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Macedonian Press Agency: News in English, 2003-09-18

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

From: The Macedonian Press Agency at and

MACEDONIAN PRESS AGENCY Thessaloniki, September 18, 2003








  • [01] ILLEGAL STRUCTURES INCORPORATED TO CITY PLAN The bill on urban planning regulations, with which an urban and physical restructuring of the country is being attempted, is expected to be ratified today by the Cabinet in its meeting today. The plan foresees that 57 areas that outside the city plan wil l be incorporated. The goal of the Ministry for the Environment, Physical Planning and Public Works is to put an end to illegal construction, clear up the scenery in the real estate market settle cases concerning approximately 1 million illegal construct owners all over Greece. The bill foresees solutions for water and electricity to be supplied to the unlicensed constructs.
  • [02] POLITICIANS' AUDIT EXTENDED The extension of the obligation to submit property statements for the politicians' audit was foreseen in the bill presented by Minister of the Interior Costas Scandalidis. Statements will be filed by ministers and MPs, all political figures, secretaries general, utility public service heads, prefects, mayors, and some civil servants. Elected political officials and those administrating public funds will be barred from stock market transactions. ND Parliamentary Spokesperson P. Pavlopoulos, made mention o f an effort to cover up the stock market scandal.
  • [03] PAPANDREOU - POWELL MEETING The Cyprus issue and developments in the Balkans, Iraq, and the Middle East, were discussed in the half hour meeting held between Greek Foreign Minister Giorgos Papandreou and his US counterpart Colin Powell.

    Mr. Papandreou pointed out to Mr. Powell the need to recommence negotiations for the Cyprus issue, based on the Annan proposal.

    "There are Turkish Cypriots who ask to participate in the broader unification within a united Europe, as I ascertained from the meetings I had with all sides, especially with the Cypriot government, political powers, as well as the society of citizens an d the Turkish Cypriot Opposition", stated Mr. Papandreou to the press.

    He also stressed that although the attention of the International Community has turned to Iraq and the Middle East, the Balkans are still an area that requires attention, so that stability is consolidated and difficult problems, such as that of Kossovo, are overcome.

    "There were disagreements, intense disagreements, about the war itself. But there is a will for a stable Iraq, with a representative government and finally reaching, as soon as possible, an independent Iraq, which will belong to the Iraqis", he noted.

    When asked if he briefed Mr. Powell on the issue of the continental reef, Mr. Papandreou underlined: "It surprises me that there are such publications, because I had nothing special to announce or about which to brief him. It is a well known issue, of co urse, there is a procedure, But that procedure has not yet reached a result. If we have a result or some development, we will inform the Greek public immediately".

    Finally, he stressed that Mr. Powell spoke positively regarding the security of the 2004 Olympics and of the close cooperation in that sector.

  • [04] CHRISTODOULAKIS: 30% ABSORBENCY The absorbency of the 3rd Community Support Framework will reach 30% by the end of the year, in contrast to 25% that it has been so far, according to the statements made by Minister of Finance Nikos Christodoulakis on his way out of Parliament, where a f ive-hour meeting presided over by Mr. Simitis was held with Ministry of Finance officials.

    The heads of the Ministries of Development, the Environment, Physical Planning, and Public Works, Labor, the Interior, Agriculture and Health participated in the meeting on the rate of absorption of the 3rd CSF funds.

    Mr. Christodoulakis gave his assurance that the programs, despite the initial difficulties they encountered, are now underway and moving at very high speeds, and thus, there is no danger of losing funds. PASOK's goal, he said, is the convergence of the p eriphery, a goal that can be reached through the 3rd CSF, while he added that there should be no rest and that efforts to accelerate all works and procedures will continue.

    On his side, deputy Minister of Finance Christos Pachtas stressed that all the weaknesses that had been observed during the first months of the program's application have been overcome, and reassured that the goal of 30% will be reached by the end of the

    year. He was also optimistic that the incorporation of works by the end of the year will cover 75% of the total budget.

    Finally, Minister of Development Akis Tsochatzopoulos stated that capital absorbency in programs he is responsible for has surpassed 13%, while the Ministry of Labor has reached 20%, according to the statements of Dimitris Reppas.

  • [05] CHRYSOCHOIDIS CONTACTS IN CYPRUS Secretary General of PASOK's Central Committee Michalis Chrysochoidis is leaving for Cyprus today, accompanied with PASOK International Affair Sector Secretary Paraskevas Avgerinos.

    Mr. Chrysochoidis will be received by the President of the Cypriot Republic Tassos Papadopoulos tomorrow and he will also meet with President of the Parliament Dimitris Christofias and leaders of Cypriot opposition partie.

  • [06] 47 ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS FOUND IN IKARIA Forty-seven illegal immigrants were located and arrested this morning by coast guard officers off the shore of Ikaria. The Turkish national who brought them across has, so far, not been found.
  • [07] THESSALONIKI HONORS CUBAN ATHLETES The Municipality of Thessaloniki will honor two of the greatest Cuban athletes, Alberto Huadorena and Anna Fidelia Quirot Moret, Olympic and world champions in middle distance events, with its greatest athletic award. The medal of the city will be awarde d to them by Mayor of Thessaloniki Vassilis Papageorgopoulos today at 16:00 in the City Council conference room.
  • [08] 17N VICTIM'S DAUGHTER SPEAKS IN COURT An emotionally charged speech was given by the daughter of 17N victim Constantinos Androulidakis, during the trial of the 19 suspected members of the "17 November" terrorist organization.

    Depi Androulidaki, a prosecution attorney for the victims' families in the case of her father's own murder, supported that it is not a political crime to kill a man leaving his house, on his way to work.

    Mrs. Androulidaki wondered if Dimitris Koufontinas and Vassilis Jorjatos show the same sensitivity to their children as they show the children of 17N's victims.

    She also characterized her father an easy target because he had no personal security. "He was not afraid so he had no security", supported his daughter in court.

  • [09] PAPANTONIOU ON THE NEW AIR CORRIDORS IN THE ATHENS FIR Defense Minister Yiannos Papantoniou appeared reassuring today concerning the agreement for the establishment of new air corridors in the Athens FIR.

    He clarified that it concerns exclusively passenger planes and not military aircraft. He also added that the issue here is the improvement of air transportation in view of the Olympic Games in 2004.

    It does not concern military aircraft neither Greek nor Turkish. The agreement has to do with passenger planes and affects only tourism. The Ministry of Defense did not even participate in the negotiations because this arrangement does not concern it, st ressed the Minister of Defense.

    Mr. Papantoniou also said that the military activities of Greece and Turkey are still within the existing framework and there is absolutely no change.

    Mr. Papantoniou admitted that there is an increase in the airspace violations by Turkish aircraft in the first half of 2003 compared to 2002 adding, however, that there is a decline lately associated with the tough stance adopted by Greece.

  • [10] LOSSES IN THE ASE Losses were recorded in the Athens Stock Exchange today after yesterday's gains. The general index dropped to -1.98% at 2.021,52 points, while the volume of transactions was considerable at 135 million euros.

    Of the stocks trading today, the majority of 285 recorded losses and 49 had gains, while the value of 49 stocks remained unchanged.

  • [11] MAGRIOTIS' VISIT TO UKRAINE Undersecretary of Foreign Affairs Yiannis Magriotis leaves tomorrow for Mariupolis, Ukraine where he will attend the events organized by the Orthodox community dedicated to the 225th anniversary of the founding of the city and also, to the city founder G reek Metropolite Ignatios. He will also visit the village of Sartana.

    On Saturday, Mr. Magriotis will inaugurate the World Council for Hellenes Abroad, SAE, Medical Center together with SAE President, Andrew Athens. He will also meet with the center's doctors and the rest employees and he will give a press conference.

    On Sunday, he will visit the village of Yalta to attend the celebrations with the participation of 48 Greek villages and then he will depart for Kiev to inaugurate the new building of the Greek Embassy.

    On Monday, Mr. Magriotis will visit the Monastery of Lavra and lay a wreath at the Monument of Ipsilantis. Mr. Magriotis will also meet with the government vice-president Mr. D. Tabachnyk, responsible for Humanitarian Aid and Development Cooperation issu es, and his Ukrainian counterpart Mr. V. Yelchinko.

  • [12] KARAMANLIS' WILL VISIT UKRAINE Right-wing main opposition party of New Democracy leader Kostas Karamanlis will be in Ukraine tomorrow until Sunday.

    Mr. Karamanlis will go to Odessa to visit a Ukrainian elementary school where the Greek language is being taught, and a number of monuments.

    He will also meet with the mayor of Odessa, while he will attend a luncheon together with representatives of the Greek community and he will visit the Archaeological Museum of Odessa.

    On Saturday, Mr. Karamanlis will be in Mariupolis for the inauguration of a World Council of Hellenes Abroad, SAE, Medical Center. He will visit the Humanitarian Studies Institute in the University of Mariupolis where he will be declared honorary lecture r. Later, he will meet with representatives of Pontian Federations and Associations in the former Soviet Union.

    On Sunday, he will be in Yalta to attend celebrations with the participation of 48 Greek villages.

  • [13] THESSALONIKI'S PREFECTURAL COUNCIL HONORED CUBAN ATHLETES Leading names in the world sports, Cuban Olympic medallists Alberto Juantorena and Ana Fidelia Quirot were honored by Thessaloniki's Prefectural Council at noon today.

    Juantorena was the only athlete (Montreal Olympic Games), who won gold medals, both in the 400m and the 800m race, in the same Olympics, while Quirot was world champion in the 800m race for five years and silver medal winner in the Atlanta Olympics.

  • [14] YIANNITSIS: NO COADMINISTRATION OF THE ATHENS FIR AIRSPACE There is no coadministration of the Athens FIR airspace, underlined Alternate Foreign Minister Tasos Yiannitsis commenting on the objections expressed on the agreement concerning the air corridors over the Aegean.

    He stressed that this is a development that safeguards the Greek interests and should not be met with an effort to undermine the advantages that have been achieved.

    Mr. Yiannitsis said that Turkey's provocative stance in the Aegean will be faced in the future with the same determination as in the past, adding that nothing has changed.

    He stressed that the strengthening of the Athens FIR position in the world network of air traffic strengthens and does not limit Greece's positions regarding the issues of national interest. He concluded that any proposal on bilateral negotiation with Tu rkey on air corridor issues was rejected as it had happened in the past.


  • [15] PAPANDREOU CALLS ATTENTION TO THE BALKANS The interest of the international community may have turned to the Middle East, but the Balkans are still a difficult region, stated Foreign Minister G. Papandreou, following his meeting with his US counterpart, Colin Powell. Mr. Papandreou denied having

    discussed the continental reef issue with Mr. Powell, regarding which he said the Greek public would be informed if there was something new, while he pointed out that he stressed the need to recommence procedures for the solution of the Cyprus issue.

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