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The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English, 05-09-13

The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Hellenic Radio (ERA) <>


  • [01] Bush: "I Take Responsibility"
  • [02] Transformers Recalled
  • [03] Case Closed
  • [04] Proposal for Education
  • [05] Emergency Landing in Paris
  • [06] Two Helios Engineers Testified
  • [07] ERT's New Programme Begins
  • [08] Bomb Suspect to Britain
  • [09] Feasible Withdrawal
  • [10] Recognition of Cyprus Necessary
  • [11] Focus on Interests of Farmers
  • [12] Botox Injection in Baby
  • [13] Market Inspections
  • [14] Golden Dawn Member Surrendered

  • [01] Bush: "I Take Responsibility"

    13 Sep 2005 19:48:00

    By Mary Lou Tzempelikou

    Following the outcry concerning the US Governments failure to deal with the disaster caused by Hurricane Katrina, in statements he made on Tuesday, American President George Bush took responsibility "to the extent the federal government didnt fully do its job right." Bush admitted that the hurricane exposed the serious problems in dealing with crises at all levels of government, while adding that he assumed responsibility. "I want to know what went right and what went wrong," concluded the US President.

    Bush made the abovementioned statements during a joint news conference with Iraqi President Jalal Talabani, while he stressed that he would be examining the ways in which the Authorities could cooperate more effectively in the future.

    It should be noted that Bush is scheduled to address the American nation concerning the disaster on Thursday, from Louisiana, the state that was affected the most by the hurricane.

    As per White House spokesman Scott McClellan, it was an unprecedented disaster, while he added, "The president will talk to the American people about the recovery and the way forward on the longer-term rebuilding."

    Discontentment among African Americans

    At the same time, a new opinion poll demonstrated that Hurricane Katrina is slowly and steadily affecting the popularity of the American President. 54% of those asked disagree with the way Bush handled the situation, while 72% of African Americans and 26% of non-Spanish speakers declared that Bush is not interested in them. The poll also demonstrated the great racial differences that still exist in the USA, since 81% of the African Americans disagree with Bushs "presidential behaviour", as opposed to 51% of the whites.

    In addition, African Americans are very discontent, since 60% believe that the Authorities delayed in reacting because the vast majority of the people living in the affected areas were poor African Americans.

    Translated by Vicky Ghionis

    [02] Danger of Overheating Transformers Recalled

    13 Sep 2005 13:07:00

    By Betty Savourdou

    Sources: AFP

    Sony Computer Entertainment announced the recall of 3.6mn Playstation 2 transformers, the majority of which have been sold in Europe, due to overheating that can lead to fire. The faulty transformers were manufactured between August and September 2004, and accompany the black Playstation 2 console. From the batch of transformers recalled 2.3mn have been sold in Europe, 960,000 in North America, 210,000 in Asia and 60,000 in the Japanese market, stated a spokesperson for Sony Computer Entertainment. The transformers will be replaced free of charge, while the company asks the owners of Playstation 2 to visit to find out if the transformer of their console has to be replaced.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    Related Links:


    [03] "There Are No Funds for Heating Benefits" Case Closed

    13 Sep 2005 12:44:00

    By Athina Saloustrou

    There are no funds for the heating benefit, said Economy Minister Giorgos Alogoskoufis today and further added that the case has been closed by the Prime Minister. "The Government," stressed Mr Alogoskoufis after the Cabinets meeting at the Maximos Mansion, "has done all it could to find a way for granting the heating benefit. Benefits cannot be given with borrowed money." However, he did say the ministry is looking into the possibilities of favouring the financially weaker as part of the next budget. Development Minister Dimitris Sioufas was asked about the fuel price and underlined that prices have dropped, voicing the hope they will continue to drop. In the meantime, he gave the green light for the Development Ministry Bill on reestablishing Chambers operational framework, which has been the object of todays Cabinet meeting.

    Bill on Chambers' Operation

    Dimitris Sioufas stressed there would be a general commercial record, while transparency in commercial activities is reinforced with the chambers' operation and preconditions are created for better serving transactions. The intervention, he underlined, aims at reinforcing Chambers and the commercial world.

    Translated by Sofia Soulioti

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    Inexistent Margins

    [04] Costs Increased by 37% This Year Proposal for Education

    13 Sep 2005 15:34:00

    By Anna Kourti

    PASOKs section head Maria Damanaki presented her partys views on educational reform, aiming at achieving effective links between Education, Economy and Society. The subject of the Press conference given by the partys Parliamentary Group was "New School Year PASOKs Proposal". "The process, which had culminated in 2003, ie prompt settlement of all administrative and educational prerequisites before the commencement of the school year, was stemmed in 2004 and mainly 2005 by New Democracy," stressed PASOKs coordinator for Educational Affairs, Andreas Loverdos. According to data by the Consumer Protection Centre that were distributed during todays Press conference, the cost of school materials increased by 37% from last year, while Mr Loverdos mentioned that the information in question was also submitted to Parliament. The Ministry of Education described PASOKs proposals as vague thoughts. At the same time, apart from the issues with Olympic Airways and the heating oil benefits, PASOKs coordinators, who convened in the absence of Mr Papandreou, assessed Mr Karamanlis statements at the TIF, as well as their party Presidents upcoming visit to Thessaloniki. Furthermore, they discussed the Oppositions future actions in Parliament.

    "A Policy of Shacks "

    "The last building mentioned on the School Buildings Organisation (OSK) site was in 2003," mentioned Mr Loverdos, adding that he had submitted this to Parliament last June, on the occasion of the vote of confidence to the Government. "The very next day, the page disappeared and the sign Under Construction appeared on the site, which continues being displayed up until now," noted Mr Loverdos.

    Due to the articles in the Press mentioning the bad condition in schools, the Ministry of Education announced that OSK absorbed a total of 317 million euros from March 2004 to July 2005.

    "Education at the hands of ND is heading from bad to worse; in the feeble and incompetent hands of that party, Education is becoming dreadfully class-based," stressed Mr Loverdos, adding, "All the institutions of social policy in Education that we built with efforts and costs are heading from bad to worse daily."

    He also mentioned that all-day schools are in danger of closing down and the situation concerning additional educational support is bad, while the programme for building new schools has stopped. "The Education Ministrys policy is a policy of shacks," noted Mr Loverdos, who added that decisions have been made for evicting 46 schools, 30 of which are situated in Athens.

    PASOKs section head for Education and Culture accused ND of "reforms in words and deforms in actions". Ms Sylvana Rapti mentioned that the last Bill for Technological Schools submitted in Parliament was an excuse to introduce the grading scale of 10 and patch up the issue with students transfers.

    Ms Rapti also referred to the issue with DIKATSA (Inter-University Centre for Recognition of Foreign Academic Titles), mentioning that the only thing that changed was the name of the agency.

    Translated by Vicky Ghionis

    [05] Aegean Passengers Unharmed Emergency Landing in Paris

    13 Sep 2005 22:26:00

    By Vagelis Theodorou

    The 171 passengers aboard Aegeans charter flight, bound from Santorini to Birmingham, looked fear in the eye just after 20:00 tonight. The Boeing 737 was forced to perform an emergency landing in Paris, as the pilot noted a fuel leak. The plane landed safely at 20:30 (Greek local time) and it is being inspected by the companys engineers. The passengers and crew are all unharmed.

    Translated by Vicky Ghionis

    [06] To A. Tsolakis, Who Traveled to London Two Helios Engineers Testified

    13 Sep 2005 15:36:00

    By Mary Lou Tzempelikou

    "Each gap we're closing helps us move on the right track. Therefore, I can say the cooperation we had with the two English engineers really helped the case," said Air Accidents Investigation Committee President Akrivos Tsolakis, after the end of the marathon statements of the two Helios engineers on Monday night in London. Answering a question regarding the long duration of the testimonies, Mr Tsolakis replied that the two engineers were "key witnesses" and the members of the committee tried to make use of all the time in their hands. The two engineers who testified were Helios Chief Engineer Alan Erwin and his colleague Malcolm Fowler. It is noted that Erwin was the one to have signed that the fatal Boeing could fly.

    Negative Toxicological Tests

    In the meantime, Head Coroner Filippos Koutsaftis briefed Justice Minister Anastasios Papaligouras on the results of the toxicological tests performed on the victims of the air tragedy.

    As Mr Koutsaftis stressed, "the tests proved negative in their total, not only on carbon monoxide but on all kinds of toxic gases."

    Translated by Sofia Soulioti

    [07] Renewed and Enriched with New Shows ERT's New Programme Begins

    13 Sep 2005 15:04:00

    By Mary Lou Tzempelikou

    The Public Television presented on Tuesday at the Benaki Museum its renewed programme, which will be enriched with new shows. Quality, information, education and entertainment will be the focal points of the programme, while as per ERTs President Christos Panagopoulos, the aim is to preserve the nature of the Public Television. Information will of course top the list, while entertainment will be enriched with TV games, Greek series and Disney shows for kids. At the same time, the new programme also included documentaries and television premieres.

    Translated by Sofia Soulioti

    [08] Extradition Decision Expected from Italy Bomb Suspect to Britain

    13 Sep 2005 19:43:00

    By Vagelis Theodorou

    Italys Supreme Court rejected the appeal lodged by Hussain Osman, one of the aspiring bombers in the 21 July attacks, giving the green light to his extradition to Britain. The 27-year-old suspect, also known as Hamdi Isaac, is accused of attempting to blow up the train in Shepherds Bush station, London, and was arrested in Rome, based on a new European arrest warrant, just one week after the failed terrorist attacks. On 17 August, an Italian court ruled in favour of extraditing the man to Britain, while at the same time setting a 34-day deadline to the Italian Authorities in order to conclude their investigation into the young man, who is charged with forming a group aiming at international terrorism and possession of false documents. His lawyers lodged an appeal, which was rejected by the countrys Supreme Court and the extradition of Osman will take place within the next 10 days. Another three men are considered suspects in the failed attacks in the British capital and charges have been laid against them.

    Translated by Vicky Ghionis

    [09] Feasible Withdrawal

    13 Sep 2005 10:41:00

    By Betty Savourdou

    Up to 50,000 soldiers could leave Iraq by the end of the year, because Iraqi troops are adequate and can take control of parts of the country, stressed Iraqi president Jalal Talabani at the Washington Post. Talabani said he would discuss the reduction of US troops in his upcoming meeting with President Bush, voicing his belief that the United States will immediately withdraw some of their troops.

    Translated by Sofia Soulioti

    [10] For Acceding into the EU Recognition of Cyprus Necessary

    13 Sep 2005 16:41:00

    By Mary Lou Tzempelikou

    Turkey has to implement the customs union protocol and subsequently recognise the Republic of Cyprus, before acceding into the EU. At least that is what the EUs British Presidency and France are telling Ankara, following Turkeys refusal to recognise Cyprus, as well as open its ports and airports to Cypriot ships and airplanes, as per diplomatic sources. Speaking on the matter, the MEP responsible for Enlargement, Olli Rehn, expressed the wish that Ankara recognises Cyprus as soon as possible, clarifying that the official recognition of Cyprus was necessary. On his part, Cypriot President Tassos Papadopoulos declared that Nicosia is seeking a counterstatement that would either satisfy them or include terms that would be useful in the future. The issue of a counterstatement would be discussed during the Permanent Representatives Committees (COPEPER) meeting on Wednesday, in Brussels. Answering to relevant questions, government spokesperson Thodoros Roussopoulos said that there is understating with Cyprus and that the necessary decisions will be made during the COPERER meeting.

    Constant Diplomatic Contacts

    On the other hand, Nicosia declared that it was aware of the French-British contacts concerning the EUs response to Turkey. As per the government spokesperson, Kypros Chrysostomidis, France has briefed the Cypriot Government, expressing the hope that the counterstatement would not affect the interests of the EU and Cyprus.

    However, he clarified that Nicosia does not have the counterstatement draft at hand just yet and criticised the British presidency, because it has not included a Member-State that is directly interested in the counterstatements content in the deliberations.

    "We are awaiting to see in which way the final draft of the counterstatement will be presented, so as to express the views of the Cypriot Republic," noted Mr Chrysostomidis. Greek FM Petros Molyviatis contacted his British counterpart Jack Straw and discussed the matter over the phone, at the initiative of the latter.

    It should be noted that Turkey signed the protocol, which extends the customs union to all the new EU Member-States, towards the end of July. However, havoc was created as it stated that the signing did not constitute the recognition of Cyprus. Ankara then rejected the idea of opening its ports and airports to Cypriot ships and airplanes.

    Translated by Vicky Ghionis

    Related News:

    Disappointment in Greece and Cyprus

    [11] Study on Crops in View of CAP Focus on Interests of Farmers

    13 Sep 2005 21:04:00

    By Vicky Keleri

    By mid-2006, Greek farmers will find out which crops to prefer, in view of the implementation of the new Community Agricultural Policy. A study will be performed for each prefecture, so that, following the decoupling of Community funds from the bulk of production, Greek producers will have all the information at hand concerning which products would be competitive, in demand in domestic and international markets, and would secure adequate income. So, for example, in areas where tobacco crops are expected to shrink, the studies will propose to producers to restructure and turn towards products that would be sold at higher prices. In addition, each study would be taking into consideration the particularities of each area and would be providing useful information about new farming methods that would reduce costs. Furthermore, it will examine the local possibilities for processing and standardising, for higher added value of products.

    Translated by Vicky Ghionis

    [12] In Canada Botox Injection in Baby

    13 Sep 2005 12:31:00

    By Annita Paschalinou

    Sources: CBC News Canada

    A Canadian doctor used botox injections to treat a baby suffering for a truly rare syndrome. Dr Sam Daniel for the University of Mc Gill in Canada tried this controversial and original method to treat a baby suffering from excessive drooling (Charge Syndrome). The baby was drowning in his own saliva and was being kept alive on a ventilator. The injection was given in his neck and the infant is now eight months old and doing well. This is the first time a doctor treated a child under 4 with botox. The Quebec government has not yet approved Sam Daniels method, but the doctor admits it makes sense, since this is a new treatment. However, he did pointed out Ontario is already covering the cost of administering it.

    Translated by Sofia Soulioti

    [13] Market Inspections

    13 Sep 2005 14:12:00

    By Anna Kourti

    The improvement of coordination and inspection services in the market topped the agenda at the meeting between Deputy Development Minister Giannis Papathanasiou and Athens Prefect Giannis Sgouros. As Mr Papathanasiou stated, the aim is to "increase market inspections, after having dealt with all the problems and weakness of the system. Increased coordination between the competent agencies would lead to the improvement of the market's image." As for Mr Sgouros, he stressed that all circulars sent by the Development Ministry to the Prefecture's competent agencies are executed. What is more, he underlined the lack of personnel, technical and mechanical equipment and the complexity of the Public Sector cause problems to the effectiveness and coordination of inspections. Mr Papathanasiou then met with SEVT's (Federation of Hellenic Food Industries) board and discussed the better cooperation of businesses with inspection authorities and the proper and timely information of consumers.

    After the end of the meeting, SEVT president D. Daskalopoulos said regarding the consequences of liquid fuel prices on the food industry that food businesses cannot handle the entire cost, but that does not necessarily mean there will be immediate increases in the market.

    It is noted that on Wednesday, the Athens Prefect will submit the inspection results to the Ministry, while he is planning to ask the General Accounting office to unblock funds necessary for the Prefecture's operation.

    Translated by Sofia Soulioti

    [14] "Periandros" Sought After Since 1998 Golden Dawn Member Surrendered

    13 Sep 2005 13:54:00

    By Athina Saloustrou

    This morning, 39-year-old Antonis Androutsopoulos, aka "Periandros" leading member of right-wing organisation Golden Dawn (Chrisi Avgi) surrendered to the Appellate Prosecutor. Androutsopoulos was sought after with an arrest warrant since 16/6/1998, when a gang and himself attacked and seriously injured student Dimitris Kousouris and another two persons, in a canteen opposite the Hellenic Army Academy. After his appearance to the Prosecution he was arrested and will be taken to the relevant Prosecutor for the serving of his sentence.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

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