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Athens News Agency: Daily News Bulletin in English, 12-01-25

Athens News Agency: Daily News Bulletin in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Athens News Agency at <>

Wednesday, 25 January 2012 Issue No: 3980


  • [01] PSI talks enter final stage, FinMin says
  • [02] FinMin Venizelos holds two-hour meeting with troika heads
  • [03] PM Papademos on PSI negotiations
  • [04] Greek political parties must commit to terms of bailout deal, Rehn underlines
  • [05] ND leader Samaras insisting on elections on April 8
  • [06] ND party leader Samaras on three-day official visit to Russia
  • [07] SYRIZA head accuses, refers to troika 'insult'
  • [08] Development minister: 'I didn't read Memorandum...I was too busy fighting crime'
  • [09] Justice minister asks Supreme Court to consider 'replacement' of financial prosecutors
  • [10] Minister's request for replacement of prosecutors intervention in justice, ND says
  • [11] SEV proposals in view of social partners' meeting on Wednesday
  • [12] Greek 2011 state budget deficit down, yr/yr
  • [13] Former customers of 2 private power distributors to return to PPC
  • [14] Stocks ended 5.48% down
  • [15] Greek bond market closing report
  • [16] ADEX closing report
  • [17] Foreign Exchange rates - Wednesday
  • [18] Deputy Culture minister meets Finnish committee on return of Parthenon marbles
  • [19] Two new arrests for debts owed to the state
  • [20] Woman arrested for 1.6 million euro debts to state
  • [21] Shocking evidence on 'new homeless' of Athens
  • [22] Group of illegals rescued off islet in Evros River
  • [23] Nine arrested in raids on companies employing illegal migrants
  • [24] Film director Theodoros Angelopoulos injured in traffic accident
  • [25] Bodies found in Lagada dump identified as missing teens
  • [26] Two arrested in village for metal items theft
  • [27] Rainy on Wednesday
  • [28] The Tuesday edition of Athens' dailies at a glance Politics

  • [01] PSI talks enter final stage, FinMin says

    BRUSSELS (AMNA / M. Aroni)

    Negotiations with the private sector over a Greek bond swap programme (PSI) are entering their final stages, Greek Finance Minister Evangelos Venizelos said here on Tuesday.

    Speaking to reporters after an Ecofin meeting in Brussels, the Greek minister said:

    "We have the approval and the support of the Eurogroup to complete talks with the private sector in the next few days". He noted that the goal was to complete the form of the PSI within the next eight days and a Greek public offer to private creditors to be made by Feb. 13.

    "It will take a few days between completing the talks and the official announcement," Venizelos said.

    Greece, in this effort, has the active participation of the EC-ECB-IMF troika, the EFSE and major European governments, he said, while expressed his confidence that a "mutually beneficial solution" will be found, which would fully fulfill all parameters envisaged in the Oct. 26 decision of the European Council.

    "The main goal was to cut Greece's public debt to around 120 pct of GDP by 2020," he added.

    The troika presented to a Eurogroup meeting on Monday an updated report on the sustainability of Greek debt. The minister stressed it was vital that the country achieve satisfactory economic growth rates over the next eight years and beyond 2020, to break what he called a malicious circle and to change the economic sentiment in Greece. He added, however, that he agreed with the opinion of Eurogroup president Jean-Claude Juncker that continuous revisions were not useful.

    Commenting on the issue of a coupon for he new bonds, Venizelos said it was a crucial parametre, although he noted there were other parametres not related with the need for additional funding (beyond the 130 billion euros). He added that other issues discussed were seeking indirect ways of raising public sector's participation in the PSI programme, in a way that will not add further debt burden to Greece.

    Venizelos said it was very likely to reach an agreement with private bondholders since it would benefit both parties.

    He said that these negotiations were linked with a new support program for Greece -expected to be finalised in the next few days through negotiations with the troika. The Greek minister underlined the significance of speeding-up structural reforms, as envisaged in the troika's latest report, and stressed that political commitments for the new programme were crucial.

    "Now is the time to negotiate, the time of difficult, but historic and significant decisions and it is the time to explain how Greece can become proud again by looking Greek citizens in the eye," Venizelos said, adding that political parties participating in the government would express their consensus to a new programme by agreeing to written commitments.

    [02] FinMin Venizelos holds two-hour meeting with troika heads

    Government Vice President and Finance Minister Evangelos Venizelos had a two-hour meeting with the heads of the troika (EU, IMF, ECB) on Tuesday, immediately after his return from Brussels and the sessions of the Eurogroup and Ecofin Councils.

    According to Finance ministry officials, the entire framework was shaped of the special discussions that must take place and of the isssues that must be clarified for the substantive content of the new loan programme to be completed. In parallel, the actions that will take place in the next few days for the completion of the consultations with the private sector regarding the PSI were discussed, in the framework of the decisions of Monday's Eurogroup session. The same officials said that the meetings will be continued with very intensive rates in the coming days.

    It is noteworthy that the creditors link directly the issue of the "haircut" and the exchange of Greek bonds (PSI) with the new loan contract and, mainly, with the additional measures that will accompany it. In the specific framework, the troika requests persistently the taking of immediate measures (abolition of minimum salary and 13th-14th salary, abolition of maturities, curbing of auxiliary pensions, decrease of the expenditure in the sector of health, further restriction of inelasticity in the labour market, layoffs of employees from the public sector, closure of organisations and agencies, speeding up of privatisations, etc.).

    [03] PM Papademos on PSI negotiations

    Prime Minister Lucas Papademos, speaking to reporters on the sidelines of the reception in honour of the diplomatic corps hosted at the Presidential Mansion on Tuesday evening, expressed optimism over a favourable conclusion of negotiations for the PSI.

    "We shall have a positive conclusion by the end of the week," Papademos said. Asked whether the head of the International Institute of Finance (IIF) Charles Dallara will return to Athens, he said "it will be his last visit, although, the agreement being concluded from a distance cannot be excluded."

    [04] Greek political parties must commit to terms of bailout deal, Rehn underlines

    BRUSSELS (AMNA - V. Demiris)

    Greece's political party leaders must fully commit to the terms of a second bailout package for the country, European Commissioner for monetary affairs Olli Rehn stressed on Tuesday after the ECOFIN Council in Brussels.

    Rehn underlined the need for a "clear and convincing commitment" from the leaders of all the main political parties that they will give broad political support to the second programme, and again stressed that political consensus in Greece was a necessary condition its success.

    He predicted that talks now underway in Athens between Greek authorities and the members of an EU-IMF troika mission on the new loans will last one or two weeks longer.

    Concerning the PSI voluntary bond swaps, Rehn reported that there was "satisfactory progress" in the talks between the Greek government and the country's private creditors and that the two sides were very close to a deal. He added that it would be desirable if this happened within January, preferably, rather than February.

    The Commissioner further clarified that, in the case that there was not all private creditors agreed to participate in the Greek bond swap programme, it would still be possible to activate Collective Action Clauses if a majority of bond holders agreed and consider that the voluntary nature of PSI had been respected.

    [05] ND leader Samaras insisting on elections on April 8

    New Democracy (ND) party leader Antonis Samaras calls for elections on April 8. Samars believes that the process for the "haircut" of the Greek debt will have closed by then and the new loan agreement will also have been signed.

    Speaking in an interview with the Reuters agency Tuesday, he stressed that "there is no time at all to lose" and reiterated his steadfast position that Greece needs a strong government that will take it out of the debt crisis.

    Terming the memorandum as the "wrong medicine for the crisis", the ND president expressed his concern over the fact that Greece is in the fifth year of a deep recession.

    "It is no longer a cyclical recession," he said, adding that "it is a long crisis, that is unprecedented in Greece, as well as Europe. If we do not do something, we shall sink even deeper, we shall not get out."

    He also reiterated his position that the big salary cuts and taxation are intensifying the recession, making the deficit falling below 10 percent of GDP more difficult.

    [06] ND party leader Samaras on three-day official visit to Russia

    New Democracy (ND) party leader Antonis Samaras began a three-day official visit to Russia on Tuesday.

    At 11 on Wednesday morning, the ND leader will be meeting with the Chief of Staff of the Presidential Administration og Russia Sergei Ivanov. At 15:00 he will meet Senate president Valentina Matvienko and at 17:00 he will visit the Church of Christ Saviour.

    At 18:00 on Thursday, Samaras will be having a meeting with Russian Federation Prime Minister Vladimir Putin.

    [07] SYRIZA head accuses, refers to troika 'insult'

    Radical Left Coalition (SYRIZA) Parliamentary group leader Alexis Tsipras on Tuesday again lashed out at the troika (EC-ECB-IMF), stressing that its "persistence in asking for the signatures of the political leaders under the new measures introduced by the new memorandum constitutes an insult to democracy because it is an attempt to predefine the outcome of the next general elections".

    Tsipras said the Greek people will not allow the humiliation of democracy in the place where it was born.

    Commenting on the statement made by Minister Mihalis Chryssohoidis, who said that he had not read the first memorandum, Tsipras referred to "irresponsible people", who have "no right to continue to make serious decisions for the country's future".

    [08] Development minister: 'I didn't read Memorandum...I was too busy fighting crime'

    Replying to criticism of having only lately discovered what he called "shortcomings" of the previous George Papandreou government, in which he had served as a minister throughout its two-year term, current Development Minister Mihalis Chryssohoidis on Tuesday defended his stance by saying he was unaware of the details of a Memorandum signed by Greece with its EC-ECB-IMF creditors.

    "I didn't read the memorandum because I had other obligations, other duties. I was too busy fighting crime as citizen protection minister. It was not my job," Chryssohoidis said in statements to a private Athens television station (SKAI).

    Chryssohoidis said he agrees with a speech given recently by former premier Costas Simitis in Berlin, who said the Memorandum was signed under conditions of panic, brought on by the fear of an imminent and immediate cessation of payments. He also said it was based on assumptions that did not reflect reality, with crushing deadlines and punitive measures by the market.

    "The negotiation was too horizontal, it made the optimistic and simplistic prediction that things would unfold in a certain way but often things do not go the way you want. The repeated (austerity) measures fuelled greater recession, because they reduced liquidity," he said.

    The veteran minister stressed that he would not take back his criticism of PASOK President George Papandreou and said he did not subscribe to views heard at PASOK's national council, namely, that everything had been done in the best possible way and that the country had been saved, even though voters had been disappointed.

    He was, however, critical of a decision last week by the two financial prosecutors to forward their investigation concerning the accuracy of the 2009 public deficit figures, published by the EL.STAT agency, to Parliament, saying that they should not have concerning themselves "with matters that have to do with national issues" and pointing out that they had not concerned themselves with the actions of former New Democracy finance minister George Alogoskoufis in 2004.

    ND reaction

    "The statement by Development Minister Mihalis Chryssohoidis, that he 'did not read the memorandum because he had other things to do' and 'it was not his job to study it', constitutes a display of audacity, irresponsibility and a dangerous attitude. Obviously, he was not the only example," New Democracy (ND) party spokesman Yiannis Mihelakis responded.

    Commenting on the controversial statement made by Chryssohoidis, Mihelakis pointed out that it confirms that "they made defining decisions about the country without first negotiating with the troika and without knowing what they approved in the Cabinet meetings and what they voted in Parliament."

    [09] Justice minister asks Supreme Court to consider 'replacement' of financial prosecutors

    Justice Minister Miltiades Papaioannou on Tuesday sent a document to the Supreme Court that asks the supreme court justices to consider whether financial prosecutors Grigoris Peponis and Spyros Mouzakitis should be replaced.

    The document was sent to the Supreme Judicial Council, while copies were also sent to Supreme Court Prosecutor Ioannis Tentes and the two financial prosecutors' immediate supervisor, Supreme Court Deputy Prosecutor Nikolaos Pantelis.

    In this, Papaioannou stressed the importance of the newly created institution of financial prosecutor for fighting corruption in public and financial life and underlined that the "national effort cannot be weakened by 'grey', vague and unsupported accusations about people and interests that supposedly obstruct efforts to seek out the truth".

    If the members of the Council decide to replace Peponis and Mouzakitis, they should appoint "two new Appeals Court deputy prosecutors with the task to investigate financial crime, who can carry out this important and valuable work with the cool-headedness, independence, responsibility and, of course, reliability demanded," the justice minister underlined.

    Supreme Court President Rena Asimakopoulou will now have to appoint a judge to act as rapporteur for the justice minister's request and set a date when the Supreme Court judicial council will convene to make a decision on the issue. The Supreme Judicial Council retains the right to refuse.

    Questioned about the justice minister's intervention, Mouzakitis noted that this lay "within the duties and rights of the justice minister" and that the matter was now in the hands of the Supreme Judicial Council.

    "I want to continue to serve justice as financial prosecutor. But wherever else I am placed by my service, I will continue to do my duty," he added.

    Asked to comment on Papaioannou's statement that the two financial prosecutors had undermined the prestige of justice through their actions, Mouzakitis denied the accusation:

    "We smite tax-evasion. In the last 2-2.5 months we have examined hundreds of files on tax evaders, given orders for more than 300 arrests throughout Greece and all this without the slightest help. For seven months we have been asking for just one assistant to help us. We continue our work," he emphasised.

    The justice minister's move comes after two weeks of controversy that began when the two financial prosecutors submitted their resignations on December 28, 2011 citing attempts to interfere and obstruct their work.

    In statements at the time, they noted that the finance ministry was bringing an amendment attempting to replace them and stressed that they refused to be prosecutors that were "dictated to" or served as an "alibi" for various organised interests operating in the "grey zones of financial crime".

    The amendment being prepared by the ministry would have effected their removal from the position of financial prosecutor by stipulating that this should be filled by a Supreme Court deputy prosecutor rather than appeals court prosecutors like Peponis and Mouzakitis.

    An investigation into their claims was launched under Supreme Court Deputy Prosecutor and inspector of courts Fotis Makris on December 29 and he very quickly decided that there was no merit to the case after speaking to the two prosecutors and receiving a written note from them on December 30.

    According to Makris, the planned amendment was the sole reason for their decision to resign, which he put down to "impulsiveness and excessive sensitivity".

    His conclusions were challenged later the same day by Mouzakitis, who said the two prosecutors had been given to believe they had five days to present a full memorandum containing their positions, while he called the document they had already given Makris a "rough note".

    Makris then re-opened his investigation, receiving a more detailed memorandum and also hearing other testimony and announced his conclusions on January 19, which were essentially the same as before.

    According to Makris, the three cases of reported intervention by politicians, colleagues and a journalist made by the prosecutors were not serious and did not constitute condemnable or illegal actions, while they had not been taken seriously by the two prosecutors at the time.

    The case took on another twist later the same day, however, when Peponis sent a case concerning his investigation into the 2009 deficit figure published by ELSTAT to his superior with the recommendation that it be forwarded to Parliament for an investigation of possible responsibility by former prime minister George Papandreou and then finance minister George Papaconstantinou.

    [10] Minister's request for replacement of prosecutors intervention in justice, ND says

    Main opposition New Democracy spokesman Yiannis Mihelakis on Tuesday criticised Justice Minister Miltiadis Papaioannou for requesting the removal of financial prosecutors Grigoris Peponis and Spyros Mouzakitis from the prosecution of financial crime, calling his action unprecedented and an intervention in the operation of justice.

    "He is rebuking the judges for implementing what is laid out in the Constitution," he noted.

    According to Mihelakis, this was the second time that Papaioannou "is substantially interfering with the work of justice", while he also noted a similar attempt by Finance Minister Evangelos Venizelos.

    "It seems, after all, that Papaioannou is falling in line with the party directives of Beglitis, Loverdos, Reppas and Diamantopoulou, the insults to justice and the threats against all society," he added.

    Financial News

    [11] SEV proposals in view of social partners' meeting on Wednesday

    The Federation of Hellenic Enterprises (SEV) suggested "freezing" the minimum wage for the duration of the economic crisis, while preserving the so-called 13th and 14th salaries (half-salary Easter and summer vacation bonuses and a full-salary Christmas bonus).

    The proposal was made in view of the social partners' meeting scheduled for Wednesday to discuss labour issues.

    SEV clarified that it will participate in the social dialogue "without setting red lines", underlining that it supports collective wage bargaining.

    The meeting is scheduled to take place at 11:00 a.m. on Wednesday at the offices of the Hellenic Confederation of Professionals Craftsmen and Merchants (GSEVEE).

    [12] Greek 2011 state budget deficit down, yr/yr

    Greece's state budget deficit totaled 21.726 billion euros in 2011, marginally up from a target envisioning a deficit of 21.712 billion euros, finance ministry figures showed on Tuesday.

    The ministry said the budget deficit was 21.457 billion euros in 2010, noting that the figures represented the state budget shortfall and that the total fiscal data for the year, which will be used as the basis for calculating the general government's deficit.

    Specifically, state budget revenues fell short by 910 million euros compared with budget targets, while spending was lower by 896 million euros in the January-December period.

    Net regular budget revenues totaled 49.993 billion euros, down 1.7 pct compared with 2010, reflecting lower receipts from individuals' income taxes. The Public Investment Programme's revenues grew 22.7 pct, or by 698 million euros compared with 2010 and by 405 million euros compared with the budget target.

    Regular budget spending grew 2.9 pct, or 1.949 billion euros, last year, reflecting higher spending on interest (+23.6 pct, or by 3.125 billion euros compared with 2010).

    Primary spending fell 1.2 pct, or by 614 million euros, despite a 12.9-pct increase in spending on social insurance, health and social protection programmes.

    The Public Investment Programme's spending fell 21.8 pct or by 1.846 billion euros last year.

    [13] Former customers of 2 private power distributors to return to PPC

    As of midnight on Tuesday, roughly 200,000 customers of electricity providers Hellas Power S.A. and Energa S.A. will be served by state-owned Public Power Corp S.A. (PPC S.A.) following a decision by DESMIE, the country's electricity transportation system management body.

    DESMIE decided to suspend the contracts with the two companies and write them off the registrar of electricity providers citing overdue debts by Hellas Power S.A. amounting to 44 million euros and by Energa S.A. amounting to 40 million euros. In addition PPC claims other 67 million euros from the two companies.

    In a joint statement DESMIE and the Regulatory Authority of Energy (RAE) clarified that the former customers of the two companies will have three months to select the electricity provider of their choice (PPC or another) and sign a new contract. Until then they will be charged with current PPC rates.

    [14] Stocks ended 5.48% down

    Stocks ended sharply lower in the Athens Stock Exchange on Tuesday as investors took profits after a nine-day rally in the market during which the composite index rose 19 pct and the bank index soared 49.33 pct. The index fell 5.48 pct to end at 703.44 points, while turnover remained a moderate 60.913 million euros.

    The Big Cap index fell 6.50 pct, the Mid Cap index ended 3.21 pct down and the Small Cap index rose 1.09 pct. Viohalco (2.61 pct), Hellenic Petroleum (1.67 pct) were the only blue chip stocks to end higher, while National Bank (13.4 pct), Piraeus Bank (11.25 pct), OTE (10.43 pct) and Eurobank (9.82 pct) were top losers.

    Sector indices ended as follows:

    Industrial products: +0.66%

    Commerce: -2.65%

    Constructions: -3.25 %

    Oil/Gas: +0.23%

    Personal/Home products: -3.00%

    Raw Materials: -4.33%

    Travel: -4.00%

    Technology: -5.61%

    Telecoms: -10.43%

    Banks: -9.45%

    Food/Beverage: -7.81%

    Health: -2.75%

    Utilities : -4.39 %

    Chemicals: +0.19%

    Financial Services: -5.53%

    Broadly, decliners led advancers by 101 to 68 with another 16 issues unchanged. Ilida (29.89 pct), Akritas (29.8 pct) and Kreka (29.67 pct) were top gainers, while Athens Electronic (19.91 pct), Hellenic Fish Farms (19.28 pct) and NEL (17.78 pct) were top losers.

    National Bank, Alpha Bank, Eurobank and Marfin Popular Bank were the most active shares of the day. ASE's capitalization fell to 27.985 billion euros.

    Blue chip stocks ended as follows:

    ALPHA BANK: 0.73

    FOLLI-FOLLIE: 6.89

    VIOHALCO: 3.15

    ELLAKTOR: 1.32

    PPC: 3.38

    COCA COLA: 14.22



    EUROBANK: 0.50

    CYPRUS BANK: 0.56

    JUMBO: 3.53


    MYTILINEOS: 2.92

    MOTOR OIL: 5.51

    OPAP: 7.05

    OTE: 2.92

    PIRAEUS BANK: 0.28

    TITAN: 12.95



    The stocks with the highest turnover were National Bank, Alpha Bank, HBC Coca Cola and OPAP.

    Selected shares from the FTSE/ASE-20 index closed in euros as follows:

    Alpha Bank: 0.73

    Public Power Corp (PPC): 3.38

    HBC Coca Cola: 14.22

    Hellenic Petroleum: 6.10

    National Bank of Greece: 1.81

    EFG Eurobank Ergasias: 0.50

    OPAP: 7.05

    OTE: 2.92

    Bank of Piraeus: 0.28

    Titan: 12.95

    [15] Greek bond market closing report

    The yield spread between the 10-year Greek and German benchmark bonds was 25.76 pct in the domestic electronic secondary bond market on Tuesday, with the Greek bond yielding 27.75 pct and the German Bund 1.99 pct. There was no turnover in the market.

    In interbank markets, interest rates were largely unchanged. The 12-month rate was 1.78 pct, the six-month rate was 1.45 pct, the three-month 1.15 pct and the one-month rate was 0.75 pct.

    [16] ADEX closing report

    The March contract on the FTSE 20 index was trading around its fair value in the Athens Derivatives Exchange on Tuesday, with turnover remaining a low 22.933 million euros. Volume on the Big Cap index totaled 9,913 contracts worth 14.144 million euros, with 23,262 open positions in the market. Volume in futures contracts on equities totaled 54,640 contracts worth 8.789 million euros, with investment interest focusing on National Bank's contracts (28,383), followed by Cyprus Bank (1,495), MIG (751), OTE (591), PPC (900), OPAP (580), Piraeus Bank (1,429), Alpha Bank (17,423), Marfin Popular Bank (817), Mytilineos (491), Hellenic Postbank (264), ATEbank (358) and GEK (254).

    [17] Foreign Exchange rates - Wednesday

    Reference buying rates per euro released by the European Central Bank:

    U.S. dollar 1.319

    Pound sterling 0.847

    Danish kroner 7.546

    Swedish kroner 8.925

    Japanese yen 102.4

    Swiss franc 1.224

    Norwegian kroner 7.753

    Canadian dollar 1.336

    Australian dollar 1.261

    General News

    [18] Deputy Culture minister meets Finnish committee on return of Parthenon marbles

    Deputy Culture and Tourism Minister Petros Alivizatos met with the Finnish committee on the return of the Parthenon marbles, in the framework of his official visit to Helsinki.

    Participating in the meeting were the committee's vice president Mika Kayava - professor of Greek at the Helsinki University, cashier Teodora Oker-Blom, secretary Eero Hemolina - a lawyer and YLE journalist Jari Neimela.

    The members of the Committee reaffirmed during the meeting their intention to support the effort for the return of the Parthenon marbles to Greece, backing the appeal's momentum with initiatives by the Committee, both in Finland, and with interventions directly to the British authorities.

    [19] Two new arrests for debts owed to the state

    A well-known journalist, aged 74, and a 50-year-old company administrator, who is active in publishing activities, were arrested on Tuesday for debts to the state.

    The 74-year-old is charged with failing to pay VAT and fines imposed on him, amounting to 135,989.14 euros, as being a partner in a company dealing with communication issues.

    The 50-year-old was arrested in the Athens suburb of Neo Psychiko, as he was found to owe to the state an amount of 741,796.08 euros.

    In addition, a conviction is pending against him for violation of the law regarding cheques, with a prison sentence of seven months and a money sentence of 500 euros.

    [20] Woman arrested for 1.6 million euro debts to state

    A 44-year-old woman that owned a company manufacturing metal components was arrested in the coastal city of Volos on Tuesday for debts to the state sector approaching 1.6 million euro.

    The woman was led before a Volos Misdemeanours Court prosecutor.

    [21] Shocking evidence on 'new homeless' of Athens

    Shocking evidence concerning the explosive dimensions of the problem of the "new homeless" in Athens was submitted to the Social Affairs Committee by Deputy Health Minister Markos Bolaris, Athens mayor George Kaminis and representatives of the Athens Holy Archdiocese and the National Committee for the Rights of Man.

    Reports now reveal that due to the economic crisis people came into the streets who were well off before it broke out, the "new homeless" include entire families while the number of people living with papers and blankets in Zappio, Koumoundourou Str., Santaroza Str., Gazi, benches, under bridges and outside closed stores, is unclear.

    Most of those leaving their homes and finding temporary "housing" in 52 locations in Athens are tax service debtors. Others owe to social security funds, resulting in them being unable to have an indigence booklet issued, being excluded from medical and pharmaceutical care and living in a state of impoverishment as a result.

    [22] Group of illegals rescued off islet in Evros River

    Eleven illegal immigrants, including four minors, were rescued off an islet in the middle of the Evros River on Tuesday by police.

    The group of illegals had attempted to clandestinely enter Greece from the opposite Turkish side of the river.

    The group was spotted by a military patrol in the region.

    [23] Nine arrested in raids on companies employing illegal migrants

    Nine people were arrested in 14 raids on companies suspected of employing illegal migrants in Attica, among them one Greek and eight foreign nationals that will be led before a public prosecutor.

    During raids conducted on Monday, police brought 19 people in for questioning and finally arrested nine.

    The Greek and one foreigner were charged with employing foreign nationals lacking valid residence and work permits, while three Pakistanis, three Bangladeshis and one Filipino were arrested for lacking valid documents for the entry and residence in Greece.

    [24] Film director Theodoros Angelopoulos injured in traffic accident

    Film director Theodoros Angelopoulos was injured in a traffic accident shortly after 7 on Tuesday evening.

    According to the police, Angelopoulos was run over by a motorcycle in the Drapetsona regional motorway, in Piraeus,after the first tunnel, in the lane leading to Keratsini.

    He was taken in an ambulance to a hospital in Faliro where he is undergoing treatment.

    [25] Bodies found in Lagada dump identified as missing teens

    The two bodies found beneath rubble in a countryside dump in Analipsi, Lagada at the weekend were on Tuesday identified as those of two missing teenagers, a 17-year-old Pomak boy and a 16-year-old girl from Albania's ethnic Greek community.

    The two teens were apparently having an affair and intended to elope. They were reported missing after Christmas.

    According to the coroner's examination, the boy had suffered head wounds possibly caused by a builder's tool and blows to the chest. They girl had also sustained blows while her body had been partly consumed by dogs.

    Police consider that the double homicide occurred elsewhere and the bodies were carried to the dump.

    [26] Two arrested in village for metal items theft

    Two Roma aged 26 and 25 respectively were arrested in a village, in the Peloponnese prefecture Arcadia for stealing metal items and causing bodily injury to a 55-year-old man.

    More specifically, after entering a plot of land belonging to a 30-year-old they removed metal items and cables, but were noticed by a 55-year-old neighbour who in his effort to prevent them was attacked and struck by the 26-year-old.

    The two Roma then boarded a truck and escaped but the prompt mobilisation of the police resulted in their arrest shortly afterwards.

    The items removed were found and returned to their owner, while the truck that they used to transfer the items was confiscated.

    Weather forecast

    [27] Rainy on Wednesday

    Rainy weather and southerly winds are forecast in most parts of the country on Wednesday, with wind velocity reaching 3-8 beaufort. Temperatures will range between 0C and 16C. Rainy in Athens, with southerly 3-6 beaufort winds and temperatures ranging from 5C to 14C. Same in Thessaloniki, with temperatures ranging from 0C to 6C.

    [28] The Tuesday edition of Athens' dailies at a glance

    The Eurogroup meeting on Monday and behind-the-scenes pressure on the creditors over the haircut of the Greek debt, and New Democracy (ND) leader Antonis Samaras' reassurance that his party will not support cutbacks in the private sector, mostly dominated the headlines on Tuesday in Athens' newspapers.

    ADESMEFTOS: "Samaras' stern 'no' on cutbacks to salaries in the private sector".

    AVGHI: "Blackmail: End to collective labour agreements".

    AVRIANI: "Hands off the judges".

    ELEFTHEROS TYPOS: "Greece leads in poverty and high prices".

    ESTIA: "No new job positions created".

    ETHNOS: "Everything will be sealed (PSI and new loan agreement) by Feb.13".

    KATHIMERINI: "Margins for PSI and measures are closing".

    NAFTEMPORIKI: "Bargaining over the new measures, the PSI and the loans".

    NIKI: "Kiss of life"

    RIZOSPASTIS: "Rise up against the policy of squalor".

    TA NEA: "Troika's burning paper".

    VRADYNI: "Government reduces the fines for illegal buildings".

    36, TSOCHA ST. ATHENS 115 21 GREECE * TEL: 64.00.560-63 * FAX: 64.00.581-2 INTERNET ADDRESS: * e-mail: anabul@ana gr * GENERAL DIRECTOR: ILIAS MATSIKAS

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