death certificate speaks of brain anoxia, while the investigation into the causes is expected to finish in two weeks time after the toxicological tests are conducted.

    The autopsy was conducted by coroner Manolis Michalodimitrakis with the presence of coroner Antonis Papadomanolakis, who was appointed as a technical counsel by the boys family.

    The two coroners dismissed any pathological causes or human error

    The parents of the boy have pressed charges against the doctors, for they attribute the death of their son to doctors mistake.

    Translated by Areti Christou

    [08] In Gaza, by Gunmen Moussa Arafat Shot Dead

    07 Sep 2005 07:16:00 (Last updated: 07 Sep 2005 12:11:45)

    By Mary Lou Tzempelikou

    Sources: BBC, Reuters,ANA

    Former Palestinian security chief and late Palestinian ruler Yasser Arafats nephew Moussa Arafat was shot dead on Wednesday, while his 29-year-old son is feared kidnapped. The gunmen stormed in his house in Gaza and after shooting grenades and battling Arafats guards, dragged him out and killed him. After the battle, his son was reported disappeared and the security forces are considering the possibility of his being kidnapped by the gunmen. A Palestinian militant coalition, the Popular Resistance Committees claimed responsibility for the assassination of former Gaza chief security Moussa Arafat and for the abduction of his son. A spokesperson for the Palestinian militant group stated that the motivations behind the assassination are to be announced later. The President of the Palestinian Authority condemned Moussas assassination and pointed out that the Ministry for the Interior along with the security forces will do everything in their power to locate the perpetrators and lead them to justice. Eyewitnesses heard at least four powerful blasts and there was crossfire between the gunmen and Arafats guards for at least half an hour.

    Controversial Figure

    Moussa Arafat, who was among the founders of Fatah movement, had many foes due to his hard-line policy he followed and had survived two more assassination attacks in the past.

    Following the Oslo agreement in 1994, Yasser Arafat had appointed Moussa head of the military intelligence service, while after the death of the Palestinian leader, Moussa elevated to chief security. However, in April he was removed from his top post due to the reforms the new Palestinian Authority put into effect.

    Moussa had battled the Palestinian security forces and militant groups many times in the past, while the al-Aksa Martyrs Brigades had described him as "symbol of corruption" that had been plaguing the Palestinian Authority.

    When Yasser Arafat tried to appoint him in charge of the security in Gaza in July 2004, there were violent demonstrations, while Fatah militants accused him of corruption.

    Moussas assassination refuelled concerns over violence breakout in Gaza and nourishes doubts as to whether the Palestinian security forces will be able to confront any violent incidents that are likely to be triggered by the Israeli pullout from the region.

    Translated by Areti Christou

    [09] 700-800 Millions Euros Expected in Revenues OTE Enters Foreign Stock Markets

    07 Sep 2005 12:47:00

    By Annita Paschalinou

    The government has proceeded with selling 10% of OTE shares to institutional investors. As per the Economy Minister, the selling process started on Tuesday night at the New York Stock Exchange and continues in London today. The revenues, which the government expects from the sale, range from 700 to 800 million euros.

    Translated by Sofia Soulioti

    [10] China and India Buy Airliners from Europe They Go For Airbus

    07 Sep 2005 11:08:00

    By Annita Paschalinou

    The European consortium Airbus is "up". China Southern Airlines signed a 1.5 billion dollars agreement to buy 10 Airbus 330. India also prefers the European manufacturer. Earlier on Wednesday, Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh announced that his government will renew Indian Airlines fleet with 43 airliners after signing a 2.2 billion dollar deal.

    Translated by Areti Christou

    [11] National Elevation

    06 Sep 2005 23:21:00

    By Vasilis Kalpinos

    The Greek Men's Basketball team claimed their second victory in equally numbered games for the 19th Acropolis basketball tournament, after prevailing over Serbia/Montenegro with 91-72. Just like yesterday against Germany, Greece were excellent versus the hosts of the upcoming Eurobasket tournament and proved they are ready to take the major step. Top scorers of Panagiotis Giannakis' team were Lazaros Papadopoulos with 17 points, Dimitris Diamantidis and Dimos Dikoudis. And to cut a long story short, this National team has many players it can rely on and works better as a total. Ten-minute periods: 26-22, 42-46, 59-75, 72-91. 8,000 fans were present in OAKA to applause for the Greek team's second win in a row.

    TEAMS

    SERBIA/MONTENEGRO (Zeljko Obradovic): Bodiroga 3, Avdalovic 3 (1), Milojevic 7, Radmanovic 10 (2), Schepanovic 3, Yaric 13 (1), Rebraca 4, Milicic 3, Tomacevic 8, Gurovic, Popovic 4 (1), Krstic14

    GREECE (Panagiotis Giannakis): Fotsis 9 (2), Dikoudis 10, Kakiouzis 9 (3), Papaloukas 6, Chatzivrettas 13 (3), Papadopoulos 17, Diamantidis 10 (1), Zisis 4, Tsartsaris 6 (1), Spanoulis 4, Vasilopoulos 3, Papamakarios

    Translated by Sofia Soulioti

    [12] Historical Day for Egypt Egypt Votes

    07 Sep 2005 08:27:00

    By Mary Lou Tzempelikou

    A historical day has broken for Egypt, since around 32 million voters are expected to vote for the countrys president among many candidates for the first time ever. President Hosni Mubarak, whose 24-year rule has earned him the name the "last Pharaoh," is highly likely to renew his term. The fact that his challengers come from minor parties that are relatively unknown to the wider public makes things even easier for Mubarak.

    Only two of the candidates are widely known, including 40-year-old liberal Ayman Nour of the Ghad Party and 70-year-old Wafd Party leader Noman Gomaa.

    Meanwhile, two major parties as well as an oppositional movement have called on the voters to abstain from the elections, since many candidacies have been precluded because only party leaders are entitled to participate in elections.

    Translated by Areti Christou


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