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Macedonian Press Agency: News in English, 03-11-17
From: The Macedonian Press Agency at http://www.mpa.gr and http://www.hri.org/MPA.
 POLYTECHNIC SCHOOL, A GENERATION LATERAthens, 17 November 2003 (13:43 UTC+2)
The traditional march to the US Embassy will complete the celebrations of the 30th anniversary since the Polytechnic School uprising against the military junta. There were minor incidents yesterday when a group of students attacked representatives of ND Youth, who were placing a wreath in memory of the fighters of 1973. However the students in the security teams intervened and forced the trouble makers out of the courtyard. Special security measures have been taken in order to avoid incidents during the marches.
 OUTSIDE PASOKAthens, 17 November 2003 (13:43 UTC+2)
A statement of independence from PASOK is being submitted to Parliament by Thessaloniki MP and former Minister Stelios Papathemelis, who stated that he disagreed with party policy. The development was characterized as unavoidable by Government Spokesperson Christos Protopapas. Minister of the Merchant Marine Giorgos Paschalidis called the Prime Minister to ask all PASOK MPs to state if they wish to be candidates in the next elections.
 COMMISSION CORRECTS FORECASTS FOR GRECEAthens, 17 November 2003 (13:44 UTC+2)
Sorry, our mistake, said senior employees of the European Commission, who met in Athens last week to go over fiscal data. According to information in the Imerisia newspaper, a high level European Commission delegation looked over all fiscal data.
As stressed by sources in the government's financial staff, the Commission officials noted mistakes in the autumn report of the service in the fiscal deficit sector and the intend to move to the correction of the goal for 2004 to 2% of the GDP from the 2.4% initially announced.
The mistake was located in the proceeds sector, which were indicated as decreased by 1.8% of the GDP in the forecasts of the spring report. This development had been foreseen by Minister of Finanace Nikos Christodoulakis in his statements to the Financial Times, where the Commission mistake had been discovered, both in overestimating proceeds as well as in overestimating expenses.
It should be noted that the new forecast has some distance from those of the Greek government as well as those of other international organizations: In the OECD's annual report on member-states, which is expected to be published on November 27, will raise the deficit for 2004 to 1.5% of the GDP, while in its September report the IMF estimated that it would be around 1.1%. The Greek government's estimate, which will be included in the budget, was about the same, setting the goal for the deficit to be around 1.2%.
 GIOTOPOULOS DENIES CONNECTION TO 17NAthens, 17 November 2003 (14:27 UTC+2)
An organization of revolutionary subversion and an armed mechanism of intervention were the characterizations given to 17 November by Alexandros Giotopoulos' second defense attorney, Giannis Rachiotis, in his statements to the court during today's proceedings.
Mr. Rachiotis supported that the organization was fighting against capital and the Americans. These people knew that the road ahead of them led to either victory, prison or death, he said characteristically.
The activity of 17N was within limits accepted by Greek society. There was no bloodbath. The Greek people cannot feel that 17N's victims are part of it. People did not feel they had lost something of their own, supported Mr. Rachiotis.
As far as Alexandros Giotopoulos is concerned, he stressed that he was in no way connected to the terrorist organization and that he was led to the bench unfairly. He also called the court not to take into account any of Savvas Xeros' testimonies during his stay at the Evaggelismos hospital, as they were carried out illegally.
 ND CONDEMNS THE VIOLENT INCIDENTS IN CHEIMARRA, ALBANIAAthens, 17 November 2003 (20:21 UTC+2)
New Democracy watches closely and with strong skepticism the procedure of the repeat municipal elections in Cheimarra, Albania, stated right-wing main opposition party of New Democracy spokesman Thodoris Rousopoulos condemning the extreme and violent behavior against citizens and candidates.
Any attempt to oppress the democratic beliefs targets the essence of Democracy. These are attitudes and behaviors totally strange to the European democratic principles and procedures, stated Mr. Rousopoulos.
New Democracy is certain that international observers have recorded the phenomena and that the European Commission will reach the necessary conclusions. Mr. Rousopoulos called on the government to take the necessary actions and condemn the unacceptable incidents in Cheimarra.
 INCIDENTS AND TENSION IN THE POLYTECHNIC SCHOOL UPRISING ANNIVERSARY MARCHThessaloniki, 17 November 2003 (19:38 UTC+2)
The march on the occasion of the 30th anniversary of the Polytechnic School uprising in Athens was held without serious incidents in Thessaloniki and according to police estimates, a total of 5,000 protesters participated in the march that passed outside the US embassy.
Limited incidents were recorded in the march that was held in Athens. Police forces were attacked by a group of young stone-throwing protesters and used teargas to break up the demonstrators.
It is estimated that the march was one of the largest recorded in the past few years. The slogans dominating were in favor of peace and against the war in Iraq.
A total of 7,000 police officers, among them special police forces, guard embassy buildings, ministry buildings and banks, while police helicopters patrol the region.
 THE CYPRIOT PRESIDENT WILL VISIT ATHENS NEXT WEEKAthens, 17 November 2003 (18:39 UTC+2)
Cypriot Republic President Tassos Papadopoulos will be on a formal visit to Athens on November 25-26 at the invitation of Greek President Kostis Stephanopoulos.
Cypriot government spokesman Kypros Chrisostomidis stated that the Cypriot President and the delegation accompanying him will depart from Cyprus on November 25 and will return on November 27.
The formal reception by President Stephanopoulos will take place at the Presidential Building on the day of his arrival in the Greek capital followed by several meetings.
A formal dinner will be given in his honor later in the evening by the Greek President.
On November 26, the Cypriot President will meet with Prime Minister Kostas Simitis.
 KREMASTINOS WILL NOT BE A PASOK CANDIDATE IN THE NEXT ELECTIONSAthens, 17 November 2003 (18:21 UTC+2)
Governing Socialist Party of PASOK Parliament deputy Dimitris Kremastinos reiterated with a new letter addressed to the Prime Minister his decision not to be a candidate with PASOK in the next parliamentary elections.
The former Health Minister will become Cardiology Clinic Director at Attikon Hospital.
Mr. Kremastinos had revealed his intentions with another letter on September 26.
 LOSSES IN THE ASEAthens, 17 November 2003 (17:54 UTC+2)
Losses were recorded in the Athens Stock Exchange today. The general index dropped to -1.43% at 2.132,57 points, while the volume of transactions was small at 93.5 million euros.
Of the stocks trading today, only 30 had gains and the overwhelming majority of 302 had losses, while the value of 57 stocks remained unchanged.
 PAPANDREOU ON THE ELECTIONS IN CHEIMARRAAthens, 17 November 2003 (17:15 UTC+2)
The behavior of the Nano government and the Albanian authorities creates skepticism regarding their real targets and proves that there is significant shortage in democratic standards in a country that wishes to approach the European Union.
Greek Foreign Minister Giorgos Papandreou made the comments on the occasion of the serious incidents that were recorded in the repeat municipal elections in Cheimarra yesterday. The statements were made within the framework of the discussion in the Ministers Council in Brussels on the issue of Western Balkans.
Mr. Papandreou's statement has as follows:
Yesterday in Albania took place the repetition of municipal elections in certain areas, among them the Cheimarra region, in which there is a massive population of Greek origin.
During the first round, as well as yesterday, serious problems took place during the elections that have been registered by the OSCE delegation and by American observers. The governments' behaviour and the behaviour of the Albanian authorities creates scepticism regarding the real targets and proves that there is an important shortage in democratic standards in a country that wishes to approach the European Union. The European Committee that is heading the negotiation for the Stability and Connection Agreement with Albania should register the events and should be rigorous during the evaluation. The Italian Presidency as well as the General Secretary of the Council Mr. Solana should send a clear message to the Albanian side.
The European Union and Greece remain consistent regarding their policies to support the European prospect for Albania, however this policy is based on principles, criteria and requirements that need to be respected by Albania.
 PROTOPAPAS: STELIOS PAPATHEMELIS SHOULD RESIGN FROM PARLIAMENTAthens, 17 November 2003 (16:51 UTC+2)
Ethics in politics demand that Mr. Stelios Papathemelis resign from his Parliament seat as well, stated Greek government spokesman Christos Protopapas.
He pointed out that the decision of Mr. Papathemelis to breakaway from PASOK is his unquestionable right. However, he reminded that he was elected Parliament deputy with the governing Socialist Party of PASOK, and with Kostas Simitis as party leader and prime minister. Therefore, it is imperative for him to resign from his Parliament seat, added Mr. Protopapas.
 THESSALONIKI'S JEWISH COMMUNITY ON THE TERRORIST ATTACKS TARGETING ISTANBUL SYNAGOGUESThessaloniki, 17 November 2003 (16:01 UTC+2)
The Jewish Community of Thessaloniki characterized as terrorist acts hurting the Jews all over the world the attacks on the Istanbul synagogues of Neve Shalom and Beth Israel that took place when several Jews had gathered there for their Saturday prayer.
In a statement it has issued, the Jewish Community of Thessaloniki expressed its deepest regret for the heinous attacks. It points out that the Greek Jews are an integral part of the Greek people and feel proud because the government of their country and Archbishop Christodoulos categorically condemned this double terrorist act affecting the Jews around the world. They also expressed the wish that the same condemnation will be expressed every time anti-Jewish publications, statements, television shows or books appear and every time Jewish monuments are being desecrated. They add that such acts cultivate the climate that breeds terrorist acts which hurt innocent people and destroy places of worship.
 THE ECUMENICAL PATRIARCH AND THE ARMENIAN PATRIARCH VISITED THE CHIEF RABBI IN TURKEYAnkara, 17 November 2003 (16:20 UTC+2)
Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew and Armenian Patriarch Mesrob II visited Turkey's Chief Rabbi Ishak Haleva to extend their condolences to him for the victims of last Saturday's terrorist attacks on two synagogues in Istanbul.
According to the Turkish news agency Anadolu, the Ecumenical Patriarch expressed grief for the victims, both Muslims and Jews. The Ecumenical Patriarch stated that the whole Turkey is in pain, adding that it was an assault on peace and the unity of Turkey.
The Armenian Patriarch in Turkey stressed that the attack raises the likelihood that certain parties wanted to deal a heavy blow on the infrastructure, culture and progress of Turkey.