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Macedonian Press Agency: News in English, 2002-11-07

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

From: The Macedonian Press Agency at and

MACEDONIAN PRESS AGENCY Thessaloniki, November 7, 2002








  • [01] ND ACCUSES PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC Honorary President of New Democracy Konstantinos Mitsotakis made insinuations against the President of the Republic, Kostis Stefanopoulos, and attacked the government yesterday, concerning Legislative Actions on the Olympic Marathon works.

    ND raised the issue of unconstitutionality, since the issue was not brought to Parliament in time, therefore the Legislative Action was no longer in effect. Mr. Mitsotakis accused the government of issuing Legislative Actions very lightly, in order to pa ss various plans of their own. He also made insinuations against the President, who signed the Action when the conditions set by the Constitution had not been met and the opposition had not agreed.

    PASOK speaker Floros Konstantinou, who had introduced the issue, reacted against ND immediately for implicating the President of the Republic. Mr. Konstantinou rejected ND's accusations concerning unconstitutionality.

    Minister of the Media and Press and Government Spokesperson Christos Protopapas called the President of ND to differentiate himself in action, from what Mr. Mitsotakis said in Parliament. Meanwhile an announcement made by the Presidency of the Republic, it is noted that: "According to the Constitution, the President of the Republic, under article 44, 'can, after the proposal of the Cabinet, issue legislative actions'".

    Concerning this announcement, Mr. Mitsotakis stated that "Mr. Stefanopoulos' opinion that he does not even have to ask the Opposition in order to issue Legislative Actions, ... is a step backwards for public life, compared to the view practiced by Konsta ntinos Karamanlis (former President of the Republic and founder of ND), according to which the President of the Republic must receive the agreement of the Opposition".

  • [02] ERDOGAN IN ATHENS IN NOVEMBER 18 Recep Tayyip Erdogan, leader of the Justice and Development Party, will visit Athens on November 18, according to information from diplomatic sources.

    It should be noted that Mr. Erdogan met with a special envoy of Prime Minister Kostas Simitis in Athens yesterday, with whom he discussed the preparations for his visit to Athens.

  • [03] PRIME MINISTER'S MEETINGS IN PARIS ESPECIALLY POSITIVE Prime Minister Kostas Simitis characterized his meetings with French President Jacques Chirac and Prime Minister Jean-Pier Raffarin, as especially positive. the meetings were "friendly and heart-felt", and the Prime Minister stressed: "We are moving towa rds Copenhagen as planned".

    In a press conference after his meetings with the French leadership, the Prime Minister stated that the goal of his trip to Paris and other European countries, is to reassure Greek positions on Cyprus, in view of the Copenhagen Summit Meeting, and to see

    if there are any problems.

    Referring to his meeting with the French President, he said that Mr. Chirac stressed that after the Brussels Summit Meeting, Cyprus' prospects for accession have developed without difficulties or objections.

    "We made the decision in Brussels to continue negotiations, to complete them, and to sign the accession in Copenhagen", he underlined.

    Also, concerning the political problem of Cyprus, it was agreed and stressed that according to the decisions at Helsinki, the resolving of the political problem is not a prerequisite for accession, and thus, if the problem is not solved, the accession wi ll continue as planned.

  • [04] OSWALD-KARAMANLIS MEETING Dennis Oswald, Head of the IOC delegation visiting Athens in order to inspect the progress of the Olympic projects in view of the Games in 2004, is satisfied with progress so far. Works were only lagging behind in the OAKA Olympic Stadium, the "Elliniko"

    Stadium and the tram.

    This afternoon at 5, during his second day in Athens, Mr. Oswald will meet with the President of New Democracy, Kostas Karamanlis.

    An hour later, Mr. Oswald will hold his customary visit with a delegation of the Ministerial Committee for preparation for the Olympics, in the amphitheater of the Ministry of Culture.

    The visit of the IOC delegation will be completed tomorrow. Mr. Oswald will hold a joint press conference with the President of the "Athens 2004" Olympic Organizing Committee, Gianna Aggelopoulou.

  • [05] THESSALONIKI FILM FESTIVAL OPENS TOMORROW The Thessaloniki International Film Festival opens tomorrow at the Olympion cinema, with a viewing of Gurinder Chadha's refreshing and very successful film at the Toronto Film Festival, "Bend it Like Beckham". During the Festival more than 150 Greek and international new film productions, and many older ones, will be shown at the Olympion cinema and the Warehouses of the Thessaloniki Harbor.

    For more information and a breakdown of the viewing schedule and special events, visit

  • [06] SUICIDES IN THE ARMY HAVE DROPPED The suicide incidents among soldiers have dropped in Greece, while the drug-addict cases and the depression incidents in the army have increased reaching 3%. Other health problems faced by the Greek soldiers are headaches, dental and stomach problems.

    The above will be presented in the 19th Armed Forces Medical Conference that will get underway in Thessaloniki this afternoon. The conference will be opened by Defense Minister Yiannos Papantoniou.

    The decline in the number of suicides is mainly due to the large number of psychiatrists touring the army units and conducting special tests to spot the potentially self-destructive individuals. Also, based on the available figures, one in three soldiers

    have dental problems.

    The conference will also deal with the threat of biological and chemical weapons and ways of protection.

  • [07] CANCER DEATHS ARE ON THE RISE IN GREECE Cancer deaths in Greece have increased by 15.5% in the past 30 years when in most of the European Union countries the dominating tendency is downward, according to the World Health Organization.

    An increase in cancer deaths is also recorded in Denmark, Ireland, Portugal and Spain, while in Finland, Germany, France and Britain the drop in the number of cancer deaths is notable.

    It should be noted that an increase of over 50% has been recorded in the deaths caused by certain cancer types such as, respiratory system cancer (52.74%), cervical cancer (52.67%) and breast cancer (53.27%).

    Very alarming is the fact that half of the women in Greece over the age of 45 visit their doctor every 7.5 years on the average and in the meantime they choose to be informed on health issues by their friends.

  • [08] THE GREEKS SPEND HUGE SUMS ON CIGARETTES The Greek smokers spent 3.1 billion Euro in 2000 to smoke 32.1 billion cigarettes, cigars and tobacco. It is estimated that the specific sum is enough to build 30 hospitals with a capacity of 600-700 beds.

    The above are included in a research on the tobacco market conducted by the Economic and Industrial Research Institute.

    According to the research, the taxes paid to the Greek state reached 1.7 billion Euro, while the Greek smokers prefer the foreign brands which have won over 67.5% of the Greek market compared to 1992 when they had only a small piece of it. An upward tren d is followed in the sales of 25-cigarette packs, while an impressive increase of 22.4% was recorded in cigar sales in the period 1999-2000.

    Based on the research, the Greeks have realized the unhealthy effects of cigarette smoking and now they turn to light cigarettes.

  • [09] PROTOPAPAS ON THE CYPRUS ISSUE Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the winner of the recent Turkish elections, will visit Athens on November 18, stated Greek government spokesman Christos Protopapas.

    Regarding the Annan plan on Cyprus, Mr. Protopapas stated that there is no indication at the moment that the plan will be negative and all sides realize that it will be a compromise solution placed within the framework of the UN decisions.

    He reiterated that it would have been best if a solution was reached before Cyprus' EU accession but this is not a precondition for Cyprus' accession into the EU, as it was stressed by the Prime Minister from Paris yesterday.

    When asked to comment on the statements made by Cypriot Parliament President Mr. Christofias, who spoke of a painful solution to the Cyprus problem, he refused to make any comments and stressed that special caution is needed at this hour.

    The Greek government spokesman stated that the government will discuss the Annan plan with the political party leaders as soon as it receives it.

  • [10] LOSSES IN THE ASE Losses were recorded in the Athens Stock Exchange today. The general index dropped to -1.05% at 1.829,10 points, while the volume of transactions was at 80.7 million Euro.

    Of the stocks trading today, 228 recorded losses and 92 had gains, while the value of 55 stocks remained unchanged.


  • [11] GREEKS FROM THE FORMER SOVIET UNION CONFERENCE The need to coordinate the actions aimed at solving the problems faced by the Greeks in the countries of the Commonwealth of Independent States, was underlined by General Secretary for the Greeks Abroad Mr. Dimitris Dollis. Mr. Dollis opened the two-day proceedings of the Greeks from the Former Soviet Union Conference held in Frankfurt within the framework of the regional SAE-Europe Conference.

    Mr. Dollis stated that the rebirth of Hellenism in the former Soviet Union began with the fall of the Soviet Union and in the years that followed big steps had been made to organize the Greeks and promote the Greek language.

    Mr. Dollis wished success to the conference participants and called on the 60 delegates representing the Black Sea countries to convey coordinated messages for effective intervention.

    SAE President Andrew Athens pointed out that he works for the solution of the problems faced by the Greeks in the former Soviet Union. He presented SAE's Medical Program and announced that the program for the support of the small sized businesses will ge t underway in January 2003 in cooperation with the Commercial Bank of Greece.

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