|Friday, 1 March 2024
The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English, 09-05-14
From: The Hellenic Radio (ERA) <www.ert.gr/>
 Euro-elections-Feverish PreparationsND and PASOK parties will announce their Euro elections lists next Sunday while both parties keep absolute secrecy regarding the candidates selected by the two party leaders at the top of their lists.
Marietta Yiannakou (ND) and George Papakonstantinou (PASOK) are the most likely candidates at the top of the respective political parties Euro elections lists while present Euro-deputies and senior political personalities are expected to be included in electable positions their lists. Bothe parties announced that their campaigns, which officially start on Sunday with K. Karamanlis speech as the Arta indoors stadium and G. Papandreou with an open gathering in Patra, will focus on economy.
Commenting on rumours about his inclusion in the Euro-elections list, Defense Minister B. Meimarakis told reporters that a proposal was neither made to him nor to any other senior official. He also stressed that he has drawn a long-term plan for the Defense Ministry and is flying to Brussels for a three-day visit to attend meetings of EU Ministers for defense and Foreign Affairs. In response to a relevant question, government spokesman said that discussions center on the real problems of Greek people. Foreign Minister Dora Bakoyianni said that the ND is launching its campaign with optimism, self-confidence and certainty. Environment and Public Works Minister G. Souflias underlined that Euro elections have an importance of particular European dimension and particular importance for national policy. The general secretary of the ND Central Committee Lefteris Zagoritis said that pre-election campaign is carried on with optimism, adding that a Europe with solidarity and respect to citizens is necessary for the exit from the financial crisis.
In response to PASOK Euro elections list, G. Papandreou, who is China, said he would answer after his deliberations with Confucius. PASOK spokesman G. Papakonstantinou also avoided to give a specific answer, saying that all candidates and senior members in the European Parliament do their job in the best way and promote Greece's positions. The general secretary of the GCP said that ND PASOK and all political parties that signed the Maastricht treaty have lied to employees and the youth about a paradise through the EU. Alexis Tsipras blamed both large parties for fabricated polarization. Stefanos Manos, leader of DRASH announced the party Euro elections list with Stelios Papathemelis at the top.
The newspaper "New York Times" predicts a low turn out in Euro elections and rise in percentage of small parties. The same article says that voters' ignorance on European Parliament competences, exercise of power by groups with vague ideological identity and dissatisfaction at the hypotonic way that European institutions handled the global financial crisis are among the basic reasons of the low turn out.
Sources: ΝΕΤ, ΝΕΤ 105.8, ΑNA
News item: 22340
 Reserved Optimism over EconomyNews
Signs for economic recovery are increasing according to economists and bankers. Loukas Papadimos, deputy chief of the European Central Bank, predicted recovery earlier than initially expected. However, the global financial tsunami continues affecting employment worldwide with Europe being among the regions where unemployment rate is drastically rising. Number of unemployed in Greece has risen to 450 thousand people while the GSEE (General Confederation of Greek Labor) and opposition parties maintain that the number of the unemployed is bigger. Women, young adults, Western Macedonia and medium-sized businesses are the worst hit by the financial crisis according to the Statistics Service.
News item: 22328
 Papandreou Contacts in ChinaPASOK leader and President of Socialist International George Papandreou is to have significant talks with the Chinese political leadership in Beijing. He will meet with the President of the Republic of China Hu Jintao and will chair a conference of the Socialist International on viable global community. In his statements, Mr. Papandreou underlined that he has taken two basic initiatives within the frame of the Socialist International regarding the formulation of a political proposal for the combat of the global financial crisis as well as global warming and green development. Target and ends of these initiatives is to create a human society.
PASOK President George Papandreou described as very important his contacts today in the Chinese capital. He is in Beijing to chair a meeting of the Socialist International Committee on the Environment, China is hosting. China plays and will continue playing a decisive role in issues regarding humanity such as the global financial crisis, and global warming in combination with green development said Mr. Papandreou, adding that Beijing's positions on these issues are of particular importance both to the Socialist International and Greece. Mr. Papandreou attended a working luncheon hosted in his honor by the Minister for Foreign Relations and visited sites included in the environment protection program while he met with China's deputy premier Li Keqiang. He also met with senior officials of the Republic of China Communist party and discussed issues linked with its relation to the Socialist International which Mr. Papandreou describes as a partnership cooperation on strategic issues. Talks also included China-PASOK and Greece-China bilateral relations. It should be mentioned that China is not a member of the Socialist International but has a close cooperation and takes part in meetings regarding viable development, global financial crisis and international disarmament. Chinese officials show high interest on these issues, place special weight on renewable sources of energy and are seeking for their important role in combating the global financial crisis, and dealing with environmental issues. The Chinese are rather interested in know how rather and not in economic resources which they appear to have. Works of the Socialist International Environment Committee open on Friday. Mr. Papandreou will meet with the Chinese President Hu Jintao in the afternoon.
News item: 22325
 Statute for Members of the European ParliamentWritten by Αλέξανδρος Μοζ
On the opening Parliamentary session beginning in 2009, new rules governing the performance of the duties of the MEPs will take effect.
The new statute abolishes the differences in the numeration of the Members of the European Parliament depending on their country of origin, providing for a basic monthly salary of EUR 7 000, which is subject to Community tax. At present, there is no common salary, as the MEPs are paid by the parliaments of their countries, receiving the same salary as their national counterparts.
Aiming at a smooth transition, there will be a period, during which each member state will be allowed to use the existing regulations. MEPs that will be re-elected will also be given the chance to opt for the existing regulations.
News item: 22339