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BRIEF GREEK NEWS BULLETIN (04/01/1996)

From: Macedonian Press Agency <mpa@uranus.eng.auth.gr>

Macedonian Press Agency News in English Directory

BRIEF GREEK NEWS BULLETIN BY MACEDONIAN RPESS AGENCY

Thessaloniki, 4 January 1996


NEWS IN ENGLISH

  • [01] PASOK'S PARLIAMENTARY GROUP FOR AN IMMEDIATE SESSION

  • [02] THE CONDITION OF THE GREEK PRIME MINISTER'S REMAINS STABLE

  • [03] INFLATION IN GREECE FOR 1995 WAS 8,1%

  • [04] NEW ROUND OF GREECE-FYROM TALKS IN NEW YORK

  • [05] UN SEC.GEN.CORRECTED REFERENCE TO FYROM AS "MACEDONIA"

  • [06] TURKISH GEN.STAFF THANKED GREECE FOR ITS RESCUE EFFORTS AFTER CRASH

  • [07] THE GREEK FOREIGN MINISTER WILL VISIT LISBON AND ZAGREB

  • [08] MEETING OF COMMONWEALTH PARLIAMENT PRESIDENTS OPENED IN NICOSIA

  • [09] EXTRAORDINARY MEETING OF THE NEW YORK GREEK ASSOCIATIONS

  • [10] ITALIAN UNDERSECRETARY OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS EXPECTED IN CYPRUS

  • [11] EU ECONOMIC ASSISTANCE FOR THE PALESTINIANS


  • NEWS IN ENGLISH

    [01] PASOK'S PARLIAMENTARY GROUP FOR AN IMMEDIATE SESSION

    Situation seems to get calmer inside the governmental socialsitic PASOK after the decision taken yesterday by the 19-member executive bureau of the central committee of the party according to which the procedures for the replacement of mr Papandreou's will start at the two-day session of the 150-member central committee on January 20th.

    The MPs pf the party will convene inside the month so that they elect, if necessary, the new prime minister as they are obliged to by the constitution.

    Yesterday the Executive bureau of the party decided that all resolutions should have the support of at least 151 MPs which make the absolute majority of the party.

    The Presiding Board of PASOK's Parliamentary Group characterised yesterday's decision by the party's Executive Bureau on the Prime Minister's replacement "positive in principle".

    The statement was made by the Parliamentary Group Secretary mr.Dimitris Beis after the 2-hour meeting of the Parliamentary Group Presiding Board that was held in the Parliament building today.

    Mr.Beis added that there are still certain points that need clarification and for this reason the Presiding Board of the Parliamentary Group will meet again tomorrow with the party's Executive Bureau.

    According to information, the problem is on whether there will be guarantees in reaching a final solution to the problem of the Premier's replacement during the Executive Bureau's meeting on January 20th or the issue will be referred to the next party convention.

    The main opposition party of New Democracy decide to submit a proposal so that the parliament express their lack of confidence to the government. The whole issue will be handled by the President of the party personally.

    The minor opposition party of Political Spring asked that the president of the republic resign if no solution is found so that the greek people give a solution in the general elections which will follow.

    In a comment he made the President of the Republic mr Constantinos Stephanopoulos restricted himself to reassuring the greek people that he knows his duties well.

    The Communist Party asked that PASOK MPs replace mr Papandreou and referred to "big interests" which fight for the control of the new era to come.

    In the 300-seat greek parliament, PASOK has 169 MPs (Andreas Papandreou inclusive), New Democracy 109, Political Spring 11 and the Communists 9.

    There two independent MPs, one elected with PASOK but sent out of the party for the criticism he had made asking for mr Papandreou's resignation and the other, the ex-foreign minister mr Michalis Papaconstantinou who was sent out of New Democracy for the criticims he made over the policy of the party on its positions on the relations with Scopje.

    [02] THE CONDITION OF THE GREEK PRIME MINISTER'S REMAINS STABLE

    The condition of greek Prime Minister Andreas Papandreou's health remains stable as it is mentioned in the two medical bulletins issued after 14:00 and 20:00 today by the board of doctors observing him at the Onassion Cardiology Center of Athens, one of the best equipped hospitals in Europe where he was admitted on November 20th suffering from a form of pneumonia.

    According to the medical bulletin, the patient's respiratory function is periodically supported by a respirator while he underwent puncture for the removal of fluid from the left side of his thorax.

    The Prime Minister's attendant doctors do not hide their concern because as they say they have not diagnosed the cause that is responsible for the immobility that is being observed in the patient's condition during the past week.

    The Health Minister, mr Dimitris Kremastinos who is mr Papandreou's personal doctor since 1988 when he was submitted to an open heart operation by the famous egyptian surgeon dr Magdi Yacub, in an interview with the daily "Ta Nea" said that the greek doctors could not say that mr Papandreou's situation is irreversible since foreign doctors as mr yacu have found it reversible.

    The Greek Prime Minister, born in 1919, has won with absolute majorities three out of the eight general elections held in the country after the fall of the military dictatorship in 1974.

    He has governed the country for more than ten years, is married to ms Demetra Liani who is also the director of his personal buerau.From a previous marriage he has four children one of which is the minister of Education mr Giorgos Papandreou.

    [03] INFLATION IN GREECE FOR 1995 WAS 8,1%

    Reliable sources in the greek Ministry of National Economy mentioned that the inflation in Greece for 1995 was 8,1%.

    This means that wage-earners and public sector pensioners will receive a adjusting sum of 2,1% on their earnings starting January 1st, 1996.

    National Economy Minister mr.Yiannos Papantoniou had predicted that inflation in 1995 would be 7,8 - 8% but the revaluation of the US dollar during the months of November and December had as a result to keep inflation at 8,1%.

    [04] NEW ROUND OF GREECE-FYROM TALKS IN NEW YORK

    The meeting of Greece's permanent representative in the United Nations, Christos Zaharakis with FYROM's representative mr.Tosefski will be held in the UN's headquarters in New York on January 11th. The meeting will take place in the presence of international mediator Cyrus Vance and will be discussed the issue of the neighbouring state's name.

    The talks will be held within the framework of the interim agreement that has been signed by the two sides aiming at the normalization of their bilateral relations.

    [05] UN SEC.GEN.CORRECTED REFERENCE TO FYROM AS "MACEDONIA"

    The office of the UN Secretary General corrected a statement it had issued yesterday on the meetings mr.Boutros Ghali had in Cairo according to which the UN Secretary General had updated the egyptian President on "the UN's presence in Macedonia".

    In the corrected statement issued by mr.Ghali's representative the term "Macedonia" was replaced by the term "former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia" under which the country had been accepted in the United Nations.

    [06] TURKISH GEN.STAFF THANKED GREECE FOR ITS RESCUE EFFORTS AFTER CRASH

    The turkish General Staff thanked Greece for its efforts aiming at rescueing the pilots of the turkish F-4 airplane that crashed "due to technical failure" west of the island of Lesvos in north-eastern Aegean.

    In the statement of the turkish General Staff published in the newspaper "Hurriyet" is underlined that the search for one of the two pilots who is still missing continued while it is also stressed that the efforts and the interest in the rescue of the two pilots expressed by the greek side brought satisfaction to Turkey.

    [07] THE GREEK FOREIGN MINISTER WILL VISIT LISBON AND ZAGREB

    Greek Foreign Minister Karolos Papoulias will visit Lisbon, Portugal on January 26th for discussions with his portuguese counterpart on bilateral issues. On January 27th mr.Papoulias will be in Zagreb, Croatia for talks with his croatian counterpart.

    According to greek Foreign Ministry spokesman Kostas Bikas the tripartite meeting of the Foreign Ministers of Greece, Bosnia and Iran will be held in Sarajevo before the end of January but the exact date has not been set yet.

    [08] MEETING OF COMMONWEALTH PARLIAMENT PRESIDENTS OPENED IN NICOSIA

    The 13th Meeting of the Commonwealth's Parliament Presidents opened in Nicosia today. Among the issues for discussion will be the relationship of the executive and legislative power, human rights and the role of Parliament deputies as well as the differencies between the presidential and parliamentary systems of government.

    Cypriot Parliament President Alexis Galanos mentioned that the meeting will be attended by the unprecedented number of 56 Parliament Presidents.

    The foreign representatives will also have the opportunity to be updated on the Cyprus problem during a series of contacts and visits in Cyprus.

    [09] EXTRAORDINARY MEETING OF THE NEW YORK GREEK ASSOCIATIONS

    Extraordinary meeting of the New York Greek Associations Federation National Issues Committee is being held today in the Federation's offices in order to deal with the issue of US ATACMS missiles that will be sold to Turkey in combination with the formation of a new situation in Turkey after the election victory of the turkish islamists' Welfare party in the recent Parliament elections.

    The initiative for the extraordinary meeting belongs to the Federation's Board of Directors member mr.Yiannis Seretis who in a written statement expressed strong concern over the above mentioned developments and especially over the stand adopted by the US administration and the US State Department concerning the issue of the sale of US missiles to Turkey.

    Mr.Seretis in his statement expresses the fear that the turkish government one more time will take advantage of the islamists' threat and will ask the US government to offer its political, economic and military support adding that this will have unfavourable effects on the issues of greek national interest.

    He mentions that the implications will be especially unfavourable for the Cyprus issue on which the turkish political parties will adopt a harder line due to the strong presence of the Welfare Party in the turkish Parliament while Washington from its part will not apply pressures avoiding to "undermine" the possible government coalition that will be formed.

    [10] ITALIAN UNDERSECRETARY OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS EXPECTED IN CYPRUS

    Italian Undersecretary of Foreign Affairs Emanuele Skamaka left from Rome today for Cyprus first stop of his mission aiming at exploring the possibilities for a solution of the Cyprus problem in the six-month italian EU Presidency.

    Mr.Skamaka will meet with cypriot President Glafkos Kliridis and with turkish- cypriot leader Rauf Denktash, while tomorrow will visit Turkey and then Greece.

    In a statement issued by the italian Foreign Ministry is mentioned that this mission aims at reaching an agreement regarding ways of EU involvement in the efforts for the solution of the Cyprus problem.

    Cypriot government spokesman Yiannakis Kasoulidis stated that the visit by US Assistant Secretary of State Richard Halbrook to Cyprus scheduled to take place on January 23rd is possible to be postponed.

    Mr.Kasoulidis said that the above were mentioned by mr.Halbrook yesterday but the US official also expressed the hope that he will be able to visit the region (Nicosia, Athens, Ankara) stating that both he and US Presidential envoy Richard Beattie are looking forward to that visit which will take place before mr.Halbrook leaves diplomacy at the end of February.

    Mr.Halbrook clearly insinuated that he can not start talks in the region due to the political situation in Turkey where no government has been formed yet.

    [11] EU ECONOMIC ASSISTANCE FOR THE PALESTINIANS

    The meeting of EU Foreign Ministers will be held in Paris on January 9th to discuss the issue of the economic assistance to the Palestinians, Greece will be represented by Foreign Minister Karolos Papoulias.

    The above were stated by Foreign Ministry spokesman ambassador Constantinos Bikas pointing out Greece's special interest in the political stability and economic development of the Middle East.

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