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Macedonian Press Agency: News in English, 2002-09-18

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 Thessaloniki, September 18, 2002

SECTIONS

  • [A] NATIONAL NEWS
  • [B] INTERNATIONAL NEWS

  • NEWS HEADLINES

    [A] NATIONAL NEWS

  • [01] PAPANTONIOU: WE WANT TO IMPROVE GREEK-TURKISH RELATIONS
  • [02] K. KARAMANLIS IN BRUSSELS
  • [03] MAYO CASE PERMANENTLY CLOSED
  • [04] OTOE PROPOSES 1 AND 2 EURO BANK NOTES
  • [05] SOTIROPOULOU IN CORYDALLOS TODAY
  • [06] GREEK COURTS UNFIT TO RULE ON GERMAN REPARATIONS
  • [07] ABOUT 100.000 FOREIGNERS AND REPATRIATED GREEKS IN THE GREEK SCHOOLS
  • [08] 140 TEENAGERS FROM ISRAEL WILL VISIT GREECE FOR A WEEK
  • [09] BEGLITIS ON THE FYROM ELECTIONS
  • [10] TWENTY EIGHT YEARS IN PRISON FOR A NORWEGIAN CHILD RAPIST
  • [11] INKA: THE CENTRAL FRESH FRUIT AND VEGETABLE MARKETS ARE EMPTY
  • [12] INFLATION IN THE EURO-ZONE REACHED 2.1% IN AUGUST
  • [13] THE ASE FREE FALL CONTINUES
  • [14] PROTOPAPAS ON THE FYROM ELECTIONS
  • [15] PAPANDREOU: INTERNAL DEVELOPMENTS IN TURKEY WILL PLAY AN IMPORTANT ROLE
  • [16] BALKAN JUSTICE MINISTERS' MEETING
  • [B] INTERNATIONAL NEWS

    NEWS IN DETAILS

    [A] NATIONAL NEWS

  • [01] PAPANTONIOU: WE WANT TO IMPROVE GREEK-TURKISH RELATIONS Greece is purely aiming at improving Greek Turkish relations, stated Defense Minister Giannos Papantoniou, while at the same time making clear that substantial and permanent improvement of Greek-Turkish relations, requires resolving the Cyprus issue and removing all Turkish claims on Greece's sovereign rights in the Aegean.

    Speaking to Flash radio, Mr. Papantoniou supported that it is difficult for one to foresee the exact developments at the Copenhagen EU Summit as far as Cyprus' accession to the EU is concerned.

    "What is certain is that Turkey has stated it will react to the accession of the Republic of Cyprus to the European Union. The question is, to what extent will these reactions go. The image I have is that at the moment Turkey is weighing the consequences

    its reaction may have. It would definitely cause great problems and will damage its European prospects, because who will continue to support it once it has acted outside international Law", he asked.

    He also added that Greece must be ready for every eventuality and added that we must continue hoping that prudence, common mind and the real interests of Turkey will prevail over its reactions.

    On Iraq

    As far as a possible US attack on Iraq is concerned, the Minister of Defense stressed that initially a positive position of the international community , and especially the EU, is needed, while he clarified that Greece will not participate in anything "t hat has not been sanctioned by the United Nations".

    Mr. Papantoniou underlined that Greece has nothing to gain from such a military intervention and he referred to the negative consequences such an action would have on a country's economy. "We also have to fight, as a country, within the EU so that throug h UN Inspectors a war can be avoided. Because geopolitically we are in the Middle Eastern region, thus any destabilizing action will be a powerful strike at our national interests. Furthermore, we are a small country, greatly dependent on petroleum. It is

    obvious that for the duration of a military operation there would be many negative consequences on our economy", he said.

  • [02] K. KARAMANLIS IN BRUSSELS President of New Democracy Kostas Karamanlis is in Brussels today, in order to participate in the works of the Presidency of the European People's Party.

    During the day, Mr. Karamanlis will meet with relevant Commissioner on enlargement issues, Gunter Verheugen, while he will be present at a reception of ND EuroMPs, in honor of Greek EU employees. In the evening the Head of the Opposition will observe the

    works of the EPP's Presidency.

    Tomorrow, the President of ND will observe the works of the council and the political office of the EPP and in the afternoon he will return to Athens.

  • [03] MAYO CASE PERMANENTLY CLOSED The file of the "Mayo" Liberian Company has been officially closed, after the relevant proposal of DA Dimitris Papaggelopoulos and Assistant DA Evanthia Spyropoulou.

    This development sparked a new round of confrontations between PASOK and ND. Press spokesperson of ND Thodoris Roussopoulos, stated that this development has done justice to ND, and is a slap in the face for all those who would not tire of poisoning publ ic life. He called Mr. Simitis and Mr. Laliotis to apologize.

    The Secretary of PASOK's Central Committee, Kostas Laliotis, pointed out that the issue is not closed. The judges are judged and the political stigma will mark ND for its shady dealings with financial interests.

    Government Spokesperson Christos Protopapas answered Mr. Roussopoulos with the questions: "Why did ND claim it had no connections to the Liberian "Mayo" company, when they accept that $2.5 million surged from this source into its own treasury? Does this not do justice to the truth of Mr. Laliotis' evidences? Is this not called a transaction and dependence on financial interests?"

    On his side, the ND Press Spokesperson stated that: "Mr. Protopapas' repeated drivel has been answered by Justice".

  • [04] OTOE PROPOSES 1 AND 2 EURO BANK NOTES The transformation of the 1 and 2 euro coins into bank notes was officially requested by the leadership of OTOE (Hellenic Federation of Bank Employee Unions), from the President of the European Central Bank, Vim Duizeberg, in order to deal with inflation

    pressures.

    "The coin form of these two European currencies is a serious reason for their undervaluing in the consciences of our country's citizens, and that has a negative effect on price levels, while, at the same time, it contributes to a lax consumer habit in bu ying products", pointed out OTOE.

    It should be noted that the Greek request of OTOE, was made known by letter to the Vice President of the European Central Bank, Lucas Papadimos, Minister of Finance Nikos Christodoulakis, and the Director of the Bank of Greece, Nikolaos Garganas.

  • [05] SOTIROPOULOU IN CORYDALLOS TODAY Aggeliki Sotiropoulou will be taken to the DA and then to the Corydallos penitentiary, charged with participating in the "November 17" terrorist organization.

    The Appeals Council judged that there are signs of possible implication and her temporary incarceration was deemed necessary. Sotiropoulou was arrested yesterday in Patissia and spent the night in a counter terrorism cell.

    Within the Corydallos penitentiary, Dimitris Koufontinas and Nikos Papanastasiou talked for 90 minutes, the duration of time they spent in the courtyard together, for the first time since their incarceration.

    According to "To Vima" newspaper, after two months of near isolation, Nikos Papanastasiou met with a fellow prisoner for the first time, while the only suspect still spending time in the courtyard alone is Alexandros Giotopoulos.

    As far as the communication rules for the prisoners with 4th degree relatives and attorneys are concerned, they have not yet been established. Dimitris Koufontinas asked if he will be allowed to see Aggeliki Sotiropoulou within the prison, while the auth orities are seriously looking into the possibility of allowing Mrs. Sotiropoulou to see her underage son every day.

  • [06] GREEK COURTS UNFIT TO RULE ON GERMAN REPARATIONS Greek courts do not have the authority to try cases on reparations for victims of the German occupation, according to the Special Supreme Court

    Specifically, the Special Supreme Court ruled that based on International Law, a state cannot be tried by the court of another state, for reparations of any kind both at times of war and peace.

    However, the issue of the German reparations has been referred to Division I of the Supreme Court, which is able to send an interlocutory query to the court of European communities before its ruling, in order to define the sense of the wrongdoing.

    The plenary session of the Supreme Court had ruled, after the appeal of Distomo victims' relatives had made, that reparation demands for wrongdoing by another state could be tried in Greece.

    On their side, the relatives of the victims may appeal to the Hague Court, against the Greek Public Sector, for violation of the European treaty on human rights, in obstructing the right to justice.

  • [07] ABOUT 100.000 FOREIGNERS AND REPATRIATED GREEKS IN THE GREEK SCHOOLS The number of foreign and repatriated Greek students is estimated at 100.000 in Greece, while one in four students in the schools of Athens is a foreigner, according to figures presented yesterday in a one-day conference organized by the Greek Local Admi nistration Association.

    Based on figures provided by the Ministry of Education for the year 2000, the foreign and repatriated Greek students in the Greek elementary education schools are 65.546 (10.7%) and 43.000 of them come from Albania, 16.459 from the former Soviet Union an d 3.500 from different EU countries. In the secondary education schools their percentage is smaller as in the school year 2000-2001 foreign students corresponded to 4.5% of the total number of students.

    Most of the foreign students are in the region of Athens (47%), central Macedonia (24%) and eastern Macedonia and Thrace (9%).

  • [08] 140 TEENAGERS FROM ISRAEL WILL VISIT GREECE FOR A WEEK One hundred forty teenagers from Israel, ages 15-17, will visit Greece for a week at the initiative of the Central Association of Greek Municipalities and Communities in cooperation with the embassy of Israel. The Israelis will visit archaeological sites

    in Athens and the Peloponnese and a number of Greek islands.

    They come from cities and towns of Israel targeted repeatedly by terrorist suicide attacks in the past two years and many of them have lost family members or friends.

    The 140 young Israelis will arrive in Athens on Sunday morning.

  • [09] BEGLITIS ON THE FYROM ELECTIONS Greek Foreign Ministry spokesman Panos Beglitis expressed the Greek government's satisfaction for the calm and democratic way in which parliamentary elections were held in FYROM as well as for the mature and responsible stance adopted by political forces

    and people in the neighboring country.

    Greece is a strategic partner of FYROM and will continue to contribute to the stability and development of the neighboring country by strengthening the multifaceted bilateral cooperation and by promoting its Euro-Atlantic prospect, stated Mr. Beglitis.

  • [10] TWENTY EIGHT YEARS IN PRISON FOR A NORWEGIAN CHILD RAPIST A prison sentence of 28 years was imposed to a 41yearold Norwegian man, according to the Greek State Radio.

    A court in Iraklion, on the island of Crete in southern Greece, found the Norwegian guilty for the rape of an 8yearold boy from Sweden, who was on vacation with his parents in Platania, Chania in May 2001.

  • [11] INKA: THE CENTRAL FRESH FRUIT AND VEGETABLE MARKETS ARE EMPTY The central fresh fruit and vegetable markets in Athens and Thessaloniki were empty in the early morning hours today as a result of the continuing consumer boycott held in protest to the high fresh fruit and vegetable prices. Yesterday, second day of the

    mobilization that will be completed on Thursday, the boycott participation reached 40-60%.

    This means in essence that large quantities of fresh fruit and vegetables have remained undisposed and as a result prices have dropped even further.

  • [12] INFLATION IN THE EURO-ZONE REACHED 2.1% IN AUGUST Inflation in the Euro-zone in the month of August was just over the 2% target set by the European Central Bank for price stability. In July inflation was under 2% at 1.9%.

    Inflation in the Euro-zone was at 2.1% in August, while Greece still has the third highest inflation among the 12 Euro-zone countries as its harmonized index rose to 3.8% like in Holland. The highest inflation was recorded in Ireland (4.5%) followed by P ortugal (3.9%). The lowest was in Germany (1%), Belgium (1.3%) and Finland (1.8%).

    The inflationary pressures in the Euro-zone were intensified by the international oil price hikes which increased the cost in industry and airlines.

    An upward course was followed by the average structural inflation in the Euro-zone which reached 2.5% in August compared to 2.4% in July.

  • [13] THE ASE FREE FALL CONTINUES The Athens Stock Exchange continues to lose ground as the general index plunged today under the 1.900 points.

    The general index dropped to -1.79% at 1.898,49 points, while the volume of transactions did not exceed 100 million Euro.

    Of the stocks trading today only 39 recorded gains and the overwhelming majority of 299 had losses, while the value of 37 stocks remained unchanged.

  • [14] PROTOPAPAS ON THE FYROM ELECTIONS As a government spokesman I cannot enter the internal affairs of other countries or comment on election results, stated Greek government spokesman Christos Protopapas responding to FYROM press reports according to which, he refused to comment on the Soci alists' victory in the parliamentary elections.

    Mr. Protopapas stressed that elections were held in a climate of calm and there was mature and democratic behavior displayed by everybody, in a country that has suffered greatly by conflicts recently. He added that the Greek government is ready to cooper ate with the government of FYROM to handle the issues that are still pending and of course Greece is ready to cooperate for the consolidation of peace, security and cooperation in southeastern Europe.

  • [15] PAPANDREOU: INTERNAL DEVELOPMENTS IN TURKEY WILL PLAY AN IMPORTANT ROLE Greek Foreign Minister Giorgos Papandreou, in an exclusive interview with the Athens radio station Alpha Polis 96.5FM, stated that Cyprus' accession as a whole is the model that will be followed by the EU. Cyprus will become an EU member as a whole but d e facto the northern part of the island will not be able to be a part of the EU due to the situation there. As soon as the problem is resolved it will become part of the EU automatically, as in the case of East Germany. Of course, all that will happen wit hin the framework of the Federation of Cyprus that will be created.

    On the course of the opening of the EU accession negotiations with Turkey, Mr. Papandreou pointed out that nothing has been decided yet and the issue will be assessed in Copenhagen on December 12. However, he said, developments inside Turkey will play an

    important role in the final decision of the EU. He added that Greece is in favor of Turkey's European course.

    When asked to comment on the likelihood for Ankara to escalate its provocation, given the unstable political scene in the neighboring country, Mr. Papandreou pointed out that in spite of the internal developments the rapprochement achieved so far has sto pped Turkey's domestic instability from being exported to Greece. Within this framework, stated Mr. Papandreou, unpredictable moves not only hurt bilateral relations but Turkey's relations with the EU as well and in essence its own prospects.

    Greece, concluded Mr. Papandreou, is always ready to defend its interests but he predicted that developments will be smooth.

  • [16] BALKAN JUSTICE MINISTERS' MEETING The first meeting of Balkan Justice Ministers will be held in Kastoria, northwestern Greece, on September 21 organized by the Greek Justice Ministry on the occasion of the 2nd Balkan Jurists Conference that will take place on September 20-21 and the foun ding of the Balkan Federation of Jurists.

    In the meeting of the Balkan Justice Ministers will participate the responsible ministers from Greece, Romania, the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, Bosnia-Herzegovina and Albania as well as representatives of the Justice Ministries in Bulgaria and Cyprus


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