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The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English, 05-11-03

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

From: The Hellenic Radio (ERA) <>


  • [01] Reforms on Penal Code
  • [02] Family Benefit to Both
  • [03] Paris Riots Continue
  • [04] Powerless Panathinaikos
  • [05] Tragedy in Trocadero
  • [06] Karamanlis-Petralia Meeting
  • [07] Lethal Typhoon Hits Vietnam
  • [08] Blast in Spain's Basque Country
  • [09] Euro Introduced in Cyprus in 2008
  • [10] Progress Report to Commission
  • [11] Dignified Award
  • [12] CIA Black Sites?

  • [01] Criminal Procedure Code Also Reformed Reforms on Penal Code

    03 Nov 2005 10:31:00 (Last updated: 03 Nov 2005 13:38:59)

    By Athina Saloustrou

    Greek Justice Minister Anastasis Papaligouras briefed the Prime Minister on the course of the purgation process as well as on the reforms on the Penal Code and the Code on Criminal Procedure. Exiting Maximos Mansion, Mr Papaligouras noted, "The arduous task of reforming the two Codes is to be assigned to two law preparation committees with accomplished figures from the judicial, political and scientific world composing it." Professor Nikos Androulakis was appointed head of the committee that will work on the reforms on the Penal Code, which was last reformed in 1950. The committee to work on the Code on Criminal Procedure will be presided over by former Supreme Courts Prosecutor Evangelos Kroustalakis. Mr Papaligouras said that Prime Minister Kostas Karamanlis expressed his intention to meet with the two heads to wish them luck in their arduous and momentous task. Mr Papaligouras underscored that both codes were drawn up 55 years ago and that in many cases they proved obsolete.

    "We Will Proceed With Purgation"

    The task assigned to the two committees is to be arduous, said the Justice Minister, while he noted that leading figures, including academics, judicial workers and lawyers, compose the committees.

    Professor Nikos Androulakis mentioned that the efforts made in the past to reform the Penal Code were narrowed down to cursory solutions.

    Mr Evangelos Kroustalakis underlined that he is fully aware of the arduousness of the task he has undertaken and voiced his optimism that the mission will be accomplished. "Our goal is to accelerate penal Justice by paying full respect to the defendants rights and to the rights the Charter of Human Rights provisions."

    Referring on the investigations into the extrajudicial network, Mr Papaligouras underlined that the government and the body of Justice are determined to bring the purgation to an end. When questioned whether he is under pressure, Mr Papaligouras answered that he is not at all concerned and reassured that this effort will come off. He further added that that the government intends to eradicate corruption in Justice.

    Translated by Areti Christou

    [02] A Proposal Concerning 500,000 IKA Pensioners Family Benefit to Both

    03 Nov 2005 09:38:00

    By Tina Valaoura

    Sources: ANA

    The President of the Council of the State Dimitris Papaemanoulidis is to submit a proposal to the Councils First Division on granting the family benefit to both spouses, who are IKA pensioners, on the ground that granting the benefit to only one of the spouses runs contrary to the Constitution.

    Mr Emmanouilidis will note that the existing law according to which only one of the two IKA pensioners is entitled to the family benefit violates the constitutional principal of equality.

    In the past, Piraeus Appellate Court had ruled against the petition of an IKA pensioner to receive the benefit for both spouses. However, Mr Emmanouilidis is to request an appeal against the ruling, citing the rulings of the Supreme Court and the Plenary Sessions of the Council of the State and the Court of Auditors.

    It is noted that the Supreme Court had ruled that both spouses, whether they are public sector employees or not, are entitled to the full amount of the family benefit. As for the IKA pensioners, a special legislative regime is in force, which draws a distinguishing line between them and the rest of the employees.

    In case Mr Emmanouilidis proposal is approved, the issue that concerns around 500,000 pensioners will be referred to the Plenary Session of the Council of the State to be furthered examined.

    [03] For Seventh Night Running Paris Riots Continue

    03 Nov 2005 07:04:00

    By Mary Lou Tzempelikou

    Sources: Reuters

    The riots that have been sweeping the poor suburbs of Paris for seventh night running assumed political dimensions. On Wednesday night, groups of young people threw rocks at the policemen and set aflame around 40 cars, two buses and dustbins, while they tried to set a police station on fire. A police force amounting to 500 men vied to put the situation under control, but they failed to avert the damages caused to a school and a shopping mall. French Premier Dominique de Villepin, who cancelled his visit to Canada due to the riots, is under pressure. It is noted that the unrest was fuelled by the death of two teenagers who were electrocuted in their effort to flee police inspection.

    Political and Social Conflicts

    A police trade union described the riots as "civil war" and called on Interior Minister Nicolas Sarkozy, whose statements made things worst, to impose a curfew on the areas affected by the riots.

    The pictures of the flaming cars made the headlines urging the French government to elevate the restoration of order to top priority. On his part, Villepin promised that his government will cope with the situation, while he lashed out at Sarkozy for calling the protesting youths "scum."

    It seems, however, that much deeper causes have fuelled the conflicts, which are put down to the failure of the poor minorities of immigrants residing the southern suburbs to fit in the French society.

    On his part, government spokesman Jean-Francois Cope reiterated the need for mutual respect and announced that on Thursday the French PM will hold a meeting with the representatives of the areas much affected by the violence.

    Translated by Areti Christou

    [04] Powerless Panathinaikos

    02 Nov 2005 23:36:00

    Panathinaikos lasted just 47 seconds against Barcelona, since it received a goal within the first minute of the match. From then onwards, the Spaniards started a party on the pitch, since apart from the goal they also had another two opportunities to score in the first five minutes. On the other hand, Malezanis players took a dive, surrendering to the mastery of Ronaldinho and his gang. The goals for Barcelona were scored by van Bommel (1), Etoo (14, 40 and 65) and Messi (34). As for Panathinaikos, goalkeeper Mario Galinovic was probably the best player of the match, which says a lot about the rest of the squad.

    Referee: Rene Temmink Yellow Card: Darlas

    BARCELONA: Victor Valdes, Oleguer, Puyol, Edmilson, van Bronckhorst, van Bommel (61 Gabri), Xavi (69 Ezquerro), Iniesta (52 Thiago Motta), Messi, Ronaldinho, Etoo

    PANATHINAIKOS: Galinovic, Vintra, Biscan (46 Kotsios), Morris, Darlas (61 Tziolis), Nilsson, Conceicao, Leontiou, Seric (79 Wooter), Gonzales, Papadopoulos.

    Translated by Vicky Ghionis

    [05] Tragedy in Trocadero

    03 Nov 2005 08:45:00

    By Mary Lou Tzempelikou

    A 24-year-old woman was killed on Wednesday night when the car her friend, 25, was driving fell in the sea near the pier of Trocadero. The driver, who was of Albanian descent, managed to get out of the car, while divers of the Port Authorities recovered the body of the woman, who was also an Albanian national. Her body was initially transferred to the Tzanio General Hospital and then it was taken to Piraeus morgue for an autopsy. As per flash evidence, the accident is due to road slipperiness, while the Floisvos port authorities are carrying out a preliminary examination.

    Translated by Areti Christou

    [06] Karamanlis-Petralia Meeting

    02 Nov 2005 20:28:00

    By Vicky Keleri

    Sources: ANA - NET

    The meeting between PM Kostas Karamanlis, Alternate Culture Minister Fani Palli-Petralia and the president of the company Olympic Proprieties, Christos Chatziemmanouil, focused on the progress of the procedure for the permanent status of casual Culture Ministry personnel and the new tenders for the development of Olympic properties. As Ms Petralia noted after the meeting, 1,485 casual employees in various sectors of the Ministry have already been hired as permanent staff, while the matter will be fully resolved within the next few weeks. In addition, referring to the 2008 Beijing Games, where Greece will be the honoured state, the Alternate Minister noted that they are collaborating successfully with the Chinese Government. In fact, a delegation of Chinese officials participating in the Greek-Chinese Committee for the preparation of the Games will be arriving in Athens on 25 November.

    Development of Olympic Properties

    With regard to the new tenders for Olympic properties, Ms Petralia noted that they are moving along, adding that all procedures are transparent, while at the same time the aim is to create new jobs.

    On his part, Mr Chatziemmanouil noted that the first stage of the tender for the International Broadcasting Centre was concluded today.

    He also added that the first stages of another two tenders, for the Badminton Arena and the Canoe-Kayak Slalom Center, will conclude next week. In addition, expressions of interest for the Agios Kosmas Olympic Sailing Centre and the Galatsi Olympic Indoor Hall will start being submitted as of next Wednesday.

    The President of the Olympic Proprieties also pointed out that great steps are taken towards developing the facilities, which will not be assigned to the private sector, but will remain as public property. He also referred to the collaboration with the Municipality of Iraklio, Crete, for the development of Pankritio Stadium.

    As he noted, announcements regarding those matters will be made within the next few weeks.

    Translated by Vicky Ghionis

    [07] At Least 20 Dead and 10 Missing Lethal Typhoon Hits Vietnam

    03 Nov 2005 08:19:00

    By Mary Lou Tzempelikou

    Sources: BBC, ANA

    Typhoon Kai Tak is the eight one running to affect Vietnam this year. So far, at least 20 people were killed and 10 are missing in the town of Danang. The torrential rains have destroyed thousands of hectares of corps in 10 provinces and have seriously disrupted the railway network. Nearly 18,000 people have fled their homes, while Kai Tak also was the reason why the Chinese President had to cancel his scheduled visit to Danang. Last month, extensive floods had claimed the lives of 30 people, while the passage of typhoon Dumrey caused 120 people to die in the Philippines, China, Vietnam, Laos and Thailand.

    Translated by Areti Christou

    [08] No Casualties. It is Put Down to ETA Blast in Spain's Basque Country

    03 Nov 2005 07:30:00

    By Mary Lou Tzempelikou

    Sources: Reuters

    A bomb exploded in the early hours of Thursday in Spains Basque country. The blast occurred in the town of Zarautz causing no casualties. Two hours earlier, the police bomb squad had defused another bomb planted near the towns court. The police suspect Basque separatist group ETA of being responsible, although no one has claimed responsibility so far. On October 25, blasts that had also been attributed to ETA occurred near courts in four Spanish cities causing no injuries. Since the beginning of 2005, ETA has mounted nearly 20 similar attacks without causing casualties.

    Translated by Areti Christou

    [09] The Cabinet Approved the Contribution Euro Introduced in Cyprus in 2008

    03 Nov 2005 09:51:00

    By Athina Saloustrou

    As of 1 January 2008, the euro will become the currency of Cyprus replacing the Cypriot pound. The competent contribution for the introduction of the euro was approved on Thursday by the Cypriot Cabinet. A spokesman for the Cypriot government stated that the Cabinet accredited the Economy Minister to hold meetings with all the parties and to submit in six months a progress report on the course of the strategic plan for the introduction of the European currency.

    Translated by Areti Christou

    [10] Progress Report is Submitted Progress Report to Commission

    03 Nov 2005 09:03:00

    By Tina Valaoura

    The Greek Economy Ministry is to submit on Thursday a fiscal progress report to the European Commission. The report describes in detail the plan of the Greek government to curtail the deficit to 2.6% of the GDP by the end of 2006 as opposed to the initial 2.8% forecast. It also speaks of cost cuttings that amount to 400 million euros.

    It is noted that under article 104 paragraph 9 of the EU Treaty, the European Commission has placed Greece under close scrutiny due to the excessive deficit. The European Commission, on its part, is called on to decided whether the planned economic policy includes structural or temporary measures. The Greek government anticipates receiving the green light for the securitization of debts to the state.

    After the report progress is submitted, the European Commission is to release on November 17 its report on economic forecasts for the fall period, while the 2006 budget is to be tabled in Parliament on November 21.

    Translated by Areti Christou

    [11] An Avid Supporter of Women's Rights Dignified Award

    02 Nov 2005 23:23:00

    By Vagelis Theodorou

    Mukhtar Mai, a Pakistani woman who was violently mistreated due to her village councils antiquated views, received the Woman of the Year award from the US magazine Glamour. Three years ago, Mai was gang raped allegedly on the order of a village council, as a punishment for a misdemeanour blamed on her brother. The magazine justified its choice by saying that it wanted to award and honour the unbelievable courage and optimism demonstrated by Mai, in order to overcome the violent indignity she suffered. At the award ceremony in New York, the 36-year-old will also receive $20,000. As she declared, part of the money will be donated to the victims of the 8 October earthquake in Pakistan, while the rest will be used to fund schools and a womens crisis centre.

    Fighting for the Rights of Women

    "I am fighting a fight against oppression, where women and the poor are oppressed... by feudal lords," Mai told an audience of rights activists.

    Later, speaking to the American Congress, the 36-year-old urged the members to support the women of Pakistan in their fight against oppression.

    It should be noted that earlier this year, Pakistans President Pervez Musharraf banned her from travelling abroad, because he feared her visit might "tarnish" Pakistans image. He later rescinded the ban, after criticism from US officials and rights activists.

    However, Mai said her rape and the subsequent court battle would not force her out of her homeland. "I think that the fight can be fought only by living in Pakistan. You cannot fight by leaving," she said.

    Her troubles, though, are not over yet, since she has an appeal pending in the Pakistans Supreme Court against a high court order to free 13 men accused of involvement in her rape.

    Translated by Vicky Ghionis

    [12] As per an Article in the Washington Post CIA Black Sites?

    02 Nov 2005 22:47:00

    By Vagelis Theodorou

    According to an article in the Washington Post, which quotes former and current CIA employees, as well as diplomatic sources, the USA has created a hidden prison network, spanning in eight countries. As per the newspaper, the secret facilities are part of a covert prison system set up by the CIA nearly four years ago and at various times it has included sites in Thailand, Afghanistan and even Guantanamo Bay. The existence and locations of the facilities, referred to as "black sites" in classified White House and CIA documents, are known to only a handful of officials in the United States and, usually, only to the president and a few top intelligence officers in each host country. The CIA spokesperson denied making any comments, while the responses of Scott McClellan, the spokesperson of White House, and the Thai Government, were along the same lines.

    Hidden Global Network

    As per the newspaper, the secret detention system was created after the 9/11 attacks, as part of the manhunt launched to locate key al Qaeda members.

    The CIA allegedly sent over 100 suspects, including 30 major terrorists and 70 less important detainees, to these prisons. The top 30 al Qaeda prisoners are isolated from the outside world, have no recognised legal rights and no one outside the CIA is allowed to talk with or see them, claimed the newspaper.

    Furthermore, the paper mentioned that the CIA used such detention centres abroad, because in the United States it is illegal to hold prisoners in such isolation, while it did not publish the names of the Eastern European countries involved in the covert program at the request of senior US officials.

    Apart from Thailand, the Czech Republic and Slovenia also denied the allegations.

    Translated by Vicky Ghionis

    Related Links:

    Washington Post Article


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