|Monday, 26 February 2024
The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English, 10-05-08
From: The Hellenic Radio (ERA) <www.ert.gr/>
 Police Manhunt in Full SwingSaturday, 08 May 2010 15:08
The police manhunt launched to track down those responsible for the murderous attack on a bank in central Athens is in full swing. The footage collected by the CCTV of nearby stores, traffic control cameras and amateur videos is being closely examined. At the same time, police are looking for DNA samples the culprits could possible left behind.
According to flash conclusions, the perpetrators were a group of at least 20 people who meant to set fire on banks, stores and hotels without care about the presence of civilians.
Those who landed a leading role in the firebombing of the bank, where three workers were killed, are five people - CCTV footage shows a person smashing the entrance with a sledgehammer, three people throwing petrol bombs inside the building, and another who, according to eyewitnesses giving them the petrol bombs.
The same scenery unfolded outside a bookshop, opposite to the bank attacked. A bookshop employee said that young people smashed the glass with sledgehammer and threw petrol bombs. As soon as the bookshop workers tried to put out the fire, the young people threw them petrol bombs to discourage them.
Four days after the tragedy, people are still visiting the place where the three bank workers were killed, leaving flowers in their memory.
A silent protest gathering was held Saturday outside the bank. Wearing white masks and holding banners reading "No One Can Take Human Lives" and "Enough with Violence, Indifference, Silence," the demonstrators expressed the objection to violence, as well as their sorrow and grief over the killing of the three bank workers.
Source: NET, ANA/MPA
News item: 36337
 Tempi Valley Section on National Highway ReopensSaturday, 08 May 2010 14:03
The Tempi valley section on the Athens- Thessaloniki national highway was given back to traffic after restoration works were completed. All toll stations reopened.
Toll Stations Reopened
The Tempi valley section reopened Saturday morning for good, after remained closed since last December due to restoration works.
At the same time, the toll stations at Makryhori and Pyrgetos reopened.
Source: NET News item: 36336
 Child Abuse Case Shocks FranceSaturday, 08 May 2010 13:10
France has been shocked by the child abuse case revealed in the small town of Gravelines to the north of the country. Four children had been abused by their parents and other relatives, aged 18 to 30, since 2007.
The case surfaced when one of the children had to be transferred to a hospital. The doctors realized that something unusual had been taking place and called the authorities.
After investigating the case, police found that the parents had been sexually molesting their children, with the youngest being six months olds and the oldest four and a half.
But it was not only their parents who abused them, but also four uncles and one aunt. The seven molesters used to gather at the family's house, and under the influence of alcohol, they abused the children.
Although the nightmare for the four children began in 2007, no one had realized what was going on.
The father, 29, is under detention, while the rest six were let free.
Source: NET News item: 36333
 Parties in Britain Hold TalksSaturday, 08 May 2010 12:47
Britain's Conservatives and Liberal Democrats will hold talks on Sunday after an inconclusive election, but are unlikely to agree on a new government before markets open on Monday, the Conservatives said.
The center-right Conservatives won most parliamentary seats in Thursday's election but fell short of a majority and are seeking the support of the smaller Lib Dems to end 13 years of Labour rule.
The talks, starting at 11 a.m. (6:00 a.m. EDT), will be face-to-face between the two parties but not involve the leaders, a Conservative Party spokesman said.
He said it was unlikely a deal could be reached by Monday, noting that Conservative members of parliament, who will be briefed on the negotiations, will not meet until Monday evening.
Financial markets, already rattled by a debt crisis in Greece, want a new government to be formed quickly so it can set about reducing a record budget deficit swiftly and decisively.
The pound, British government bonds and the London stock market all fell on Friday when it became clear the Conservatives would not have a parliamentary majority, but sterling and bonds recouped early losses on the prospect of a deal with the Lib Dems.
Lib Dem leader Nick Clegg held a series of meetings on Saturday with senior party members to seek their backing for a possible deal with the Conservatives.
Clegg must overcome skepticism among a significant number of his party, who fear that Britain's third largest party may be forced to sacrifice too many cherished policies for a deal.
Several hundred protesters chanted outside the Lib Dems' headquarters, urging them to push for reform of an electoral system that favors the two largest parties.
Clegg said on Saturday that four core areas of tax, education, economic recovery and fundamental political reform were at issue.
Source: Reuters News item: 36332
 EU: Measures to Cement EurozoneSaturday, 08 May 2010 11:02
EU leaders are considering taking measures capable of preventing the Greek crisis, which the European Central Bank chief termed as a "systemic crisis" that poses serious threats to the currency union, from spreading, as fears of a domino effect are growing. They are thinking of setting up a solidarity fund, which could be funded by the European Commission and the ECB, as well as laying down strict rules with regard to the stability pact. The EU Finance Ministers are meeting Sunday in Brussels to agree on a strong declaration before the weekly opening of the world markets.
Setting up Stability Mechanism
Greece's borrowing crisis and the fears that this crisis could spread to other eurozone nations have urged the EU leaders to agree on the setting up of a stability mechanism with a view to aiding ailing economies.
Taking into consideration the current situation, the European Commission would suggest an EU stability mechanism to cement fiscal stability in Europe, commented EU President Herman Van Rompuy, conveying the will of the EU leaders to step up measures against speculators.
Reading the joint communiqué of the EU leaders, he stressed that all nations sharing the single currency have fully realizing the eurozone have come up against a serious situation. He further argued that they would joint forces to deal with it.
In an attempt to demonstrate they seriousness of the situation, the European Commission will outline Sunday morning its plans, while the EU Finance Ministers are being called on to come to a conclusion on the same day, with a view to preventing the turmoil in Greece from spreading to nations, including Spain and Portugal upon the weekly opening of the world markets.
The proposals to be made have to be okayed by the 27 nation bloc before being activated.
Although no details of the proposals have surfaces, diplomats said that the choices include the establishment of rules that lift obstacles in unblocking the aid given by the member-states, and the authorization of the European Commission to borrow from the world markets so that it can fund nations unilaterally, something that can be already be done when it comes to non-eurozone member-states.
European Commission President José Manuel Barroso claimed they would defend the euro currency no matter what, further adding they had many tools at their disposals to use. He declined, however, to elaborate on the proposals.
The eurozone leaders agreed to make the rules governing the stability pact stricter and to adopt more effective sanctions on those who break them. They also appeared willing to intensify their efforts to bring deficits down in the coming years and match the standards set by the European Union.
They also decided to fully support the European Central Bank in its moves to safeguard stability within the eurozone and agreed to use all means possible to cement stability.
Source: NET, NET 105.8, ANA/MPA
News item: 36331
 Bailout Package for Greece ApprovedSaturday, 08 May 2010 10:46
The eurozone leaders approved the activation of the bailout package for Greece. The eurozone nations stood by the side of Greece to so that the latter can manage to bring its deficit and debt down, underlined Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou. He also noted that the eurozone problems are not only associated with Greece and that the single currency union will try to safeguard stability within the union.
The eurozone leaders agreed late on Friday on a three year joint programme with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) that makes available 110 billion euro to help Greece meet its financing needs.
The first installment of the euro-aid to Greece will be paid without fail. The eurozone nations will contribute for their part 80 billion euros, with 30 billions will have been paid by 19 May. Interest rates will stand at about 5%.
The rest will be contributed by the International Monetary Fund at much lower interest rates.
The European Central Bank head termed the measures approved by the Greek House as appropriate, while EU Commissioner for Monetary Affairs Olli Rehn appeared certain that Greece will succeed in meeting its goals.
Papandreou: Joint Struggle to Cement Eurozone
"Today's decision showed that the eurozone nations are by our side," commented George Papandreou after the summit of the eurozone member-states wrapped up.
Papandreou added that these funds will "help us to implement without everyday's uncertainty in the international markets, the stabilisation and growth programme for our economy."
"But the summit has shown something more, that the need to shield the eurozone relates not only to Greece's problems, but that the issue is a broader one and concerns the eurozone as a whole," Papandreou also said.
"These decisions show that we are going to work all together not to let international speculation acting without control in the markets, to take Europe out of the crisis and contribute substantially to the world economy's recovery," the Greek Premier said.
Source: NET, NET 105.8, ANA/MPA
News item: 36330