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The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English, 08-08-14

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

From: The Hellenic Radio (ERA) <>


  • [01] On Taut Rope
  • [02] Fresh Round of Talks
  • [03] Ceiling Prices on Fuel
  • [04] Ahmadinejad in Turkey
  • [05] Committee to Mark New Borders
  • [06] Fires in Argolida and Arcadia
  • [07] Pellas: 41 Y/O Stabs his Wife
  • [08] Civilians Rally on Landfill in Lefkimmi
  • [09] Serbia Refers to International Criminal Court
  • [10] Tallest Woman in the World Passes away
  • [11] Break of Pan Hellenic Record
  • [12] Beach Volley: Greece Advances to the "16"
  • [13] Beach Volley: Karantasiou-Arvaniti Disqualified
  • [14] Arkansas Democratic Head Shot Dead
  • [15] Not Withdrawing from Gori

  • [01] 78-Year-Old Expatriate Hellene Killed

    On Taut Rope

    14 Αυγ 2008 14:48:00 (Last updated: 14 Αυγ 2008 17:01:26)

    By Betty Savourdou

    Sources: ΝΕΤ, ΝΕΤ 105.8, Reuters, ΑNA-ΜPA

    Although Russia and Georgia have agreed to adopt the EU peace plan, the implementation of truce in Caucasus seems to be difficult. While the Russian troops were expected to be withdrawn from Gori, a spokesman of the Georgian Interior Ministry stated that the Russian forces "are destroying" the city. As per the AFP, strong blasts have been just heard and thick smoke covered Gori, while Russian troops are heading to Poti port and a military base in the area, something which Russia has rejected. Meanwhile, Russian President Dmitri Medvedev invited France to encourage Tbilisi to sign a binding agreement, not allowing it to attack its provinces, which wish to become autonomous. Meanwhile, the Russian Prosecutor has reported that it will begin an investigation on genocide, following Georgian military operations in South Ossetia. At the same time, the Georgian Ambassador to the UN is accusing the Russians of "inhumane abusiveness." Besides, it has been announced that a 78-year-old expatriate Hellene has been killed in Tshinvali during the clashes in South Ossetia.

    Moscow Says its Forces not in Poti

    A spokesman of the Georgian Interior Ministry reported that the Russian forces "are destroying" Gori near South Ossetia and Poti port in the Black Sea. He added that blasts are being heard and the city planted with mines. Furthermore, he argued that the Russians are destroying new roads constructed in western Georgia.

    Although Russia has rejected that its forces are in Poti, eyewitnesses stated that Russian tanks enter the city. In reply, Deputy Chief of the Russian General Staff Anatoli Nagovitsin stated that there are neither Russian tanks nor troops in Poti.

    Meanwhile, Europeasn envoys, accompanied by a Georgian official have not managed to arrive in Gori, as the Russian army forbade them to do so. However, the mission described the situation calm.

    Tension between the US and Russia

    US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, who is to meet with EU President Nicolas Sarkozy to brief him on his contacts with Moscow, stressed that if Russia is indeed violating the ceasefire, then it may find itself isolated. Ms Rice is on her way to Tbilisi to meet with President Michael Saakashvili.

    Meanwhile, despite Mr Saakashvilis relevant statements, the US announced that it does not plan to take under its control Georgias ports and airports, within the framework of its peace initiative. In parallel, the Kremlin has called on Washington to decide whether it will support Georgia or honor a real relationship between partners with Moscow. At the same time, Russian President Dmitri Medvenev has called on France to encourage the Georgian government to sign a binding agreement, forbidding any attacks against South Ossetia and Abkhazia.

    Earlier, the Russian President had met with the leaders of S. Ossetia and Abkhazia in the Kremlin to sign a six-point French plan that will allow the end of hostilities. Mr Medvedev stated Russia would support South Ossetia and Abkhazias decision, promising to guarantee for them on the Caucasus and all over the world.

    Besides, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov told a Press Conference in Moscow that Georgias territorial integrity is de facto limited, adding that the issue can only be resolved in mutually accepted ways.

    In a telephone conversation with his US counterpart, Mr Lavrov rejected the reasons why Russia is violating the truce in Georgia and the fact that it is not respecting the principles included in the agreement for the resolution of the crisis.

    On Wednesday, the EU Foreign Ministers decided at an extraordinary meeting to sent observers immediately to monitor the fragile truce. Greek Foreign Minister Dora Bakoyannis stated that the objective is the end of ceasefire and operations, the return to the prior state and the commencing of a dialogue.

    Finally, the Georgian ambassador to the UN accused the Russian soldiers of inhumane brutality, adding that humanitarian organizations did not have access to territories controlled by the Russian armed forces. He also accused the Russians of attacking indiscreetly Georgian civilians and infrastructures.

    Humanitarian Aid

    The US is sending humanitarian aide to Georgia. Two aircrafts have transferred tents, sleeping bags, blankets and medicines to Tbilisi.

    Besides a Greek military aircraft carrying tents, blankets and medicines arrived in Georgia yesterday.

    Meanwhile, it has been announced that a 78-year-old expatriate Hellene, named Ivan Michailidis has been killed in Tshinvali during the clashes in South Ossetia. His three-member family remains in the area.

    Until now, 25 refugees, including expatriate Hellenes have arrived in Vladikavkas

    The Greek ambassador to Novorossisk, who has been in Vladikavkas since the first day of the crisis is in contact with expatriate Hellenes and the president of the local Greek community and local authorities to help them with their problems.

    The Greek government has decided to offer the members of the above families extraordinary financial aid.

    Translated by John Crystallidis

    Read the story on other sources:

    BBC: Russians begin Georgia handover

    Related News:

    Not Withdrawing from Gori

    [02] FYROM Issue

    Fresh Round of Talks

    14 Αυγ 2008 15:53:00

    Sources: ΝΕΤ, ΝΕΤ 105.8, ΑNA, CNN

    UN envoy Matthew Nimetz, who will visit Skopje and Athens next week, has announced a new round of talks on the FYROM (Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia) name issue. Prior to his meeting with the Greek negotiator Adamantios Vassilakis on Wednesday, Mr Nimetz told Skopje reporters that the negotiations would focus on the name-issue, as designated by the interim agreement and the relevant Security Council resolution.

    At the same time, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice has reiterated the USs fixed position that the FYROM name-issue should not constitute an obstacle to FYROMs entry to NATO.

    Meanwhile, in a radio interview, PASOK cadre A. Loverdos expressed his concern over the fact that Mr Nimetz had not stated clearly that there is only issue open to be discussed, which is the FYROM name-issue and nothing else. "Mr Nimetz described the name-issue the central issue to be discussed and not the sole issue for discussions," said Mr Loverdos.

    Finally, as per Dvenvik newspaper in Skopje, FYROM citizens who are coming to Greece for their holidays are undergoing thorough checks from FYROMs customs authorities.

    Translated by John Crystallidis

    Related News:

    Nimetz: "Focus on Name-Issue"

    [03] Ceiling Prices on Fuel

    14 Αυγ 2008 12:03:00

    Sources: ΝΕΤ 105.8

    Accepting the proposal of the Regulatory Authority for Energy (RAE), Development Minister Christos Folias and Economy Minister George Alogoskoufis have decided to impose ceiling prices on fuel in the Dodecanese, Heraklion, Corfu, Kefallinia, Cyclades, Lasithi, Lesvos, Lefkada, Rethymno, Chania and Chios. The measure will be introduced in an attempt to further deescalate fuel prices.

    As per the ministerial decision, ceiling prices will go into force as of today until 31 August. Prices of petrol in islands with at least three petrol stations will be selling unleaded oil at 1.247 euros per litre, super unleaded oil at 1.443 euros per litre, super leaded at 1.327 euros per litre and diesel oil at 1.373 euros per litre. Prices of petrol in islands with at least two petrol stations will be selling unleaded oil at 1.257 euros per litre, super unleaded at 1.453 euros per litre, super leaded at 1.337 euros per litre and diesel oil at 1.383 euros per litre.

    Translated by John Crystallidis

    Related News:

    Summer Profiteering to End

    [04] Ahmadinejad in Turkey

    14 Αυγ 2008 14:54:00

    Sources: ANA

    Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has arrived in Constantinople today to hold talks with Turkish officials on Irans nuclear programme and bilateral relations reported the Anadolu news agency. Talks will also focus on the fight against Kurd autonomists and Turkeys cooperation with Iran in the energy sector.

    Later today, the Iranian leaders will meet with Turkish President Abdullah Gul. On Friday, he will meet with Prime Minister Recep Tayeep Erdogan, before ending his first visit to a NATO member-state.

    As source from the Turkish PMs office reported that Mr Ahmadinejads visit to Turkey may not result in the signing of the expected agreements on oil and natural gas, following the Iranian sides fresh requests.

    In July, Turkey and Iran signed a preliminary agreement to export Iranian natural gas to Europe through Turkey. It has been estimated that Turkey will be producing 20.4 billion cubic metres of natural gas in Irans southern Pars.

    Turkeys investment for the production of natural gas in Iran has been estimated to about 3.5 billion dollars. The USA has expressed its objection to the agreement.

    Translated by John Crystallidis

    [05] Committee to Mark New Borders

    14 Αυγ 2008 14:11:00

    Sources: ΑNA, AFP

    Syria and Lebanon have announced the setting up of a joint committee that will mark the borders between the two countries, one of the thorny issues raised in Damascus by Lebanese President Michel Suleiman

    In a joint announcement made public after the Lebanese Presidents first visit since 2005, the two countries report that they have decided to "re-activate" a joint committee that will investigate the issue people who have vanished in both countries.

    However, Syria has announced today that the Shebaa Farms borders, occupied by Israel will not be marked before the Jewish state withdraws from the area.

    Israel regards Shebaa Farms, which it has been occupying since 1967, part of the Golan Heights, while Syria and Lebanon regard them Lebanese.

    Thus, the disputed areas borders will not be in the committees focus.

    Translated by John Crystallidis

    [06] Fires in Argolida and Arcadia

    14 Αυγ 2008 13:59:00

    Sources: NET 105.8, ΑNA-ΜPA

    The fire that broke out 12:15 on a hill at Lygourio, Argolida is still burning dried grassland, without however threatening inhabited areas. 15 fire-engines with 30 firemen are aided by five fire-fighting planes and one water-dropping helicopter are trying to contain the fire.

    As per the General Secretariat of Political Protection, Athens, Eastern Attica, Evia, the Cyclades and Samos are running a high risk for fires to break out there.

    Thus, people should abstain from outdoor works that might cause fire and see that they do not throw away their lit cigarettes. In case of fire, they should call 199.

    Translated by John Crystallidis

    [07] Her Health Condition Stable

    Pellas: 41 Y/O Stabs his Wife

    14 Αυγ 2008 12:52:00

    A 41 years old man injured his wife after a fight they had in Arnissa of Pella prefecture. The man also attacked and injured his 75 years old father who was transferred to Arnissa Health Center where he received first aid. The man and wife often quarreled and their relationship was turbulent. The 23 years old woman beard multiple injuries by hunting knife in her stomach, back and limbs. She was transferred to the General Hospital of Edessa and was submitted to surgery. According to her treating doctors, her health condition is stable. Police is conducting preliminary investigation on the incident and the murderer is expected to be indicted for attempt of murder.

    Translated by Sofia Gartziou

    [08] Civilians Rally on Landfill in Lefkimmi

    14 Αυγ 2008 11:43:00

    Sources: ΝΕΤ 105.8

    The inhabitants Coordination Committee in Lefkimmi, Corfu is staging a fresh rally on Saturday evening against the creation of a landfill in the area, requesting in parallel the removal of MAT (Riot Police) police forces. Meanwhile, the trial of the two individuals, who were held responsible for last Saturdays incidents, was postponed for 8 January. The President of the court postponed the trial as the four witnesses for the prosecution did not attend the trial on the excuse that they were on duty.

    Translated by John Crystallidis

    [09] Serbia Refers to International Criminal Court

    14 Αυγ 2008 10:54:00

    Serbias Foreign Minister Vuk Jeremic said that his countrys key goal is to request the International Criminal Court examine the legitimacy of the unilateral declaration of Kosovos independence and halt the recognition procedure, so that the two sides can resume talks. Asked whether the Georgian standoff could be linked to the Kosovo issue, he said that Serbia views unilateral declaration of independence as a risky precedent worldwide.

    The Serbian Foreign Minister argued that the situation in the Caucasus proved how dangerous a military intervention could be, further stressing that Serbia had always been after a permanent solution.

    Jeremic is due in the USA, where the UN General Assembly is to request the International Criminal Court to examine the Serbian claim.

    Kosovos President Fatmir Sejdiu, on the other hand, said that he was not concerned over the statements of the Serbian officials with regard to the recognition of Kosovos independence. Sejdiu underlined that the recognition process cannot be affected by Serbia.

    [10] Tallest Woman in the World Passes away

    14 Αυγ 2008 10:07:00

    By Vivian Papastefanou

    Sources: ΑNA-ΜPA/CNN

    Sandy Allen, named the worlds tallest woman (3.31metres) in 1975 by the Guinness World Records book has died today at the age of 53 at an old peoples home in Shelbyville, Indiana, the local newspapers have reported. The cause of her death is not known. However, Allen was suffering from kidney and blood infections. At the age of 10 she was 1.90 tall. Many believe that her extraordinary height is due to an operation for the removal of a tumor when she was young.

    Translated by John Crystallidis

    [11] Break of Pan Hellenic Record

    14 Αυγ 2008 15:21:00

    By Nasos Bratsos

    Apostolos Tsagarakis occupied the second place in Beijing Mens 50 m. Freestyle-Heat 10 clocked 22.39 and equaled his pan Hellenic record. The Greek swimmer finishes 26 in total rank (in semi finals tomorrow, the 16 first will advance).

    Translated by Sofia Gartziou

    [12] Beach Volley: Greece Advances to the "16"

    14 Αυγ 2008 10:38:00 (Last updated: 14 Αυγ 2008 15:52:09)


    Koutroumanidou Efthalia and Tsiartsiani Maria were defeated by German Goller Shara and Ludwig Laura 2-0 (24-22, 21-12) in womens beach volleyball in a match taking place under difficult weather conditions. However they made it to the last "16" of the competition as one of the best three teams of the competition. The Greek team will face Australian Natalie Cook and Tamsin Barnett. The date of the game has not been set yet as the timetable is formed due to broadcasting reasons- according to the Chinese teams.

    Koutroumanidous Statements

    Efthalia Koutroumanidou: "Our performance was bad. We made many mistakes and our opponents fairly reached victory. We must not repeat such a performance in the next phase. The weather was bad and hardened our efforts".

    Translated by Sofia Gartziou

    [13] Beach Volley: Karantasiou-Arvaniti Disqualified

    14 Αυγ 2008 10:38:00

    By Thanasis Karlos

    In the first round of womens beach volley Karantasiou-Arvaniti were defeated by Brazilian Talita-Renata 2-0 set (22-20, 21-19) and are disqualified as they occupied the last placed in group D of the competition.

    Translated by Sofia Gartziou

    [14] Arkansas Democratic Head Shot Dead

    14 Αυγ 2008 09:34:00

    Sources: REUTERS

    The chairman of the Arkansas Democratic Party, Bill Gwatney, died in a hospital after being shot by a lone gunman at the partys headquarters in Little Rock, officials said on Wednesday. His unidentified killer also died after a high-speed chase and exchange of gunfire with police. The motive for the shooting remained unknown.

    "Arkansas has lost a great son, and I have lost a great friend. There is deep pain in Arkansas tonight," Arkansas Gov. Mike Beebe, a Democrat, said in a statement.

    Gwatney, 48, was a former state Senator and his shooting shocked the southern state and the Democratic Party establishment. As a state party chairman, he would have also been a "superdelegate" at the partys national convention in Denver later this month.

    Local media reports said the gunman had fired three shots in Gwatneys office before fleeing the scene.

    Read the story on other sources:

    CNN: Arkansas Democratic chairman killed in shooting

    [15] The Russian Troops

    Not Withdrawing from Gori

    14 Αυγ 2008 09:28:00 (Last updated: 14 Αυγ 2008 16:48:07)

    Sources: NET - NET 105.8, AFP

    The ceasefire agreement achieved in the Caucasus remains shaky. Russian President Dmitry Medvedev has urged Russia, which is mediating in the conflict, to encourage Tbilisi to sign a binding agreement. While NATO has been scheduled to hold an emergency session on coming Tuesday, the Washington-Moscow relations are to be seriously tested. US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice is due in Paris and Tbilisi to have talks on the crisis in the Caucasus. Washington has called on Russia to fully observe the truce pact. In the meantime, a spokesman of the Georgian Interior Minister said that the Russian forces had not pulled out of Gori, central Georgia. They kept saying they would leave the city, but they changed their mind, said he, further adding that the Georgian forces stayed off Gori to avoid clashing with the Russians. He had earlier announced that the Russians had started withdrawing their troops from Gori and that Georgias police and armed forces would gradual take over.

    Russian forces have returned to the Georgian port of Poti and raised troop numbers in Gori despite a ceasefire, a spokeswoman for Georgias foreign ministry said on Thursday. "Despite the previously reached agreement, Russians are deploying additional forces in Gori and fortifying the city. At the same time, Russian armed forces have returned to Poti," spokeswoman Nato Chikovani told AFP.

    Kremlin called on Washington to choose between partnership with Moscow or the Georgian leadership, stressing that were Georgia to earn a NATO membership, that would put the Alliance to the test. In the meantime, urged by the USA, NATO barred a Russian ship from joining a multi-national anti-terrorism patrol in the Mediterranean, in retaliation for Moscows military operations in Georgia.

    Russian President Dmitry Medvedev urged France, which is mediating in the conflict, to encourage Tbilisi to sign a binding agreement not to wage attacks on its separatists region, said Kremlin on Thursday.

    Medvedev had a telephone conversation late on Wednesday with his French counterpart Nicolas Sarkozy, who contributed to the wording of the key points of the ceasefire agreement between Russia and Georgia in South Ossetia, continued Kremlin.

    In the meantime, US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice departed early on Thursday morning (Greek local time) for Paris and Tbilisi, where she is to hold talks with French and Georgian top-ranking government officials on the conflict in South Ossetia and the crisis in Abkhazia.

    US President George W. Bush demanded Wednesday the immediate Russian withdrawal from Georgia.

    "Observing the ceasefire is what matters," stressed Wednesday Greek Foreign Minister Dora Bakoyannis, who attended the informal Summit of the 27 EU Foreign Ministers in Brussels.

    Investigation into Genocide Accusations

    Russian judicial authorities have started investigating accusations speaking of genocide in South Ossetia, after being tipped off actions against the Russian citizens living in South Ossetia. Special investigators have already been sent to the breakaway province to collect information.

    Russia has also requested the Georgians accused of genocide in South Ossetia be brought to a trial at an international tribunal.

    Estimates on human losses during the fighting are contradictory. Authorities in Russia and the Ossetian separatists speak of 1500 deaths, without citing their sources. According to the Russian army, 74 have been killed, 171 have sustained injuries and 19 have been reported missing. Georgia, on the other side, has said that death toll amounts to 175.

    Related News:

    Fragile Truce

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