|Monday, 27 January 2020|
Macedonian Press Agency: News in English, 06-02-15
From: The Macedonian Press Agency at http://www.mpa.gr and http://www.hri.org/MPA.
 THE NEW GOVERNMENT WAS SWORN INAthens, 15 February 2006 (13:04 UTC+2)
The goals of the government concerning the speeding up of reforms in public administration, economy, education, health and above all the changes in the public utility companies (DEKO) were underlined by Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis speaking in today's first cabinet meeting after yesterday's government reshuffle.
The swearing-in ceremony of the five new government ministers and one deputy minister was held at 10 am today. Also, present in the ceremony were the three ministers and one deputy minister who changed portfolio. After the ceremony, the prime minister received the new ministers.
Commenting on the changes, main opposition Socialist Party PASOK President Giorgos Papandreou stated that the countdown has begun for the government of New Democracy.
According to the Communist Party, the changes in the government were made to become more effective in the materialization of the strategic choices of plutocracy.
Coalition leader Alekos Alavanos stated that it was nothing more than a shuffling of the card deck but unfortunately the cards are marked.
 NEGOTIATION WITHOUT ARBITRATIONAthens, 15 February 2006 (13:21 UTC+2)
Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis stated to the newspaper Fileleftheros that a new, carefully and well-prepared negotiation process without arbitration and pressing timetables should get underway within the framework of the UN aimed at reaching an agreed solution acceptable by all in Cyprus.
A priority will be given to the Cyprus issue and the progress of the Greek-Turkish relations, stated Mrs. Dora Bakoyiannis in the ceremony during which she took over the Ministry of Foreign Affair from outgoing Petros Molyviatis who stressed that the heart of the foreign policy is that we will never allow the falsification of national rights.
A US State Department spokesman stated to ANA-MPA that close cooperation is desired with Mrs. Bakoyiannis like the good cooperation shared with outgoing minister Molyviatis.
 THE SWISS BANK ACCOUNTS OF FORMER JUDGE BOURBOULIA TO OPENAthens, 15 February 2006 (17:55 UTC+2)
The Federal Court of Lausanne rejected the objections raised by former judge Konstantina Bourboulia and gave the green light to the responsible authorities to proceed with the opening of her bank accounts in Switzerland. Mrs. Bourboulia is wanted in Greece accused of involvement in a trial-rigging ring.
The objections raised by Mrs. Bourboulia and her sister Eleana Nova were rejected as being too late while the objections raised by her mother were rejected as unfounded.
Meanwhile, the Paris Court of Appeals postponed again the examination of the Greek Justice Ministry request for Bourboulia's extradition to Greece on the grounds of a medical certificate provided by the prison where she is currently being held according to which she is in ill health and therefore, is unable to attend a court trial.
The French prosecutor stated that she runs a fever and probably she has the flu.
The French judge adjourned the court until next Wednesday, February 22.
The lawyer representing the Greek state commented while leaving the courthouse that Konstantina Bourboulia plays for time.
 BIRD FLU TESTS ON TWO SUSPECT CASES WERE NEGATIVEThessaloniki, 15 February 2006 (15:42 UTC+2)
The two elderly people, who came into contact with dead chickens and are treated in hospitals in the cities of Serres and Edessa, north Greece, with bird flu symptoms, apparently were not infected with the bird flu virus.
Serres Hospital director Antonios Tsitros stated that there is no reason for concern about the health condition of a 65-year-old farmer from Rodopolis who had buried a dead chicken with his bare hands. Mr. Tsitros stated that all test results came out negative and the man is expected to be released from hospital before the end of the day.
Meanwhile, the test results for a 78-year-old woman, who came into contact with a dead chicken and is treated in Edessa Hospital with bird flu symptoms, will be ready tomorrow. Edessa Hospital medical service director Anastasios Koukos speaking to ANA-MPA did not characterize the elderly woman as a suspect bird flu case. He said that initial results are normal and the woman is in a specially equipped room until the next test results are ready.
 PASOK LEADER MEETS WITH THE PRESIDENT OF ISRAELAthens, 15 February 2006 (14:33 UTC+2)
Main opposition Socialist Party PASOK President Giorgos Papandreou met with visiting President of Israel Moshe Katsav and discussed Middle East issues and the initiatives that could be undertaken by PASOK and Socialist International for the purpose of peace.
Mr. Papandreou stated that they discussed the recent elections in Palestine and the election victory of Hamas as well as, the very difficult and sensitive situation in Iran.
Mr. Papandreou also stated that he presented to the Israeli President PASOK's thoughts on the Balkans, Cyprus and the Greek-Turkish relations and stressed the need for the Patriarchate of Jerusalem to be recognized.
 THE PRESIDENTS OF GREECE AND ISRAEL TO VISIT THESSALONIKI TOMORROWThessaloniki, 15 February 2006 (14:21 UTC+2)
Hellenic Republic President Karolos Papoulias and visiting Israeli President Moshe Katsav will be in Thessaloniki tomorrow.
The two presidents will attend a ceremony commemorating the 50,000 Greek Jews from Thessaloniki who perished in the Nazi concentration camps during WWII. The ceremony will be held at the Holocaust Monument in Eleftheria Square and a memorial plaque will be unveiled.
Afterwards, they will visit the Jewish Culture Museum. Minister of Macedonia-Thrace Giorgos Kalantzis will give a formal luncheon in honor of the two state presidents at the Governor's Mansion.
President Papoulias will depart for Athens while President Katsav is scheduled to arrive at the archaeological site of Vergina at 3.45 pm to visit the royal tombs of the Macedon kings and the museum.
Later in the afternoon, the President of Israel will address the Jewish Synagogue where he will be declared honorary member of the Jewish Community of Thessaloniki.
 JOINT DECLARATION FOR PEACE AND PROSPERITYAthens, 15 February 2006 (13:31 UTC+2)
Hellenic Republic President Karolos Papoulias stated addressing the formal dinner in honor of visiting Israeli President Moshe Katsav yesterday that peace and prosperity for all in the Middle East will be able to close an open wound releasing creative forces to build a better future.
We have to consolidate the principles of democracy, uproot racism, xenophobia and anti-Semitism, stressed Mr. Katsav in response, characterizing Greece as an important partner of Israel and an entry gate to the Balkans.
Prime Minister Karamanlis also met with the Israeli President.
 MORE AUSTRALIANS STUDY ANCIENT GREEK HISTORY BECAUSE OF HOLLYWOODMelbourne, 15 February 2006 (14:03 UTC+2)
The number of Australian university students studying ancient Greek History recorded an impressive rise because of Hollywood.
The newspaper The Australian Financial Review dealt with the phenomenon with an article signed by Luke Slattery who mentions that registration to the ancient Greek History course in the University of Sydney recorded a notable increase as the number of students signing up to attend reached 320 this year compared to 230 in 2004.
He writes that the gods are smiling again but this turnabout can be traced back to the popular culture of the film industry and movies like Troy, Alexander the Great and Gladiator. He added that students in the last classes of high school who selected the ancient History class reached 10,300 surpassing the number of students studying contemporary History.
Mr. Slattery also refers to statements made by 33-year-old classicist Alastair Blanshard who is the writer of a book on Hercules. Mr. Blanshard said characteristically that the way we tell stories, what we choose to say and what we keep silent reveals a lot about ourselves. Stories are the way we cling to life, he added.