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MPA NEWS IN ENGLISH

From: Macedonian Press Agency <mpa@philippos.mpa.gr>

Macedonian Press Agency News in English Directory

MACEDONIAN PRESS AGENCY NEWS IN ENGLISH

Wednesday, April 17 1996


[A] NATIONAL NEWS

[B] INTERNATIONAL NEWS


TITLES

[A] NATIONAL NEWS

  • [01] GREECE-FYROM TALKS ON NAME ISSUE BEGAN IN NEW YORK TONIGHT

  • [02] GREECE-FYROM TALKS NOT EXPECTED TO PRODUCE SIGNIFICANT RESULTS

  • [03] THE GREEK-SKOPJAN TALKS IN NEW YORK ARE OF DECISIVE IMPORTANCE

  • [04] THE PRIME MINISTER WILL INFORM THE PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC ON HIS TRIP TO THE UNITED STATES TOMORROW

  • [05] THE GREEK PRIME MINISTER WILL VISIT BRITAIN AND IRELAND

  • [06] THE AGREEMENT BETWEEN ISRAEL AND TURKEY SHOULD NOT AFFECT THE GREEK- ISRAELI RELATIONS, STATED MR.REPPAS

  • [07]MESUT YILMAZ CONSIDERS UNACCEPTABLE SOME OF GREEK TERMS FOR DIALOGUE

  • [08]EUROPARLIAMENT VOTES FOR A REPORT THAT QUESTIONS CEDEFOP'S USEFULNESS

  • [09] ALTERNATE MINISTER OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS TO VISIT CYPRUS ON FRIDAY

  • [10] MODERN GREEK STUDIES DEPARTMENT CREATED AT RUSSIAN UNIVERSITY

  • [11] GREEK-BULGARIAN SEMINAR ON THE DEVELOPMENT OF BORDER REGIONS

  • [12] GREECE TO PARTICIPATE AT INTERNATIONAL FOOD FAIR


  • [B] INTERNATIONAL NEWS

  • [13] SECURITY COUNCIL TO DISCUSS CYPRIOT ISSUE IN NEW YORK TONIGHT

  • [14] THE BRITISH SUPPORT THE RETURN OF THE PARTHENON MARBLES TO GREECE

  • [15] CYPRUS PROTESTED STRONGLY AGAINST THE VIOLATIONS OF ITS AIR SPACE BY TURKISH FIGHTER JETS

  • [16] THE RELATIVES OF THE 126 PERSONS STILL MISSING IN CYPRUS WILL BE INFORMED ON THEIR FATE

  • [17] CYPRIOT MP DENOUNCES TURKISH OCCUPATION

  • [18] CYPRIOT MEMBER OF PARLIAMENT MEETS WITH DEMIREL

  • [19] TURKISH VIEW ON INTER-PARLIAMENTARY UNION

  • [20] THREE CYPRIOTS ARE AMONG THE RICHEST PEOPLE IN BRITAIN

  • [21] ROMANIAN LOCAL ELECTIONS TO TAKE PLACE IN JUNE

  • [22] TURKEY GATHERED ITS AMBASSADORS IN BALKANS COUNTRIES FOR POLICY ASSESSMENT

  • [23] ROMANIA AND TURKEY TO COOPERATE IN MILITARY TRAINING

  • [24] E.B.R.D. GOVERNORS APROVED TO DOUBLE THE BANK'S CAPITAL

  • [25] ITALIAN PRESIDENT TO VISIT ALBANIA

  • [26] CROTIA AND FYROM HAVE IDENTICAL OPINIONS ON YUGOSLAV SUCCESSION

  • [27] CROATIA AND FYROM HAVE NO OPENED QUESTIONS, GLIGOROV SAID

  • [28] CZECH FOREIGN AFFAIRS MINISTER VISITS FYROM ON APRIL 21

  • [29] FOREIGN EXCHANGE RATE REPORT


  • NEWS IN DETAIL

    [A] NATIONAL NEWS

    [01] GREECE-FYROM TALKS ON NAME ISSUE BEGAN IN NEW YORK TONIGHT

    The new round of talks between Greece and FYROM regarding the neighboring state's name, have began in new York under the mediation of United Nations official Cyrus Vance.

    According to reports, the meeting, which started at 18:20 Greece time, will last approximately one and a half hour, and could continue beyond the working lunch provided by Greece's UN Ambassador Christos Zacharakis to his skopjan counterpart Ivan Toshevski and the UN mediator Mr. Vance.

    According to well-informed sources, Mr. Zacharakis and his alternate Mr. Kaskarelis met with Mr. Vance in a preparatory 20- minute meeting prior to the session.

    It is said that the greek side will ask for explanations regarding the recent intransigent statements made by the FYROM government's representatives.

    [02] GREECE-FYROM TALKS NOT EXPECTED TO PRODUCE SIGNIFICANT RESULTS

    The new round of talks beginning today in New York's United Nations headquarters between Athens-Skopje, is not expected to produce significant results to the FYROM name issue.

    Greek Ambassador to the UN Christos Zacharakis and his Skopjan counterpart Ivan Toshevski will hold separate meetings with the UN mediator Cyrus Vance, in sessions that are expected to last all day.

    Diplomatic sources at the UN point out that a hard-line position has been adopted by Skopje lately, where any changes in the name are not being accepted. Even in Mr. Vance's circles, it became known that FYROM's President Kiro Gligorov has notified the UN mediator that he does not intend to accept a compound name and insists on the "constitutional name" of his country. This Skopjan stance appears to have been intensified since the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia recognized FYROM as "Republic of Macedonia."

    The same sources state that, in case of an impasse, something that appears as a likely outcome, Mr. Vance will ask for further directions from the Security Council on the issue.

    However, the mediator is also willing to exercise the mandate he has received and submit his proposal for the neighboring state's name, "Nova Macedonia."

    Meanwhile in FYROM, little attention has been granted by the media to today's negotiations. The state-owned radio station in Skopje referred to the talks and noted that it will be the fourth time that Athens and Skopje will sit at the negotiations table, following the New York-signed interim agreement of September 1995.

    [03] THE GREEK-SKOPJAN TALKS IN NEW YORK ARE OF DECISIVE IMPORTANCE

    The new round of negotiations between Greece and FYROM begins today in New York under the auspices of UN mediator Cyrus Vance over the issue of the final name that will be used by the neighbouring state based on the interim accord signed by Greece and FYROM.

    Those talks are expected to be of decisive importance as the margin of time set by the United Nations in reaching a final solution has been exhausted.

    It should be noted that the previous meeting of greek ambassador Zacharakis with skopjan representative Vania Tosefski had been held in a positive climate.

    During that period of time, Skopjan President Kiro Gligorof continued to insist in his intransigent position, according to which, Skopje does not accept the change of its constitutional name. A similar statement was made a few days before the start of the new round of negotiations and by skopjan Foreign Minister Frchkovski, who stressed that the only compromise his country can do is to allow Greece to call it with other than its constitutional name.

    The greek side is not in a hurry to close the issue as greek Prime Minister Simitis stated upon his return from the United States, while it is clear that in this procedure the United States play an active role, but at this phase they are interested in the development of the trade and economic relations between Greece and Skopje.

    Greek Foreign Minister Theodoros Pangalos in his latest press conference had pointed out that both countries are interested in developing their bilateral relations in all levels, in economy and trade, except from the name. He also underlined that Skopje must take under serious consideration that its economic development passes through Greece.

    The outcome of those negotiations can not be foreseen but the strong reactions both countries face in the domestic political scene do not leave a lot of room for a compromise solution.

    [04] THE PRIME MINISTER WILL INFORM THE PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC ON HIS TRIP TO THE UNITED STATES TOMORROW

    Prime Minister Kostas Simitis will visit President Kostis Stephanopoulos tomorrow and will brief him on the outcome of his visit to the United States, according to greek government spokesman Dimitris Reppas.

    The greek government spokesman also stated that the Prime Minister intends to brief on the issue and the greek Parliament but a specific date has not been set yet.

    Referring to the Prime Minister's visit to the US he expressed the government's satisfaction and stressed that the outcome of the trip was positive. He said that the government presented complete proposals and now Turkey is called to respond.

    Mr.Reppas said that many governments are now supporting the greek proposal for a step by step approach and added that the first step should be made by Turkey which must undertake an initiative bringing the issue of the islets of Imia, it had created, before the International Court of Justice in The Hague.

    Responding to a question by a reporter mr.Reppas mentioned that there is not an issue of a political character dialogue with Turkey at this or at another stage.

    To the question concerning the statements by the US State Department spokesman that Greece and Turkey must discuss the issue of Imia and also other issues, the greek government spokesman replied that the statement refers to a long-term US goal in order for the relations between Greece and Turkey to be relations of friendship and cooperation.

    The greek government spokesman stated that Greece wants the normalization of the greek-turkish relations based on the respect of International Law. Mr.Reppas added that all the efforts made by the greek government aim at the improvement of those relations and the greek side expects corresponding steps from Turkey.

    Regarding the letter by US President Clinton urging for peaceful solutions to "territorial disputes", the greek government spokesman responded that Greece does not accept the existence of territorial disputes, adding that Turkey is the one maintaining that such differences exist.

    He said that nevertheless, it is positive that Turkey is called to handle with peaceful means and within the framework of international bodies even the differences it discovers. He stressed that for Greece the territorial status quo in the region is clear, concrete and given.

    Mr.Reppas also mentioned and the american position on the Cyprus problem stressing that the United States and other countries as well, are now accepting the greek position according to which, the progress toward the solution of the Cyprus problem will contribute to the improvement of the greek-turkish relations.

    Until now, the greek government spokesman added, those countries were accepting the turkish position according to which, a precondition for progress in the Cyprus issue is the improvement of the greek-turkish relations.

    [05] THE GREEK PRIME MINISTER WILL VISIT BRITAIN AND IRELAND

    Greek Prime Minister Kostas Simitis will visit Britain and Ireland on April 22 to 24 within the framework of his tour to european capitals.

    According to greek government spokesman Dimitris Reppas, the Prime Minister will meet with his british counterpart John Major on Tuesday and with his irish counterpart John Brutton on Wednesday.

    Mr.Reppas stressed that the Prime Minister will make many visits abroad aiming at promoting the issues of greek national interest.

    [06] THE AGREEMENT BETWEEN ISRAEL AND TURKEY SHOULD NOT AFFECT THE GREEK-ISRAELI RELATIONS, STATED MR.REPPAS

    The agreement between Israel and Turkey must not affect Greece's relations with Israel, stated greek government spokesman Dimitris Reppas, who also wished that the agreement will not bring changes in the relations of Israel with Cyprus.

    Commenting on Israel's attacks in South Lebanon the greek government spokesman stated that Greece opposes any hostile action.

    [07] MESUT YILMAZ CONSIDERS UNACCEPTABLE SOME OF GREEK TERMS FOR DIALOGUE

    Turkey's Prime Minister Mesut Yilmaz has characterized as "unacceptable" Greece's expressed condition that in order for a dialogue to take place between Athens and Ankara, Turkey must not consider Greece's possible extension of its Aegean territorial waters to 12 miles to be a casus belli.

    According to the turkish daily "Cumhurryet", the Turk Premier stated that in case Greece insists on the above-stated condition, the other conditions will be rendered meaningless.

    "Therefore, I do not see an appropriate climate at this time (that would allow us) to assess the greek statements," he stated and added "I hope that within the following days the greek government will reassess the issue and once it re-examines the statements that we have made in the past, a new approach will be adopted, which will give us the opportunity to conduct a true dialogue."

    [08] EUROPARLIAMENT VOTES FOR A REPORT THAT QUESTIONS CEDEFOP'S USEFULNESS

    The plenary session of the European Parliament has cast its approval of the report submitted by the British europarliamentarian of the European People's Party Kellet Bowman, who proposed that the exemption of the CEDEFOP administration be postponed, regarding the 1994 management, while at the same time he questioned the center's usefuleness, which has been based in Thessaloniki since last year.

    The postponement of the exemption of the administration for the 1994 budget has been proposed by the British MP until it is ascertained that a satisfactory draw of credits provided for the center's function have been secured, the manpower is properly trained and that services provided correspond to the clientele's needs.

    The report, was based on a study performed by the independent french company "Quateraire" and was critisical of the CEDEFOP management and production, to a point where its usefulness was questioned, since its primary client, the European Commission, hardly uses its services.

    Today's decision does not bear a direct impact on the Thessaloniki center's function since it refers to a time period, 1994, when the Center was headquartered in Berlin, although this distinction is not made in the report.

    Speaking to a Thessaloniki radio station, Mr. Bowman characterized as "unfortunate but not reversible" the transfer of the CEDEFOP headquarters to Thessaloniki, while he clarified that under no circumstance does he suggest that this decision should be reversed. Moreover, he added that certain of the necessary measures have been taken to renovate the Center.

    Speaking to the Macedonian Press Agency, the PASOK europarliament member Nikos Papakyriazis characterized today's decision as "unfortunate" due to the poor quality, as he characteristically said, of Mr .Bowman's report. Mr. Papakyriazis stated that mobilizations have already been set forth by governmental euro-parliamentarians in efforts to inform the appropriate officials on the Center's function.

    [09] ALTERNATE MINISTER OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS TO VISIT CYPRUS ON FRIDAY

    The Alternate Minister of Foreign Affairs George Romeos will meet with the cypriot President Glafkos Clerides and cypriot Foreign Minister Alekos Michaelides on Friday, as part of his three-day visit to Cyprus beginning tomorrow.

    Mr. Romeos will also meet with Archbishop Chrysostomos, the president of the cypriot Parliament Alexis Galanos, the various parties leaders, the Congress of Greeks Abroad (European Region) and the mayor of Nicosia Lellos Demetriades.

    [10] MODERN GREEK STUDIES DEPARTMENT CREATED AT RUSSIAN UNIVERSITY

    The greek Ministry of Culture will embrace the newly-formed department of byzantine and modern greek studies at the University of Lomonosof in Moscow, into its program of cooperation and funding of departments of modern greek studies in other countries.

    The Ministry of Culture's Secretary-General George Thomas met yesterday with Lomonosof professors Borus Fonkits and Dimitri Afinoyenof and proposed the inclusion of the specific department's students to the Ministry's program of greek studies, organized every summer in Thessaloniki in cooperation with the Institute of Studies of the Balkan Peninsula. Moreover, professorial cooperation among the two countries was discussed and Mmr. Fonkits and Afinoyenof requested that the Ministry of Culture send to Russia greek books that are difficult to find.

    Lomonosof University's department of byzantine and modern greek studies is expected to become one of the most renowed schools of foreign literature.

    The meeting was held in a friendly climate, and the two professors were given a valuable book on the Mount Athos treasures and have been invited by the Ministry to visit Greece for ten days.

    [11] GREEK-BULGARIAN SEMINAR ON THE DEVELOPMENT OF BORDER REGIONS

    Greek-Bulgarian Seminar on the cooperation of border regions will be held by the end of April in the southern bulgarian city of Smolian.

    The seminar will be organised by the European Union and will participate mayors and representatives of tourist and trade companies and organizations from the northern greek cities of Xanthi, Drama, and Kilkis and also from nine southern bulgarian cities.

    The two sides will examine the possibilities in the processing of joint development programmes concerning the border regions which are possible to be financed by the European Union.

    [12] GREECE TO PARTICIPATE AT INTERNATIONAL FOOD FAIR

    Greece will participate in an International Fancy food and Confection Show to be held in the United States and Australia, announced the Thessaloniki's Chamber of Commerce and Industry today.

    The first fair will be held in Philadelphia on June 23-26 and the second will be held in Melbourne between September 8 and 11.

    Greece's participation will be marked by the exhibit of confections, jams, olive oil, olives, canned foods, frozen produce, grain and fish.

    The greek Organization of Export Promotion (OPE) has undertaken the organization of Greece's participation.


    [B] INTERNATIONAL NEWS

    [13] SECURITY COUNCIL TO DISCUSS CYPRIOT ISSUE IN NEW YORK TONIGHT

    A delegation of the five permanent members of the Security Council for the Cypriot issue will meet tonight in New York in an effort to allay concerns expressed by the Security Council's permanent members, mainly Russia, who are distanced from the american initiative.

    United Nations Representative Sylvana Foa stated that the meeting will be held under the Presidency of the United States and added that neither the UN Secretary-General will be participating, nor his assistant.

    Instead, representing the Secretary-General will be his alternate special representative in Cyprus Gustav Feishel, who yesterday held separate meetings with representatives of the Security Council's permanent members.

    Participating in the meeting will be the Cypriot issue Co- ordinator of the U.S. State Department Jim Williams, the British Foreign Ministry's official Warren Gass and the Russian Foreign Ministry's official Piotr Doproserdov. Also present will be the Nicosia-based diplomatic representatives of the US and Britain.

    [14] THE BRITISH SUPPORT THE RETURN OF THE PARTHENON MARBLES TO GREECE

    The overwhelming majority of the british public opinion believes that the Parthenon Marbles must be returned to Greece, as it was shown by the results of a telephone poll held last night by TV Channel 4 after a documentary on the Parthenon Marbels and their history.

    The television documentary maintained, based on strong historical and legal arguments, that the Parthenon Marbles should be returned to Greece and the show's presenter asked the viewers to express their own opinion on the issue.

    According to an announcement made today by TV Channel 4, in the telephone poll participated 99.340 viewers of whom 91.822 voted for the return of the Parthenon Marbles and only 7.518 against.

    The television show's presenter and producer Jimmy Steward stated after the poll's result was announced that he is extremely satisfied by the verdict of the british public opinion and expressed the belief that the same position will be adopted and by the british political world.

    [15] CYPRUS PROTESTED STRONGLY AGAINST THE VIOLATIONS OF ITS AIR SPACE BY TURKISH FIGHTER JETS

    The permanent representative of Cyprus in the United Nations Ambassador Nikos Agathokleous with a letter to UN Secretary General Boutros Ghali protested strongly against the repeated violations of the cypriot air space by 6 turkish fighter jets that took place last week.

    In his letter mr.Agathokleous gave details over the time period, the place and the duration of the three violations made by the turkish F-4 fighter jets on April 10 and 11.

    He mentioned that the planes were on a reconnaissance mission and were photographing the coasts of Cyprus, adding that each of them stayed in the region for half an hour.

    Mr.Agathokleous pointed out that last month four turkish fighter planes had again violated the Cypriot air space and stressed that those arbitrary flights are in violation of the regulations on aviation and security and endanger the civil aviation flights over Cyprus.

    [16] THE RELATIVES OF THE 126 PERSONS STILL MISSING IN CYPRUS WILL BE INFORMED ON THEIR FATE

    The relatives of the 126 persons still missing in Cyprus, whose files have not been submitted to the Fact-Finding Committee, will soon be informed on their fate.

    The information was confirmed by the cypriot Education Minister who stated that about 2/3 of the 126 files have been studied and the relatives of the missing will be informed after a meeting with the Prosecutor General, who is studying the case.

    [17] CYPRIOT MP DENOUNCES TURKISH OCCUPATION

    Cypriot Parliament Member Yiannakis Omirou denounced the continuous turkish occupation of Cyprus, during a speech he gave yesterday in Constantinople, at the 95th Conference of the Inter- parliamentary Union.

    Mr. Omirou stated that the presence of the participants in the Conference offers the opportunity to denounce any foreign foray committed by countries under the pretense of protecting minorities in other countries, often in the form of invasion and occupation of territories.

    The cypriot parliamentarian also empasized that the presence of minorities does not justify blatant violations of International Law or the disrespect of the majority's legal rights, especially when the minority enjoys the same rights as the rest of the population.

    [18] CYPRIOT MEMBER OF PARLIAMENT MEETS WITH DEMIREL

    The cypriot issue must be solved with a dialogue held between the two communities, stated the Turk President Suleiman Demirel during his brief meeting with the cypriot parliamentarian Nikos Anastasiades, who leads the Cyprus delegation at the session of the Inter-parliamentary Union Conference held in Constantinople today.

    When the cypriot parliament member responded that Turkey must help towards this direction by withdrawing the occupation troops, President Demirel reacted by reiterating his position that the issue is between the two communities.

    During yesterday's session of the Conference, the cypriot delegation presented the international aspects of the issue as a problem of invasion and occupation.

    At the meeting, the turk-cypriot delegation presented the known positions adopted by its President Rauf Denktash. Tomorrow, the greek-cypriot delegation will be received by Patriarch Vartholomeos to whom Mr. Anastasiades will convey a message by President Glafkos Clerides.

    [19] TURKISH VIEW ON INTER-PARLIAMENTARY UNION

    The turkish delegation's reaction to the denunciations expressed by the cypriot delegation for the continuous occupation of Cyprus by turkish forces has been characterized as "democratic."

    Participating at the 95th Conference of the Inter- parliamentary Union, held since yesterday in Constantinople, the leader of the turkish delegation and assistant to the President of the True Path Party Ismael Karakuyiu, stated that the greek and greek-cypriot positions will not have an impact in the final declaration and characterized these positions as "empty words", adding that the turkish positions will be developed analytically during the course of the meeting.

    The Turk Premier Mesut Yilmaz's stance was genial, as during his speech he stated that Turkey breeds good will sentiments towards all people, and especially towards its neighbors. Mr. Yilmaz called upon all the participating parliamentarians to develop a spirit of cooperation and understanding.

    [20] THREE CYPRIOTS ARE AMONG THE RICHEST PEOPLE IN BRITAIN

    Three cypriots are among the 500 richest people in Britain, according to the 8th annual list issued by the british newspaper "Sunday Times".

    They are, ready-to-wear clothes manufacturer Chris Lazari, who according to the newspaper is placed at the 307th position with a personal estate estimated at 50 million british pounds, pop singer George Michael who is at number 348 with 45 million british pounds and Sir Rio Stakis, owner of hotels and casinos, whose family fortune is estimated at 43 million british pounds and is placed at the list's 375th position.

    In the same list are included and the names of the greek shipowners Yiannis Goulandris and Lou Kollakis.

    [21] ROMANIAN LOCAL ELECTIONS TO TAKE PLACE IN JUNE

    The Romanian government has set the date for the first and the second round of local government elections on June 2 and 16, Romanian public radio announced today. Formerly the local elections were scheduled for May 26.

    During the earlier local elections, on February 1992, the main political opposition body, the Democratic Convention of Romania (CDR), scored a significant success mostly in the urban centers, including Bucharest, while the then-ruling party, the National Front of Salvation, prevailed in the provinces.

    On the forthcoming local government elections Bucharest will particularly become the battle field for the clashes between the opposition and the ruling Party of Social Democracy (PDSR). The Democratic Convention of Romania, the largest opposition alliance, has rejected a "cooperation pact" offer from the ruling party PDSR, Romanian National News Agency Rompres reported. Reminding PDSR of last year's governing alliance with extreme nationalist and neo- Communist parties, the CDR says any cooperation now would be "illogical and immoral." With a national election following just months after the local one, CDR wants to put as much distance as possible between itself and Romania's current ruling party. The first round of the general and presidential elections will take place simultaneously on September 29.

    PDSR is backing the candidature of the world tennis champion and multi-million-dollar fortune Ilie Nastase. The latest polls show that 48 percent of Bucharest voters favor Nastase over any other candidate. His supporters tend to be people without higher education, mainly workers, pensioners and women between the ages of 31 and 55. Nastase's closest rival is the CDR candidate Victor Ciorbea, magistrate and law profesor. By contrast, Ciorbea is most popular among men between 31 and 55 and his supporters tend to be people with higher education, business executives, teachers.

    However, the chronic disorder in the capital city must be ended, because the city once nicknamed "little Paris", Bucharest, now looks more like "little Calcutta" - thanks to 50 years of catastrophic local administration and former dictator Nicolae Ceausescu's taste in architecture.

    [22] TURKEY GATHERED ITS AMBASSADORS IN BALKANS COUNTRIES FOR POLICY ASSESSMENT

    Turkey has gathered its ambassadors in the Balkan countries for policy assessment before the presidential visit to Romania this week, Turkish media and "Cumhuriet" newspaper reported. President Suleyman Demirel will go to Romania on April 18 as official guest of Romanian President Ion Iliescu.

    Turkey's ambassadors in key Balkans countries and Turkey's representative to the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) arrived in Ankara on April 15 and visited president Suleyman Demirel. They started a two-day policy consultation with the related departments of the Turkish Foreign Ministry.

    "The meeting will review Turkey's bilateral relation with the Balkan countries as well the overall situation in the region," Turkish Foreign Ministry Spokesman Nurretin Nurkan stated, adding that the Ministry periodically holds such meetings.

    [23] ROMANIA AND TURKEY TO COOPERATE IN MILITARY TRAINING

    A project due to increase the cooperation between Romania and Turkey in the military training field has been signed in Ankara, Romanian News Agency Rador reported. The document is mapping the activities in military training expected to take place this year.

    [24] E.B.R.D. GOVERNORS APROVED TO DOUBLE THE BANK'S CAPITAL

    The Board of Governors of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) aproved on April 15 in Sofia to double the bank's annual capital, which is reaching now a fund of ECU 20 billion, Romanian News Agency Rador reported.

    This is the first and the last growth of the EBRD capital since 1991, when it has been set up in order to facilitate the transition proces in the former communist countries. EBRD foresees a constantly increasing of the loans, amounting to ECU 2,5 billion in 1999, AFP noticed.

    [25] ITALIAN PRESIDENT TO VISIT ALBANIA

    Italian President Oscar Luigi Scalfaro is expected to arrive in Tirana on Friday for an official visit, presidential sources announced. Scalfaro will meet with his Albanian counterpart Sali Berisha.

    [26] CROTIA AND FYROM HAVE IDENTICAL OPINIONS ON YUGOSLAV SUCCESSION

    "FYROM and Croatia agree that the right of succesion belongs to all former Yugoslav countries, not only to FR Yugoslavia," Croatian President Franjo Tudjman said in a press conference in Zagreb after the meeting with FYROM's President Kiro Gligorov. President Tudjman stated that the two countries have similar, even identical views on the events in the world and in the region.

    "We have identical opinions for our relations with the neighbors, based on mutual recognition, respect of the sovereignty. Also, we are against any ideas to set up any kind of Balkan, Adriatic or Eastern-Europe associations," President Tudjman said, underlining that the countries should not be conditioned with previous unions for the further integration in the EU.

    [27] CROATIA AND FYROM HAVE NO OPENED QUESTIONS, GLIGOROV SAID

    Between Zagreb and Skopje there are no opened questions and the two countries will cooperate in the future without any kind of historical burdens, FYROM's President Kiro Gligorov stated in Zagreb.

    "The trade between our countries should be intensively developed in the future," Gligorov stressed, reminded that before the war the trade relations ranged to $1 billion, while now they range to $80 million.

    President Gligorov has been accompanied in his one-day visit to Zagreb by the Vice-Secretary of the Ministry of the Foreign Affairs Victor Gaber and by the Internal Minister Tomislav Cokrevski who signed with his Croatian counterpart an agreement for cooperation concerning the fight against organized crime, terrorism and the arms and drugs trade.

    Gligorov's opinion is that there is no doubt that FYROM and Croatia are firmly determined for the European integration. Finally, Kiro Gligorov stated that Croatia may become an important military factor in the future in this part of the Balkans.

    [28] CZECH FOREIGN AFFAIRS MINISTER VISITS FYROM ON APRIL 21

    Foreign Affairs Minister of Czech Republic Jozef Zelenec will pay a two-day visit to FYROM on April 21, following the invitation of his counterpart Ljubomir Frchkovski.

    They will discuss issues on mutual cooperation and the situation in the former Yugoslav territories after the Dayton agreement.

    [29] FOREIGN EXCHANGE RATE REPORT

    CURRENCY          FIXING      BUY         SELL
    ECU              300.8000   299.8980    301.7020
    U.S. Dollar      242.3600   241.6330    243.0870
    Deutsche Mark    160.7120   160.2300    161.1940
    UK Sterling      365.4500   364.3540    366.5460
    French Franc      47.3150    47.1730     47.4570
    Swedish Crown     35.8600    35.7520     35.9680
    Danish Kroner     41.6320    41.5070     41.7570
    Norwegian Crown   37.2500    37.1380     37.3620
    Italian Lira      15.3945    15.3480     15.4410
    Swiss Franc      197.3800   196.7880    197.9720
    Spanish Peseta     1.9278     1.9220      1.9336
    Finnish Mark      51.2040    51.0500     51.3580
    Yen              223.7400   223.0690    224.4110
    

    Complete archives of the Macedonian Press Agency bulletins are available on the MPA Home Page at http://www.mpa.gr/ and on the U.S. mirror at http://www.hri.org/MPA/

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