|Saturday, 18 January 2020|
Macedonian Press Agency: News in English, 01-11-30
From: The Macedonian Press Agency at http://www.mpa.gr and http://www.hri.org/MPA.
 MINISTERS OF EDUCATION MEET IN BRUSSELSBrussels, 30 November 2001 (13:33 UTC+2)
The 15 Ministers of Education of the EU who met in Brussels discussed the progress of the converging of EU member-countries' educational systems and the possibility of instituting common diplomas for European Universities.
Minister of Education Petros Efthymiou referred to the need of instituting common European study programs and diplomas in higher education, while he stressed that institution accreditation holds the danger of discrimination.
"Higher education can only be public good, part of public responsibility, it cannot be a tradable good, it cannot obey the rules we have for trading other goods, he underlined.
The Council decided that 2004 will be declared the European Year of Education through Sports.
 I LIKE KILLING COPS, SAYS INFAMOUS CRIMINALBucharest, 30 November 2001 (13:30 UTC+2)
Kostas Passaris confirmed the profile of the brutal and cold-blooded criminal that the Greek Police had outlined. The 25-year-old criminal appeared cynical and especially provocative, and stated that he enjoyed killing people in uniform.
On his extradition, the Romanian Chief of Police in Bucharest, Michai Georgi, stated that for the time being his extradition is not an issue, since his file has to be investigated first, however he left the issue open.
 AXON AIRLINES STOPPED OPERATIONSAthens, 30 November 2001 (18:43 UTC+2)
Axon Airlines, announced today that it suspends its operation.
In an announcement it has issued, the Greek private airline mentions that it was led to this decision by the international crisis in the sector of air transportation after the September 11 terrorist attack on the United States.
 PROTOPAPAS: GREECE IS NOT A COUNTRY OF OPEN BORDERSAthens, 30 November 2001 (18:13 UTC+2)
Greece is not, and will not become, a country of open borders, stated Greek government spokesman Christos Protopapas responding to a question on the Afghan refugees in the Ionian Sea island of Zakynthos, adding it is being considered to be returned to their country.
Mr. Protopapas stated that certain of them are already in Turkey and until the fate of the rest is decided the state will do everything it can to make their lives easier.
 LOSSES IN THE ASEAthens, 30 November 2001 (17:19 UTC+2)
Losses were recorded in the Athens Stock Exchange today. The general index dropped to -0.17% at 2.694,02 points, while the volume of transactions was at 191 million Euro or 65 billion drachmas.
Of the stocks trading today, 132 recorded gains and 187 had losses, while the value of 46 stocks remained unchanged.
 THE BULGARIAN FOREIGN MINISTER TO MPAAthens, 30 November 2001 (17:13 UTC+2)
Bulgarian Foreign Minister Solomon Passy speaking to MPA, stated that his impressions from his first visit to Athens and the meetings he had with President Kostis Stephanopoulos and Foreign Minister Giorgos Papandreou, are excellent.
He said that he met Mr. Papandreou many years ago and characterized him as an excellent host and a man who knows how to work. He expressed satisfaction for the support offered by Greece to Bulgaria's effort to become a member of the EU and NATO. He also referred to the assistance offered by Greece in the efforts made by Bulgaria to be removed from the list of the Schengen agreement countries, while referring to the support Bulgaria got in the UN Security Council, he stressed that his country will return the gesture by backing Greece's candidature in the UN Security Council in 2003.
On the Burgas-Alexandroupolis oil pipeline, Mr. Passy expressed the strong interest of the Bulgarian government saying that the plan is of strategic importance and each one of the three countries namely, Bulgaria, Russia and Greece, must participate on equal terms and in a satisfactory way.
Referring to the situation in FYROM, he stressed that Bulgaria, like Greece, wants the country's prosperity and territorial integrity. He also said that Bulgaria backs the inviolability of the borders in the Balkans.
 MR. PASCHALIDIS MET WITH THE BRITISH AMBASSADOR TO ATHENSThessaloniki, 30 November 2001 (17:07 UTC+2)
Minister of Macedonia-Thrace Giorgos Paschalidis met in Thessaloniki today with the British ambassador to Athens and discussed the cooperation between Thessaloniki and London and other cities as well, on city organizing issues.
Mr. Paschalidis was invited to visit England and Scotland to study the country's administrative structure and London's metropolitan organization.
On the war in Afghanistan, they agreed that the shifting of interest eastwards as a result of the Afghan war should not limit the EU interest in the Balkans.
 INTRAKOM-INTRASOFT MERGERAthens, 30 November 2001 (16:58 UTC+2)
A colossus with estimated annual profits of 50 billion drachmas and a strong presence in the countries of southeastern and central Europe, the Middle East and north Africa is being created with the merger of computer and telecommunications companies Intrakom and Intrasoft.
Speaking in the general assembly of the two companies' stockholders the group's president Socratis Kokkalis stated that there are mergers with a positive effect and others that are being made for stock market purposes, stressing that operational benefits are also necessary.
Mr. Kokkalis speaking about Greece's accession into the EMU stated that there are many advantages for the Greek companies and many disadvantages as well, because they will have to be compared with their rivals in the rest EU member-states.
Referring to the likelihood of a cooperation or partnership with the Greek Telecommunications Company, OTE, or another telecommunications industry, Mr. Kokkalis pointed out that such a move would make Greece's presence even stronger, adding that it is an issue that should be considered by both the government and the opposition.
 GREECE HAS THE MOST NEW AIDS CASES IN EUROPEThessaloniki, 30 November 2001 (16:46 UTC+2)
The highest percentage of new AIDS cases in Europe is recorded in Greece, while in the early 1990s it had the lowest, according to the Doctors of the World on the occasion of tomorrow's World Day on AIDS.
Over 20 million people, 3/4 of whom are Africans, have died from AIDS since 1980, while the people testing positive with AIDS in 2001 reached 36 million. In 16 countries, over 10% of their population, between the ages 15-49, suffers from AIDS, while in 7 north African states one in five adults is infected with the deadly HIV virus. An estimated 70% of the adults and 80% of the children living with HIV are in Africa, home to 10% of the world population, while the high prices of the drugs necessary for the treatment of AIDS make them inaccessible to the countries that need them most.
The Doctors of the Word stress the necessity to create and expand initiatives such as, limiting the damage caused by the use of intravenous medicines and allowing underdeveloped countries to produce low-cost anti-AIDS medicine.
 MEETING FOR G. FERHOFSTADT VISITAthens, 30 November 2001 (13:33 UTC+2)
Prime Minister Kostas Simitis is presiding over a preparatory meeting in view of the visit of European Council's President and Belgian Prime Minister, Guy Ferhofstadt, to Athens on Saturday, and the Meeting of the regular European Council at Laeken, Brussels, on December 14-15.
Minister of Foreign Affairs, Giorgos Papandreou, alternate Minister of Foreign Affairs Tassos Giannitsis, Professor Panagiotis Ioakimidis, Secretary General of European Affairs Ilias Plaskovitis, and others, participated in the 2-hour meeting.
 SIMITIS IN SLOVENIAAthens, 30 November 2001 (13:32 UTC+2)
Prime Minister Kostas Simitis is paying a one day visit to Slovenia, where he will meet with the President and the Prime Minister of the country.
Mr. Simitis left from the Eleftherios Venizelos airport in Spata for Lubliana, and is accompanied by alternate Minister of Foreign Affairs Tassos Gianitsis and deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Giannis Zafiropoulos.
The reason of the visit is to sign bilateral agreements of cooperation between Greece and Slovenia in the sectors of agriculture and air transports.
 ANTIWAR RALLY AT ATHENS "PROPYLEA"Athens, 30 November 2001 (13:32 UTC+2)
A protest gathering at the Propylea and march to the US Embassy has been organized for tonight at 7pm, by the Genoa Initiative 2001, in order to express their opposition to the bombing of Afghanistan. Manolis Glezos will be the speaker at the event.
 SIMITIS: GREECE WILL DO EVERYTHING POSSIBLE FOR CYPRUS TO BECOME AN EU MEMBERLjubljana, 30 November 2001 (17:41 UTC+2)
Greece will use every means provided by the European Union treaties to achieve Cyprus' EU accession, stressed Greek Prime Minister Kostas Simitis in statements he made today during his visit to Ljubljana where he met with his Slovenian counterpart Jassen Drovsek.
Mr. Simitis expressed optimism that Cyprus' EU accession will proceed smoothly and stressed that it is a mistake to believe that the Cyprus issue can cause problems to the EU accession course of the rest candidate states. He also stated that no one can stop the EU enlargement because of Cyprus and if Cyprus is presented as a problem it is obvious that it will be just an excuse.
The two Prime Ministers stated that there is room for the further improvement of the already good bilateral relations in the sectors of the economy, technology and trade. Mr. Simitis also met with the President of Slovenia.
Mr. Simitis reiterated Greece's support to the efforts made by the country in order to become a member of the Euro-Atlantic structures.
He also stated that Greece will hold the EU rotating presidency in the first half of 2003 and expressed the hope that it will be the one to close the negotiation procedures. He also said that pending issues, like the common policy on agriculture, and the structural funds can be settled in a spirit of cooperation.
It should be noted that the delegations of Greece and Slovenia signed agreements of cooperation in the sectors of economy, technology, trade, agriculture and air transportation.
 GREEK POLICE NOT OF MUCH HELPBucharest, 30 November 2001 (13:29 UTC+2)
According to Bucharest Chief of Police, Michai Goergi, the Greek Police Officers who were in Romania to investigate Passaris, found out about him after the Romanian Police arrested him, while during the police operation to capture him in Bucharest, the Greek Officers were investigating the same crime in the Galats region, about 300 miles from the Romanian capital.