|Saturday, 25 January 2020|
Macedonian Press Agency: News in English, 03-10-06
From: The Macedonian Press Agency at http://www.mpa.gr and http://www.hri.org/MPA.
 2004 BUDGETAthens, 6 October 2003 (11:34 UTC+2)
The new budget approved by the Cabinet will be submitted to Parliament today. Minister of Finance Nikos Christodoulakis stressed that the aim is a growth rate of 4.2% and a drop of unemployment to 8%. The plan includes the government's social package of 1.7 billion euro, while raises and expenses are foreseen for the Ministries of Health, Education, the Interior and the Aegean.
 78% OF GREEKS CONSIDERS 17N GUILTYAthens, 6 October 2003 (11:34 UTC+2)
The 19 suspected members of the 17 November terrorist organizations are considered guilty by 78% of Greeks, according to a VPRC poll, carried out on 1193 people over the age of 18, from September 10 to September 24, published today in the Imerisia. On the contrary only 2.3% believes that they are innocent, however 19.7% is reserved in answering.
Specifically on Alexandros Giotopoulos (the organization's alleged leader), 44% believes that he is probably the leader of 17N, while 17.9% believes that he is not. However, 36.5% is reserved in answering the specific question, while only 1.6% believed that the organization had no leader.
Regarding the crimes of the organizations, 33.3% believed that they are probably political, while 46.5% believe that they are penal; 20.2% did not answer the specific question.
However, a large portion of public opinion, 65%, is not interested in the trial of the 17N organization, in contrast to 31.7% that is interested in it. Regarding the trial continuing in the women's ward of the Corydallos Penitentiary, which expected to be completed in the first ten days of November, 55.5% believed that the trial was fair, in contrast to 22.9% which believes that it was probably not.
 DEVELOPMENTAL LAW PRESENTEDAthens, 6 October 2003 (13:09 UTC+2)
The provisions of the new developmental law will be put into effect on January 1, 2004. The law is expected to be submitted to Parliament by Minister of Finance Nikos Christodoulakis within the week, while it foresees strong motivations for major investments, as well as the promotion of the new system of tax audits.
 DRYS IN SEARCH OF A SOLUTIONAthens, 6 October 2003 (11:34 UTC+2)
A meeting with public agriculturalists and veterinarians, who are in their 4th week of mobilizations, has been scheduled by Minister of Agriculture Giorgos Drys, in an effort to deal with the problem that has been presented to the market. The agriculturalists and veterinarians are continuing their strikes, with the support of the Civil Servants' Union, despite the fact that the strike has been declared illegal and excessive by the Athens Court of First Instance.
 THE GREEK FOREIGN MINISTRY SPOKESMAN ON THE SITUATION IN THE MIDDLE EASTAthens, 6 October 2003 (20:29 UTC+2)
Greek Foreign Ministry spokesman Panos Beglitis expressed the Greek government's concern for the escalation of tension in the Middle East after the bloody suicide attack in Haifa and the Israeli air raid on Syria.
The Greek government and the Foreign Ministry watch with great concern the dangerous escalation of violence and tension in the Middle East after the recent terrorist attack in Haifa that resulted to the deaths of innocent Israeli citizens, among them children, and the Israeli Air Force attack on Syria, he said characteristically.
He condemned both the terrorist attack in Haifa and the Israeli air raid on Syria and reiterated the need for the implementation of the road map for peace in the region.
 THE ATHENS JOURNALISTS CONDEMN THE PERSECUTION OF TURKISH CYPRIOT COLLEAGUESAthens, 6 October 2003 (20:14 UTC+2)
The Athens Daily Newspaper Journalists' Association condemns the escalation of persecution directed against journalists Sener Levent and Ali Osman of the Turkish Cypriot opposition newspaper Afrika on behalf of the occupation regime in northern Cyprus.
The Athens journalists condemn the persecution of their Turkish Cypriot colleagues, which is accompanied by open threats against their lives.
 THE MAYOR OF FLORINA MET WITH ROMANIA'S CONSUL GENERAL TO THESSALONIKIFlorina, 6 October 2003 (18:45 UTC+2)
Mayor of Florina, northwestern Greece, Stefanos Papanastasiou met with Romania's Consul General to Thessaloniki, Silviu Ionescu, who made a ceremonial visit to the city of Florina.
During the meeting, they discussed the prospects for the twinning of the city of Florina with the city of Tirkoviste, while they also, discussed ideas for the further development of the economic, tourist and cultural cooperation, as well as joint initiatives.
The two men also exchanged views on bilateral state relations, and on Florina's special role in the wider Balkan region and southeastern Europe.
 PAPANTONIOU WILL VISIT THE UNITED STATESAthens, 6 October 2003 (18:19 UTC+2)
Greek Minister of Defense Yiannos Papantoniou departs today for the United States to attend the NATO Defense Ministers' Summit meeting, which will take place in Colorado on October 8-9.
On Tuesday, October 7, Mr. Papantoniou will visit Washington where he will meet with US Assistant Secretary of State Mark Grossman.
On the same day, Mr. Papantoniou will be the main speaker in the 2nd Annual Conference on Greek-US Relations addressing issues of foreign policy and defense, the Athens Olympic Games preparations, the investment opportunities offered in Greece and the security environment. Later in the afternoon, he will meet with Greek-American Senator Paul Sarbanis and then he will leave for Colorado.
The NATO Summit agenda includes watching the Dynamic Response 07 military exercise, attending a working lunch of the NATO Defense Ministers with the NATO Secretary-General on Wednesday and with the Russian Defense Minister on Thursday.
Mr. Papantoniou will give a press conference in New York on Saturday, October 11.
 PROTOPAPAS ON THE ARREST OF GREEK FISHERMEN BY THE TURKSAthens, 6 October 2003 (17:58 UTC+2)
The responsible agencies of the Greek Foreign Ministry have mobilized for the release of two Greek fishermen arrested by the Turks and results are expected soon, stated Greek government spokesman Christos Protopapas commenting on the arrest of two Greek fishermen in the region of Soufli, in the prefecture of Evros northeastern Greece.
The two Greek fishermen were arrested by the Turks accused of entering the Turkish territorial waters while fishing in Evros River. The ordeal for Pluton Magdalinidis and his 15yearold son, Yiannis, began at dawn when they went fishing at Evros River in the region of Soufli.
Based on the available information, the two entered the Turkish territorial waters when they got lost and were arrested by the Turks. Their release is expected within the next few hours.
 SIMITIS MEETS WITH PASOK PARLIAMENTARY GROUP PRESIDENCYAthens, 6 October 2003 (17:38 UTC+2)
The government cannot accept the financial demands of the various social groups, said Prime Minister Costas Simitis, commenting on the wave of strikes taking place.
In the meeting he had with the Presidency of PASOK's Parliamentary Group, drawing on the commencing of a new period for the Parliament's Plenary Session, Mr. Simitis expressed his satisfaction on the course of the economy and the growth rate. He stressed that the budget will be voted on and repeated that parliamentary elections will be held in Spring 2004.
The Prime Minister also discussed the problems MPs are concerned with, with the Presidency.
 GAINS IN THE ASEAthens, 6 October 2003 (17:13 UTC+2)
Gains were recorded in the Athens Stock Exchange today. The general index rose to +1.94% at 2.130,54 points, while the volume of transactions was at 156.2 million euros.
Of the stocks trading today, the overwhelming majority of 307 recorded gains and 32 had losses, while the value of 45 remained unchanged.
 PASSARIS REQUESTED HIS TRANSFER TO GREECEBucharest, 6 October 2003 (17:00 UTC+2)
Notorious Greek criminal Kostas Passaris, who has been sentenced twice to life imprisonment by a court in Bucharest, Romania for a double murder and robbery, requested to be transferred temporarily to Greece according to Romanian Justice Ministry sources.
According to Romania's penal laws, the transfer of an inmate to another country can last for a small period of time. For example, until the Greek authorities complete the investigation on crimes committed in Greece in which Passaris was allegedly involved.
After the investigation is completed, the Greek authorities will have to escort Passaris back to Romania to serve his sentence.