|Saturday, 19 October 2019|
Macedonian Press Agency: News in English, 05-04-15
From: The Macedonian Press Agency at http://www.mpa.gr and http://www.hri.org/MPA.
 PRISON SENTENCE OF 18 YEARS TO A NEWSPAPER PUBLISHERAthens, 15 April 2005 (13:46 UTC+2)
An Athens court imposed a prison sentence of 18 years to newspaper Eleftheri Ora publisher Grigoris Michalopoulos who was tried for attempted blackmail of businessmen Thodoros Angelopoulos and Yiannis Latsis using the threat of an alleged attack against them by terrorist group 17 November while he was also accused of forgery.
Grigoris Michalopoulos was found innocent of the charges concerning Glifada Mayor Grigoris Kasidokostas, businessman Argiris Saliarelis and Metropolitan Bishop Chrisostomos of Zakynthos. The prosecutor had asked for a guilty verdict on all charges.
 EUROPEAN CONSTITUTION DEBATE IN PARLIAMENTAthens, 15 April 2005 (13:31 UTC+2)
The debate in Parliament on the ratification of the European Constitution Treaty is being completed today with the speeches of Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis and the leaders of the opposition political parties represented in Parliament.
A total of 120 parliament deputies coming from the opposition parties of PASOK, the Communist Party and Coalition are expected to present a proposal calling for a referendum. The ruling party of New Democracy and main opposition party of PASOK are in favor of the European Constitution Treaty while the Communist Party and Coalition are against.
A vote for the ratification of the European Constitution will take place in Parliament on Tuesday. A total of 151 votes are necessary for the European Constitution to be ratified.
 THE CYPRIOT PRESIDENT IS READY FOR NEGOTIATIONSNicosia, 15 April 2005 (13:18 UTC+2)
Cypriot Republic President Tassos Papadopoulos stated yesterday that he is ready for a new well-prepared round of negotiations for the solution of the Cyprus problem, while Mehmet Ali Talat is expected to be elected to the leadership of the Turkish Cypriots on Sunday with a wide majority.
Mr. Papadopoulos also stated that many countries help in the efforts for the opening of a new round of talks.
Turkish Prime Minister adviser on foreign policy issues and parliament deputy of the ruling party Egemen Bagis expressed the hope that after the elections the UN secretary general will call a new round of talks for the solution of the Cyprus problem based on the Annan Plan.
 KARAMANLIS: THE EUROPEAN CONSTITUTION CONCERNS OUR PRESENT AND FUTUREAthens, 15 April 2005 (18:42 UTC+2)
An appeal to all Parliament deputies to vote in favour of the European Constitution Treaty was issued by Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis speaking in Parliament today in the debate for the ratification of the European Constitution.
Mr. Karamanlis stated, among others, that the Treaty does not satisfy to the fullest all positions, objectives and goals and does not offer direct solutions to all problems Europe is faced with in the great and laborious effort toward its integration but it is an important milestone on the way toward a common European future. He stressed that the decision concerning the ratification of the European Constitution is of a major importance because it deals with the present and future of all Greeks.
Mr. Karamanlis congratulated the leader of the main opposition party of PASOK for being brave enough to mention in his speech the contribution of Konstantinos Karamanlis to Greece's course in Europe.
The Prime Minister also referred to the issue of FYROM and the Greek-Turkish relations. On the Nimetz proposal on FYROM, he said that it does not fully meet Greece's positions while on the occasion of the leaks to the press regarding the proposal he said that an effort was made to create sensation.
On the Greek-Turkish relations, Mr. Karamanlis pointed out that Foreign Minister Petros Molyviatis was prudent and successful when handling the recent incidents with Turkey.
 GREEK SCHOOL TO BE INAUGURATED IN KORCE, ALBANIAThessaloniki, 15 April 2005 (16:24 UTC+2)
Greek Minister of Education Marietta Giannakou and Deputy Foreign Minister Evripidis Stilianidis will attend on April 17 the inauguration of the Greek elementary school Omiros in Korce, Albania and the Computer Science Department in the University of Korce financed by the Greek Foreign Ministry International Development Cooperation Agency.
In statements to MPA, Mr. Stilianidis stressed that the Foreign Ministry gives a special emphasis on education diplomacy, which contributes to the promotion of Greek culture, Greek literature and Greek language.
One of the most important projects that was an old dream for the ethnic Greeks in Albania was the construction and operation of a school in Korce, said Mr. Stilianidis.
The construction of the school was financed by the Greek Foreign Ministry and will operate with the assistance and cooperation of the Ministries of Education of both countries, said Mr. Stilianidis adding that a Computer Science Department will also be inaugurated in the local university.
These two interventions by Hellenic Aid display the important role Greece can play as a donor in the wider Balkan region as well as Greece's sensitivity for neighboring peoples and the ethnic Greek minority in Albania, which can function as a bridge of friendship and cooperation between the two countries, stressed Mr. Stilianidis.
The inauguration will be made in the presence of Archbishop Anastasios of Tirana and All Albania while the foundations of the region's high school building will also be laid.
The Minister of Education and the Deputy Foreign Minister are scheduled to visit the building that used to house the Greek Consulate (the Seferis building), the Korce Cathedral and the Themistoklis Germenis High School.
 GREEK AIRSPACE VIOLATIONS BY TURKISH AIRCRAFTAthens, 15 April 2005 (14:58 UTC+2)
Turkish aircraft committed 13 violations of the Athens FIR air traffic regulations and 21 violations of the Greek national airspace in north and central Aegean.
Turkish aircraft formations flew yesterday morning and afternoon over the islets Kalogeri at an altitude of 500, 1,000 and 14,000 ft.
In addition, 6 formations flew south of the Andros shooting range.
In all instances, the Turkish aircraft were identified and intercepted by Greek fighter jets, while in two cases the interception procedure turned into dogfights. According to information, three Turkish aircraft were armed.
 MOLYVIATIS TO UNDERGO SCHEDULED SURGERYAthens, 15 April 2005 (14:11 UTC+2)
Foreign Minister Petros Molyviatis will be admitted to an Athens hospital today to undergo a blood vessel operation.
The surgery was scheduled and an announcement was made a few days ago with an official statement issued by the Foreign Ministry.
 THE EUROPEAN COMMISSION PRESIDENT TO VISIT THE GREEK PARLIAMENTAthens, 15 April 2005 (14:00 UTC+2)
European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso will visit the Greek Parliament on Monday, April 18.
Mr. Barroso will present the topic on the odyssey of Europe, the quest for reform and Greece's role in a joint meeting of the Permanent Committees of National Defense and Foreign Affairs, Economic Affairs, Production and Trade, and the Special Permanent Committee on European Affairs.
Earlier, Parliament President Mrs. Anna Benaki-Psarouda will have a brief meeting at her office with Mr. Barroso and they will exchange views on the European Constitution and issues of general European interest.
 THOUSANDS OF SIGNATURES OF GREEK-AMERICANS COLLECTED ON THE FYROM NAME ISSUEWashington, 15 April 2005 (17:06 UTC+2)
Thousands of signatures of Greek-Americans expressing concern over the FYROM name issue were delivered by the leaders of the Greek community in the United States to US Assistant Secretary of State Nicholas Burns one of the most important associates of US President George Bush.
In their meeting in Washington on April 12 with the former US ambassador to Athens the leaders of the Greek-American community stressed that the issue in question is a lot more than just a name issue.
The meeting with Mr. Burns followed a recent meeting last November with US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice at which World Council of Hellenes, SAE, President Andrew Athens, Father Alexandros Karloutsos from the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America and Coordinated Effort of Hellenes, CEH, in America President Andy Manatos accompanied Archbishop Demetrios of America.
In this meeting Mr. Manatos mentioned to Secretary Rice an analogy for this issue that was particularly meaningful to her given her background from the Southeast U.S. He noted that just as with the confederate flag issue for Americans, which caused horrendous suffering in the past and if handled wrong now, could encourage extremists and bring more suffering today, so is the Macedonian issue for the Greeks.