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Macedonian Press Agency: News in English, 2003-04-04

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, April 4, 2003

SECTIONS

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

  • NEWS HEADLINES

    [A] NATIONAL NEWS

  • [01] CLEAR DIFFERENCES
  • [02] PROFIT ABOVE HUMAN LIVES IN CORINTH
  • [03] THE US DON'T WANT MORE POLES
  • [04] DIAMANTOPOULOU: THE US DON'T WANT ANY MORE POLES
  • [05] ALL OF GREECE CONCENTRATING AID FOR IRAQ
  • [06] ND AHEAD BY 6.5% ACCORDING TO METRON ANALYSIS POLL
  • [07] KARAMANLIS: UPGRADING OF UN'S AUTHORITY NECESSARY
  • [08] KAKLAMANIS ON THE WAR IN IRAQ
  • [09] MINISTER OF LABOR ON CORINTH ACCIDENT
  • [10] TENSION AT 17N TRIAL
  • [11] SIMITIS-PAPANDREOU DISCUSSED CYPRUS, IRAQ AND THE EU PRESIDENCY
  • [12] INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON THE EUROPEAN CINEMA
  • [13] TSOCHATZOPOULOS-CRVENKOVSKI MEETING
  • [14] GAINS IN THE ASE
  • [15] BULUKBASI TESTIFIED IN THE 17N TRIAL
  • [16] DIAMANTOPOULOU: THE IMPLEMENTATION OF THE STABILITY PACT IS AN EXPRESSION OF EU CREDIBILITY
  • [17] EU PRESIDENCY ON THE ACCESSION OF SERBIA AND MONTENEGRO INTO THE COUNCIL OF EUROPE
  • [18] THE PATRIARCHATE OF JERUSALEM ON THE ALLEGED ASSASSINATION ATTEMPT AGAINST THE PATRIARCH
  • [19] THE BULGARIAN INTERIOR MINISTER ON A VISIT TO ATHENS
  • [B] INTERNATIONAL NEWS

  • [20] US RESERVATIONS ON EU-UN IMPLICATION IN IRAQ NEWS IN DETAILS

    [A] NATIONAL NEWS

  • [01] CLEAR DIFFERENCES A difference of 6.5 units in favor of ND was noted in the Metron Analysis poll that was published yesterday. The KKE has concentrated 5.9%, the Coalition is at 4%, and the rest of the parties are at below 3%. Mr. Simitis retains a 2.3 unit lead over Mr.

    Karamanlis on who is most appropriate to be Prime Minister, and there was a 0.5% decrease in the difference between PASOK and ND. 6 out of 10 people asked, foresee that ND will win he next elections. We have 13 months commented Mr. Laliotis, the new poli tical atmosphere has been set, answered Mr. Souflias.

  • [02] PROFIT ABOVE HUMAN LIVES IN CORINTH The five responsible parties for the "CORINTH PIPE INDUSTRY SA" factory on the old Corinth-Patra highway will be indicted today, due to the explosion that took place in the factory yesterday, killing six workers. 18 security violations had been recorded at the factory and no improvement measures had been taken.
  • [03] THE US DON'T WANT MORE POLES A new attitude and viewpoint, both in the security dogma and as regards to the support of their financial interests, was ascertained concerning the US over the past two years, on a global level, by Greek EU Commissioner Anna Diamantopoulou, in statements

    to the mpa.gr. The Commissioner observed the formation of an unprecedented anti-American atmosphere in Europe, and anti-Europeanism in the US, which hinders any form of cooperation on a political level.

  • [04] DIAMANTOPOULOU: THE US DON'T WANT ANY MORE POLES EU Commissioner Anna Diamantopoulou ascertained a change in the attitude and viewpoint of the US on a global level as far as their security dogma and support of their financial interests is concerned, in her statements to the mpa.gr.

    Mrs. Diamantopoulou supported that it is the "reasoning of the superpower", which has been being prepared for years, which aims at the non-existence of any opposing pole in the world, while she observed that there is an evident anti-American atmosphere b eing formed in Europe, and an anti-European atmosphere being formed in the US, a fact that dangerously obstructs every form of cooperation on a political level.

    As she explained, the unilateral US policy, which does not take international organizations and treaties into account, can be seen in the conflicts within the EU in a series of political issues. "An evident agenda has been being followed by the Bush admi nistration over the past two years, a new approach on a global level. We went from the point where we had the United Nations, the World Trade Organization, the World Labor Organization, the International Monetary Fund, some international organizations, wh ich, lets say, were a form of global government, to the point where they (the US) moved to unilateral actions. We have seen major conflicts between Europe and the US over the past two years on issues such as agricultural policy", stated Mrs. Diamantopoulo u characteristically, while she referred to the disagreements over the steelworks, the Kyoto Protocol, agreements on the use of biological weapons, to none of which have the US agreed with, in contrast to the international community.

    "It seems that on the one hand there is a new security dogma - meaning when and why the US decide to attack - very different from that of the past. Secondly there is a new choice as far as supporting its financial interests is concerned, which once again

    does not take into account the global system. This is more or less the reasoning of a superpower, which recognizes itself as the responsible party to resolve issues on the planet, but that it also has the right to defend its own financial interests regar dless of the cost or violation of international treaties. I think that with the Bush administration we have seen a new face, which, lets not kid ourselves, was being prepared for years and can even be traced back to the Clinton administration, through, fo r example, some of the speeches made by Madeline Albright.

    Regarding the war in Iraq, the Greek Commissioner expressed her fears at the general instability, which will have consequences all over the planet. "The war's next day will determine many things. It is not possible, in my opinion, for someone to believe that a whole region with approximately 30 states will make a plan with little led soldiers, changing its whole system. From there on there will be surprises, conflict, the unforeseen that could not have been planned, and I fear that this destabilization o n such a large region, will have consequences all over the planet".

    According to Mrs. Diamantopoulou, the US do not wish to have strong opposing powers on a global level, such as the EU or the upcoming powers of China and India, however, he characterized the possibility of the present crisis having being created to strik e at the EU, an exaggeration. "There is a very interesting approach from Robert Kayten, to whom part of the dogma of this US philosophy over the past decade, is due: That the US must never again have an opposing pole on a global level", she said, and adde d: "I think that this plan, that there should no opposition, is obviously connected to the war, with the control of power sources, because which major power can be a major power without access to energy sources?"

    The Commissioner appreciated that a non-participation of Europe in this procedure creates a problem, as would the opposite choice, that of supporting its own interests. "There is a political view within the EU that says "what can you do, politics are not

    always right, we must look to our own interests, see how we will delegate authority and wealth in the future, to benefit our countries". If they make a choice based only on that point of view, which of course does not end there because it opens "Pandora' s box", the consequences of the conflicts and destabilization in the region, with terrorism first and foremost among them, will strike at these countries first of all", she said.

    Regarding the position of the new EU candidate countries supporting US positions in the war on Iraq, she stated that it is due to both their pro-American sentiment and the imperfections of their political systems and the lack of a joint European position . "One should see the data on the interior of these countries. There is a deep feeling that their liberation from the soviet system was greatly due to the Americans. That if the Americans had not come the soviet system that oppressed them, would have neve r collapsed. So there is an a priori pro-American sentiment and an admiration towards the Anglo-Saxon model and the American system, as far as the glittering part of its output is concerned. Secondly, nobody can accuse these countries, because they were n ever in the European position, because there was no European position. When 5 out 15 EU members signed in favor of the US positions, then nobody can tell the candidates why didn't you follow what Europe said", she said, and added: "We must locate our crit icism on the interior of the EU, where it is making it absolutely clear that without a joint foreign and defense policy, Europe cannot be a world power".

    Mr. Diamantopoulou stood by the reasonable protection and guarding of the new countries, supporting that they have a long history and a culture that has contributed to European and global events.

    Finally, the Commissioner pointed out the danger of a political confrontation between the EU and the US due to the anti-American and anti-European sentiment within the two peoples, which may lead to problems of cooperation on both sides. "We are now seei ng anti-Americanism forming in countries where it had never been recorded. In Spain the reaction is intense. There is reaction against Bush. The same is happening in America. Perhaps there was never the anti-European sentiment there that there is today. I t is the first time that we see anti-Americanism and anti-Europeanism being formed throughout the whole of the peoples of Europe and the US. This is dangerous because it escapes the conflict between politicians on individual issues and turns into a more g eneral notion of the population that makes cooperation harder", she ended.

  • [05] ALL OF GREECE CONCENTRATING AID FOR IRAQ There has been a great response from citizens all over the country to the appeal made to concentrate humanitarian aid for the war victims in Iraq.

    Specifically, the Thessaloniki German School, with the initiative of its own 9th grade students, will organize a fund raiser, the money from which will be sent to the "Doctors Without Boarders", in Iraq.

    The Greek periphery is also participating in the efforts. In Mytilini, the municipality delivered over 15 tons of aid. At the same time, the city's pharmacists' and dentists' association, will offer financial aid and pharmaceutical materials to the "Doct ors of the World" and "Doctors with no Boarders" organizations, for the multi-infirmary of Saddam City in Baghdad.

    Humanitarian aid is also being concentrated by municipalities, cultural associations and bodies of Crete. In fact, the Crete Chamber of Commerce called all its members, in an announcement it made, to contribute to the humanitarian aid towards the Iraqi p eople. It has also built special facilities where this aid is to be stored. Furthermore, the Heracleon Bar Association has decided to offer 3,000 euro for the purchase of pharmaceutics for the people of Iraq, and its distribution through the "Doctors of t he World".

    Meanwhile, bodies in Kerkyra are asking for the support of the citizens in the concentration of humanitarian materials. A Solidarity office is already functioning in the Prefecture building, for the concentration of pharmaceutics. The support of all the faithful to the Iraqi people was requested by the Metropolis of Kerkyra and Paxi. Humanitarian aid (pharmaceutics, clothes, food) is being concentrated in the Metropolis' spiritual center, while money will be collected at all churches during the holy serv ice.

    The materials to be concentrated at Metropolises throughout the country, will be sent to two refugee camps in Syria and Jordan with the help of the UN High Commission.

    Efforts to concentrate aid are also continuing in Rhodes, where it is being gathered in the old boys' orphanage.

    With the initiative of the Social Policy Bureau of the Municipality of Serres, in cooperation with other city bodies and associations, the concentration of humanitarian aid for the civilian population of Iraq is continuing. A bank account has already bee n opened at the Bank of Attica, which will continue accepting contributions until Thursday, April 10th. The funds to be concentrated will buy medicines from the Pharmacists Association. At the same time, any citizens of Serres willing to offer powdered mi lk, bottled water or medicines (mainly antibiotics and painkillers), can take them to the offices of the Day Care Centers sector of the Municipality of Serres, in the old market. The quantities to be concentrated will be sent to Jordan with the help of th e "Doctors Without Boarders", and will then be taken into Iraq for the relief of the war victims.

    On April 6, the aid concentrated by the Municipality of Vitina will be delivered, while food and medicine is also being concentrated in Tripolis.

    Finally, the Greek Solidarity Caravan decided not to move to the concentration of food and clothing for Iraq, as, it pointed out, it cannot guarantee the independence of its actions in Iraq under the present circumstances, and would have to cooperate wit h the US-UK forces, an action that would be against its principles. Thus, it has decided to concentrate money in a bank account opened in the National Bank. The money will be released as soon the humanitarian path to Iraq, overseen by the UN, is opened, f or the financial adoption of children who lost their parents in the war.

  • [06] ND AHEAD BY 6.5% ACCORDING TO METRON ANALYSIS POLL A lead of 6.5 units was given to New Democracy over PASOK, according to a poll carried out by "Metron Analysis" from March 14 to March 30.

    Specifically, according to the poll to be published in tomorrow's "Ethnos" newspaper, on intention to vote, New Democracy concentrated 38.1%, while 31.5% of the people of Greece would vote for PASOK, and they are followed by the KKE with 5.9%, the Coalit ion of the Left with 4%, LA.OS with 2.7% and DIKKI with 2.1%.

    According to the previous poll carried out by the same company, the distance between ND and PASOK has decreased by 0.5%, while the KKE and the Coalition of the Left have increased their share.

    There is still a great difference in favor of ND, on who the people think will win the next elections. 59.2% of people believe it will be ND, while 25.1% believe it will be PASOK.

    It should also be noted that there was a small increase in the difference between Costas Simitis and Costas Karamanlis, regarding who is more appropriate to become Prime Minister. Mr. Simitis concentrated 36.3% against Mr. Karamanlis' 34%.

    In contrast, the popularity of the President of ND (57.2%) is higher than that of the Prime Minister (52.1%) by 5.1 units.

    The announcement of the poll's results caused comments from the government and Opposition. His belief that PASOK, headed by Costas Simitis, can contest and win the 2004 elections was expressed by the Secretary General of PASOK's Central Committee, Costas

    Laliotis. He also added that every poll has its own use, but no poll can predetermine the verdict of the Greek people.

    "This is another Metron Analysis poll, just like all other polls over the past 2 years, pointing out a broad, clear lead for New Democracy. The political scene seems to have solidified. The poll, carried out during a great international crisis and dramat ic events in Iraq, recorded that most Greeks choose and steadily trust New Demcracy", was the other side of the coin, shown by Secretary for Political Planning and Programming of New Democracy, Giorgos Souflias.

  • [07] KARAMANLIS: UPGRADING OF UN'S AUTHORITY NECESSARY The need to heal the wounds of the UN and to upgrade its authority, competence and effectiveness in the post war era of Iraq, was stressed by President of New Democracy Costas Karamanlis, in his speech at the Economist Conference.

    Mr. Karamanlis appreciated that "this is not the end of the UN", despite the weaknesses in its functioning and actions, which were presented as "vociferous" in the outbreak of the Iraq crisis, stressing that this is not the first time they have appeared,

    nor is it the first time that these weaknesses were located, and the example of Cyprus would suffice in certifying this truth.

    Furthermore, he underlined that the course towards the political unification of the EU must be accelerated and the first Constitution of Europe must come into being, a clause of mutual subscription, communal solidarity, for the safety of all the European

    Peoples against any exterior threat.

    Once again, he placed himself in favor of the reinforced cooperation in the defense policy and asked that the joint foreign policy be strengthened. "Europe must find the strength to move on, without any more delays. The "defensive eurozone", which we hav e been proposing for years, must begin now, for those states willing and able, and must keep the door open to those who wish to enter later. We support (and we stated this from the very first moment) the initiative of France, Germany, Belgium and Luxembou rg. We know that it is not easy to attain tangible results immediately. It requires a lot of persistent effort. It requires faith, confidence and persistence. Greece needs to be one of the members of this initial effort. Especially when Greece is the onl y country facing the threat of war and when Greeks pay more for their defense than any other European citizen", he stressed.

    Regarding the relations of the EU with the US, Mr. Karamanlis stressed that it is of great importance to the security and stability of the world, to secure rational and harmonious transatlantic relations on the basis of equal cooperation and not competit iveness, so as not to stabilize this atmosphere of opposition and confrontation.

    In closing, he pointed out that for Greece to play the part it wants to, and which it can, in the new era, it needs a different policy in all sectors, and mainly in the economy. "Tomorrow - if the war lasts long - things may be harder. Lost years always carry a heavy price. But that must not postpone our plans or our actions. On the contrary. Greece needs a dynamic economic policy, emphasizing the Development - Competitiveness - Social cohesion triptych", said the President of ND.

  • [08] KAKLAMANIS ON THE WAR IN IRAQ "The sacrifice of Martin Luther King is tragically current today. His peaceful and liberating speech is heard again today, like a clarion call to all the peoples of the world, and especially the American people, in whose name and interest, supposedly, an

    arrogant leadership with no knowledge of history, has launched a ruthless slaughter in the Middle East'.

    The above was stressed by the President of the Parliament Apostolos Kaklamanis, at the opening of the 2-day symposium on American visionary and pacifist Reverend Martin Luther King, organized by the University of Athens.

    Referring to the war in Iraq, Mr. Kaklamanis noted that while it began as a healthy military jog, it is turning into a global nightmare, threatening to carry all of humanity away with it into a vortex of devastation.

    "The protest to the war in Iraq is due to no kind of anti-Americanism, nor to any sympathy to the dictatorial regime in Iraq. We are enraged, we protest and resist, because we understand that the prospect of enforcing the dominance of a single leading gr oup, a economic-military elite, governing a country, would mean the intensifying of inequalities, an increasing of autarchy and violence, and would lead to an extended global crisis", said the President of the Parliament characteristically.

  • [09] MINISTER OF LABOR ON CORINTH ACCIDENT "The head of the inspectors' body arrived at the accident from the very first moment and had the chance, in cooperation with local bodies, to carry out an initial investigation on the conditions under which the accident with these tragic consequences, to ok place", stated Minister of Labor Dimitris Reppas, at a press conference on the explosion that occurred yesterday at "CORINTH PIPE INDUSTRY SA", which cost the life of 6 workers.

    Five individuals arrested by the police are expected to be taken to the DA today in connection to the explosion. They are: the manager and director of the company Antonios Perigialiotis, production supervisor Constantinos Maninatis, foreman Constantinos Sarmas, electrical maintenance engineer Panagiotis Liouskos, and security overseer, Constantinos Papachristopoulos. The arrested parties are accused of manslaughter by negligence and not observing security measures.

    Of the three injured workers, 46-year-old Stavros Stathopoulos is in serious condition at KAT hospital in Athens.

    Meanwhile, the funerals for the six workers who died after a factory wall collapsed on them due to a gas leak that caused an explosion, were held this morning, while their colleagues at the factory carried out a 24-hour-strike in protest to the working c onditions.

  • [10] TENSION AT 17N TRIAL DA Christos Lambrou asked alleged leader of 17N Alexandros Giotopoulos if he was in any way related to the proclamation sent by the terrorist organization after the attempted murder of businessman Vardis Vardinogiannis in November 1990.

    Alexandros Giotopoulos denied any connection to the proclamation, while he supported that so far 15 cases have been discussed in court, and no evidence has been presented proving his guilt in any of the charges he is facing.

    "In the beginning of the political changeover years, there were many actions carried out by organizations that sent proclamations. Am I supposed to have written them too?" said Alexandros Giotopoulos.

    At that point Dimitris Koufontinas intervened. The defendant commented on his testimony in the Vardis Vardinogiannis case, and supported that what is mentioned in the 17N proclamation after the murder attempt against the businessman represents him perfec tly. The proclamation characterized Vardinogiannis a Mafioso, a gangster and a killer.

    Later, there was tension at the trial, due to the an attempt made by Alexandros Giotopoulos' attorney, Giannis Rachiotis, to connect the organizations attack against US Sergeant Ronald Stewart to the 1991 Gulf War.

    President of the Court Michalis Margaritis and DA Lambrou reacted when Mr. Rachiotis started asking the Sergeant's daughter questions regarding the events preceding her father's murder.

    Mr. Lambrou addressed the defendants asking them: "Who gave you the right to kill. Must a black Sergeant be killed because Iraq is being bombed?"

    Dimitris Koufontinas then took the floor and supported that Ronald Stewart was part of the same military machine that is bombing Iraq today

    The proceedings were concluded as the witnesses that had been called for the specific case were absent.

  • [11] SIMITIS-PAPANDREOU DISCUSSED CYPRUS, IRAQ AND THE EU PRESIDENCY The developments on the issue of Cyprus were examined today in the meeting of Prime Minister Kostas Simitis with Foreign Minister Giorgos Papandreou in Athens.

    For the record, Mr. Simitis will meet in Belgrade on Wednesday with his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan. The Greek side has made it clear that any talks on the Cyprus issue will not take place at a bilateral level but at a UN level based on the Annan peace plan.

    Mr. Simitis and Mr. Papandreou also examined issues concerning the Greek EU Presidency in view of the signing in Athens on April 16 of the accession acts of the new EU member states.

    The Foreign Minister referred to the meetings he had with US Secretary of State Colin Powell on the issue of Iraq. He said that Mr. Powell recognizes the UN role in the post-war Iraq. However, the Greek Foreign Minister stated that the Greek EU Presidenc y and the United States do not share the same view on the role of the UN but it is not unlikely to have a consensus that will promote the UN role as it is requested by the Europeans.

    Mr. Papandreou stated that "we should wait for the next developments" stressing that, of course, the UN cannot be involved in an armed conflict and the talks concern the UN involvement in Iraq's reconstruction process.

  • [12] INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON THE EUROPEAN CINEMA The future of the European cinema is on the spotlight of an international conference that will take place in Athens on April 5-6 on the occasion of the Greek EU Presidency. The conference on Cultural film and audiovisual industry, enlargement and collabo ration with third countries, is organized by the Greek Film Center and the Greek Culture Ministry.

    This international gathering deals with the issue of copyright and its accepted use, the new cooperation projects with third countries and the creation of the right conditions that will allow the development of the audiovisual markets in the ten new coun tries about to join the EU.

  • [13] TSOCHATZOPOULOS-CRVENKOVSKI MEETING Greek Minister of Development Akis Tsochatzopoulos discussed energy cooperation issues between Greece and FYROM with FYROM's Prime Minister Branko Crvenkovski.

    Mr. Tsochatzopoulos stated that a priority issue is the promotion of a natural gas pipeline that will pass through Greece and FYROM and the rest Balkan countries as well, aimed at linking the region with the EU. He said that both sides share the same int erest in promoting the issue.

    Water resources exploitation issues were also examined in the meeting. Mr. Tsochatzopoulos stated that Axios River passes through Greece and FYROM and it is very important from many points, environmentally, economically and socially. He said that both si des are interested in promoting cooperation in terms of its exploitation and environmental protection.

    He also said that in the talks he had with Mr. Crvenkovski they examined the potential to expand further the network which supplies FYROM with petrol from Thessaloniki through the OKTA company in order to be able to reach Kosovo as well through a new pip eline. He said that further discussion on the issue will take place during his visit to Skopje at the end of the month.

    Responding to questions on whether they discussed in their meeting the issue of the war in Iraq and its effects on the energy sector in the wider region, Mr. Tsochatzopoulos stated that there is always an effort to limit as much as possible the effects o f the war. He said that FYROM too backs cooperation so that oil reserves will be guaranteed by all neighboring countries following the example of Greece which guarantees oil reserves through the Hellenic Petroleum oil company.

  • [14] GAINS IN THE ASE Gains were recorded in the Athens Stock Exchange today. The general index rose to +1.52% at 1.541,12 points, while the volume of transactions was satisfactory at 82.6 million euros.

    Of the stocks trading today, the overwhelming majority of 246 recorded gains and 63 had losses, while the value of 76 stocks remained unchanged.

  • [15] BULUKBASI TESTIFIED IN THE 17N TRIAL Turkish diplomat Deniz Bulukbasi testified today in the terrorist group "17 November" trial on the failed assassination attempt made against him on October 7, 1991.

    He stated that his attackers wanted to kill him and his entourage, while he expressed the belief that the assassination attempt did not affect the course of the Greek-Turkish relations.

    Defense attorney Yiannis Rachiotis asked the witness if he condemns certain actions of the Turkish leadership. The president of the court intervened and stressed that these questions should not be made because they are irrelevant to the case.

  • [16] DIAMANTOPOULOU: THE IMPLEMENTATION OF THE STABILITY PACT IS AN EXPRESSION OF EU CREDIBILITY The implementation of the Stability Pact is not only a commitment of the EU member states for close economic cooperation but an expression of EU credibility as a political entity.

    The above were stressed by Greek European Commissioner Anna Diamantopoulou, responsible for employment and social affairs issues, who opened the proceedings of the 96th session of the European Banking Federation taking place in Athens.

    Mrs. Diamantopoulou pointed out the need for a coordinated cooperation at a world level to face the new challenges created by globalization. She also referred to the proposals for a more open cooperation with the G7 states on monetary policy issues, sayi ng that it is an ideal opportunity the fact that the G7 Finance Ministers will meet in Washington next week.

    Mrs. Diamantopoulou stressed that there is a need for greater efforts aimed at the successful materialization of the New Strategy on Employment. In spite of the fact that a total of 5 million new job positions have been created in the EU after the Lisbon

    Summit (500.000 of them in 2002). The success, stated Mrs. Diamantopoulou, will depend on the restructuring that is necessary to be made and mainly, on next year's economic growth.

  • [17] EU PRESIDENCY ON THE ACCESSION OF SERBIA AND MONTENEGRO INTO THE COUNCIL OF EUROPE The Presidency welcomes the accession of Serbia and Montenegro to the Council of Europe as an important step forward to the country's rapprochement with the European institutions.

    The accession of Serbia and Montenegro to the Council of Europe will enhance internal as well as regional stability and cooperation. It will also consolidate democracy, human rights and the rule of law in the country, while contributing to the country's and the region's European perspective. The Presidency noted with satisfaction Serbia and Montenegro's expressed determination to fully h´nour all commitments and obligations following membership to the Council of Europe to the benefit of the people of Serbia and Montenegro.

  • [18] THE PATRIARCHATE OF JERUSALEM ON THE ALLEGED ASSASSINATION ATTEMPT AGAINST THE PATRIARCH A strange affair came to light today. A Palestinian arrested by the Palestinian Authority maintains that he received a large amount of money by an individual inside the Patriarchate of Jerusalem to assassinate Patriarch Erineos. The Palestinian allegedly

    said that the man who paid him was a Metropolite and according to information, he has named him.

    In a statement issued by the Patriarchate of Jerusalem it is stressed that the Patriarch is well, clarifying that he was never aware of a suspicious move against him.

    In the statement issued by the Patriarchate it is pointed out that the suspect is still questioned by the authorities and the Patriarch follows the developments closely with total confidence in the Palestinian and Israeli authorities as well as the Greek

    Orthodox Christian clerics serving in the Patriarchate of Jerusalem.

  • [19] THE BULGARIAN INTERIOR MINISTER ON A VISIT TO ATHENS Bulgaria's Interior Minister Georgi Petkanov will be on a visit to Athens on April 6-7 accompanied by the Undersecretary of Interior and a seven-member delegation.

    During his visit to the Greek capital Mr. Petkanov will have bilateral talks with Public Order Minister Michalis Chrisochoidis.

    Among the issues for discussion will be the process of Bulgaria's harmonization with the European standards and specifically with chapter 24 on justice and internal affairs. The two sides will also analyze the current cooperation situation between them and their neighboring countries, decide on future cooperation priorities and examine bilateral cooperation in major sports events, asylum and immigration.

  • [B] INTERNATIONAL NEWS

  • [20] US RESERVATIONS ON EU-UN IMPLICATION IN IRAQ US Secretary of State Colin Powell appeared reserved towards the position of the EU expressed by Mr. Papandreou, that a UN resolution concerning the involvement of the EU on the day following the end of the war. Mr. Powell has had meetings with 22 of cou nterparts in the first few days following the beginning of the war, while Washington is preparing the post-war Iraqi government.
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