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Macedonian Press Agency: News in English, 2003-08-27

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, August 27, 2003

SECTIONS

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

  • NEWS HEADLINES

    [A] NATIONAL NEWS

  • [01] THOMAS SERIFIS ADMITTED PARTICIPATION IN 17N
  • [02] SECURITY PLAN AGAINST BIOCHEMICAL ATTACK DURING THE OLYMPIC GAMES
  • [03] PAPANTONIOU: PROPOSAL FOR THE EMPLOYMENT OF ADDITIONAL 13.700 PROFESSIONAL INFANTRYMEN
  • [04] TRAVEL ADVICE FOR GREECE BY THE AUSTRALIAN GOVERNMENT
  • [05] ARCHBISHOP CHRISTODOULOS WILL PERFORM THE ITF INAUGURATION CEREMONY
  • [06] 17N DEFENDANT KOSTAS TELIOS TESTIFIED IN COURT
  • [07] GREECE ASKS FOR EXPLANATIONS FROM AUSTRALIA ON THE TRAVEL ADVICE ISSUE
  • [08] GAINS IN THE ASE
  • [09] THE GREEK GOVERNMENT ACCEPTS HELP FROM SCOTLAND YARD
  • [B] INTERNATIONAL NEWS

    NEWS IN DETAILS

    [A] NATIONAL NEWS

  • [01] THOMAS SERIFIS ADMITTED PARTICIPATION IN 17N The trial on the terrorist group "17 November" continues today with the testimony of defendant Thomas Serifis.

    Serifis confirmed that he had committed the actions he had admitted earlier before a special examining judge but he did not go as far as to accept the charges against him in their entirety. He also reiterated that he is not going to refer to any of his c odefendants.

    He admitted that he became a 17N member in 1989 when he placed an explosive device in an abandoned house. He maintained that he stopped any participation in the group in 1990 because even though he was in agreement with its actions he did not take part i n the planning process.

    Serifis stated that no one pressured him to become a member of the terrorist group and on the other hand, no one exerted any pressures on him after he left it. He underlined that he never took money from the group and that he did not know where the hideo uts were.

  • [02] SECURITY PLAN AGAINST BIOCHEMICAL ATTACK DURING THE OLYMPIC GAMES A plan for the protection of Athens in the case of a biochemical terrorist attack during the Olympic Games next year was submitted to the Ministries of Public Order and Defense by a special committee characterizing its implementation as absolutely necess ary for the safety of the games.

    The plan for the biochemical protection of Athens is being described in a top secret document, according to the Athens newspaper "To Vima". To deal with a likely terrorist attack involving biological and chemical weapons is suggested among others that ma ss decontamination systems should be installed in 13 hospitals in the Athens area. Also, special protective uniforms are necessary, collapsible decontamination tanks, portable oxygen supply devices, gas masks and special protective suits for the security personnel.

    The cost of the plan is estimated at 28 million euros concerning the equipment supplies and 3 million euros for personnel training.

  • [03] PAPANTONIOU: PROPOSAL FOR THE EMPLOYMENT OF ADDITIONAL 13.700 PROFESSIONAL INFANTRYMEN Minister of Defense Yiannos Papantoniou in a letter addressed to the Prime Minister proposes reforms in the armed forces. In addition, he submits his own proposals for the governing Socialist Party of PASOK agenda in view of the dialogue within the party

    aimed at drawing up its policy for the period 2004-2008.

    According to the Athens newspaper "Ethnos", the main reform suggested for the armed forces is the proposal for the employment of an additional 13.700 professional infantrymen. The goal of this proposal is to cut military service to be less than 12 months .

    Mr. Papantoniou in his letter to the Prime Minister mentions that the defense spending cuts release a total of 2.7 billion euros, a sum that can be used to strengthen the development and social policy in 2004.

  • [04] TRAVEL ADVICE FOR GREECE BY THE AUSTRALIAN GOVERNMENT The Australian government is expected to issue a travel advice for Greece later this evening. The move is made after the slanderous press reports in Australian newspapers regarding the issue of security during the Athens 2004 Olympic Games.

    According to Greek state-run television channel NET, the Australian Foreign Ministry mentions that there is no evidence or information on a likely terrorist attack in Greece, but the Australian government has to protect its nationals anywhere in the worl d.

    A similar travel advice is expected to be issued by Australia for Germany, while a travel advice is already in effect for Italy, Spain and France.

  • [05] ARCHBISHOP CHRISTODOULOS WILL PERFORM THE ITF INAUGURATION CEREMONY Archbishop Christodoulos of Athens and All of Greece will perform this year's inauguration ceremony for Thessaloniki's International Trade Fair, ITF, after the official invitation issued by Metropolite Dionisios of Neapolis and Stavroupolis.

    The Metropolite, who is temporarily in charge of Thessaloniki's Metropolis, in a letter to Thessaloniki's ITF management, published on the Thessaloniki newspaper "Macedonia", points out that he does not wish to perform the inauguration ceremony because h e believes that the event will be more formal if it is performed by Archbishop Christodoulos.

    The arrival of Archbishop Christodoulos to Thessaloniki takes place at a time of a controversy between the Ecumenical Patriarchate and the Athens Archbishopric on the issue of the election of a new Thessaloniki Metropolite.

    The Ecumenical Patriarch expressed the position that the 1928 Patriarchic Act has to be respected and the list with the names of the candidates for the Metropolis of Thessaloniki has to be sent to the Ecumenical Patriarchate for approval.

  • [06] 17N DEFENDANT KOSTAS TELIOS TESTIFIED IN COURT Kostas Telios, another defendant in the "17 November" terrorist group trial, testified in court today and launched a strong attack against the terrorist group.

    He called on the court to try him and find him guilty not because of what he did but for what he did not do, namely because he did not stop the activities of the terrorist group. He characterized the 17N as a dogmatic organization and maintained that it constituted a problem for the country's image internationally.

    He admitted that he participated in the attempts against prosecutor Kostas Androulidakis and former Finance Minister Yiannis Paleokrassas as well as in a robbery.

  • [07] GREECE ASKS FOR EXPLANATIONS FROM AUSTRALIA ON THE TRAVEL ADVICE ISSUE The Greek government is in constant contact with the Australian government on the travel advice that it is about to be issued for Greece.

    The above were stated by Greek Foreign Minister Giorgos Papandreou pointing out that the Australian side has sent a message to Greece according to which, it should not try to diagnose anything deeper hidden in the travel advice in question given the fact

    that similar travel advice has already been issued for Italy, Spain, and France.

    Meanwhile, the Australian ambassador to Athens has been called to the Foreign Ministry to give explanations on the issue.

    Referring to the recent press reports in Australia, raising security issues during the Athens 2004 Olympic Games, Mr. Papandreou associated them with economic interests given the present circumstance and the bids taking place on Olympic Games supplies.

    The Foreign Minister met today with the Prime Minister and discussed issues of foreign policy focusing on the EU-Turkey relations, the Greek-Turkish relations and the Cyprus issue in view of the UN General Assembly meeting that will be held by the end of

    September.

  • [08] GAINS IN THE ASE Marginal gains were recorded in the Athens Stock Exchange today. The general index rose to +0.20% at 2.256,09 points, while the volume of transactions was at 152.8 million euros.

    Of the stocks trading today, 143 had gains and 165 recorded losses, while the value of 73 stocks remained unchanged.

  • [09] THE GREEK GOVERNMENT ACCEPTS HELP FROM SCOTLAND YARD The Greek government accepted the request made by Scotland Yard to send officers to the southeastern Aegean island of Rhodes with the mission to convey to their Greek colleagues their experience in facing incidents caused by British troublemakers.

    The above were stated by Greek government spokesman Christos Protopapas, pointing out that Greece has no objection to cooperate with the British officers to face problems caused by their country's nationals.

  • [B] INTERNATIONAL NEWS


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