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The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English, 05-12-20

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

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

CONTENTS

  • [01] Focusing on Municipalities
  • [02] Learn English or Else!
  • [03] Epanastatikos Agonas Behind the Attack
  • [04] Adverse Weather Continues
  • [05] Murder in Papagou
  • [06] Suicide Attack in Afghanistan
  • [07] Air Accident in Miami
  • [08] Sharon Released From Hospital
  • [09] Netanyahu Sweeps to Victory
  • [10] Discussion of Budget Continues
  • [11] Akratitos Defeated Xanthi
  • [12] Cine-Review Without a Script

  • [01] For The New Municipal Code Focusing on Municipalities

    20 Dec 2005 10:48:00 (Last updated: 20 Dec 2005 12:53:31)

    The Cabinet, which is holding a meeting chaired by Prime Minister Kostas Karamanlis, is focusing on the new Municipal Code. The changes forwarded aim to improve the running of municipalities. They also mean to bring about radical changes in the Municipal Code and to settle a string of problems puzzling the local governors. It also foresees the upgrading of the town councils, as well as local referendums on serious issues of local interest, following the decision taken by the town council or claims issued by the citizens. It further provides for closing down or merging the troubling municipal enterprises which have been weighing down the municipalities, while the collection of state funds to the benefit of the Local Governments is facilitated. As soon as it is given the green light from the Cabinet, the new Municipal Code is to be made public by Interior Minister Prokopis Pavlopoulos.

    Prior to the meeting, Prime Minister Kostas Karamanlis had a meeting with Public Works Minister Giorgos Souflias. As per information, the two men discussed the already submitted bill on construction permits, the speedier advance of the national cadastre, as well as the balanced allocation of the 4th Community Support Framework.

    [02] English Lessons or Become Unemployed Learn English or Else!

    20 Dec 2005 11:38:00

    By Despina Hristopoulou

    The President of Turkmenistan gave a last warning to the members of his Government if they did not become fluent in English in less than six months. The eccentric President, Saparmurat Niyazov, literally threatened the Cabinet, stating that if they do not learn English in order to communicate with foreign Governments and companies without the help of an interpreter they will be replaced, or simply fired. In fact, he noted that he did not care how they learned English, but to just learn! Does the Presidents demand seem irrational and exaggerated? Before reaching a conclusion, you should know that Niyazov had banned long hair on men, while he recently ordered for penguins to be hosted in a zoo at the desert!

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    [03] With a Leaflet to "Pontiki Epanastatikos Agonas Behind the Attack

    20 Dec 2005 10:56:00

    By Tina Valaoura

    Sources: ΝΕΤ

    The terrorist group "Epanastatikos Agonas" sent a leaflet to newspaper Pontiki claiming responsibility for the attack occurred last week against the Ministry of Economy at Syntagma Square. The leaflet, whose content is under lab tests by the anti-terrorist branch of the Attica Police Department, will be released on Pontiki on coming Thursday.

    Translated by Areti Christou

    [04] Sunny But Cold Adverse Weather Continues

    20 Dec 2005 10:17:00

    By Tina Valaoura

    Sources: NET-ANA

    Temperature dropped to -21C in Nevrokopi, north of Greece. Despite todays sunshine, temperatures remain polar. The mountainous regions of Macedonia are still snowbound, whereas snow chains have elevated to a must for those wishing to travel to the mountainous provincial road network.

    Traffic Police has instructed the use of snow chains on the Florina-Kastoria, Aetou-Nymfaiou provincial roads, as well as from the towns of Veria and Naousa towards the ski resorts on Mt Vermio. Furthermore, drivers are advised to be careful when driving at night because of frost conditions.

    In Thessaloniki, despite the sunshine, temperature has been flirting with 0C, while it dropped to -2C at dawn. Temperature went down to -13C in Florina and -9 in Kozani and Kastoria, where large parts of the lake turned into ice. Serres experienced -5C, Alexandroupoli -4C and Kavala -3C. In the prefecture of Kozani, schools opened an hour later today.

    Despite todays sunshine, it is freezing cold around Greece, while frost is forecast at night and in the early hours in the north. Winds will be of gale-force in the Aegean, while temperatures will range from -12C to 4C in the north, from -5C to 11C in the Ionian and the rest of the country and from 1C to 12C in the Aegean. Sunshine will prevail in Athens, winds will be northerly and temperatures will range from 1C to 9C. Sunshine is also forecast for Thessaloniki, with the temperaturesranging from -5C to 4C.

    As for Christmas, meteorologists speak of rainfalls, freezing cold in the mainland and sleet and snowfalls in the mountainous regions of the country.

    Translated by Areti Christou

    [05] Victim is a 56-Year-Old Woman Murder in Papagou

    20 Dec 2005 07:42:00

    By Vagelis Theodorou

    At 8pm on Monday night, a 56-year-old woman, wife of a retired Navy officer, was found murdered in her house, on 1 Mavraganis Street in Papagou. The victim is Polyxeni Lyberopoulou, who was found in her apartments bedroom. The woman resided in the apartment with her husband and son. She had suffered multiple knife wounds and was found by her 26-year-old son who called the police. As the coroner concluded, the victim had sustained injuries on her head by a rock and several other knife wounds on her body. The Homicide Department rushed at the scene, while clues point to her husband as the main suspect, who has disappeared. Investigations are being conducted by policemen for the suspects location in order for him to make a statement over the murder.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    [06] Taliban Claimed Responsibility of Attack Suicide Attack in Afghanistan

    20 Dec 2005 10:57:00

    Today, three Italian soldiers, members of the Peace Corps in Afghanistan, were lightly injured by a suicide attack with a car bomb at the town of Herat, in the western part of the country, as a NATO spokesperson reported. At least one of the perpetrators was killed in the attack. The bomb explosion took place in a street leading from Herat to the airport as announced by Lieutenant Colonel Ricardo Christoni, a spokesperson of the International Security Force in Afghanistan (ISAF). A spokesperson of the Taliban claimed responsibility of the suicide attacks, which is the last of a series of acts by the Afghan rebels, targeted at government forces and the Peace Corps.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    [07] Air Accident in Miami

    19 Dec 2005 23:58:00

    By Annita Paschalinou

    Sources: Reuters

    As per the US Coast Guard, the death toll of a seaplane crash in Miami, Florida, is six persons, up to this moment. As per Reuters, 16 passengers were aboard the aircraft. TV network CNN spoke of 14 dead and 20 passengers in total; two pilots and 18 passengers, among whom two infants. Eyewitnesses reported that shortly before the fall of the aircraft, they heard a loud bang and saw smoke in the sky. Unconfirmed information reported that the aircraft belonged to a private company, which performs flights to Miami and the Bahamas.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    Read the story on other sources:

    Reuters: Seaplane crash in Miami kills six: Coast Guard

    [08] Following a Stroke Sharon Released From Hospital

    20 Dec 2005 11:16:00 (Last updated: 20 Dec 2005 13:38:06)

    By Vagelis Theodorou

    Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon was released from hospital on Monday following a minor stroke he suffered on Sunday. "This stroke did not influence my strength. I spent two pleasant days here," said Mr Sharon while addressing the hospital staff. At the same time, Mr Sharon thanked the citizens "who voiced their concern and interest," and joked with the reporters saying, "It appears that you have missed me," while referring to his new part Kadima he argued, "Now I must quickly get back to work and move forward." Kadima party official Roni Baron claimed that the Israeli PM will open the cabinet meeting scheduled for Sunday, while members of the Likud party argued that Sharons health problem is most likely to have an impact on the course of the new party. However, two new opinion polls placed Kadima first foreseeing that it will win 39 or 42 parliamentary seats in Knesset on March 28 early elections.

    Translated by Areti Christou

    Read the story on other sources:

    Haaretz: Kadima chair Bar-On: Sharon will open cabinet meeting Sunday

    Related News:

    Netanyahu Sweeps to Victory

    Sharon Won't Resign

    [09] Over Silvan Shalom Netanyahu Sweeps to Victory

    20 Dec 2005 01:06:00

    Opinion polls were confirmed. Former Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu swept to a victory in the Likud chairmanship race. He received 47% of the vote, as opposed to 32% for his challenger Foreign Affairs Minister Silvan Shalom. Hardliner rival Moshe Feiglin tallied with 15% and Agriculture Minister Yisrael Katz gathered 6%. The turnout, however, was rather low, since, according to the figures released by Likud, 40% of the party officials voted. "Likud has taken the road back to power," stated Mr Netanyahu as soon as the election results were announced. On his part, Mr Shalom conceded his defeat while congratulating the winner. "Ive told him that I will stand by him," he said to the reporters.

    Analysts argued that the election of the former Prime Minister to Likuds leadership signals the return of the party to its rightist roots, since the opinion polls conducted after Sharons withdrawal in November and the setting up of the new party have brought Likud to the third place.

    Benjamin Netanyahu was Israels Prime Minister (1996-1999) and Economy Minister in Sharons last government. The 56-year-old politician had strongly opposed the pullout of the Israeli settlers from Gaza and therefore he tendered his resignation.

    Translated by Areti Christou

    Read the story on other sources:

    Haaretz: Netanyahu: Likud is on road back to power

    Die Welt: Likud-Block wahlt Netanjahu zum neuen Parteichef

    Related News:

    Sharon Won't Resign

    [10] Discussion of Budget Continues Discussion of Budget Continues

    19 Dec 2005 23:17:00

    By Annita Paschalinou

    The discussions on the new budget continue with references made to community funds, while it will be completed with a roll-call vote on Thursday at midnight. Deputy Minister of Economy Petros Doukas referred to the "great success of the Government and the Prime Minister over the 20.1 billion euros we will receive from the EU" and accused PASOK on its implemented policies, saying that the Government received a State of restricted responsibility and an idle economy. On his part, PASOK MP Christos Verelis doubted the Governments capability to absorb 20.1bn euros of community funds. The former Transport Minister doubted the usefulness of the Government and estimated that ND MPs will vote for the budget out of political duty.

    Accusations by the Opposition

    On his part, KKE MP for Larissa Mr Tsiogas accused the Government of "anti-populist attacks adjusting the budget to the demands of competitiveness and for the benefit of industrialists."

    "The workers, as opposed to the employers and Government, do not owe anything and should not apologise to anyone," he added.

    SYN MP for Thessaloniki Asimina Xirotiri spoke of a loss of community funds from the 3rd Community Support Framework (CSF) and accused the Government of abandoning any idea of programming and social control of development.

    D. Avramopoulos on Tourism Discussing the budget in Parliament, Minister of Tourism Dimitris Avramopoulos voiced his satisfaction over the course of tourism and expressed the certainty that it will be even better in the coming years.

    This year, noted Mr Avramopoulos, the gross revenues from tourism were increased by 6.1% in comparison to the previous year of the Olympic Games, which means that the increase ranges around 16% to 17%.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    Related News:

    Budget at Focus

    [11] Akratitos Defeated Xanthi

    19 Dec 2005 23:16:00

    By Stathis Petropoulos

    Xanthi will not have a Merry Christmas since in the last but one game for 2005, was found against Akratitos, a team that can also be described as fearless due to the great difference between the two, and suffered a defeat by 2-0. The key player of the game concluding the 14th round of A Division was Brazilian Sales, who scored his teams two goals and he will surely enjoy his vacation. Xanthi may have entered the pitch forcefully, as in the 8 hit the goalpost. After half an hour, and with Xanthis supremacy being wiped out, Sales "hit" for the first time, while the second goal came in the 51 by the former once again.

    Referee: Vasileiou (Ilia)

    Yellow cards: Sales

    AKRATITOS: Stelea, Obradovic, Pipinis, Badas, Zuela, Macquet, Marinescu, Gustavo, Sales (79 Pagonis), Londo (58 Skoufalis), De Francesco (89 Tzimopoulos).

    XANTHI: Pizanowski, Maghradze, Papadimitriou (39 De Mattia), Paviot, Sikov, Antzas, Emerson, Lafata (53 Kazakis), Garpozis, Baykara (74 Fliskas), Labriakos.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    [12] Computer System Assesses Films Cine-Review Without a Script

    20 Dec 2005 10:00:00

    By Vagelis Theodorou

    Will the remake of King Kong be a smash hit or a blunder? Will it make it to the top of the box office or will it prove nothing but a sheer flop? A US researcher developed a computer system promising to free film producers from such questions that could cost them millions of dollars. Dr Ramesh Sharda, a scientist at Oklahoma State University, came up with a programme assessing films and predicting their success, without even reading the script! The computer cine-critic depends on a neural network, a programme resembling a similar brain mechanism. The neural programme places the films in one of nine categories. In fact, Dr Shardas study, which appears in "Expert Systems with Applications," is sponsored by a great Hollywood film studio, which he refused to name.

    Blockbuster or a Flop?

    Focusing on the films success rather than its quality, this computer programme is capable of predicting which film is to become a blockbuster and which a flop.

    This unusual cine-critic used data on 834 films released between 1998 and 2002. The assessment of the films is built upon seven key parameters, the star value of the cast, the genre of the film, the degree of special effects employed, whether it is a sequel or not, the age of the target group and the number of the screens it is to open in.

    Depending on the score in all seven parameters, films fall into nine categories, ranging from "flop" (total takings less than $1 million) to "blockbuster" (over $200 million).

    The results of the study showed that 37 percent of the time the network accurately predicted which category the film fell into. For example, as the "founding father" of the programme said, the system correctly predicted that the Harry Potter series would be a smash hit. The four films released so far have amassed well over $3 billion worldwide

    Dr Shardas next step is to expand the system to DVDs. He is also working on a new website, where users can insert film parameters and get a prediction.

    Read the story on other sources:

    TechNewsWorld: Computer Program Predicts Feature Film Success

    Reuters: Computer spots a blockbuster from box office flop

    Related Links:

    Dr Sharda's Study


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