|Sunday, 15 December 2019|
Macedonian Press Agency: News in English, 01-07-13
From: The Macedonian Press Agency at http://www.mpa.gr and http://www.hri.org/MPA.
 SIMITIS ON THE OPINION POLLS AND ASEAthens, 12 July 2001 (18:48 UTC+2)
Prime minister Kostas Simitis speaking in the cabinet meeting today referred to the two opinion polls according to which, right-wing main opposition party of New Democracy is leading socialist governing party of PASOK in terms of popularity and ND leader Kostas Karamanlis is more fit to become prime minister. Mr. Simitis stated that the government's picture is not good.
The prime minister stated that opinion polls are an indication of how citizens react in a specific moment but they are used as means to exert political pressure, and create conflict.
Mr. Simitis also referred to the situation in the Athens Stock Exchange and the economy, stressing that it appears that there is a front that is responsible for the creation of a negative climate aimed at controlling political developments.
 ANOMERITIS GUARANTEED THAT BEEF AND MILK CONSUMERS ARE NOT IN ANY DANGERAthens, 12 July 2001 (15:47 UTC+2)
Greek agriculture minister Giorgos Anomeritis gave the assurance that beef and milk are not responsible for the spread of the bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) to humans.
Speaking this morning before the responsible parliament committee, he pointed out that 7.000 of the 30.000 cattle raised in the country were tested during the first half of the year and the only "mad cow" disease case was the one traced in Kilkis, northern Greece.
The minister reiterated that no animal over the age of 30 months goes to consumers without a veterinary inspection.
 SATISFACTION OVER THE THESSALONIKI-BASED EUROPEAN INSTITUTIONSThessaloniki, 13 July 2001 (17:03 UTC+2)
The responsible European Parliament committee expressed satisfaction after the budget control it held in Thessaloniki-based European institutions as it was established that the European tax payers' money is being used effectively for the reconstruction of the Balkans and vocational training.
An 11-member delegation of Euro-deputies, which was in Thessaloniki on July 10-12 to visit the European Center for the Development of Vocational Training (CEDEFOP), concluded that the organization was successfully moved from Berlin to Thessaloniki and that in view of the EU enlargement it will have to upgrade its relations with the European Institute on Vocational Training based in Turin, Italy.
The delegation also visited the headquarters of the European Agency for the Reconstruction of the Balkans which manages the main aid programs for Kosovo, Serbia and Montenegro.
 LOSSES AGAIN IN THE ASEAthens, 13 July 2001 (16:45 UTC+2)
The Athens Stock Exchange had new losses today. The general index recorded considerable losses of 3.32% at 2.422,70 points, while the volume of transactions was disappointing at 115.3 million Euro or 39.299 billion drachmas.
Of the stocks trading today, only 31 recorded gains and the overwhelming majority, 312, had losses, while the value of 38 stocks remained stable.
 UNEMPLOYMENT WAS AT 11.4% IN 2000Athens, 13 July 2001 (16:39 UTC+2)
Unemployment in Greece recorded a small decline in 2000 at 11.4% of the work force compared to 11.9% in 1999, according to figures provided by the National Statistics Agency.
In the last trimester of last year, unemployment was at 11.6% compared to 12.4% in the same period in 1999.
The drop in unemployment recorded in the last trimester of 2000 was 0.1%.
 MESSAGES TO THE 8TH WORLD CONFERENCE OF PAN-MACEDONIAN ASSOCIATIONSKaterini, 13 July 2001 (16:26 UTC+2)
The proceedings of the 8th World Conference of the Pan-Macedonian Associations opened in Litochoro, Pieria today with the meetings of the national committees of the Pan-Macedonian Associations of US-Canada, Australia and Europe. The formal opening of the conference will take place this afternoon with the participation of about 400 representatives of Macedonian organizations from different parts of the world. Also, present will be 1.500 observers, while especially important is the presence of the young Greeks living abroad with 500 representatives.
In a message to the conference participants, Ecumenical Patriarch Vartholomeos wished success to its proceedings. Archbishop Christodoulos of Athens and All of Greece also wished success and stated in his message that the Greeks have to respect their beliefs and history, facing the challenge of globalization.
President Kostis Stephanopoulos also wished success to the conference proceedings and stated that since its establishment in 1947 the Pan-Macedonian Association offered significant services to Hellenism through its multi-faceted action.
Parliament president Apostolos Kaklamanis stated in his message that the Macedonians living abroad have proved that they keep their patriotism and national conscience alive even in the most isolated parts of the planet. He also stressed that we should not have the illusion that we have solved all our problems or that the dangers in the region do not concern us.
Foreign minister Giorgos Papandreou in his message stresses that the fact that the Macedonians chose to hold their conference in the holy land of Macedonia is a proof that they keep the Greek spirit and the Macedonian soul alive in spite of their long and laborious absence in foreign lands.
 SHOCKING REPORT ON DRUG USE IN GREECEAthens, 13 July 2001 (16:16 UTC+2)
The dimensions of the drug problem in Greece can be seen clearly in the annual report on the drug situation in Greece in 2000 that was given to publicity by the Greek University Research Institute on Mental Health.
Some of the basic characteristics underlined in the report are the big rise in the use of inhaled solvents by teenagers, the early age in which young people start using drugs and the use of heroin among teenagers. Also, the spread of multiple drug addiction and the increase in the drug-related deaths.
The spread of inhaled substances use among teenagers is also being confirmed by the ESPAD European Research according to which, the student population in Greece (14%) (based on a sample of 107 schools across Greece and a total of 2.205 sixteen-year-old students) occupies the top place in the use of inhaled solvents compared to the rest European countries average (9%).
The average age to start cannabis use is 16, while young people start taking pills at the age of 15 and at 21 they start with heroin.
A 61.8% of the users are unemployed, 20.8% have a stable job and 13% are occasionally employed.
 GREEK PERSONALITIES AGAINST MILOSEVIC'S INDICTMENTAthens, 13 July 2001 (15:43 UTC+2)
Personalities representing a wide spectrum of the Greek society, coming from every political party, signed a joint declaration against the arrest of former Yugoslav president Slobodan Milosevic, who has been led before the International Court in The Hague, and demand his immediate release.
Among those personalities are politicians, military officials, academicians, local administration officials, artists and many others.
 THE KALAS IN THE WORLD CONFERENCE OF PAN-MACEDONIAN ASSOCIATIONSLitochoro, 13 July 2001 (15:38 UTC+2)
The proceedings of the 8th World Conference of the Pan-Macedonian Associations got underway in Litochoro, Pieria in central Greece today with the participation of three distant descendants of Alexander the Great, who came from Pakistan for this purpose. They are Taigun Moidini and Serbali Han of the Kalas tribe and Naile Rahin of an Islamic tribe, called Makedonski.
The 3.000-member strong Kalas tribe preserved its Hellenic character for 2.500 years, underlined journalist Giorgos Alexandrou, who has developed strong ties with them since 1980. He stressed that the Kalas worship the twelve Gods of the ancient Greeks, observe an ancient Greek worship ritual and they are ruled as a society by the elders. He also mentioned that men and women are equal and enjoy sexual freedom.
Mr. Alexandrou pointed out that there are Muslim tribes which believe that they are descendants of Alexander the Great, adding that it is a challenge for the Greeks to adopt alternative forms of hellenism. These tribes are in Pakistan, Tadjikistan, Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan.
Serbali Han caused a sensation when he stated in his speech that the Kalas do not believe that Alexander the Great is dead and they wait for him to come back.
 POSITIVE COMMENTS IN ECOFIN ON THE GREEK ECONOMYBrussels, 12 July 2001 (16:52 UTC+2)
The fiscal discipline in the European Union was examined in the EU national economy and finance ministers, ECOFIN, meeting in Brussels.
Greek minister of national economy Yiannos Papantoniou received flattering comments on the Greek economy growth rate which is estimated to be at 4.6%.
Mr. Papantoniou stated that if the Euro-zone economy growth rate is at 2.2-2.4%, Greece's 4.6% is double and this is a very big success for the Greek economy.
The average inflation in the Euro-zone will drop by the end of the year and will be at 2.7%. Greece's inflation is expected to follow the downward course of the Euro-zone inflation and it will be at 2.7% or 2.8% by the end of the year.
 THE SPECIAL MOUNT ATHOS STATUS IS PROTECTED BY THE EUBrussels, 12 July 2001 (16:42 UTC+2)
The special status of Mount Athos will not be abolished and the European Commission does not intend to deal with such an issue as the monastic community in Mount Athos is under a special regime.
The assurance was given by European Commissioner Antonio Vitorino, responsible for justice and internal affairs issues, in response to a question by British socialist Euro-deputy Glean Ford on how the European Commission intends to show that the fact that women are not allowed to visit Mount Athos is in accordance with the EU treaties and if it will take measures to deal with the issue.
 BURNS: GREECE IS A MODEL COUNTRYWashington, 13 July 2001 (16:05 UTC+2)
US ambassador to Athens Nicholas Burns speaking in the "Voice of America" radio praised Greece and the Greek people, stressing that he intends to visit Greece regularly after his term ends in September to enjoy the country's natural beauty and the wonderful hospitality of its people.
Mr. Burns stated, among others, that Greece is a model country for the Americans representing what Bosnia, Yugoslavia, Romania, Bulgaria, FYROM, and Albania could achieve in the future. He said that for this reason, Greece has been encouraged to play an active political role in the region, stressing that Greek foreign minister Giorgos Papandreou has developed a great activity and has become a positive factor in the efforts for the solution of the problems in the region.
Referring to the US-Greek relations, Mr. Burns stated that they are very close and friendly, praising the Greek-American community for its efforts aimed at making the US-Greek relations even closer.
 GREECE IS ON THE US LIST OF COUNTRIES WITH PROBLEMATIC MOVEMENT OF IMMIGRANTSWashington, 13 July 2001 (15:58 UTC+2)
The US state department published a list of countries that do not take the necessary measures against the trafficking of people which is characterized as a "modern form of slavery".
According to the US diplomacy, Greece is one of the 23 countries on the list as it has not admitted publicly that the trafficking of people constitutes a problem.
Based on the report, Greece is one of the countries through which illegal trafficking of women from Balkan countries and the former Soviet Union takes place and those women are the victims of sexual exploitation.
The list includes countries such as Israel, Saudi Arabia and South Korea.
 OLYMPIC GAMES MUST RETURN TO GREECE PERMANENTLYMelbourne, 12 July 2001 (18:06 UTC+2)
The position that the Olympic Games must return to Greece permanently was expressed by Australian labor party leader Kim Beazly, who is also a candidate for the post of prime minister. The statement was made in response to the question if he supports Peking's bid for the 2008 Olympic Games.
Speaking in Melbourne's radio station, he said that Olympic Games must return to Greece permanently especially, now that Athens will have the necessary infrastructure for such athletic events. He added that such a move will help in the restoration of the games' prestige, while it will limit their commercialization and corruption.
For the record, voting will take place in Moscow tomorrow for the selection of the city that will host the 2008 Olympic Games.