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Macedonian Press Agency: News in English, 2001-03-30

Macedonian Press Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Macedonian Press Agency at http://www.mpa.gr and http://www.hri.org/MPA.


MACEDONIAN PRESS AGENCY NEWS IN ENGLISH
Thessaloniki, March 30, 2001

SECTIONS

  • [A] NATIONAL NEWS
  • [B] INTERNATIONAL NEWS TITLES
  • [] NATIONAL NEWS
  • [01] EUROPEAN COMMISSION PRESIDENT IN THESSALONIKI
  • [02] ABNA CONVENES IN THESSALONIKI FOR FYROM CRISIS
  • [03] GREEK, YUGOSLAV PMs TO ADDRESS BALKAN FORUM
  • [04] GREECE AND LATVIA SIGN COOPERATION PROTOCOL
  • [05] WORLD LEADERS AT "ECONOMIST" EVENT IN ATHENS
  • [06] GREEK COAST GUARD OFFICERS HONORED BY DEA
  • [07] ATHOC CHIEF TO CNN: WE'RE WORKING VERY HARD
  • [08] SOCIAL POLICY COMMISSIONER IN THESSALONIKI
  • [09] SCOTLAND YARD TO SOON TURN OVER N17 EVIDENCE
  • [10] THE EFQM CONFERENCE WILL BE HELD IN THESSALONIKI FOR THE FIRST TIME
  • [11] GAINS IN THE ATHENS STOCK EXCHANGE
  • [12] BREAST CANCER AFFECTS 4.500 GREEK WOMEN EACH YEAR
  • [13] THE GREEK-BULGARIAN RELATIONS IN AN INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE IN THESSALONIKI
  • [14] THE 5TH NEW DEMOCRACY PARTY CONGRESS OPENS THIS AFTERNOON
  • [B] INTERNATIONAL NEWS
  • [15] JOURNALIST, 2 CIVILIANS, DIE IN KOSOVO MORTAR FIRE
  • [16] CULTURAL EVENTS DEDICATED TO GREECE IN GENEVA
  • [17] CONFERENCE OF THE SOUTHEASTERN EUROPEAN DEFENSE MINISTERS IN SKOPJE
  • [18] GREEK ASSISTANCE TO BULGARIAN PROJECTS
  • [19] JOINT EXERCISES BY FIRE-FIGHTERS FROM GREECE, BULGARIA AND TURKEY

  • NEWS IN DETAIL

    [A] NATIONAL NEWS

    [01] EUROPEAN COMMISSION PRESIDENT IN THESSALONIKI

    European Commission President Romano Prodi is arriving in Thessaloniki today, to attend commemorative events on the 20th anniversary of Greece's accession to the European Union.

    The anniversary celebrations, which get underway tomorrow, will also be attended by Prime Minister Costas Simitis and European Parliament President Nicole Fontaine, main opposition party leader Costas Karamanlis, as well as other dignitaries.

    The events will also include three forums: "Greece in Europe- 20 years of future prospects", "Economic and regional development in Greece and Europe" and "Enlargement and future organization in Europe."

    Mr. Prodi will be proclaimed an honorary citizen of Thessaloniki, during an extraordinary municipal council meeting where the Mayor of Thessaloniki Vassilis Papageorgopoulos will award him the city's Gold Medal of Honor.

    It will be the first time the municipal council will be proclaiming a European Commission president an honorary citizen.

    [02] ABNA CONVENES IN THESSALONIKI FOR FYROM CRISIS

    The members of the Association of Balkan News Agencies (ABNA) are presently holding an extraordinary meeting in Thessaloniki, in order to discuss the present situation in southeastern Europe in light of the latest developments in FYROM.

    The meeting features the participation of the general- directors from the national news agencies of Anadolu (Turkey), ANA (Greece), ATA (Albania), BTA (Bulgaria), MIA (FYROM), ROMPRESS (Romania), Tanjug (Yugoslavia), IHA (Turkey), MOLDPRESS (Moldova) and MPA (Greece).

    The discussion, held under the initiative of the Macedonian Press Agency and within the framework of ABNA, will focus on the discovery of initiatives by the region's national news agencies and their contribution to restoring a climate of peace, security and cooperation in southeastern Europe.

    Moreover, the participants will review issues pending within the ABNA, such as the operation of its web site, (abna.org), and the formulation of an improved version of the DIAVLOS program, which would provide for a multilateral link among all of the region's national news agencies via the Balkan News Bank.

    Presently in operation at the MPA's facilities in Thessaloniki, the Balkan News Bank provides an archive of news, photographs sound and video.

    [03] GREEK, YUGOSLAV PMs TO ADDRESS BALKAN FORUM

    Prime Minister Costas Simitis and his Yugoslav counterpart Zoran Zizic are to be among the speakers at a Balkan forum to be held in Thessaloniki on April 2-3, organized by the Association of Industries of Northern Greece and the Hellenic American Chamber of Commerce.

    The foreign ministers of three Balkan countries will also speak at the meeting, namely Albania's Paskal Milo, FYROM's Srgjan Kerim and the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia's Goran Svilanovic, who will discuss the topic "Southeastern Europe: Political Stability as a Prerequisite for European Cohesion".

    National Economy Minister Yiannos Papantoniou will also be joined by four of his counterparts, namely from F.R.Y., Cyprus, Albania and FYROM, who will review the latest developments in their countries' economies, under the scope of Greece's Balkan Reconstruction Plan.

    Other speakers include Bodo Hombach, the Balkan stability pact coordinator, and senior U.S. State Department official James Swiggart, director of the Office of South Central European Affairs.

    According to the organizers, the event aims at serving as the platform for peace in the Balkans and an exchange of ideas on social and economic development in the region.

    [04] GREECE AND LATVIA SIGN COOPERATION PROTOCOL

    Greece and Latvia signed a protocol of cooperation in the sectors of education, economic relations, technical know-how and dual taxation issues, during a joint ministerial meeting held yesterday in Athens.

    Greece's Deputy National Economy Minister Yiannis Zafiropoulos and Latvian Economic Minister Aigars Kalvitis chaired the ministerial session, where participants addressed bilateral economic issues and discussed future plans for their development.

    The protocol includes issues such as tourism, construction, agriculture, transport, information systems, industry and education, while it also includes Greece's decision to grant 10 million dollars worth of credit line to Latvia.

    [05] WORLD LEADERS AT "ECONOMIST" EVENT IN ATHENS

    An international conference to be held by the magazine "The Economist" in Athens on April 3-4, will be attended by Prime Minister Costas Simitis and other leaders, among them the former president of the United States George Bush.

    The international event will focus on the theme "Leadership Strategy at the Dawn of the 21st Century".

    Other leaders expected to attend are former president of the former Soviet Union Mikhail Gorbachev, Palestinian President Yasser Arafat, former Israeli prime minister Shimon Peres, former Russian prime minister Yevgeny Primakov, Yugoslav President Vojslav Kostunica and FYROM Premier Ljubco Georgievski, Albanian Premier Ilir Meta, Secretary General of the Council of the European Union and High Representative for Common Foreign Policy and Security Policy (CFCP), Brussels, Javier Solana, and others.

    Among the participants representing Greece will be Foreign Minister George Papandreou, National Defense Minister Akis Tsochatzopoulos, National Economy Minister Yiannos Papantoniou, leader of the main opposition party of New Democracy Costas Karamanlis and the party's honorary president Constantine Mitsotakis and Bank of Greece Governor Loukas Papademos.

    [06] GREEK COAST GUARD OFFICERS HONORED BY DEA

    The United States Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) has honored 32 Greek Coast Guard officers who completed a two-week course in counter-narcotics work at sea.

    In a ceremony held at the Merchant Marine Ministry, US Ambassador to Athens Nicholas Burns saluted counter-narcotics cooperation between the US and Greece as one of the great strengths of the two countries' relationship.

    The purpose of the seminar was to train coast guard officials in modern methods of counter-narcotics work.

    Minister of Merchant Marine Christos Papoutsis, stressed that the Greek government is very sensitive on the issue of counter- narcotics and will in no way allow the country to become a corridor for drug trafficking from east to west.

    Greek counter-narcotics work played a major role in the interception of drug cargoes aboard the ships China Breeze in 1999 and the Suerte in 2000.

    [07] ATHOC CHIEF TO CNN: WE'RE WORKING VERY HARD

    Greece will be thoroughly ready for the Olympic Games of 2004, the president of the Athens Organizing Committee (ATHOC) Yanna Aggelopoulos-Daskalaki stted during an interview with CNN.

    Referring to the course of preparations on projects related to the Games, Ms. Aggelopoulos-Daskalaki stated that 72 percent of the overall athletic facilities have been completed, while she also stressed that a special plan is presently underway for the Games' security.

    "We're all working very hard since we feel that the Games are returning to their birthplace," she stated.

    [08] SOCIAL POLICY COMMISSIONER IN THESSALONIKI

    Greek European Union Social Policy Commissioner Anna Diamantopoulou is to arrive in Thessaloniki today, where she will give an address entitled "Employment and social cohesion in Europe".

    Ms. Diamantopoulou yesterday signed a decision on the ratification of the Greek operational program "Training and Vocational Preparation", which includes EU backing for all Greek regions amounting to 1.9 billion euro, corresponding to 8.6 percent of the Community Support Framework's (CSF) total funding for Greece.

    The program aims at promoting equal opportunities for access to the labor market for all, linking training and employment, developing and promoting enterprise, improving women's access to the labor market and strengthening training infrastructures.

    [09] SCOTLAND YARD TO SOON TURN OVER N17 EVIDENCE

    Scotland Yard officials working with the Greek authorities on the terrorist assassination of London's military attache in Athens last June, are to present their conclusions in six weeks.

    According to the Athens radio station"Sky", the results of "Operation Digest" follow a full revision of all available evidence from 26 years of urban guerrilla attacks in Greece.

    The British detectives combed through the Greek files on the November 17 terrorist organization, which claimed responsibility for the shooting of Brigadier Stephen Saunders, from the very beginning, using state-of-the-art methods and technology that was not available before.

    One of the key conclusions is that 17N uses different teams to execute specific tasks, with one group, for example, carrying out shooting missions and another for attacks with the anti-tank missiles the organization stole from the Greek Army.

    [10] THE EFQM CONFERENCE WILL BE HELD IN THESSALONIKI FOR THE FIRST TIME

    The conference of the European Quality Prize Winners will be held for the first time in Thessaloniki and is expected to attract the interest of hundreds of Greek businessmen.

    The conference will be held on May 16 co-organized by the European Fund for Quality Management and the Greek Business Management Society (central Macedonia department).

    The representatives of the participating Greek companies will have the opportunity to meet with the prize winning companies and discuss with them the methods that led them to the highest level of productivity and effectiveness.

    [11] GAINS IN THE ATHENS STOCK EXCHANGE

    Significant gains were recorded in the Athens Stock Exchange today. The general index rose to +1.03% at 3.044,55 points, while the volume of transactions was very small at 156.26 million Euro or 53.24 billion drachmas.

    Of the stocks trading today, 174 recorded gains and 147 had losses, while the value of 50 stocks remained stable.

    [12] BREAST CANCER AFFECTS 4.500 GREEK WOMEN EACH YEAR

    Breast cancer affects 4.500 women in Greece each year and according to the scientists attending the 1st Conference of Gyniatrics, that takes place in Thessaloniki under the presidency of Aristotle University obstetrics and gynecology professor Ioannis Bondis, cancer can be beaten if women are well-informed.

    Breast cancer in Greece is responsible for most deaths in Greece after lung cancer and therefore, mammography is necessary for women over the age of 40, who want to trace cancer at its early stages. If the tumor is traced at its early stage and has a diameter smaller than 1 cm it has been proven that there is a 90% chance for the patients to live for more than 20 years.

    Based on epidemiology data, just 15% of the breast cancer cases in Greece are diagnosed at their early phase, while in the United States the percentage is larger than 50%. However, it has been proven that breast cancer affects the Greek female population less compared to the female populations in northern and central Europe.

    [13] THE GREEK-BULGARIAN RELATIONS IN AN INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE IN THESSALONIKI

    The proceedings of the 7th international conference on the "Political, spiritual and cultural relations between the Greeks and Bulgarians from the 18th to the 20th century", organized by the Balkan Studies Institute in cooperation with the Balkanology Institute of the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, opened in Thessaloniki today.

    The communication of scientists from the two countries and the exchange of views are the main goals of the conference, according to statements made to MPA by Balkan Studies Institute director and Aristotle University assistant professor Ioannis Mourelos, who expressed great concern for the developments in FYROM.

    [14] THE 5TH NEW DEMOCRACY PARTY CONGRESS OPENS THIS AFTERNOON

    The 5th New Democracy party congress will open in Athens this afternoon with the participation of 4.500 delegates.

    The congress proceedings will open with the speech of Organizing Committee president and former prime minister Tzanis Tzanetakis followed by party leader Kostas Karamanlis.

    Right-wing main opposition party spokesman Theodoros Rousopoulos underlined that New Democracy is the first political party to broadcast live its congress on the Internet (www.ndsynedrio.gr).

    No party leadership issue will be raised in the congress. There will be a vote on the Executive Committee proposal concerning the broadening of the Central Committee membership, while tomorrow a discussion will be held on a government draft program and the party charter. On Sunday, a vote will be held for the election of the Central Committee members and the party congress will end with the speech of party leader Kostas Karamanlis.

    [B] INTERNATIONAL NEWS

    [15] JOURNALIST, 2 CIVILIANS, DIE IN KOSOVO MORTAR FIRE

    A British cameraman and two Kosovar civilians were killed yesterday in a mortar attack near the village of Krivenik, close to the FYROM-Kosovo border.

    According to KFOR, the NATO-led peacekeeping force stationed in the Yugoslav province, another 19 were wounded in the afternoon attack, which fell near KFOR soldiers.

    The Associated Press in London has confirmed that one of its Prishtina-based cameramen, Kerem Lawton, 30, was killed in the bombardment, while the two dead civilians were said to be villagers from Krivenik, aged 19 and 33.

    According to KFOR spokesman Richard Heffer, a KFOR patrol saw a group of men walking through the border area. When the patrol approached them a mortar shell fell within 300 meters of the troops.

    The spokesman of FYROM's Defense Ministry Georgki Tredafilov denied that his country's forces fired the deadly rounds.

    [16] CULTURAL EVENTS DEDICATED TO GREECE IN GENEVA

    A number of cultural events dedicated to Greece, under the title "Greek Spring", are underway in Geneva.

    The events will continue throughout the month of April and will take place at the CAC Voltaire conference center, where the Geneva Cinema Club is based.

    Within the framework of the events there will be Greek film screenings, music events and photo exhibitions.

    [17] CONFERENCE OF THE SOUTHEASTERN EUROPEAN DEFENSE MINISTERS IN SKOPJE

    The defense ministers from southeastern Europe will be in Skopje next Thursday to examine the geopolitical situation in the region, the phenomenon of the creation of new crisis hotbeds, the political control of the armed forces and the prospects for regional and cross-border cooperation.

    The meeting will be attended by the defense ministers of Turkey, Bulgaria, Greece, Albania, FYROM, Yugoslavia, Romania, Croatia, Slovenia, Ukraine as well as, Italy, Sweden and the United States. The proceedings will also be attended by representatives of the United Nations, NATO, the European Union and OSCE.

    [18] GREEK ASSISTANCE TO BULGARIAN PROJECTS

    Greece will offer free economic assistance of 54.3 million Euro to Bulgaria for the materialization of projects within the framework of the program it has drawn up for the reconstruction of the Balkans. The funds must be used in the period 2001-2005 and by early May Bulgaria should suggest a framework agreement on the way these funds will be used.

    Greek national economy ministry general secretary Minas Stavrakakis and Bulgarian undersecretary of economy Kristo Michailovski met in Sofia and discussed ways in which the assistance can be used. According to the Bulgarian official, the materialization of the first project will start in two months.

    It should be noted that, according to the Greek program for the reconstruction of the Balkans Athens will offer free economic assistance of 543 million Euro to the countries in the region. Specifically, Albania will receive about 51 million Euro, FYROM 46.8 million Euro, Romania 72.5 million Euro and Yugoslavia 241 million Euro.

    [19] JOINT EXERCISES BY FIRE-FIGHTERS FROM GREECE, BULGARIA AND TURKEY

    Fire-fighting forces from Greece, Bulgaria and Turkey conducted joint exercises near the Bulgarian city of Svilengrad.

    In today's last drill that was watched by Bulgarian president Petar Stoyanov and other officials, the fire-fighters had to put out a fire at an oil reservoir that was the result of an earthquake.

    The Bulgarian president congratulated them for their effective cooperation and wished similar cooperation among politicians for the Balkans to become a peaceful region with countries that share friendly relations.


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