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The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English, 06-04-05

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

From: The Hellenic Radio (ERA) <>


  • [01] 2-Year Contracts in DEKOs
  • [02] Chain Reactions over Insulting Mottos
  • [03] New Impetus for Cyprus Issue
  • [04] Changes in the Choice of Candidates
  • [05] Kalousis Guilty of Bribery
  • [06] Work Stoppage at the Metro
  • [07] Prospects of Further Cooperation
  • [08] 򺺝 in Domestic Poultry
  • [09] Playboy Enters Gay Market?
  • [10] Prosecutor Intervened on New List
  • [11] KKE Blasts Deal on Work Contracts
  • [12] Message to Turkey
  • [13] Municipal Employees on Strike

  • [01] Biministerial Committee Decided 2-Year Contracts in DEKOs

    05 Apr 2006 14:36:00 (Last updated: 05 Apr 2006 17:51:04)

    By Mary Lou Tzempelikou

    Sources: 团

    As announced by Greek Economy Minister Giorgos Alogoskoufis after the Biministerial committee convened Wednesday to discuss the DEKOs (public utilities and enterprises), the administrations of loss-making enterprises should aim at entering into two-year contracts with the employees. The Presidents of OASA (Athens Urban Transport Organisation, OSE (National Railway Company) and the Greek Aerospace Industry also attended the meeting. On his part, Development Minister Dimitris Sioufas underscored, "The changes and reforms on DEKOs proceed in a careful and decisive manner," while Transport Minister Michael Liapis stated that some DEKOs had accumulated deficits, adding that curtailing the deficits of the loss-making DEKOs is a keynote priority. Defence Minister Vangelis Meimarakis also attended the meeting.

    Aimed at Curbing Deficits

    The pay rises, which should be decided on until April 30, will amount to 3% this year, with the total pay cost standing at 5%, while pay rises will amount to 4% in 2007, with the total pay cost climbing to 6%.

    It is noted that OASAs operating costs for 2005 posted a 5.4% drop, while emphasis will be placed on OSE, whose deficit reached 600 million euros last year.

    With regard to the Greek Aerospace Industry, the unjustifiable bonuses should be curbed, while personnel regulations have to undergo all necessary changes.

    Finally, as for the Olympic Airlines, the Economy Ministry is awaiting the opinion of the Legal Council of the Greek State on whether the company can be incorporated in the law on DEKOs.

    It is noted that the European Commission granted a two-month extension for OA to return the illegal state aid it had received for the period 1998-2002. In addition, the EC warned that if the company does not comply, the case will be referred to the European Court, while it proposed the imposition of penalties.

    SYN Blasted the Deal

    SYN member Panayotis Lafazanis termed the decision of the Biministerial Committee as a "monument of anti-labour perception," underlining, "it abolishes the liberty of collective work contracts just like that, and vies to impose on the so-called loss-making DEKOs a two-year austerity period with pay rises ranging even below the official price index."

    Translated by Areti Christou

    [02] By DAP Members Against PASOK President Chain Reactions over Insulting Mottos

    05 Apr 2006 15:58:00 (Last updated: 05 Apr 2006 19:14:05)

    By Mary Lou Tzempelikou

    Sources: NET, NET Radio 105.8,

    The Government condemned the insulting mottos against PASOK President George Papandreou during the speech of Culture Minister Giorgos Voulgarakis at a DAP (ND-affiliated Students Union) event in Thessaloniki. "Such mottos, as the ones heard today against the PASOK President, do not honour our political culture," stressed ND Secretary General Lefteris Zagoritis. Government spokesperson Theodoros Roussopoulos condemned the incident, stressing it was an isolated reaction. On his part, Mr Voulgarakis stressed the mottos do not represent either himself or the vast majority of DAP students, adding they do not befit NDs political culture. A few hours after the incident, PASOK Press Spokesperson Nikos Athanasakis had strongly reacted, noting Mr Voulgarakis is heavily exposed for "tolerating insulting mottos" and added, "The facts and TV image speak for themselves about Mr Voulgarakis so-called political culture."

    On Tuesday, Mr Voulgarakis contacted PASOK Secretary Mariliza Xenogiannakopoulou, asking her to let Mr Papandreou know how sorry he was, explaining he could not hear the mottos and hence intervene, because of the heated climate in the hall.

    Referring to the incident, Defence Minister Evangelos Meimarakis said times have changed in Universities, noting DAP has imposed a new civilised behaviour without violent outbursts.

    KKE Secretary General Aleka Papariga also condemned the incident, stressing neither ND nor PASOK are capable of inspiring political culture.

    ONNED President Giorgos Papanikolaou categorically condemned the mottos, noting, "Such behaviours neither represent nor reflect our beliefs."

    Speaking on NET radio 105.8, DAP secretary Dimitris Valoudakis also condemned the incidents, while PASP (PASOK-affiliated Students' Union) secretary Kostas Mefsout accused the Culture Minister, saying such behaviours do not befit politicians.

    Translated by Sofia Soulioti

    Related News:

    Student Elections

    [03] Day Two of her Visit to Cyprus New Impetus for Cyprus Issue

    05 Apr 2006 12:02:00 (Last updated: 05 Apr 2006 19:22:42)


    Sources: 团-团 105.8-ANA

    Greek FM Dora Bakoyannis held talks Wednesday with her Cypriot counterpart Giorgos Iakovou and political leaders in Nicosia, in the context of her official visit to Cyprus. The Cyprus issue, Turkeys European prospects, the EU enlargement, as well as the developments in the Balkans, topped the agenda between the two Ministers. "We have agreed on everything," noted Mr Iakovou and predicted that Mrs Bakoyannis visit "will benefit the aspirations of both countries." The Cypriot FM also added that Nicosia has drawn its attention to Turkeys appointment with the EU, which will determine whether Ankara has met its obligations towards the 25 bloc. On her part, Mrs Bakoyannis praised the close ties Greece and Cyprus enjoy and underlined that the cooperation between the two countries will be further strengthened, in the light of the new impetus favouring the Cyprus issue. Referring to the Annan plan, she reiterated that the way it was presented resulted in its being rejected by the Cypriot people and that it now belongs to the past.

    Commenting on the violations of the Greek national air space by Turkish fighter jets occurred Tuesday, Mrs Bakoyannis argued, "Such behaviours contradict Turkeys willingness to enter the European family," further adding she still believes that the powers wishing for Turkey to have a European and democratic future will prevail. The Greek FM met with Cyprus House of Representatives Dimitris Christofias. They both reaffirmed the will of Athens and Nicosia to embark on a coordinated course of actions so that the recent developments on the Cyprus issue bear fruit.

    Earlier, Mrs Bakoyannis had visited the Imprisoned Tombs, graves of Greek Cypriots killed during the anti-colonial struggle in the mid-50s, and the Makedonitissa Tomb, in Nicosia. The Greek FM also paid a visit to the headquarters of the Cyprus National Guard and was informed by Chief of the National Guard Lieutenant General Constantinos Bisbikas.

    Translated by Areti Christou

    Related News:

    Joint Stance

    [04] Papandreou Harshly Criticised the Government Changes in the Choice of Candidates

    05 Apr 2006 16:43:00

    Sources: NET, NET Radio 105.8

    PASOK President George Papandreou announced a new way of selecting PASOK candidate mayors and prefects for the upcoming municipal elections. As per Mr Papandreou, candidates in 24 municipalities will be chosen through preliminary elections while an innovation will be pilot tested at the municipality of Maroussi. A randomly selected electoral body of 200-300 citizens will choose the party candidate. As per the president of the Electoral Processes Committee, Alekos Papadopoulos, these innovations will have a consultative nature, as the Committee will perform the final political evaluation. During the presentation, George Papandreou launched an attack against the Government, accusing it of creating a climate of political decay.

    Translated by Sofia Soulioti

    [05] Innocent for Breach of Duty Kalousis Guilty of Bribery

    05 Apr 2006 17:32:00

    Sources: NET, ANA

    The 3rd Three-Member Court of Appeals penalized former justice Evangelos Kalousis, who is remand in custody for his implication in the extra-judicial ring, with 3.5 years of incarceration for bribery. The court ruled against Kalousis on a bribery case back in 2001, when he had asked for 50 million drachmas to release Giorgos Iatridis, who was doing time for drug trafficking. Giorgos Iatridis, his wife and a pharmacist were charged with selling illegal formulations containing narcotic substances on the Internet. The court found Kalousis innocent on the charge of breach of duty, as it was not proved that Kalousis acted upon third persons indications.

    He Denied Accusations

    Speaking before the court, the former justice denied the accusations, supporting the case was "fabricated" with "lies and slander." Defendant G. Iatridis and his wife an American citizen- testified in court. The couple, accused of drug trafficking, testified Kalousis was asking for exchanged in order to release the both of them.

    Translated by Sofia Soulioti

    [06] On Thursday, from 5am until 9am Work Stoppage at the Metro

    05 Apr 2006 16:51:00

    Sources: NET

    Passengers using the Metro system for their transportation will be faced with an unpleasant surprise on Thursday. Employees' will go on a four-hour work stoppage, requesting for the implementation of the Collective Labour Contract. Trains will be performing no routes from 5am until 9am.

    Translated by Sofia Soulioti

    [07] Between Greece and Turkey Prospects of Further Cooperation

    05 Apr 2006 19:29:00

    By Dimitris Alexopoulos

    Sources: NET, ANA

    Economy Minister George Alogoskoufis and Turkish State Minister for Trade Kursad Tusmen, who met in the afternoon, estimated the purchase of Turkish bank Finansbank by the NBG (National Bank of Greece) would open new horizons in the Greek-Turkish business relations. The two Ministers met at the Economy Ministry and went over the total of Greek-Turkish economic relations, also voicing the need to further reinforce bilateral commercial transactions, which have doubled in the last three years. In fact, only 10 Turkish companies are doing business in Greece, while there are 228 Greek businesses in Turkey.

    In this context, the two Ministers decided to expand their cooperation, in order to come up with solutions so that commercial transactions between the two countries are further boosted.

    Mr Alogoskoufis also repeated the Greek government's fixed position to support Turkey's European prospect, because its integration to the European Union will be beneficial for both countries and the wider Southeastern European area.

    On his part, Mr Tusmen said the meeting also focused on the prospect of developing trade in coastal areas and making joint investments in third countries.

    Translated by Sofia Soulioti

    [08] In Leipzig, Germany 򺺝 in Domestic Poultry

    05 Apr 2006 18:34:00

    By Despina Hristopoulou

    Sources: BBC, Reuters

    The deadly strain of the avian influenza was located for the first time at a poultry-breeding unit in Leipzig, Saxony. The virus, which has claimed the lives of over 100 people, mostly in Asia, was located in a farm with some 16,000 geese, turkeys and chickens. This is the first time the virus is located in a domestic poultry in Germany and the second in Europe (France). In Germany, the virus has been also detected on cats. The Minister of Social Affairs in Saxony stressed all poultry in the farm will be culled. "This first case raises many questions," said the German Chancellor, Angela Merkel, stressing the situation is serious. However, she added all necessary actions will be taken to prevent the virus from spreading.

    Translated by Sofia Soulioti

    Read the story on other sources:

    BBC: Bird flu found in German poultry

    [09] Playboy Enters Gay Market?

    05 Apr 2006 12:23:00

    By Annita Paschalinou

    Playboy magazine is considering launching a gay brand even within 2006. Playboy CEO Christie Hefner told the London Times that they may move into the gay market, underlining that given the importance of the market in Britain, such a publication will not take long. Despite its limited circulation of some three million copies worldwide, the magazine is pretty profitable. It is the flagship magazine of a larger group that recently entered the fashion market focusing on clothes and accessories for women. Playboy items have worked their way through many European stores, including Selfridges in London and Colette in Paris. The group is due to open a series of branches in Europe before the end of 2006.

    Translated by Areti Christou

    [10] To Investigate the Complaint Prosecutor Intervened on New List

    05 Apr 2006 16:16:00

    By Tina Valaoura

    Sources: ANA-团

    Chief First Instance Prosecutor Dimitris Papangelopoulos requested journalist Aristea Bougatsou submit all evidence that made her report the interceptions of journalists phone conversations. The Prosecutor asked the journalist, who works for paper Kathimerini and Skai radio station, to present him every single document she delivered to the Hellenic Authority for the Information and Communication Security and Privacy (ADAE) to study the case and rule whether it has to be investigated by a judicial worker.

    On his part, Public Order Minister Byron Polidoras dismissed the claims and invited the Authority to inspect the operational capacities of the Greek Intelligence Service.

    Following the meeting held late on Tuesday by its Board of Directors, the Journalists Union of Athens Daily Newspapers (ESHEA) demanded the case be fully unravelled.

    The list yielded by the journalists bore no evidence on the sender. The list includes the names of 24 journalists working for a total of seven television networks and newspapers. The names of the TV networks and newspapers and the journalists were on Latin letterings, while three of them were misspelled. In particular, P. Galiatsatos working for daily Ta Nea was spelled as Galiatsanos, ESHEA President P. Sobolos was spelled as Siobolos and Themos Anastasiadis, co-publisher of paper Thema, was spelled as Athanasiadis.

    In her letter, Mrs Bougatsou claimed that the interceptions started after the end of the 2004 Olympic Games and named the Greek Intelligence Service or some part of it as responsible.

    However, many have questioned the authenticity of the list, since, as they said, the names were written on a white paper, without any distinctive sings on.

    The head of the PMs political office Giannis Angelou is to testify Thursday morning before the Parliaments Standing Committee on Institutions and Transparency on the wiretapping case.

    Related News:

    Greek Journalists Bugged

    Related Links:


    [11] KKE Called the Deal Outrageous KKE Blasts Deal on Work Contracts

    05 Apr 2006 15:48:00

    By Vicky Keleri

    Sources: ANA- 团

    KKE secretary general Aleka Papariga blasted ND and PASOK, on the occasion of the deal on the collective work contract, which she termed as outrageous from an economic, political and moral viewpoint. As she noted, the deal struck helped the ruling party to augment its credibility before the employers unions and so is the case when it comes to PASOK. The only difference comes to the fact that PASOK had a remarkable knack of misleading and deceiving the employees. Mrs Papariga further added that KKE views the pay rises given as bits, given the exorbitant and constant rises in the living standards of the employees. Furthermore, Mrs Papariga called on the employees to take to the streets on April 13.

    A. Alavanos Used Harsh Tongue

    On his part, SYN President Alekos Alavanos described the collective work contract as a provocation, mainly for the low-income earners.

    "Such a development, so alien to the real needs of the employees, would not have been possible had there not been convergence between the Government and the Main Opposition," he argued.

    Translated by Areti Christou

    [12] By the Greek Defence Minister Message to Turkey

    05 Apr 2006 15:34:00

    By Tina Valaoura

    Sources: ANA-团

    While addressing the annual conference launched by Economist, Greek Defence Minister Evangelos Meimarakis called on Turkey to halt the violations of the Greek national air space. Underlining that the further development of the Greek-Turkish relations mostly depends upon Turkeys stance, Evangelos Meimarakis reminded that fully respecting the universals that govern good neighbouring relations is an absolute imperative for Turkeys smooth European course.

    "In this context, the practice of violating the Athens FIR and the Greek national air space and territorial waters should be halted, for it contradicts Turkeys obligations towards the EU," pointed out the Defence Minister, further adding that threat of casus belli, apart from being old-fashioned and incompatible with Turkeys European prospect, runs contrary to its pledges and fails to contribute to the drive for a bilateral communication and cooperation.

    Commenting on Tuesdays violations of the Greek national air space by Turkish fighter jets that coincided with Greek FM Dora Bakoyannis visit to Cyprus, Mr Meimarakis maintained that Turkey is giving Greece and Europe wrong messages.

    During his address at the Economists conference, the Greek Defence Minister outlined the core of the Greek defence policy, which aims to establish safety, peace and stability in the wider area, while he reminded Greeces active participation in the initiative for the Mediterranean Dialogue and the Euro-Atlantic prospects of the SE European countries.

    Translated by Areti Christou

    [13] On April 5 and 6 Municipal Employees on Strike

    05 Apr 2006 13:53:00

    Sources: 团, 团 105.8

    Municipal employees have scheduled a 48-hour strike for Wednesday and Thursday, demanding pay rises. The employees staged Wednesday a street protest at Karaiskaki Square and then marched towards the Greek Ministry for the Interior. Pay rises, permanent working status for their colleagues covering fixed and permanent needs and payment of productivity bonus, are listed among their claims. Due to the strike, the rubbish will not be collected, therefore the Municipality of Athens plead the citizens not to discard their household rubbish to the rubbish tanks. A delegation of the municipal employees met with Interior Minister secretary general Thanassis Vezyrgiannis. SYN President Alekos Alavanos attended the street protest at Karaiskaki Square and voiced his backing to the cause of the employees.

    Translated by Areti Christou

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