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Macedonian Press Agency: News in English, 98-05-04

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

Macedonian Press Agency: News in English Directory

MACEDONIAN PRESS AGENCY NEWS IN ENGLISH

Thessaloniki, May 4, 1998


NEWS IN ENGLISH

[A] NATIONAL NEWS

[B] INTERNATIONAL NEWS


TITLES

[A] NATIONAL NEWS

  • [01] HELEXPO HOLDS CORRESPONDENTS FORUM IN THESSALONIKI

  • [02] O.A.’S BOARD CONVENE TODAY TO DISCUSS PILOTS’ TERMS

  • [03] THE GOVERNMENT PREPARES CHANGES IN THE WORK RELATIONS

  • [04] STRONG STATEMENT BY THE EUROPEAN LEADERS ON THE COURSE OF THE GREEK ECONOMY

  • [05] THE AGREEMENT BETWEEN THE OA PRESIDENT AND THE PILOTS’ UNION HAS BEEN APPROVED

  • [06] NEW DECLINE IN THE ATHENS STOCK EXCHANGE

  • [07] 70% OF THE GREEK SUGAR INDUSTRY WILL BE SOLD

  • [08] “ELAIS” HAS MAINTAINED THE FIRST PLACE IN THE GREEK OLIVE OIL MARKET

  • [09] MR. REPPAS EXPRESSED DISCONTENT FOR THE FAILURE OF THE HALBROOKE EFFORTS

  • [10] MR. REPPAS COMMENTED ON THE OPENING OF PKK OFFICES IN GREECE

  • [11] PASKAL MILO: AN ARMED CONFLICT IN KOSOVO IS POSSIBLE

  • [12] REPPAS: GREECE WILL JOIN THE EMU IN 2001

  • [13] PANAMERICAN CONFERENCE OF THE HELLENES ABROAD


  • [B] INTERNATIONAL NEWS

  • [14] GREEK PREMIER SATISFIED OVER EUROPEAN SUMMIT ON EURO

  • [15] RICHARD HOLBROOKE’S CONTACTS IN CYPRUS BEAR NO RESULTS

  • [16] TENSION MOUNTS IN KOSSOVO

  • [17] DEVELOPMENT MINISTER IN EGYPT FOR ENERGY AGREEMENT

  • [18] WIM DUISENBERG ELECTED CHIEF OF EUROPEAN CENTRAL BANK

  • [19] GREEK CLIMBER DIES IN THE HIMALAYANS, HIS BODY UNRETRIEVABLE

  • [20] GREEK DEFENSE MINISTER IN MADRID FOR WEU, NATO MEETINGS

  • [21] OCCUPATION FORCES IMPOSE VISA LEVY ON GREEK JOURNALISTS

  • [22] “THE LONDON TIMES”: GREECE HAS WORLD’S CLEANEST BEACHES

  • [23] HOLBROOKE: TALKS IN CYPRUS ARE AT TEMPORARY DEADLOCK

  • [24] TSOCHATZOPOULOS ATTENDS THE WEU AND NATO ASSEMBLY MEETING

  • [25] THE CYPRIOT GOVERNMENT IS DISPLEASED WITH THE INTRANSIGENCE DISPLAYED BY THE TURKISH CYPRIOTS

  • [26] A BELGRADE NEWSPAPER WARNS OF INCREASED RADIATION IN SERBIA

  • [27] EXTENSIVE MEDIA COVERAGE TO PROF. DIMITRIS TSATSOS’ VISIT TO ALBANIA


  • NEWS IN DETAIL

    [A] NATIONAL NEWS

    [01] HELEXPO HOLDS CORRESPONDENTS FORUM IN THESSALONIKI

    The Organizer of the International Trade Fair of Thessaloniki HELEXPO is holding a four-day correspondents' forum in Thessaloniki, starting today, in order to promote tourist attractions of central Macedonia.

    Reporters from Vienna, Prague, Berlin, Budapest, Moscow and Belgrade have been invited to attend the forum.

    HELEXPO president Antonis Kourtis said that the exhibition agency has worked in the past to promote tourism in the region by taking part in several international tourism exhibitions.

    [02] O.A.’S BOARD CONVENE TODAY TO DISCUSS PILOTS’ TERMS

    The national air carrier’s, Olympic Airways, administrative board is to convene today in order to decide on whether or not they will accept the agreement reached between the company’s pilots and the OA’s chairman Theodoros Tsakirides.

    Last week, the board members turned down the agreement reached between the pilots and Mr. Tsakirides. In case the agreement is not up to par for the board members, the pilots have made it clear they will not work overtime, which will certainly bear consequences on the flight schedules.

    [03] THE GOVERNMENT PREPARES CHANGES IN THE WORK RELATIONS

    The Greek government will propose the implementation of changes in the work relations, the social security and the privatizations of the public service agencies before the end of the month. The changes will be made within the framework of Greece’s efforts to meet the convergence criteria with the 11 EU countries that already joined the first phase of the European Economic and Monetary Union.

    Coalition of the Left opposition party leader Nikos Konstantopoulos submitted a question to the prime minister on Greece’s course toward the EMU.

    [04] STRONG STATEMENT BY THE EUROPEAN LEADERS ON THE COURSE OF THE GREEK ECONOMY

    Greek minister of national economy and finance Yiannos Papantoniou characterized as especially strong the statement made by the European leaders on the course of the Greek economy toward the “Euro”.

    In a press conference, Mr. Papantoniou made it clear that there is no issue of a new devaluation of the drachma, while he also announced that privatizations will move ahead. On the case of the privatization of the Ionian Bank, the Greek minister stated that decisions will be reached soon.

    Moreover, he said that the positive course of the Greek economy is recognized for the first time and added that the interest rates will drop as soon as Greece joins the EMU.

    [05] THE AGREEMENT BETWEEN THE OA PRESIDENT AND THE PILOTS’ UNION HAS BEEN APPROVED

    The draft agreement reached between Olympic Airways president Theodoros Tsakiridis and the pilots’ union was unanimously approved by the Greek state airline’s Board of Directors.

    According to information, the interested sides agreed to proceed with the rewording of the agreement regulating issues of over-time work, benefits and flight hours. Already, the clause according to which, the OA pilots could fly airplanes of the affiliate “Macedonian Airline” has been removed.

    [06] NEW DECLINE IN THE ATHENS STOCK EXCHANGE

    The general price index in the Athens Stock Exchange showed a drop of 0,57% after the big increase observed in the opening of transactions.

    The value of trading reached 65 billion drachmas. In the inter-bank market the interest rates followed a downward trend, while the drachma exchange rate showed an increase toward the main foreign currencies and especially, toward the US dollar.

    [07] 70% OF THE GREEK SUGAR INDUSTRY WILL BE SOLD

    The Greek Sugar Industry is one of the largest industries in the country based on its annual turnover and according to statements made by Agricultural Bank of Greece president Petros Lambrou, 70% of the company will be sold and already the search for a strategic investor has begun.

    It should be noted, that the real value of the Greek Sugar Industry is estimated to be over 220 billion drachmas.

    [08] “ELAIS” HAS MAINTAINED THE FIRST PLACE IN THE GREEK OLIVE OIL MARKET

    The olive oil industry “ELAIS”, which occupied the first place among the sector’s companies in 1997, will start exporting to the United States.

    “ELAIS” maintained its lead in 1997 with a share of over 30% in the Greek market. Among the company’s plans for the current fiscal year is included the materialization of a new 4 billion drachmas investment aimed at the installation of new equipment.

    [09] MR. REPPAS EXPRESSED DISCONTENT FOR THE FAILURE OF THE HALBROOKE EFFORTS

    Greek government spokesman Dimitris Reppas, referring to the contacts of US presidential envoy Richard Halbrooke in Cyprus, expressed the Greek government’s discontent over the fact that the deadlock over Cyprus did not break due to the Turkish intransigence.

    Mr. Reppas also expressed the hope that the US initiative will continue and that the international factor will reach the right conclusions regarding Turkey’s position.

    Finally, Mr. Reppas characterized as unacceptable the terms set by Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash for the resumption of the talks.

    [10] MR. REPPAS COMMENTED ON THE OPENING OF PKK OFFICES IN GREECE

    Greek government spokesman Dimitris Reppas, when asked to comment on the information concerning the opening of PKK offices in Greece, said that political organizations operate freely in Greece as well as in other European countries.

    Mr. Reppas clarified that Greece will not allow for the opening of an office by an organization that operates against state governments by using violence and terrorism.

    [11] PASKAL MILO: AN ARMED CONFLICT IN KOSOVO IS POSSIBLE

    The situation in Kosovo encourages war, stressed Albanian foreign minister Paskal Milo in an interview to the Athens newspaper “Vradini” expressing his strong concern over the developments in the region.

    Mr. Milo suggested that Kosovo should become an autonomous federal republic within the framework of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia and backed international mediation rejecting the proposal made by FRY president Slobodan Milosevic for direct dialogue between Belgrade and the Albanian-speaking population in Kosovo. Mr. Milo clarified that the Albanian-speaking population in Kosovo does not want to be united with Albania but it wants an independent state recognized by the United Nations.

    The Albanian foreign minister expressed the view that it is the first time in the past 50 years that tensions are so high along the borders. He said that it is the first time that the Albanians in Kosovo are so determined to claim their rights.

    [12] REPPAS: GREECE WILL JOIN THE EMU IN 2001

    Greek government spokesman Dimitris Reppas described the results of the European Union summit, that took place in Brussels, as positive and expressed his conviction that Greece would join the European Monetary Union (EMU) in 2001.

    Mr Reppas noted that the joint statement issued by the 15 EU member states proved that the European Union recognizes the efficiency of the Greek economy and encourages the country to continue its bid for EMU membership. He also added that the Greek government was not exulting or celebrating but it presented reality which was that Greece is very close to achieving this goal.

    [13] PANAMERICAN CONFERENCE OF THE HELLENES ABROAD

    The first pan-American conference of the Hellenes leaving abroad, with the participation of a Greek parliamentary delegation, is due to take place on May, 9, in New York, aiming at a mutual exchange of information as well as at the examination of a series of issues concerning the joint course of Hellenes in Greece and abroad.

    The Greek delegation will be headed by the deputy of Dodecanese and secretary of the Central Committee of the governing party of PASOK Kostas Scandalidis while other participants from the government will be the deputy ministers of Foreign Affairs, Giannos Kranidiotis, and Economy, Nikos Christodoulakis, as well as the secretary-general of Hellenes Abroad, Stavros Labrinidis.


    [B] INTERNATIONAL NEWS

    [14] GREEK PREMIER SATISFIED OVER EUROPEAN SUMMIT ON EURO

    Greek Prime Minister Kostas Simitis said in Brussels yesterday that the European Union summit's results on the issue of the common currency (euro) were extremely positive for Greece.

    The prime minister stressed the fact that Greece's entry into the third phase of European monetary union (EMU) will be based on the same criteria used for the other 11 countries which just entered the system.

    Mr. Simitis expressed his total satisfaction over the results of the long-drawn out session of this summit, which ended early yesterday morning with the election of Dutchman Wim Duisenberg as the first President of the European Central Bank.

    The premier said that within the next few days he will inform President of the Republic Kostis Stephanopoulos and the political leadership of the country on the outcome, and discuss the results with them.

    Mr. Simitis said that the road toward the adoption of a common currency will not be without problems. A common currency without a common government and a common taxation system is a new experience, he added.

    [15] RICHARD HOLBROOKE’S CONTACTS IN CYPRUS BEAR NO RESULTS

    The United States Presidential envoy for the Cyprus issue Richard Holbrooke is shuttling between the Presidency building in Nicosia where he meets with President Glafkos Clerides, and the occupied territories in the northern part of the island where he meets with Turkish-Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash.

    So far Mr. Holbrooke’s efforts have borne no result, but the experienced diplomat will persist with his efforts for the next ten days.

    Mr. Denktash is remaining intransigent in his position that the occupied part of Cyprus be recognized as an independent state. The US, the European Union and the United Nations have stated that this will not happen. Mr. Holbrooke is to visit Athens and Ankara today.

    [16] TENSION MOUNTS IN KOSSOVO

    Tension is mounting in the strife-torn region of Kossovo, between the Serbs and the Albanian-speaking locals.

    Yesterday, a delegation of Albanian Ministers, headed by vice- president Bashkim Fino, visited border regions. Albania’s defense Minister did not rule out the possibility of stationing troops at the border regions.

    Meanwhile, Belgrade is protesting the sanctions drawn by the “Contact Group” against their country.

    [17] DEVELOPMENT MINISTER IN EGYPT FOR ENERGY AGREEMENT

    Minister of Development Vasso Papandreou is currently visiting Egypt in order to finalize an energy agreement.

    Ms. Papandreou is in Cairo attending a conference to consider potential business opportunities in the region. Papandreou, accompanied by representatives from Greece's Public Power Corporation (DEH), will sign the first energy cooperation agreement between Greece and Egypt today.

    During her visit, she will also meet with Orthodox Patriarch Petros of Alexandria.

    [18] WIM DUISENBERG ELECTED CHIEF OF EUROPEAN CENTRAL BANK

    Following lengthy negotiations, European Union leaders chose yesterday Dutchman Wim Duisenberg to head the bank that will control Europe's single currency, the euro.

    In a compromise, Duisenberg was selected as chief of the new European Central Bank, but with the proviso that he leave in 2002, when Frenchman Jean-Claude Trichet will take over for four years.

    The dispute over the central bank post – mainly between Germany and France – marred celebrations at the landmark summit of EU leaders called to confirm the selection of 11 nations that will adopt the euro as their shared currency on January 1 and create an unprecedented economic union.

    [19] GREEK CLIMBER DIES IN THE HIMALAYANS, HIS BODY UNRETRIEVABLE

    A 44-year-old Greek mountaineer died in the Himalayan Mountains on Friday after he slipped and fell from a peak, according to the Nepalese government.

    Nikos Papandreou, a businessman from Athens, fell 4,950 feet from Mount Dhaulagiri on Friday, his team members said.

    His body was not found and the Nepalese government said it will not try to look for it. Expeditions rarely look for bodies during such accidents because they often fall into deep crevices and it is impossible to retrieve them.

    The accident occurred when Mr. Papandreou slipped at a height of 24,750-feet, on the way to the summit of the summit, said the Nepalese Tourism Ministry, which monitors all climbing activities in the country.

    The seven-member Association Hellenic Mountaineers SEO team abandoned its bid on the mountain, 26,950 feet high.

    [20] GREEK DEFENSE MINISTER IN MADRID FOR WEU, NATO MEETINGS

    National Defense Minister Akis Tsochatzopoulos is currently in Madrid today to attend NATO’s and the Western European Union's Parliamentary Assembly.

    According to reports, Mr. Tsochatzopoulos is to meet with the Alliance’s Secretary-General Javier Solana who will reiterate the importance of trust-building measures in the Aegean.

    Mr. Tsochatzopoulos will be making an address in the framework of the WEU's Parliamentary Assembly tomorrow.

    Afterwards, he will meet his Spanish counterpart Mr. Sera at the Spanish Defense Ministry and will also visit Spanish defense industries, as well as the Military Museum in Madrid.

    [21] OCCUPATION FORCES IMPOSE VISA LEVY ON GREEK JOURNALISTS

    Greek Cypriot journalists left in protest a meeting in Turkish occupied Nicosia after they were told that next time round they will have to pay so-called visa charges, imposed by the illegal Turkish Cypriot regime.

    The reporters were told by Taner Etkin, a self-styled minister of the regime, that "we will implement all the principles at the borders after this meeting and we will ask you, the media, who want to come to the north to fill the forms and pay the visa charges."

    The move by the regime comes in retaliation to yesterday morning's development when Turkish journalists, who arrived on the island through an illegal port of entry in occupied Cyprus, were not allowed by the Cyprus police to cross into the government controlled areas of the Republic to cover a meeting between President Glafcos Clerides with US emissary Richard Holbrooke.

    Ports of entry in the northern part of Cyprus, occupied by Turkish troops since they invaded in 1974, have been declared illegal and anybody wishing to enter the Republic of Cyprus should do so through points controlled by the Cypriot authorities.

    The Turkish Cypriot regime imposes what it calls "visa charges" at the only crossing point between the northern Turkish occupied areas and the southern government controlled part of Cyprus.

    [22] “THE LONDON TIMES”: GREECE HAS WORLD’S CLEANEST BEACHES

    Greece has the cleanest beaches in the world, according to a poll conducted by Great Britain’s daily “The London Times”, which gathered opinions from 100 travel agencies in England.

    The travel bureaus voted their preferences as follows: 15% Greece, 13% the beaches in the remaining Mediterranean, 10% the shores of the Indian Ocean and 8% Africa.

    According to Greece’s Undersecretary of Development Michalis Chrysochoides, a great number of tourists is expected to arrive in Greece this year fueled by the devaluation of the drachma.

    [23] HOLBROOKE: TALKS IN CYPRUS ARE AT TEMPORARY DEADLOCK

    The United States presidential envoy for the Cyprus issue Richard Holbrooke has characterized the talks he recently held at the island as a “temporary deadlock”.

    Following his successive meetings with Cypriot President Glafkos Clerides and Turkish-Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash, the US emissary said “I do not think it’s either a crisis or a catastrophe”.

    He did add that there is an impasse in the talks, which he characterized as important.

    Moreover, during the press interview Mr. Holbrooke stated Mr. Denktash is insistent that the occupied part of the island be recognized as a state and refused to embark on negotiations until this is done.

    During an interview with the “Washington Post”, Mr. Holbrooke said that the shift in the Turkish stance is the reason no progress has been made in the Cyprus issue, adding that the US involvement in Cyprus will be continued in order to avert a worsening turn of the situation.

    Mr. Holbrooke stressed that the two days of talks reached an impasse when Mr. Denktash set forth two new terms for restarting the talks. that is, first to conduct the talks based on two “states” and, second, that President Clerides must withdraw Cyprus’s accession bid from the European Union.

    [24] TSOCHATZOPOULOS ATTENDS THE WEU AND NATO ASSEMBLY MEETING

    Greek minister of defense Akis Tsochatzopoulos is in Madrid today to participate in the proceedings of the Western European Union and NATO parliamentary assembly meeting.

    According to information, Mr. Tsochatzopoulos is expected to be pressured by NATO secretary-general Javier Solana to accept the confidence-building-measures in the Aegean.

    Meanwhile, the likelihood for a meeting between Greek minister of defense and his Turkish counterpart on the sidelines of the Madrid meeting remains open.

    [25] THE CYPRIOT GOVERNMENT IS DISPLEASED WITH THE INTRANSIGENCE DISPLAYED BY THE TURKISH CYPRIOTS

    Cypriot press minister Christos Stilianides expressed the Cypriot government’s discontent and disappointment for the intransigence displayed by Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash in the meeting he had with US presidential envoy Richard Halbrooke. Mr. Stilianides also stressed that unfortunately the effort for the resumption of dialogue between the two communities, aimed at the establishment of a two-zone and two-community federation, has failed.

    Mr. Stilianides added that the international community must realize that the Turkish side is solely responsible for the lack of progress toward the overall settlement of the Cyprus problem.

    Referring to the proposal of the Russian Federation for the demilitarization of Cyprus and the transformation of the UNFICYP into an international force with a UN Security Council mandate, Mr. Stilianides stated that it includes elements found in the two proposals for the island’s demilitarization that were submitted by Cypriot president Glafkos Clerides. The Cypriot government spokesman stressed that the island’s demilitarization and the presence of an international force with a UN Security Council mandate was and still is Cyprus’s firm policy.

    [26] A BELGRADE NEWSPAPER WARNS OF INCREASED RADIATION IN SERBIA

    The Belgrade newspaper “Nasa Borba” warns that increased levels of radiation have been recorded in Serb regions.

    The newspaper maintains that the Democratic party of Serbia with a letter to the ministry of information has requested that the public should be informed on whether the increased levels of radiation are a result of a leak from the nuclear plants of Chernobyl or Kozlodui or on whether the radiation comes from sources inside the Yugoslav borders.

    The Federal Republic of Yugoslavia has no nuclear plant in its territory and until now no official Serb authority has confirmed the information on the increased radiation levels.

    [27] EXTENSIVE MEDIA COVERAGE TO PROF. DIMITRIS TSATSOS’ VISIT TO ALBANIA

    The Albanian mass media gave extensive coverage to the new visit to Tirana by Greek Constitutional Law professor and Euro- deputy Dimitris Tsatsos which was made at the invitation of Albanian Constitution Committee president Sabri Gondo.

    The Albanian television gave a special emphasis to Mr. Tsatsos’ meeting with Albanian president Redjep Meidani and also to the willingness displayed by Mr. Tsatsos to help the Albanian committee to draw up the country’s new Constitution.

    Mr. Meidani stated that Mr. Tsatsos’ contribution will give a new boost to the work of the responsible Albanian committee.


    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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