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The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English, 05-11-25

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

From: The Hellenic Radio (ERA) <>


  • [01] Real Estate Taxation Changes
  • [02] The Moon's Age
  • [03] "Lock 'Em Inn"
  • [04] Resignation and Summons
  • [05] New Law on Domestic Violence
  • [06] Milupa Milk Confiscated
  • [07] Farewell George Best
  • [08] Konstantinou: "Olympiacos is the Greatest Team"
  • [09] Noise Pollution Affects the Heart
  • [10] Forged Health Certificates Ring
  • [11] All is Well for "Erica"

  • [01] As Per the New Bill Real Estate Taxation Changes

    25 Nov 2005 20:16:00

    By Dimitris Alexopoulos

    Sources: NET, NET 105.8, ANA

    A tax exemption of 19% VAT for the acquisition of a first home, which will be implemented as of January 1 for all newly constructed buildings and blocks of land, was approved this morning by the Governmental Committee. Moreover, the tax relief limit for the acquisition of a first home is increased by 15%. The bill also foresees the increase of tax relief for parental grants to 100,000 euros and the quadrupling, to 80,000 from 20,000, for inheritance, while the tax for transfer of real estate will be gradually abolished. Minister of Economy Giorgos Alogoskoufis described the bill as an important change in Greeces taxation, noting that it will tidy-up the construction department and combat tax evasion.

    Gradual Abolishment

    Moreover, Mr Alogoskoufis explained that permits submitted up to this day, with a complete folder and signed contract work, are not filed under the regulation. Blocks of land given as contribution are also exempted from VAT.

    The increases of objective values, which will be implemented as of 2006, will be also announced in December. Mr Alogoskoufis said that the adjustment will be smooth and made in three periods.

    Earlier, alternate Government spokesperson Mr Vagelis Andonaros, referring to the meeting of the Governmental Committee, said that the advanced bill achieved the organisation of taxation on the real estate department.

    The introduction of VAT, explained Mr Andonaros, concerns certain categories of real estate, and has been discussed in the past and is a decision taken by the Government long ago.

    "With this bill, the government achieves the unachievable. It burdens construction, which could contribute to the combat of the recession, which the Government policy is leading the economy to, and at the same time, decreases public revenues for the coming years. At the same time, the regulation for the exemption of VAT for whoever has submitted a "complete folder" opens the door of deals in town planning open wide. Thus, it completes the cycle of palinodes of the previous months, which led to an artificial raise of real estate value," stated chief of PASOKs Economy Sector Vaso Papandreou on the bill.

    What the Bill Foresees

    As per the new bill, the transfer tax of real estate will be implemented on not newly constructed buildings that will be transferred as of 1/1/2006. However, there is an increase of the tax relief limit to transfers by 15%. The transfer tax of real estate is gradually abolished, since a second transfer of an older real estate after 1/1/2006 will be filed under the increment tax. Moreover, second transfers after 1/1/2006 will be filed under the trading fee of 1% times the value of the real estate.

    The increment tax will burden the seller of the real estate, and the tax rate that will be implemented on the difference between construction value and the value of the sale of real estate will be 20% if the real estate remained in the ownership of the tax payers up to five years from its acquisition, 10% for 5-15 years, 5% for 15-25 years, while after 25 years the increment tax is abolished.

    The tax relief limit of inheritance tax is quadrupled, as well as grants and is 80,000 from 20,000 euros.

    On parental grants, the tax relief is increased, from 90,000 to 100,000, while payments of tax emerging from inheritance will be able to be paid in 24 bi-monthly instalments from 24 monthly currently enforced.

    In particular, the following examples will come about from the decreases in taxes.

    For an inheritance of 80,000 euros the tax currently is 4,000 euros. With the new measures the tax is zeroed. For an inheritance up to 200,000 the tax currently is 16,000 and becomes 11,000 euros.

    For inheritance of 300,000 the tax from 34,000 drops to 29,000 euros. For parental grants of 100,000 the tax is currently 3,500 euros and with the new measures are 500 euros. For parental grants of 80,000 the tax currently is 8,500, while it is zeroed with the new measures. For 200,000 euros the tax from 32,500 euros drops to 11,000 euros.

    The bill also includes provision on revenues taxation, among which is the consolidation of expenditures arising from the revenues of businesses.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    Related News:

    Changes in Real Estate Taxation

    [02] The Moon's Age

    25 Nov 2005 18:29:00

    By Tina Valaoura

    The mystery regarding the moons age is no longer a mystery. British and German mineralogists jointed forces and managed to unravel the closely guarded mystery and provide the most accurate answer ever. The moon is 4,527 billion years old! It was the lunar rocks the Apollos astronauts brought with them that gave away the secret. The researchers studied the extent of a specific radioactive isotopes deterioration to reach their conclusion. They admitted, though, that the future measurements are likely to provide an even more accurate result. However, they underlined that their measurement flirts with the truth just off a hundred million years.

    Translated by Areti Christou

    [03] Hotel for Drunkards! "Lock 'Em Inn"

    25 Nov 2005 14:20:00

    By Tina Valaoura

    Sources: Reuters

    British Police has come up with a pretty resourceful and imaginative formula to advertise the services they will be offering to would-be drinking law offenders, who will find themselves spending Christmas behind bars. The initiative was taken by Ipswich policemen, who, bearing in mind that this years Christmas festivities coincide with the enactment of Britains new open-all-hours drinking laws, decided to let the citizens know of the high class services British Police are willing to offer. If they overdo it with the booze, of course!

    Therefore, Ipswich Police distributed nearly 30,000 leaflets manifesting the dubious attractions of the cells and reminding that a few more drinks may earn them a convenient stay at the "Lock Em Inn" hotel, which lies in a ideal place allowing easy access to pubs, clubs and penal courts. As for the infrastructure, the leaflets make it clear that the facilities date back to 1960 and are minimalist chic. Regarding the food, a picture of a microwave promises warm food reheated in seconds. Could it be any worse?

    Translated by Areti Christou

    [04] Over the Extrajudicial Ring Resignation and Summons

    25 Nov 2005 19:08:00

    By Dimitris Alexopoulos

    Sources: NET, NET 105.8, ANA

    After a call to testify on involvement in the extrajudicial ring, Chief of the Athens First Instance Court Gerasimos Dionisatos submitted his resignation. Mr Dionisatos is accused of breach of duty, bribery, conspiracy and association in the ring. He is reportedly involved in suspicious substitutions of Antonia Ilia, in order for her sit in the cases of Giosakis, while he is charged for the crime of bribery, as per the brief, that Iakovos Giosakis paid his trip to Alexandreia, for the enthronement of the new Patriarch. In a written announcement, Mr Dionisatos stated his innocence, claiming that he travelled to Alexandreia for the enthronement, just as other judicial workers and representatives of the State, while he stated that he is resigning for the benefit of the self-governing of the courts. Apart from Mr Dionisatos, summons were given to lawyer Ioanna Kosivaki, an associate of Sakis Kechagioglou, on a provisional and protective measures case and First Instance Judge Anastasios Savvas for a favourable handing of surgeon Giorgos Zornatzis, who, on June 2003, attempted to poison two of his associates. Moreover, the investigators issued an arrest warrant for NIMTS surgeon Manolis Niotis, who is accused of issuing forged terminal illness certificates to drug dealers and is charged for felony on legalising revenues from an illegal activity.

    Postponement of Disciplinary Indictment

    Today, Petros Madouvalos and his associate, Christos Chatzipanagiotou, testified to the Disciplinary Council of the Piraeus Lawyers Association, charged on involvement in the extrajudicial ring.

    The independent MP submitted a written testimony, while the Disciplinary Council decided to not proceed with a disciplinary indictment against him, until the end of the procedure.

    Meanwhile, in a statement, President of the Supreme Court Romilos Kedikoglou noted that the collection of evidence is allowed, such as the opening of band accounts of the MP by relevant investigators, before the lift of immunity.

    "The ban is only allowed for Ministers," noted Mr Kedikoglou, adding that the submission of a demand for the lift of immunity of the independent MP was done legally and without delay.

    Testimonies of the "16" as of Monday

    In the meantime, the 16 new figures who were summoned for testimonies and are: Giorgos Nikolakopoulos, Nikos Emanouilidis, Maria Vracha, Stavroula Psira and Nektarios Athanasopoulos will be entering the appeals investigators offices as of Monday.

    As per sources, all of them will ask for a deadline in order to meticulously study the brief and prepare their defence.

    The above was already done by lawyer Petros Machas, who is involved in the case of monk Kloponin.

    In a statement given out by Mr Machas he stated that the brief he received does not correspond to the material collected by the two investigators.

    "The only evidence in the brief," stated Mr Machas, "is the countersignature in the lawsuit of my associate, Mr Emanouilidis, on the case of monk Kloponin, which is strictly legal, while my so-called signature in the submission of the so-called lawsuit never occurred."

    Government is Determined

    Meanwhile, the Government reassured that there will not be a statute of limitations at any expense.

    "There will be no statute of limitations in the purgation procedure," stated Minister of Justice Anastasios Papaligouras.

    "The amendments of the bill on money laundering, which the Government submitted to Parliament, do not concern the investigation in development over the extrajudicial ring, in any case. The amendments that turn the specific crime from a felony to a misdemeanour will not be implemented in persons involved in extrajudicial rings," stated alternate Government spokesperson Mr Vangelis Andonaros.

    The relevant developments were investigated in a meeting of President of PASOK George Papandreou with the Presidencies of the Lawyers Associations.

    The meeting focused on issues concerning the institutional operation of Justice, stressing the dysfunction of coordinated powers and institutions, leaving gaps that are covered by extrajudicial rings and others.

    In closing, it is noted that the Plenary Session of the Lawyers Associations has already taken up the initiative of safeguarding institutions, protecting the prestige of Justice and its clear operation, a fact that found an immediate positive response by the President of PASOK.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    Related News:

    Resignation over Extrajudicial Case

    [05] World Day Against Domestic Violence New Law on Domestic Violence

    25 Nov 2005 16:25:00

    By Despina Hristopoulou

    Sources: ANA, NET

    On the occasion of the world day against domestic violence, Greek Justice Minister Anastasios Papaligouras presented on Friday at the Zappeion Mansion the new bill on combating domestic violence. Education Minister Marieta Giannakou also attended the event. Political parties and social and legal bodies are to discuss the bill before it is submitted to Parliament next month. In the meantime, PASOK sector for women has introduced a volunteer hot line in support of abused women. The free hot line 800-11-900-400 is to start operating as of upcoming week.

    Promoting a Healthy Family Environment

    Mr Papaligouras noted that the provisions of the bill aim at combating extreme cases of authoritarianism within families. As per the Ministry, the bill aims at:

    1. safeguarding the persons freedom, dignity and self-determination within the family,

    2. protecting the childs physical and mental health and,

    3. setting the pattern for a healthy family environment.

    Furthermore, the bill elevates six new criminal behaviours, including violence committed before an underage at the expense of another family member, violence against pregnant women, violence against the elderly and disabled patients, physical or emotional strain, intimidation and attempt to bribe witnesses investigated for cases of domestic violence, into penal offences.

    Public and private school teachers and professors are also obliged to immediately inform the judicial and police authorities when cases of physical abuse come to their notice.

    Arrest is provisioned for the perpetrators, while other measures, including the issuing of restraining orders, are also provided for.

    Translated by Areti Christou

    [06] Milupa Milk Confiscated

    25 Nov 2005 20:40:00

    Sources: NET, ANA

    Another brand of childrens milk, this time of German company Milupa, is recalled from the Italian market, since lab exams detected traces of ITX. The substance used for printing packages had also been found in Milupa Aptamil 2, Aptamil soya and Babymil, products that expire between December 2005 and the first months of 2006. As per news agency Ansa, a mother in Sicily complained to the police that her 7-month-old baby felt indisposed after consuming Milupa milk.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    Read the story on other sources:


    Related Links:


    [07] Farewell George Best

    25 Nov 2005 15:43:00

    By Vasilis Kalpinos

    A press spokesman for Londons Cromwell Hospital announced George Bests death on Friday. The Manchester United legend breathed his last at the age of 59 after weeks of ill health due to his alcohol addiction. The 59-year-old Northern Ireland ace had first been admitted to hospital in early October, while he had lately been suffering from internal bleeding which was related to a kidney infection. After his medication was readjusted, Bests health improved, however, he was not released from hospital. The European Footballer of 1968, had long been an alcohol addict, while in 2002 he underwent a liver transplant.

    Translated by Areti Christou

    [08] Konstantinou: "Olympiacos is the Greatest Team"

    25 Nov 2005 14:33:00

    Sources: ANA,

    After all the commotion stirred by his transfer from Panathinaikos to Olympiacos this summer, Michalis Konstantinou spoke to the official site of the team and noted "Olympiacos is a much greater team than Panathinaikos." Among others, the Cypriot player said that one of the reasons that he transferred to the Piraeus team was the help of the fans, who wanted him in the squad, and moreover voiced his dissatisfaction on Panathinaikos stance after what was said after his move. In closing, he revealed that he had other proposals from abroad, but Olympiacos wanted him more and that this transfer to the team of Piraeus was a great step for his career.

    "Fans are Important"

    The Cypriot players spoke of the reasons he decided to transfer to Olympiacos. Konstantinou said that initially he knew that his contract with Panathinaikos had ended, and that he only wanted to rest and see what he would do with his future. And he continued "Although many people come up with various scenarios on the subject, the truth is very simple. My contract with Panathinaikos expired last summer. I took one month of vacation trying not to think about what would take place next and then came back to Athens and met with my manager in order to talk about the proposal I had about the future of my career. To tell you the truth, I wasnt going crazy about my contract ending and about what I was going to do next. I hadnt begun to look for another team six months before the expiration of my contract, although I had this right. I spoke with Paschalis Papadopoulos with whom I have been having a brilliant cooperation for some time now and he spoke to me about Olympiacos interest in signing me. Up until that time, I was abroad and had been for a month. I can honestly tell you that I hadnt even picked up the phone to ask him what was going on. He explained to me that the President of the club was eager to sign me. I was honoured by that. I dont know how long ago they had contacted my representative. All I know is that Olympiacos and Mr Kokkalis honoured me with their proposal and I immediately agreed upon signing. In fact I didnt even consider any other proposal, although a few were from some great foreign teams. Olympiacos showed how much they wanted me and that was that."

    One of the reasons that made him take this decision were the fans of Olympiacos, who, as he said, asked him to be a "red and white," while his entrance to the squad helped him emotionally. "During last season, a very strange event had occurred. Wherever I went, I kept meeting Olympiacos fans who told me they wanted me on the team. This was very important to me. The rivalry between Olympiacos and Panathinaikos is widely known. Never before had I seen such reaction. Last year however, no matter where I went, I had fans telling me to join Olympiacos. This helped boost my confidence."

    Following, he talked about his former teams stance and said he was disturbed by it. "Its any teams right to decides not to renew a players contract. What bothered me was what was said about me. When you dont want a player, where do you come off blaming him about joining Olympiacos? Where do you come off saying all negative things about him to the Press? I dont think its nice to do that. I respect the fact that they didnt want me on the team. I have joined a great team and I think it has served me well.

    Moreover, he talked about Angelos Basinas. Among others, the Cypriot player said that he does not ask him about his plans and noted that he would like for him to be his team-mate.

    Further on, he spoke about his goals, which are none other than winning the Championship and the Cup With Olympiacos, while ending the interview he spoke about Rivaldo, a player he admired as a child and fascinated by the fact that he is now a team-mate. "Rivaldo is an idol I used to look up to since I was a child, just like Maradona. He is definitely among the top 11 players in the world! Thats the plain truth."

    [09] Chronic Exposure is Harmful Noise Pollution Affects the Heart

    25 Nov 2005 12:45:00

    By Tina Valaoura

    Sources: BBC - European Heart Journal

    Noise pollution, a phenomenon most usual affecting the residents of a city, is most likely to cause psychological problems, as well as organic disorders that are not always ear-related. As per a study that appeared in the European Heart Journal, environmental noise, such as traffic, may double or even triple the risk of heart attacks.

    Risk Factor

    The researchers of the Charit&#233; University Medical Centre in Berlin noted that the danger is related to the volume of the noise and reassured the patients that more work on the issue should be done. They did not miss underlining, though, that lower safety levels should be established.

    "Apparently, we are focusing on a threshold at which danger looms and this appears to be around 60 decibels (db)," said Dr Stefan Willich, head of the research team. 60 db is the level of noise reported in a crowded and busy office. As per the research, which studied the cases of 4,000 patients, chronic exposure to constant or excessive noises in the workplace increases the risk of heart attack in men. Women, on the other hand, do not seem to be influenced. Exposure to loud noises favours stress and anger, two emotions leading to high levels of adrenaline and noradrenaline, which relate to increased blood pressure and plasma lipids.

    Should various risk factors, including smoking, or high blood pressure, be added, the mixture becomes really hazardous. "Chronic exposure to noise can be described as an outside risk factor contributing to atherosclerosis and cardiovascular disease," Mr Willich explained.

    According to the World Health Organisation, the highest safety level for humans amounts to 85db. However, Mr Willich suggested it be lowered between 65 and 75db.

    Read the story on other sources:

    European Heart Journal

    [10] In Attikon Hospital Forged Health Certificates Ring

    25 Nov 2005 13:42:00

    By Annita Paschalinou

    Sources: NET, NET 105.8

    After investigations, the Ministry of Health revealed a ring that issued forged health certificates for immigrants, in Attikon Hospital. As Minister of Health Nikitas Kaklamanis announced, one alternate pathology Professor, in charge of the certificate issuing committee and a lawyer were involved in the ring. Within a month, they had issued 1,800 forged certificates without medical examinations. During the coming days, the brief with the cases evidence will be sent to judge of First Instance Prosecution Dimitris Papagelopoulos.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    [11] Eight Passengers are Safe from Harm All is Well for "Erica"

    25 Nov 2005 11:42:00

    By Vagelis Theodorou

    The eight passengers of Ukrainian yacht "Erica," which nearly sank on Wednesday night, due to strong gales, 90 miles off Peloponnisos, are safe from harm. As the Ministry of Mercantile Marine announced, the investigations, in which two frigates of the Navy and helicopters, one C-130, one NATO frigate and ships in the area participated in, continued until the morning and bore fruit. At around 10:40 a passing ship, Liberian "Chicago," located "Erica", information that was confirmed by a Navy helicopter. An hour later, a frigate of the Navy rescued the eight passengers, four men and four women, and transported them to Kalamata.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    Related News:

    Yacht in Danger

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