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Athens News Agency: Daily News Bulletin in English, 15-03-23

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <http://www.ana.gr/>

Monday, 23 March 2015 Issue No: 4916

CONTENTS

  • [01] PM Tsipras to discuss all issues in meeting with Chancellor Merkel
  • [02] PM Tsipras: No pressure at Monday's meeting with Merkel
  • [03] Meeting of PM Tsipras with economic team ends
  • [04] PM Tsipras concludes successive meetings with ministers
  • [05] Tsipras' initiative has borne fruit, European Parliament VP said after meeeting PM Tsipras
  • [06] Foreign Minister Kotzias proposes joint Greek-German Committee on war reparations - paper
  • [07] Economy Minister Stathakis says he's optimistic about negotiations with lenders
  • [08] Defence Min. Kammenos says government held an 'honourable stance' at the EU summit
  • [09] Slanderous report on Katrougalos is part of an effort to weaken the government, say gov't sources
  • [10] Admin. Reform Min. Katrougalos: Reports against him are aimed at undermining the government
  • [11] ND: If report on Katrougalos is true, he should be removed from government
  • [12] Government spokesman accuses ND of hurling mud at the government
  • [13] PASOK asks for removal of Katrougalos from government following report in the media
  • [14] Government should not try to take credit for work already done, sayd ND
  • [15] Gov't spokesman: ND is confused about the 2 bln euros earmarked for Greece
  • [16] ND leader Samaras criticises government for closed shops on Sundays
  • [17] Four alternate ministers sworn in before President Pavlopoulos, PM Tsipras
  • [18] New deputy governor of Bank of Greece to be sworn in on Monday
  • [19] 'All together we can create a joint front against racism,' says Civil Protection minister
  • [20] Justice ministry calls on imprisoned hunger strikers to end the strike
  • [21] Protecting forests is a springboard for a sustainable economy, says Environment minister
  • [22] SYRIZA ahead of ND by 23.5 pct in poll
  • [23] SYRIZA leads by a whopping 26.5 pct over ND in Palmos Analysis poll
  • [24] 'Restart of the economy bill' passes in Parliament late on Friday
  • [25] Energy ministry amendment cancels rises of special duty in electricity bills
  • [26] The procedures for public tenders will change, says Alt. Finance Min. Mardas
  • [27] March in memory of dead student Giakoumakis in Thessaloniki
  • [28] Three people rescued after training aircraft crashes in Axios river
  • [29] Four arson attacks against bank ATMs across Athens
  • [30] Albanian prisoner allegedly responsible for killing fellow national, injuring another
  • [31] Minor tremor strikes off the coast of Piraeus
  • [32] Clouds and rain on Monday
  • [33] The Sunday edition of Athens' dailies at a glance Politics

  • [01] PM Tsipras to discuss all issues in meeting with Chancellor Merkel

    Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras and German Chancellor Angela Merkel will discuss on Monday the economic crisis, bilateral relations on a political, economic and diplomatic level, regional issues and the EU's future, government sources said on Sunday, commenting on the meeting between the two leaders in Berlin.

    Following the seven-party meeting on the sidelines of the EU summit in Brusels, the climate between the two countries has changed and the two sides will discuss all subjects without pressure, the sources said.

    Tsipras is expected to leave Athens at 11.00 on Monday, while his meeting with Merkel is scheduled for 17.00 (local time). The two leaders will then make joint statements and will answer a few questions. Tsipras and Merkel will continue with a working lunch which will include five associates from each side.

    [02] PM Tsipras: No pressure at Monday's meeting with Merkel

    The meeting with German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Monday will not be pressured by the ongoing negotiations, Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras told a Greek daily, adding that the two leaders will discuss the strengthening of bilateral relations and important issues which affect Europe.

    "On Monday I will be in Berlin to meet German Chancellor Angela Merkel. It's a meeting that will not be pressured by the negotiations. This is very important as both sides will be able to discuss important problems afflicting Europa, but also the strengthening of bilateral relations," Tsipras was quoted as saying to Sunday's edition of Kathimerini.

    The premier said this is no time for celebrating, but for hard work; for negotiating and also for governing. "We have a unique chance to push for reforms the previous governments didn't dare implement, either because they were bound by powerful interests, or because they didn't have the popular mandate. It's time to change the country and that depends solely on us - on the government," he said.

    [03] Meeting of PM Tsipras with economic team ends

    The meeting of Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras with Government Vice-President Yiannis Dragasakis, Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis and Alternate Minister for International Economic Relations Euclid Tsakalotos at Maximos Mansion ended on Sunday evening.

    The meeting lasted one hour and ministers didn't make any statements.

    [04] PM Tsipras concludes successive meetings with ministers

    Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras' successive meetings with Government Vice-President Yiannis Dragasakis, Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis and later Parliament Speaker Zoi Konstantopoulou concluded on Saturday evening.

    [05] Tsipras' initiative has borne fruit, European Parliament VP said after meeeting PM Tsipras

    The Vice-President of the European Parliament, Dimitris Papadimoulis said the meeting between SYRIZA MEPs and Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras on Saturday was useful and constructive.

    Papadimoulis said deputies were briefed and exchanged views on several issues and noted Tsipras' initiative is bearing fruit. He also said it is particularly important that the government enjoys the trust of a large majority of the Greek people.

    Tsipras is now meeting with Government VP Yiannis Dragasakis and Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis.

    [06] Foreign Minister Kotzias proposes joint Greek-German Committee on war reparations - paper

    BERLIN (ANA-MPA/F. Karaviti)

    Foreign Minister Nikos Kotzias is more in favour of a political rather than a legal solution on the issue of German war reparations, which could be determined by a joint team of Greek and German experts, German newspaper Sueddeutsche Zeitung reported in a story which will be published on Monday.

    "I believe we have to find ways to discuss with Germany was quoted as telling the paper, adding that a Committee of experts should be established by the two countries. "We have to find a common denominator," he said. In the article titled "Athens wants a compromise on the issue of war reparations", the paper also notes Kotzias and German counterpart Frank-Walter Steinmeier who are meeting in Berlin, will discuss the Greek-German Fund for the Future and the Greek-German Youth Laboratory which were founded in 2014.

    Asked about Greece's debt, the paper says the Greek foreign minister speaks of a "haircut" but without making specific demands, while he describes Chancellor Angela Merkel as a "very reasonable person who considers the future of Europe".

    Kotzias also told the paper it is important for Europe not to destabilize Greece, because if it happened, "millions of people" from the Middle East could find their way to the North of Europe.

    [07] Economy Minister Stathakis says he's optimistic about negotiations with lenders

    Economy, Infrastructure, Shipping and Tourism Minister George Stathakis expressed on Sunday his optimism about talks with Greece's international lenders, saying the EU summit was a positive step.

    "I think Friday was a very positive step which will be completed within the next week. I believe now the government's conviction that we can exit the memorandum and form a new framework of cooperation with our partners in a safe way that allows the implementation of SYRIZA's programme is very close to being achieved," Stathakis said on the sidelines of an event in the town of Chania, Crete.

    [08] Defence Min. Kammenos says government held an 'honourable stance' at the EU summit

    National Defence Minister Panos Kammenos expressed on Saturday his satisfaction with the result of the EU summit meeting, saying the prime minister held an "honourable and just stance".

    "The prime minister, the government and the Greek people proved that when you claim what is just, you can converse with everyone. The Greek government and the prime minister held an honourable and jus stance, asking to be allowed to implement the mandate we received in the elections of January 25," Kammenos said answering a question while on a visit to Kalavryta in the northern Peloponnese.

    "I'm especially happy that the result of these negotiations is positive and that our partners understood that a country cannot be ruled by a government that translates draft bills sent to it, but by implementing people's mandate," he added, noting that the decision to implement the February 20 agreement is very important, not just for Greece but for Europe.

    [09] Slanderous report on Katrougalos is part of an effort to weaken the government, say gov't sources

    The slanderous media report on Alternate Minister for Administrative Reform George Katrougalos was made up to undermine the government and the prime minister ahead of his visit to Berlin on Monday, government sources said on Sunday.

    "Today, the reason for which the slanderous report on Alternate Minister for Administrative Reform George Katrougalos was made up becomes obvious. The timing is not accidental. It's a systematic effort to weaken the Greek government and the prime minister a day before the crucial trip to Germany," the sources said, adding that the crucial issue of vested interests and corruption is used, which is a common point of interest for the German and Greek government.

    "Those who believe they can achieve the ethical impairment of the Greek government with lies and slander are bitterly fooling themselves," the same sources said and argued that "those who are afraid we will get to the bottom of the issue of vested interests have every reason to be afraid."

    [10] Admin. Reform Min. Katrougalos: Reports against him are aimed at undermining the government

    Alternate Minister for Administrative Reform George Katrougalos on Saturday attributed a media report accusing him of taking advantage of his post to rehire clients he had when he worked as a lawyer to efforts to undermine the work of the government.

    According to a news report published in Greek daily To Vima on Saturday, Katrougalos, who worked as a lawyer for a private firm before he was elected in the last national elections, signed just before the elections private agreements with civil servants who had been laid off or suspended by the previous government. These agreements stipulated that he would receive a 12 pct commission of the gross amount which would be awarded to them by courts if they won the case.

    Katrougalos strongly denied any wrong doing, saying that he resigned from the legal firm he worked for after he was elected as MEP and has not taken up any similar case since then, nor has he drafted any similar agreements. He also notes in a statement that since he became minister, he has chosen not to have any personal contact with his former clients.

    "My political and legal activity always had the same aim, to defend rights and the Constitution. In the past five years, I handled many cases related to the memorandum, most of them with little or no legal fees: port privatisations, the PSI robbery, the illegal appointment of the administration in HRADF [privatization agency], the civil mobilization of employees in the metro and many others, among which the civil servants who were suspended," Katrougalos said in a statement.

    He explained that legal fees were only paid when the trial took place in civil courts and other lawyers were involved, which would only be paid if the ruling was favourable. "But I don't expect a personal fee from any of these cases because these amounts would be received from the firm I worked in until the European elections," he noted.

    "Since my election as MEP I left the company and I have never taken up any such case neither have I drafted any agreement," he said.

    The minister also said that to clarify his position to his former clients, once elected in his current post, he invited them to an open event where he announced how they would be reinstated. He also told them he would have no private meetings or discussions over the phone with any of his former clients.

    Katrougalos also said he believes the report is aimed at "harming my personal honour and reputation" and at undermining the government's efforts for essential changes and "that's why it was brought up as soon as the draft bill for streamlining public administration was submitted for public consultation."

    [11] ND: If report on Katrougalos is true, he should be removed from government

    Main opposition New Democracy (ND) said on Saturday Alternate Minister for Administrative Reform George Katrougalos should be expelled from the government if the allegations reported by newspaper To Vima are true.

    According to the report, Katrougalos' old law firm had signed private agreements with laid-off or suspended civil servants to represent them in court at a fee and then rehire them in the public administration.

    ND spokesman Costas Karagounis said if the report is confirmed, the minister must be removed from his post. "It seems 'hope' was not an election logo; it was a commercial transaction, priced at 12 pct," the spokesman said.

    "The price is paid by the tax payer and appears to be collected by the minister as, instead of hiring new and worthy employees, they rehire their own people at a price," he added.

    "Now everyone realizes what it means to have the Left rule for the first time," Karagounis concluded in his statement.

    [12] Government spokesman accuses ND of hurling mud at the government

    Instead of apologizing for rushing to adopt the false report on Alternate Minister for Administrative Reform George Katrougalos, the main opposition asks for the minister's removal from office, government spokesman Gavriil Sakellaridis said on Sunday, commenting on a press release by New Democracy (ND).

    "Although the slanderous reports have been shot down, [ND] insists on hurling mud at the government. They should get this straight. Corruption and vested interests are their monopoly. Justice will soon be served," Sakellaridis said.

    Earlier, ND spokesman Costas Karagounis said: "It seems the anti-memorandum battle came with a price tag. 12 pct per head! But responsibility doesn't just lie with Mr. Katrougalos, but also with the government which is covering him. As it was proven, they knew it for a while and they kept him at his post. And they still haven't removed him."

    [13] PASOK asks for removal of Katrougalos from government following report in the media

    Opposition party PASOK asked on Saturday for the removal of Alternate Minister for Administrative Reform George Katrougalos from his post, following reports in newspaper To Vima on his private agreements to defend laid-off or suspended civil servants when he was a lawyer.

    "It wasn't enough for him that he built his political career on an anti-bailout demagogy, jeopardizing the country's existence. He also turned it into a lucrative profession. And now he took over the government portfolio that will allow him to satisfy his clients. He didn't even declare there was an impediment in his handling of cases he had as a lawyer," PASOK said in an announcement.

    "Mr. Katrougalos must immediately be removed from the government and be returned to his clients, who surely miss him. The question that arises is: Are there more government of parliamentary officials of SYRIZA with similar entanglements?"

    [14] Government should not try to take credit for work already done, sayd ND

    Main opposition New Democracy accused Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras on Saturday of trying to take credit for the achievements of the previous government of Antonis Samaras.

    "The 2-billion-euro package [of EU funds] announced by Tsipras is the well-known result achieved after the negotiations of Mr. Samaras at the end of 2013, which was eventually agreed for the period 2014-2020 from the same European budget," party spokesman Costas Karagounis said.

    The spokesman also said that a large number of these funds have already been earmarked for specific social needs.

    "The government should focus on absorbing these funds within the year and by frontloading 2015, instead of taking credit for work which has already been done," Karagounis added.

    [15] Gov't spokesman: ND is confused about the 2 bln euros earmarked for Greece

    The two billion euros which will be gradually given to Greece through EU funds have nothing to do with the funds the previous government allegedly claimed for the country, government spokesman Gavriil Sakellaridis said on Saturday.

    "The main opposition is confused. Not only it doesn't know what is happening, it is also doesn't know who is announcing what," Sakellaridis said in a statement.

    "The two billion euros secured by the government have nothing to do with the previous government. The funds earmarked to tackle the humanitarian crisis and youth unemployment were announced for the first time by the President of the European Commission Jean-Claude Juncker himself, not the Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras," he noted.

    "Furthermore, this money is not related with the programme for the period 2014-2020 to which Mr. Karagounis is referring to. Therefore, the 2 billion euros have nothing to do with the previous government," he said.

    "If they cannot enjoy the successes of the government at least they can try not to embarrass themselves," he added.

    [16] ND leader Samaras criticises government for closed shops on Sundays

    The leader of the main opposition New Democracy (ND), Antonis Samaras, criticised the government following a visit to the town of Kalamata in the southern Peloponnese on Sunday, saying the town's shops shouldn't be closed when cruise ships are in town.

    "As you remember, we abolished the cabotage and the cruise ships came. Now the ships are here, the stores are closed and 2,000 tourists who could have shopped here in Kalamata, in any region of the country, cannot do it. This is a big mistake," Samaras said.

    "I hope tourists, who reached record numbers thanks to battles fought by the previous government over this, will continue to arrive, because so far it is the only hope for economic growth. Because no one is talking about the economy and growth," he added.

    [17] Four alternate ministers sworn in before President Pavlopoulos, PM Tsipras

    Four Alternate ministers who had not been sworn-in yet due to a lack of a legislative provision covering their posts did so before the President of the Republic Prokopis Pavlopoulos and Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras on Saturday.

    Alternate Minister for Social Insurance Dimitris Stratoulis, Alternate Minister for Migration Policy Tasia Christodoulopoulou and Alternate Minister for Research and Innovation Costas Fotakis took a civil oath, while Alternate Minister for Infrastructure Transport and Networks Christos Spirtzis took a religious oath.

    Earlier, Pavlopoulos and Tsipras had a half-hour private meeting during which the prime minister briefed the president on the discussions he held with European leaders in Brussels.

    [18] New deputy governor of Bank of Greece to be sworn in on Monday

    The swearing-in ceremony for the new Deputy Governor of the Bank of Greece (BoG) Theodoros Mitrakos will be held before the President of the Republic Prokopis Pavlopoulos on Monday (March 23), at 11.30.

    The ceremony will be attended by Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis, BoG Governor Yiannis Stournaras and the Bishop of Thermopylae Ioannis. Earlier, Pavlopoulos will meet with Cypriot politician Giorgos Lillikas, the head of the Citizen's Alliance movement, it was announced.

    [19] 'All together we can create a joint front against racism,' says Civil Protection minister

    The International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination demonstrates how important it is to think of the consequences of racism, which only can be devastating to society, Alternate Minister for Civil Protection Yiannis Panousis said on Saturday in a message to mark the day.

    "All of us together we can create a joint front so that racism doesn't undermine peace, security, justice, progress and prosperity. A joint front for a universal society centered around humanism and respect for human rights," Panousis said.

    "Racism, as a perception and as a behavior, is used to cause fear, hatred and to cause a particular type of stigma towards mostly vulnerable groups, thus eroding the cohesion of the social fabric."

    "Even extreme criminal behavior feeds from racist motives and biases," he added and continued, "Faced with these intolerant practices we must set our core values which make up the culture over time, the culture and value code of our society, as well as our commitment to the ideals of democracy, freedom and solidarity. We must also promote respect for people and recognition of diversity."

    [20] Justice ministry calls on imprisoned hunger strikers to end the strike

    The Justice ministry on Sunday called on the hunger strikers who are serving sentences for terrorism-related crimes to stop their protest and asked their doctors to respect their choice not to eat but to intervene immediately in an emergency.

    "Doctors in detention centres, or if needed, the hospitals, must provide medical treatment tailored to the decision of prisoners, with continuous monitoring and readiness to intervene in case of emergency," the ministry said, replying to an announcement of the doctors monitoring hunger strikers.

    "Hunger strikers are asked to end their strike while they wait the drafting of relevant laws which are underway," the ministry added. The ministry also said that some of the demands of the strikers will be met by draft bills which are being prepared by the government, while others will be examined.

    Doctors monitoring hunger strikers had asked the Justice Minister to take every available measure to prevent permanent damages in the health of the prisoners. Among the hunger strikers are convicted terrorists Dimitris Koufodinas and Nikos Maziotis.

    [21] Protecting forests is a springboard for a sustainable economy, says Environment minister

    Protecting Greek forests is everyone's responsibility, said Alternate Minister for the Environment Yiannis Tsironis on Saturday, marking the International Day of Forests.

    "Greek forests are precious, beautiful, but they are in danger. It's everyone's duty to deliver more and better forests to the next generations. Their protection is not an obstacle, but a springboard for a sustainable economy," Tsironis said.

    The minister noted that forests not only bring variety to mountains but they form one more productive sector which can contribute to the country's exit from the crisis.

    [22] SYRIZA ahead of ND by 23.5 pct in poll

    Ruling coalition partner SYRIZA leads by 23.5 percentage points over main opposition New Democracy (ND) in voting intention according to an opinion poll conducted by Metron Analysis on behalf of newspaper Parapolitika, which was published on Saturday.

    Asked "if there were elections next Sunday, which party would you vote for?" 41.9 pct of the respondents said SYRIZA, while 18.4 pct said ND.

    Golden Dawn is third place with 5.3 pct, followed by Potami with 4.9 pct, the Communist Party (KKE) with 3.9 pct, Independent Greeks (ANEL) with 3.8 pct, PASOK with 3 pct, KINIMA with 2 pct and the Union of Centrists with 1.9 pct.

    A further 2.4 pct said they would vote for "Another party", 3.9 pct said Blank/Invalid, 5.1 pct said they would abstain, 2.5 pct said they were undecided and 1 pct didn't answer.

    On the question of whether "you are in favour of Greece remaining in the Eurozone", a resounding 84 pct of participants said "Yes", 13 pct said they prefer the drachma and 3 pct didn't answer.

    Asked "who you believe must back down from its demands in the negotiations", 60 pct said the Eurozone, 20 pct said Greece, 18 pct said both and 2 pct didn't answer.

    Another 62 pct sees the government's course so far as positive, versus 29 pct who have a negative opinion and 7 pct who said "neither". Two percent didn't answer.

    Of those polled, 72 pct said they have a positive opinion about the way Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras is exercising his duties, 22 pct have a negative opinion, 4 pct has :neither positive nor negative" opinion and 2 pct didn't answer.

    Asked who is more suitable for prime minister, Alexis Tsipras leads with 53 pct, with Antonis Samaras following with 19 pct.

    The survey was conducted in the period March 16-18, 2015.

    [23] SYRIZA leads by a whopping 26.5 pct over ND in Palmos Analysis poll

    Ruling coalition partner SYRIZA leads by 26.5 percentage points over main opposition New Democracy (ND) in voting intent according to an opinion poll conducted by Palmos Analysis on behalf of private TV station SBC, published on Friday.

    Asked "if elections were held on Sunday, which of the following parties would you vote for?", 42.8 pct of respondents said SYRIZA and 16.3 pct said ND. The Communist Party (KKE) received 3.9 pct, Golden Dawn 3.6 pct, To Potami 3.4 pct, the Independent Greeks (ANEL) 3.2 pct, PASOK 2 pct, Union of Centrists 1.6 pct and KINIMA 1 pct.

    A further 2.5 pct said they would vote "another party", 8.9 pct said "I have not decided", Blank/Invalid was 3.4 pct, and 3.3 pct said they would abstain. Another 4.1 pct didn't respond.

    Questioned on how they would characterize the government's negotiation with Greece's lenders, 50 pct of participants said it is "tough", 24 pct said "mild" and 20 pt said it is "non-existent". A further 4 pct said it doesn't have an opinion and 2 pct didn't answer.

    Concerning the main opposition and asked if "you believe there should be a leadership change in New Democracy after the results of the elections of January 25", 43 pct answered "Yes" (and 7 pct "probably yes"), while 20 pct answered "No" (and 5 pct "probably No"). Another 24 pct said "I have no opinion/I don't care" and 1 pct didn't answer.

    The nationwide opinion poll was conducted on March 17-19.

    Financial News

    [24] 'Restart of the economy bill' passes in Parliament late on Friday

    A bill titled "Regulations for the restart of the economy" passed in Parliament late on Friday night by roll-call vote, in principle and per article, under emergency voting procedures.

    The bill, which settles arrears to the state and social security funds by provisions that include the opportunity to settle debts in as many as 100 installments, passed in principle by ruling parties SYRIZA and Independent Greeks (ANEL), and former ruling coalition partners New Democracy (now main opposition) and PASOK, while Potami and extreme-right Golden Dawn (Chryssi Avgi) voted "present". The Communist Party of Greece (KKE) voted against because the government rejected an amendment for full writeoff of debts of families with total annual income of 20,000 euros and a haircut of debt for families with double that income.

    During the per-article discussion, New Democracy proposed roll-call votes for four articles involving the jurisdiction of the finance minister in setting debt regulations and exemptions from them (articles 16-17); precautionary and temporary taxation of companies unders suspicion of "triangular transactions" (article 21); and the end of all operations for Paraktio Attiko Metopo (Coastal Attica Front) S.A. and transfer of its assets to the current state privatisation agency (article 24).

    The four articles passed on the votes of SYRIZA and ANEL. ND, Potami and KKE voted against, PASOK voted for the first three and against the fourth, while Golden Dawn voted "present" for the first three articles and against the last one.

    [25] Energy ministry amendment cancels rises of special duty in electricity bills

    The ministry of Productive Reconstruction, Environment and Energy ministry announced on Sunday it is cancelling the increases in the special duty for the reduction of gas emissions (ETMEAR) which had been decided by Greece's power regulator RAE, with an amendment-addition which will be included in the first draft bill which will be submitted to Parliament.

    It also announced it will re-examine the revenues of the account which finances renewable sources of energy, which is funded by ETMEAR.

    "The unit charges of the special duty for the reduction of gas emissions will remain unchanged in 2015 to the levels set for 2014," the amendment states.

    According to the explanatory statement attached to the amendment, "the provision is deemed necessary to allow for the reassessment and redefinition of the revenues of the Special Account of article 40 of law 2773/1999 and service the objectives pursued without burdening customers from an increase of ETMEAR."

    [26] The procedures for public tenders will change, says Alt. Finance Min. Mardas

    The government will change the procedure followed for public tenders even for procurements valued under 60,000 euros, Alternate Finance Minister Dimitris Mardas said during a speech at an event organized by the Central Macedonia chapter of the Economic Chamber of Greece.

    "This joke with sketchy tenders will stop," Mardas said adding that new systems will be implemented which have already been approved legally but remain inactive and which could lead to cost savings without reducing the materials and services which will be purchased."

    The minister also said every line in the budgets of every ministry is being investigated to identify unjustifiable expenditures not related to wages.

    General News

    [27] March in memory of dead student Giakoumakis in Thessaloniki

    Hundreds of people held a protest march in memory of bullying victim Vangelis Giakoumakis in Thessaloniki on Sunday afternoon, to express their solidarity with his family.

    The rally started from the White Tower with protesters marching through the main avenues of the city before returning to the starting point, where people observed a minute of silence.

    The call was organized through Facebook where a page was created named "A march to condemn the killers of Vangelis".

    [28] Three people rescued after training aircraft crashes in Axios river

    Three people were rescued from a training aircraft which crashed on an islet in the river Axios in Epirus, western Greece, the fire department said on Sunday.

    The aircraft, which was carrying the pilot and two Italian nationals, had taken off from Thessaloniki and authorities said it crashed at around 15.00 in the afternoon.

    Rescue teams were able to extricate the pilot from the plane, slightly injured and transfer him to the military hospital of Thessaloniki. The two other passengers are well in their health, but were transferred to the hospital of Kilkis for precautionary reasons.

    [29] Four arson attacks against bank ATMs across Athens

    Four bank ATMs around Athens were set on fire by unknown individuals during the night on Friday, police has said.

    The first attack took place at 02.37 in the neighbourhood of Kypseli in central Athens, when an ATM was burned causing damages. In the next two hours three more ATM was set on fire in Pefki, Zografou and Marousi. Police has not found any trace of the materials used in the attacks.

    Another arson attack took place in Kesariani, where a supermarket van was completely destroyed.

    [30] Albanian prisoner allegedly responsible for killing fellow national, injuring another

    A jailed Albanian national, 35, is charged by police as being responsible for a fight that broke out in the central Greece jail of Larissa on Friday.

    The man is accused of killing a fellow-national, 47, and seriously injuring another, 46, with a self-made knife.

    The perpetrator had past differences dating to their life in Albania. The injured man is hospitalised in Larissa.

    [31] Minor tremor strikes off the coast of Piraeus

    A 3.2-magnitude quake has hit the sea area off the port of Piraeus, in southern Greece, the automated solution of Athens' Geodynamics Institute said on Sunday.

    The tremor took place at 21.17 local time (1917 GMT) at a focal depth of 5km. The epicenter is located 14.6 klm southwest of Athens, near the island of Salamina.

    No injuries or damages were immediately reported.

    Weather forecast

    [32] Clouds and rain on Monday

    On Monday, rain and storms are expected for the northwestern parts of Greece and the Aegean. Winds will transfer dust mainly in the west and south. Temperatures around the country will range from 4 to 18C.

    [33] The Sunday edition of Athens' dailies at a glance

    ANGELIOFOROS ON SUNDAY: Police investigates for possible Jihadists

    ETHNOS ON SUNDAY: The list that gives money

    AVGHI: The economy picks up

    VRATHINI: Social insurance - Painful changes against men

    ELEFTHEROS TYPOS: Tough points in the 'list'; social security, VAT, and ENFIA

    I EPOHI: As it turns out, there is another way!

    KATHIMERINI: Behind the scenes of the seven-party meeting [in Brussels] and Tsipras' double ftont

    DEMOKRATIA ON SUNDAY: Chinook, guilty secrets

    RIZOSPASTIS ON SUNDAY: Negotiations, clashes, compromises and the people foot the bill once again

    KONTRA NEWS ON SUNDAY: Alexis is heading for elections. [Ex-PM] Costas Karamanlis agrees.

    O LOGOS: 750 million people are thirsty

    PRIN: SYRIZA and ANEL are following memorandum policies

    PROTO THEMA: They demand new ENFIA (property tax), one-off tax, increase in fuel price and VAT

    TO ARTHRO: Last chance for Tsipras

    TO VIMA ON SUNDAY: Tsipras' list on Merkel's table

    To PARON: We have overcome the worst part

    REAL NEWS: Berlin is pressuring for a third bailout programme

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