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Macedonian Press Agency: Brief News in English, 98-11-02
From: The Macedonian Press Agency at http://www.mpa.gr and http://www.hri.org/MPA.
BRIEF GREEK NEWS BULLETIN BY THE MACEDONIAN PRESS AGENCY
Thessaloniki, November 2, 1998
NEWS IN DETAIL
 PREMIER STANDS BY GOVERNMENT POLICY DURING PARLIAMENT DEBATE
Athens, November 2 (MPA)The Prime Minister Kostas Simitis, who opened last night's parliamentary debate on granting the government a confidence vote, vowed to press on with his already-carved policy and stressed that no hesitation or experimentation will be tolerated.
Mr. Simitis asked for a confidence vote last Thursday after having conducted a minor cabinet reshuffle. He justified his request for a confidence vote as follows:
"First to give an answer to all those who dispute the government's political legitimacy, that is, vested interests, certain unionist groups and the main opposition New Democracy (ND) party; secondly, to give a reply to populism and thirdly, to confirm with the confidence vote PASOK's conceptions for the country's prospects".
Confident over the country's entry to the European Economic Monetary Union (EMU) by the year 2000, the Premier said that the government "is not going to toy, not even for a moment, with the interests of the people and the country and is not willing to waste the sacrifices and efforts of the Greek people, so as to become pleasant and benefit PASOK".
He stated that EMU accession is not a goal in itself, instead, he said, "the government's goal is the Greek citizens' ever- increasing prosperity."
The Premier also said that the government has achieved the safeguarding of social expenditure, unlike other European countries, thereby proving that its social concern is real and not theoretical.
 PARLIAMENT CONTINUES TALKS FOR CONFIDENCE VOTE IN GOVERNMENT
Athens, November 2 (MPA)The Hellenic Parliament will continue discussions this evening, concerning granting a confidence vote to the government.
Prime Minister Kostas Simitis, who sought the confidence vote immediately after the government reshuffle on Thursday, opened the discussion last night analyzing the government policy in all sectors. The discussion will continue until midnight on Tuesday when the parliamentarians will vote in an open ballot. The government is resolved to seek a Parliamentary absolute majority of at least 151 votes in the confidence vote on Tuesday night. The leader of the main opposition party Kostas Karamanlis accused the Premier of trying to resolve inner-party problems at the expense of parliament. The secretary-general of the Communist Party of Greece Aleka Paparega stated that the government's EMU accession target is leading the country on a course to bankruptcy.
 GREEK TELECOM ORGANIZATION LISTED ON WALL STREET AS OF TODAY
Athens, November 2 (MPA)Greece's Telecommunications Organization (OTE) is ready for its listing on the New York Stock Exchange today, as the general counsel of OTE George Chrysolouris will be the first Greek to declare the opening of trading on the NYSE.
ΟΤΕ is Greece's largest company with a market capitalization of $11 billion, equal to roughly 10 percent of Greece's GDP.
 OTE SHARE TWICE OVERSUBSCRIBED, ORDERS POURED IN AT LAST MINUTE
Athens, November 2 (MPA)Public subscriptions for shares in Greece's Telecommunications Organization (OTE) were twice oversubscribed, surpassing even the most optimistic forecasts.
According to news reports, a heavy load of orders came in from international institutions at the last minute.
The third flotation of OTE shares will bring the government approximately 302 billion drachmas, according to the National Bank of Greece, one of the offer's main underwriters, along with Credit Suisse First Boston and Salomon Smith Barney. The share's price has been listed at GRD6.100.
The subscription title allocation, conducted during the weekend, paved the road for today's listing on the New York Stock Exchange where the general counsel of OTE George Chrysolouris will be the first Greek to declare the opening of trading on the NYSE.
 FYROM: VMRO-DPMNE & DEMOCRATIC ALTERNATIVE SOLUTION WIN ELECTIONS
Skopje, November 2 (MPA)The conservative coalition VMRO-DPMNE and Democratic Alternative Solution has emerged as the winner in the second round of parliamentary elections held yesterday in FYROM, having gathered 59 seats in both rounds, with the Social-democratic Union coming second.
The main opposition victory has also been acknowledged by the outgoing Social-Democrats cabinet.
 THESSALONIKI HOSTS ASSEMBLY OF ORTHODOXY MEETING
Thessaloniki, November 2 (MPA)A two-day meeting of the International Secretariat of the European Inter-parliamentary Assembly of Orthodoxy is beginning in Thessaloniki today.
The meeting will plan the celebration of the completion of two thousand years of Christianity and will examine ways to further improve the operation of the Assembly.
The participants will also discuss the formation of a committee of legal specialists from its member-states who will contribute towards regulating the presence of new sects in Europe.
 OPPOSITION PARTIES BLAST GOVERNMENT AND ITS POLICIES DURING DEBATE
Athens, November 2 (MPA)The leader of Greece's main opposition party, New Democracy's Kostas Karamanlis, slammed the government during last night debate concerning the granting of a confidence vote to the ruling PASOK party.
Mr. Karamanlis stated that the government and the Prime Minister Kostas Simitis were "weaker than ever" and that the country is undergoing a "dissolution of the state."
"The government is weaker than ever and more so the prime minister is weaker than ever and with spasmodic moves he is asking for a confidence vote under pressure from his party's internal opposition," Mr. Karamanlis said.
He further referred to a "dissolution of the state", of a state "which instead of being a friend to the citizen has become its enemy".
He also accused the government of not accelerating the privatization course and of not curbing public expenditure.
In regards to the government's foreign policy, Mr. Karamanlis stated that it has led to "Turkey's audacity and increased provocation".
The secretary-general of the Communist Party of Greece (KKE) Aleka Paparega said that the premier called for a confidence vote "in order to reassure the Greek and European plutocracy that the popular protest, which was expressed clearly by the (recent) municipal and prefectural elections, will not lead the government to evasions, which might relax the rhythms of the wild neo-liberal policy, which it follows with consistency."
She further added that the people are not willing to make more sacrifices for the European Union and the " fake aim of the EMU."
The Coalition for the Left and Progress (Synaspismos) leader Nikos Konstantopoulos said that the Premier, "instead of studying the messages of the municipal elections, is requesting by blackmail, of its deputies to ignore the message of the popular decision and grant a cover with their vote to his incomprehensible persistence on the same policy."
Democratic Social Movement (DHKKI) leader Dimitris Tsovolas said that the Premier called for the confidence vote in order to "settle inter-party (PASOK) disputes."
 PREMIER TO MEET WITH PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC TODAYAthens,. November 2 (MPA)
Prime Minister Kostas Simitis is to be received by the President of the Hellenic Republic Kostis Stephanopoulos today.
The Premier will brief the President on the course of the state's internal and foreign policies.
 ISRAELI PRESIDENT EMBARKS ON THREE-DAY OFFICIAL VISIT TO CYPRUS
Nicosia, November 2 (MPA)The President of Israel Ezer Weizman is embarking on a three-day official visit to Cyprus today, the first such visit by an Israeli head of state.
President Weizman will be greeted at the Larnaca airport by the President o the Republic of Cyprus Glafkos Clerides with whom he will hold talks later in the day.
Also today, the Israeli president will meet with the Archbishop Chrysostomos and will attend a dinner given in his honor by President Clerides.
During his stay in Cyprus, Mr. Weizman will meet by the President of the Parliament of Cyprus Spyros Kyprianou and with leaders of the opposition parties.
 PASOK'S VIEWS ON ESP'S MANIFESTO FORWARDED TO COOK
Athens, November 2 (MPA)A memorandum with the views of the Greek ruling PASOK party regarding the Socialist Manifesto for the European Parliament elections has been forwarded by Greece's Deputy foreign minister Yiannos Kranidiotis to the British foreign secretary Robin Cook, chairman of the governing Committee of the European Socialist Party.
The memorandum is based on positions set out in a document presented by the Prime Minister Kostas Simitis on "The political and social future of Europe" during the recent informal EU summit in Portschach, Austria.
The Greek ruling party, PASOK, stresses the need for accelerating the process for political unification in the EU, securing political control of Economic and Monetary Union, and strengthening the "society of citizens" and the democratic character of European institutions. It supports the strengthening of the European Parliament's roles and powers and notes that the time has come to adopt more decisive measures to combat unemployment.
The committee will first convene over the "Manifesto" on November 12 and 13 in Brussels, and PASOK will be represented by Mr. Kranidiotis and Nikos Themelis.
 FIRST MUSEUM OF MT. ATHOS AT MONASTERY OF XENOPHON
Thessaloniki, November 2 (MPA)Rare icons and mosaics presented during last year's Exhibition of the Treasures of Mt. Athos in Thessaloniki are to be exhibited on a permanent basis from now on at the monastic community's first museum which will operate at the Monastery of Xenophon.
The museum was recently inaugurated by the Ecumenical Patriarch Vartholomeos during the celebration of the monastery's 1,000th anniversary.
Among the items on display are 25 rare icons that date back to the 10th century while coins belonging to Byzantine Emperor Komninos, which were recently excavated, will also be on display in the future.
 PHILOXENIA '98 STARTS THURSDAY, S.E. EUROPE'S BIGGEST TOURISM FAIR
Thessaloniki, November 2 (MPA)The Helexpo-founded PHILOXENIA '98, the biggest tourism exhibition in South-East Europe, is to start in Thessaloniki on Thursday, November 5, featuring 10,000 sq.m. of exhibition space and more than 350 exhibitors of the tourism industry from around the world.
Among the sectors to be represented at the four-day fair are hotels, apartment and other accommodation forms, transportation, meeting, conference and incentive travel, tour operators, nature and adventure trips, data communications and publications.
PHILOXENIA reached its peak last year with 369 exhibitors. More analytically, 311 of these were from Greece while 58 from abroad. The exhibitors presented their products to 10,000 visitors of which 4,000 visitors with trade interest.
This year's event is jointly organized by Thessaloniki's HELEXPO and Great Britain's REED EXHIBITIONS, a marketing company which organizes 336 exhibitors worldwide, nine of which are for the tourism sector .
The collaboration agreement, which is expected to be finalized by the end of August, is expected to contribute decisively to the improvement of services offered in the area of international marketing. The two companies will sign a ten year agreement commencing in1999.