|Friday, 15 November 2019|
Macedonian Press Agency: News in English, 01-10-24
From: The Macedonian Press Agency at http://www.mpa.gr and http://www.hri.org/MPA.
 NEW GOVERNMENT SWORE IN TODAYAthens, 24 October 2001 (12:41 UTC+2)
The new government swore in today at 11:30am, while later today the new cabinet met presided over by the Prime Minister Kostas Simitis. The return of Mr. Skandalidis to the government with his appointment to the Ministry of the Interior, and the transfer of N. Christodoulakis to the Ministry of National Economy, G. Papantoniou to the Ministry of Defense and A. Tsohatzopoulos to the Ministry of Development, V. Papandreou to the Ministry of the Environment, Planning and Public Works, along with Mr. G. Papandreou and Mr. Venizelos remaining in the same ministries, signal the new 48-member government. In the meantime, Mr. Pagalos emphatically denies that any proposal of participation in the government was made to him, neither directly nor indirectly.
 MEASURES IN EFFECT IMMEDIATELYAthens, 24 October 2001 (13:55 UTC+2)
The European terrorism law, and the redefinition of relations between political and judicial authorities, after recent intense confrontations, will be the two most basic issues that the new Minister of Justice, F. Petsalnikos, will have to deal with. EU measures will have to be officially taken up by all member-states, so Mr. Petsalnikos will have to expedite the new legislative measures, changing the laws on terrorism, money-laundering, lifting of bank-client confidentiality, etc., so that they can be put into effect by 1/1/02.
 SEVEN PRIORITIES BY ND FOR THE PERIOD 2001-2002Athens, 24 October 2001 (19:59 UTC+2)
A meeting of right-wing main opposition party of New Democracy Permanent Committees coordinators on the priorities of the party's parliamentary work, was held in New Democracy's central offices in Athens today presided over by party leader Kostas Karamanlis.
Mr. Karamanlis pointed out in his speech that New Democracy's obligation is to exercise constructive criticism on the government and express its own proposals. He also presented seven New Democracy goals-proposals for the parliamentary period 2001-2002.
Specifically, on economy, New Democracy's goals are development, employment and social cohesion which will be achieved among others through the promotion of structural changes, liberalization of markets, clarity in transactions, and the protection of workers' rights. Also, ND suggests cutting public spending, the adoption of a new agricultural and regional policy, as well as, an aggressive tourist policy, open management of the 3rd Community Framework of Support funds and guarantees for the protection of the tax-payers' money.
On people and society, the goal is to create a society characterized by solidarity giving a special emphasis to the eradication of inequalities, poverty and unemployment.
The goal of New Democracy is to create a new state by implementing reforms and deep changes based on the principles of transparency, meritocracy, respect for the citizen and a strong local administration.
Regarding the 2004 Olympic Games, the goal is to be a success, while the challenges ahead are Olympic Truce, peace, the cooperation among the peoples and security.
The goals concerning the issue of the social security system reform are viability and social justice that will be achieved through reforms and deep changes. New Democracy backs the three-way funding of the social security system (namely, by the state, the employees and the employers), wants no change in the pension age limits, no pension cuts, and proposes more benefits for mothers.
On education, the goal is equal opportunities for all achieved through real reform and national dialogue. Also, more funds are needed for education and better use of new technologies, while an emphasis is given to infrastructure.
On Greece's place in Europe, New Democracy believes that Greece should undertake initiatives within a strong Europe. Europe should hold a leading role in international developments. It should achieve real economic and political unification, protect its borders and include Cyprus in the first EU enlargement wave. ND adds that Greece should become Europe's bridge to western Balkans and eastern Mediterranean.
 THREE HUNDRED RARE MAPS IN THESSALONIKI'S WAR MUSEUMThessaloniki, 24 October 2001 (18:40 UTC+2)
Three hundred rare maps and gravures dated back from the 15th to the 19th centuries and a significant number of old cartographic books will be displayed in an exhibition that will be hosted in Thessaloniki's War Museum.
The exhibition will open on October 27 and will present the development of printed cartography in Greece from the times of the first maps until the 19th century. The work of famous cartographers like, Mercator, Ortelius, Coronelli, Blaeu, D' Anville and Rigas Fereos, will also be presented.
 SMALL LOSSES IN THE ASEAthens, 24 October 2001 (17:17 UTC+2)
Small losses were recorded in the Athens Stock Exchange today. The general index dropped to -0.58% at 2.391,34 points, while the volume of transactions was at 84.5 million Euro or 28.8 billion drachmas.
Of the stocks trading today, 82 recorded gains and 242 had losses, while 53 remained unchanged.
 THE GROWTH AND COMPETITIVENESS OF THE GREEK ECONOMY ARE THE PRIORITIESAthens, 24 October 2001 (17:04 UTC+2)
An emotional handing over ceremony was held in the Ministry of National Economy and Finance. Former Minister of National Economy Yiannos Papantoniou referred to the problems that existed on the way to fiscal reform and handed over the ministry to Mr. Nikos Christodoulakis, stressing that he is a guarantee that his policy will be continued.
Mr. Christodoulakis referred to the great role Mr. Papantoniou played in the course of the Greek economy and especially, in Greece's EMU membership. He said that a special emphasis will be given to the growth and competitiveness of the Greek economy, the promotion and smooth operation of money markets and the social security issue.
 STATEMENTS BY THE OUTGOING AND THE NEW MINISTERSAthens, 24 October 2001 (16:22 UTC+2)
Former Minister of Defense Akis Tsochatzopoulos stated, while taking over the Ministry of Development from his predecessor Nikos Christodoulakis, that in his long government presence he was never in an economic ministry. He stressed that the efforts that will be made will be characterized by a sense of cooperation, while an emphasis will be given to the better approach of the market people and the representatives of production sectors.
Ms. Vaso Papandreou referred to her work in the Ministry of Interior, while handing over the post to her successor Kostas Skandalidis. She pointed out that many reforms have been made in the area of public administration which is a sector that has to be in a constant reform.
Taking over, Mr. Skandalidis stated that he is very pleased and moved to return to the Ministry of Interior after 7 years, stressing that reforms in the sector of local administration should continue.
In a very emotional atmosphere and with tears in his eyes, Dimitris Reppas handed over the Ministry of Press and Mass Media to Christos Protopappas. Mr. Reppas thanked for their cooperation the journalists assigned to the press room characterizing it as a "workshop of democracy".
Mr. Protopappas stated that he takes over a very big responsibility and pledged that he will live up to this responsibility with the help of the journalists. Referring to Mr. Reppas he stated that he is his model and pointed out that he has won the love of the political world.
Kostas Laliotis, who is the new PASOK Central Committee secretary, handed over the Ministry of Environment, Public Works and Land Planning to his successor Vaso Papandreou after being for 8 years in that post and expressed the belief that Ms. Papandreou will continue the work done in the best possible way. From her side, she stated that she is very moved by the fact that she replaces Mr. Laliotis with whom she shares a common political course of 27 years.
Undersecretary of Foreign Affairs Yiannis Magriotis, responsible for Greeks living abroad, in statements he made to MPA on the occasion of his new duties stressed that he is very pleased and satisfied with the fact that he returns to familiar and friendly surroundings. He said that in an era characterized by globalization and the international crisis, the Greek communities abroad have a very important role to play.
 WINTER TIME RETURNS ON SUNDAYAthens, 24 October 2001 (16:18 UTC+2)
Winter time returns in Greece in the early morning hours of Sunday, October 28.
The clocks will turn backwards one hour at 4am on Sunday to show 3am.
 FOURTEEN MINISTERS AND UNDERSECRETARIES FROM N. GREECEAthens, 24 October 2001 (16:14 UTC+2)
Governing socialist party of PASOK officials from northern Greece have expressed satisfaction over the fact that the specific part of the country is represented in the new 48-member government by 14 ministers and undersecretaries, the largest ever representation of the region in a Greek government.
Two ministers Akis Tsochatzopoulos (Minister of Development) and Evangelos Venizelos (Culture Minister) and three undersecretaries (Yiannis Magriotis, Nikos Gesoulis, Spiros Vougias) come from Thessaloniki.
Minister of Public Order Michalis Chrisochoidis is from the prefecture of Imathia, Justice Minister Philippos Petsalnikos from the prefecture of Kastoria, Minister of Macedonia-Thrace Giorgos Paschalidis from Pella, undersecretary of Labor Lefteris Tziolas from Grevena, undersecretary of National Defense Lazaros Lotidis from Kozani, undersecretary of Economy Christos Pachtas from Chalkidiki, undersecretary of economy Apostolos Fotiadis from Evros, undersecretary of Economy Gioros Floridis from Kilkis and undersecretary of Environment, Public Works and Land Planning Yiannis Tsaklidis is from Kavala.
 PROPOSAL FOR FOREIGN POLICY COUNCILAthens, 24 October 2001 (14:28 UTC+2)
Minister of Foreign Affairs Giorgos Papandreou rejected New Democracy's proposal for the formation of a Foreign Policy Council, but made a commitment to submit its proposal to the government by the beginning of 2002, and through discussion and careful consideration, will incorporate all positive proposals of all parties.
Mr. Papandreou stated that he agrees with the essence of New Democracy's proposal, but not with each separate issue. In order to avoid confusion through some unclear factors, the proposal was rejected.
 MINISTRY OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS DELEGATION IN BELGRADEAthens, 24 October 2001 (14:14 UTC+2)
A delegation of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs began a two-day visit today in Belgrade. The object of the visit is to discuss developments in the Balkan region.
The Greek delegation, in which participants include Director of Balkan Affairs Alexandros Mallias, will be received by the Yugoslavian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Goran Svilanovic.
 SUSPICIOUS LETTER ADDRESSED TO THE GREEK CONSULATE IN GHIROKASTRETirana, 24 October 2001 (16:16 UTC+2)
A suspicious letter was traced in the office of Greek consul general Yiannis Pediotis in Ghirokastre, according to the Albanian newspaper "Dita".
Police removed the letter and already lab tests are being made to determine what was the suspicious powder found in the envelope.
According to the newspaper, a similar letter was found in the villa of a US diplomat in Tirana but lab tests proved that the powder in it was just flour.