|Friday, 13 December 2019|
Macedonian Press Agency: News in English, 00-10-06
From: The Macedonian Press Agency at http://www.mpa.gr and http://www.hri.org/MPA.
 GREEK FM PLANS TO VISIT BELGRADEThessaloniki, 6 October 2000 (10:37 UTC+2)
Greek Foreign minister George Papandreou is planning a trip to Belgrade, as part of Greek initiatives in response to the recent developments in Yugoslavia, Press undersecretary Telemachus Chytiris announced today.
Mr Chytiris expressed the hope that a solution will be found to the current crisis as well as with Slobodan Milosevic, adding that Vojislav Kostunica should take action to solve the problem internally, without Western intervention.
As far as Greek intervention in the crisis is concerned, the Greek Press undersecretary stressed that "the policy upheld by Athens has always been moderate. It was the only capital to have constant ties with Belgrade and the only capital to send its Foreign minister to the Yugoslavian capital. Our support has never been one-sided and we worked towards helping Yugoslavia and towards finding a solution to the crisis. These efforts are recognised by the Yugoslavian nation and by Mr Kostunica, with whom we were in touch with until yesterday, as our diplomatic representatives are still in Belgrade.
 A UKRAINIAN AIRPLANE IS GROUNDED AT THE AIRPORT OF THESSALONIKIThessaloniki, 6 October 2000 (17:55 UTC+2)
Relatives of the victims of the December 1997 air tragedy at the Pieria Mountains, west of Thessaloniki, were able to order through their lawyers the grounding of an airplane belonging to the Ukrainian airline "Aerosweet" based on a court decision concerning the compensation claims submitted by them.
The "Boeing 737" airplane arrived at Thessaloniki's Macedonia Airport yesterday at noon on a regular flight from Kiev. The relatives of the Yakovlev victims maintained that tens of lawsuits are pending in civil courts claiming compensation for the deaths of their loved ones and therefore, the grounding of the airplane was imperative until the court procedures are over.
Another airplane of the same company had been grounded in January 1998 about a month after the air tragedy in which 73 people lost their lives. The airplane remained grounded at Macedonia Airport for 9 months. It was released when Ukrainian company representatives submitted letters of guarantee regarding the compensation claims by the victims' relatives.
 COHEN-CAKMAKOGLU MEETING IN THESSALONIKIThessaloniki, 6 October 2000 (17:36 UTC+2)
Turkish minister of defense Sabahadin Cakmakoglu will meet with his US counterpart William Cohen in Thessaloniki on Monday. The meeting is scheduled to last half an hour and will take place after the summit meeting of defense ministers from south-eastern Europe.
The Turkish minister of defense is expected to arrive at Thessaloniki's Macedonia Airport on Sunday on board a private plane and in the afternoon of that day he will visit the Turkish consulate and the house of Kemal Ataturk.
 GREEK GOVERNMENT SPOKESMAN - YUGOSLAVIAAthens, 6 October 2000 (17:19 UTC+2)
Developments in Yugoslavia move toward a positive direction, stated Greek government spokesman Dimitris Reppas, pointing out that a new page with a European orientation has been turned in the neighboring country.
Mr. Reppas referring to yesterday's developments in Yugoslavia expressed satisfaction over the fact that the Greek policy was vindicated, saying that Greece's role proved to be useful. He said that from the first moment Greece had disagreed with the interventions in Yugoslavia and Milosevic's indictment for war crimes by the International Court of Justice in The Hague. He said that the political powers must handle the crisis with a sense of responsibility to safeguard the transfer to a new era.
On the fate of Milosevic and his family, the Greek government spokesman underlined that the issue must be handled by the political powers in Yugoslavia and that Greece in cooperation with them will do everything possible to settle the issue. However, he added that Greece will not become a country that will receive individuals requesting political asylum, and that it will act within the framework of the European Union decisions. He said characteristically that Greece will not offer its territory and its airports to Mr. Milosevic or other officials.
On Mr. Kostunica, he said that he enjoys the recognition of the European leaders and the Russian president, adding that he is a credible debater and his message to the Yugoslav people showed that he is aware of his responsibilities.
The Greek government spokesman left open the likelihood of a visit by the Greek foreign minister to Belgrade by saying that Mr. Papandreou is always welcomed in the neighboring country.
Finally, referring to the Greek students in Yugoslavia he said that the Greek embassy is in constant contact with them.
 THE CAUSES OF THE "SAMINA" TRAGEDY ARE BEING INVESTIGATEDSyros, 6 October 2000 (16:44 UTC+2)
The investigation on the causes of the "Samina" tragedy continues. The two special magistrates investigating the conditions under which the shipwreck took place are in the Aegean island of Syros and work together with investigator Ilias Stefanatos, who was appointed by the ministry of merchant marine.
At the moment, the investigation has focused on a telephone call ship mate Tasos Psychogios received just before the "Samina" crashed on the rocky islet, about 2 nautical miles outside the port of the island of Paros. According to information, Psychogios had received a phone call on his mobile phone by a crew member of another ship sailing in the region warning him that the "Samina" was off course.
The special magistrate is expected to call for questioning all those who are involved in the shipwreck one way or another, while written documents and other findings retrieved by the divers from the sunk ship are also being examined.
 INFLATION CLOSED AT 3.1% IN SEPTEMBERAthens, 6 October 2000 (16:18 UTC+2)
The news from the inflation front in Greece are good. According to the National Statistics Agency, inflation in Greece in the month of September was at 3.1% compared to 3.5% in the month of August.
 GREECE WILL CALL FOR THE LIFTING OF THE SANCTIONS IMPOSED ON YUGOSLAVIAAthens, 6 October 2000 (16:11 UTC+2)
The crucial developments in Yugoslavia after the latest events in the country will be the basic issue on the agenda of the EU general affairs council meeting that will be held in Luxembourg on Monday.
Greece, which will be represented by foreign minister Giorgos Papandreou and deputy foreign minister Elisavet Papazoi, will ask for the immediate lifting of the sanctions imposed on Yugoslavia and the activation of the 2.3 trillion Euro account approved for the country's reconstruction in the next five years.
The Greek government will also call for the immediate expansion of the Organization for the Reconstruction of the Balkans in Thessaloniki to include Serbia together with Kosovo and Montenegro.
According to deputy foreign minister Elisavet Papazoi, the EU has accepted Greece's stance based on which, the candidate for EU membership western Balkan countries must respect the ethnic minorities on their territory and the inviolability of the existing borders. Also, Ms. Papazoi stated that the EU presidency will announce the establishment of a free trade zone between the EU and the Balkan states.
 THE GREEK AUTHORITIES ARE IN A STATE OF READINESS REGARDING THE GREEK STUDENTS IN YUGOSLAVIAAthens, 6 October 2000 (15:36 UTC+2)
The Greek foreign affairs ministry is in a state of readiness for any kind of intervention in case it is needed in order to evacuate the Greek students from Yugoslavia, according to ministry officials.
Meanwhile, minister of education Petros Efthimiou stated that he contacted the Greek embassy in Belgrade and stressed that all the Greek students are safe.
Tension was recorded yesterday outside the Macedonia-Thrace ministry building in Thessaloniki when parents of Greek students in Belgrade gathered to ask for the immediate return of their children to Greece and their transfer to Greek universities.
 GAINS OF 1.73% IN THE ATHENS STOCK EXCHANGEAthens, 6 October 2000 (15:10 UTC+2)
Gains of 1.73% were recorded in the Athens Stock Exchange today and the general index was at 4.027,09 points, while the volume of transactions was very satisfactory at 207 billion drachmas.
Of the stocks trading today 248 recorded gains, 104 had losses and 24 remained unchanged.
 THE PRIME MINISTER ON THE DEVELOPMENTS IN YUGOSLAVIAAthens, 6 October 2000 (15:00 UTC+2)
Greek prime minister Kostas Simitis, in his speech today before the central committee of the governing socialist party of PASOK, referred to the latest developments in Yugoslavia and the political scene that is being formed in Belgrade.
The prime minister stated characteristically that yesterday's developments in Yugoslavia confirmed in the most clear way that the Serb people voted for democratic change in their country. The developments also proved that the Greek government had followed the right policy. He said that Greece proved, through the initiatives it undertook, that it has knowledge of the region and exercised a consistent policy aimed at the consolidation of stability and security in the wider Balkan region.
The latest rapid developments call for a calm, democratic and peaceful course that has to be followed in the neighboring country, said the prime minister, adding that Greece will always be on the side of the Yugoslav people and will always support Yugoslavia's course toward becoming a member of the European family.
The developments in Yugoslavia prove that peace, democratic development and growth are still needed in the region and for this reason Greece has a significant role to play, said the prime minister.
 KARAMANLIS: THE WILL OF THE SERB PEOPLE MUST BE RESPECTEDAthens, 6 October 2000 (14:39 UTC+2)
The will of the Serb people must be respected, stated main opposition party of New Democracy leader Kostas Karamanlis, on the occasion of the developments in Yugoslavia. The main opposition party leader called on the Greek government to play the role of a catalyst in order to safeguard stability in the Balkans.
Mr. Karamanlis stated that the will of the Serb people must be respected immediately, adding that there is no room for a violent overturning of the expressed will of the people. He also said that Greece's traditional friend in the Balkans must occupy again the position it deserves in the European scene.
He also called on the European Union to prove in action that it can and want to help Yugoslavia in its difficult road ahead.