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Macedonian Press Agency: Brief News in English, 97-06-30
From: The Macedonian Press Agency at http://www.mpa.gr and http://www.hri.org/MPA.
BRIEF GREEK NEWS BULLETIN BY MACEDONIAN PRESS AGENCY
Thessaloniki, June 30, 1997
NEWS IN DETAIL
 THE MPA CONFERENCE OPENED IN THESSALONIKI TODAY
Thessaloniki 30 June (MPA)The "heart of information" beats today and tomorrow in Thessaloniki where General Directors and Chief Editors of the 50 largest Balkan mass media have gathered to attend the Inter-Balkan Journalist Conference organized by MPA and co-organized by the Cultural Capital of Europe Organization - Thessaloniki '97.
The topic of the two-day conference is "Peace and Development in southeastern Europe: The role of the mass media". The conference was officially declared open by Minister of Macedonia- Thrace Philippos Petsalnikos, while the opening intervention was made by Minister of Transport and Communications Haris Kastanides.
 MPA'S CONFERENCE ON PEACE AND DEVELOPMENT IN SOUTHEASTERN EUROPE, THE ROLE OF THE MASS MEDIA
Thessaloniki, June 30 (MPA)The Minister of Macedonia-Thrace Philippos Petsalnikos has expressed his certainty that the InterBalkan conference titled "Peace and Development in Southeastern Europe, the role of the mass media" organized by the Macedonian Press Agency and currently taking place in Thessaloniki, will contribute to the development of initiatives regarding peace, security and economic collaboration in Southeast Europe.
Inaugurating the Conference, Mr. Petsalnikos stated that "the new order of things currently occurring in the Balkans, the cooperation and understanding among the peoples, constitutes an integral prerequisite for peace in the region and for the developments of the Balkan peninsula's countries in the economic, political and social sectors.
"Greece can play a significant role and dynamically contribute to the development of the Balkan markets and economic cooperation." Moreover, the Minister of Macedonia-Thrace stressed the importance of Greece's leading role in the region given its participation in international organizations which enables her to serve as a mediator between the Balkans and Western Europe.
Mr. Petsalnikos referred to the Ministry's committee for Inter-Balkan cooperation, to the Inter-Balkan Regional Center, and the Black Sea Bank. Moreover, the Minister of Macedonia-Thrace, referred to the European Union's offices established in Thessaloniki, as well as to the European Commission's imminent establishment of a satellite office in town.
The Minister of Transportation and Communications Haris Kastanides also addressed the Conference, where he stressed that the role of the mass media in establishing peace is self- explanatory, even though this is not always so.
"Many times, the media equate news with negation and disaster," Mr. Kastanides stated, adding that if this trap was avoided than it would an example to follow, since it would contribute to the development of the peoples.
Moreover, Mr. Kastanides stressed that it would be constructive if the media further promoted the initiatives for cooperation in the Balkans, such the one recently held among Balkan Transportation Ministers for the collaboration of the region's post offices.
The Macedonian Press Agency's General Director Spyros Kouzinopoulos, saluting the conference, stressed that the event is held by the MPA as part of its efforts to further develop inter- Balkan cooperation among the region's mass media so that the obstacles will be done away with in this sensitive sector of information and to establish peace, security and friendship.
"The role of the mass media and the journalists is a very significant one, especially in such difficult era where a lengthy crisis in regards to establishing trust has made the media a fragile means, thereby paving the way to all sorts of manipulation and misinformation," Mr. Kouzinopoulos stated.
The Mayor of Thessaloniki, Konstantinos Kosmopoulos saluted the Macedonian Press Agency's contribution to establishing cooperation among the Balkan region's national news agencies and to the efforts in establishing Thessaloniki as an economic, cultural and spiritual center.
"With the full development and complete operation in the Balkan News Bank, which through an initiative undertaken by the MPA and with the creation of a satellite center to link the Balkan news agencies, as well as through the Internet server, the aims to improve information are considerably strengthened," the Mayor of Thessaloniki said.
 SWEEPING VICTORY OF THE ALBANIAN SOCIALISTS IN YESTERDAY'S ELECTIONS
Tirana 30 June (MPA)The Socialists and the center-left parties in Albania achieved a big victory in yesterday's parliamentary elections, according to the first official results. The Socialists call for President Berisha's resignation, while their leader Fatos Nano stated that the victory is so extensive that his deputies will control 2/3 of the Parliament after the second round of voting next Sunday.
Specifically, according to information coming from the Socialists, they will control 60 of the 115 seats in the new Parliament.
Greek Euro-deputy Yiannis Roubatis, who was an observer in yesterday's elections, pointed out that the Socialists have a wide lead even in the city of Durres.
Meanwhile, according to statements made by Vasilis Melos, President of the Union of Human Rights, which represents the Greek minority, his party has elected 5 deputies to the new Parliament.
 THE GREEK MINISTER OF DEFENSE EXPRESSED SATISFACTION FOR THE ELECTION RESULTS IN ALBANIA
Athens 30 June (MPA)Greek Minister of Defense Akis Tsochatzopoulos and Undersecretary of Foreign Affairs Yiannos Kranidiotis expressed satisfaction for the election results in Albania after the meeting they had today to discuss NATO issues in view of the new structure of the north Atlantic alliance, that will be examined in the organization's summit meeting next week.
In a telephone conversation mr.Tsochatzopoulos had with Albanian Socialist leader Fatos Nano yesterday was briefed on the election process, while mr.Kranidiotis had a communication with caretaker Prime Minister Baskim Fino.
Mr.Tsochatzopoulos and mr.Kranidiotis speculated that the new facts will lead the country to normalization and pointed out that the role of the multi-national force will be re-examined.
 THE ISSUE OF THE ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS MUST BE REGULATED BY THE ALBANIAN POLITICAL LEADERSHIP
Athens 30 June (MPA)Greek Minister of the Interior Alekos Papadopoulos underlined today that the issue of the Albanian illegal immigrants entering Greece must be regulated by the Albanian political leadership and stressed that the new government has a difficult task ahead of it.
Mr.Papadopoulos stated that the issue of the Albanian illegal immigrants can not be dealt within the framework of the same legal status that is in effect for other illegal immigrants, coming from countries like, the Phillipines. He also stressed that this will be one of the first issues the Greek government will have to discuss with the new Albanian government.
 STEPHANOPOULOS: MACEDONIA IS AND WILL REMAIN GREEK
Serres 30 June (MPA)Macedonia was, is and will remain Greek, underlined Greek President Kostis Stephanopoulos, who is on a two-day tour to the northern city of Serres. Mr.Stephanopoulos attended the festivities for the anniversary of the city's liberation and was honoured with its "Golden Key".
 THE CYPRIOT PRESIDENT WILL VISIT GREECE
Athens 30 June (MPA)Cypriot President Glafkos Clerides will visit Athens today to meet with President Kostis Stephanopoulos and Prime Minister Kostas Simitis in view of the direct talks he will have with Turkish-Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash in New York in early July.
According to the Cypriot State Radio and Television Company, President Clerides brings with him a document that includes the positions of the Greek-Cypriot side, based on the National Council decisions, aiming at the better coordination with the Greek government.
Complete archives of the Macedonian Press Agency bulletins are available on the MPA Home Page at http://www.mpa.gr/ and on the U.S. mirror at http://www.hri.org/MPA/