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The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English, 08-02-19
From: The Hellenic Radio (ERA) <www.ert.gr/>
 Meeting in AthensNimetz's New Proposal on FYROM
19 Feb 2008 16:26:00 (Last updated: 19 Feb 2008 19:00:05)
During his meeting with Greek and FYROM negotiators, Adamantios Vassilakis and Nikolai Dimitrov, Matthew Nimetz suggested a new mutually acceptable solution to the "name issue" of the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM). Mr. Nemitz stressed that his suggestion does not fully cover the aims of the two countries but as he said it is fair and decent and can set the basis for the finding of a solution on the issue. In parallel, he called on both sides to continue their contacts. The two ambassadors did not make any comments and did not reveal any further clue regarding the suggestion stating that they will first discuss it with their governments. Both countries must submit their final decision within the following two weeks.
"Now is the Time"
Matthew Nimetz praised the negotiators' high standard, appearing certain that both countries and peoples wish that a solution is found.
He also stressed that the two countries, as well as the stability in the region would benefit from a solution. "Now is the time", he stressed.
However, he refused to reveal anything on the content of the proposal pleading the procedure's confidentiality. In reply to a question as to whether he had taken under considerationGreece's historical sensitivities, he reported that he took under consideration everybody's sensitivities.
Skopje negotiator N. Dimitrov that he would present the proposal to his government, which will examine it carefully, confirming what Nimetz had said.
Political Party Reactions
Referring to FYROM name dispute KKE (Greek Communist Party) believes that it is interrelated with developments in Kosovo, adding that the proposals made public until now as per which Nimetz's proposal speaks of a double name does not seem to satisfy either sides.
SYRIZA (Coalition of the Radical Left) stresses that developments in the Balkans demand alertness, adding that the party insists on a mutually accepted solution on the problem with Skopje.
LAOS (Popular Orthodox Rally) President George Karatzaferis stresses in his statement that Nimetz's proposal is leading Greece to complete defeat, adding that Karamanlis' possible veto cannot defend sufficiently the needs created by the governments' laxity in the last 15 yeas.
 Ice TrapsProblems Abating
19 Feb 2008 16:51:00
By Anna Kourti
Sources: ÁNA-ÌPA, ÍÅÔ, ÍÅÔ 105.8
Although the weather has been improving gradually, the prevailing low temperatures are creating sleet, which constitutes transportation dangerous. Sleet had covered many parts of the road network Tuesday, while the Traffic Police advises drivers to be careful in order to avoid accidents. In parallel, many people were hospitalized due to fractures they had suffered. All public means of transport, as well as air services at Eleftherios Venizelos airport and sea services from the ports of Piraeus and Rafina have been running smoothly today. However, schools in Attica, Piraeus, Euboea, Argosaronic islands, the Cyclades, Heraklion and Lasithi, Crete remained closed. At the same time, many villages mainly in Crete remain cut off, while cultivations in Argolida, Messinia, Ilia, Crete, central and northern Greece suffered extensive damage due the poor weather, with prices of vegetables and fruit rising. Vegetables in Attica and the Peloponnese suffered extensive damages. Rural Development Minister Alexandros Kontos, who visited Megara and Marathonas to see the damages himself, spoke of just and fast compensations. The National Meteorological Service forecasts a fine weather for Wednesday, with 4-5 Beaufort strong winds and locally at seas 6 Beaufort. The temperature in Athens will range from 7-14 Celsius and in Thessaloniki from 3-12 degrees.
Translated by John Crystallidis
 Kosovo: Diplomatic Fever and Incidents19 Feb 2008 15:49:00
By Dimitris Alexopoulos
Sources: ÍÅÔ-ÍÅÔ 105,8-ÁNA/ÌNA, Reuters
European Union foreign policy chief Javier Solana made surprise visit to Kosovo on Tuesday to meet leaders of the new state two days after their Western-backed declaration of independence. Mr. Solana is expected to repeat EU appeals for clam after the move which is opposed by Serbia. Serbian president states that his country will fight for Kosovo using diplomatic means and Russia is warning that the global stability is in danger. At the same time, Serbs opposed to Kosovos newly declaration and attacked borders making police to call for help.
Violent Incident in Borders
Serbs burned down one border post and attacked a second one. Kosovo police manning the post called for help from the NATO peacekeeping force, KFOR, which said it was stepping in.
"Protesters have destroyed the border crossing post at Gate 1 in Jarinje," the Kosovo police spokesman said. "No one has been injured." Protesters were also attacking a second post at Zubin Potok in Kosovos Serb-dominated north, he said
The violence highlights the decision taken by the Security Council nearly at the end of the war (1998-1999) which provides for Kosovo to remain in Serbian occupation.
Russia is Warning
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has warned his U.S. counterpart Condoleezza Rice that Kosovos declaration of independence endangers international stability, the Foreign Ministry said on Tuesday.
After Kosovos declaration by US Belgrade is recalling its ambassador from Washington and states that from now on its relations with the countries that have recognized Kosovos independence will not be the same.
Turkey president Mr. Erdogan branded Kosovos independence as a step for peace and stability in Balkans.
Translated by Sofia Gartziou
 Defeat of Musharraf's Party19 Feb 2008 09:21:00
Sources: ÁNA-ÌPA, Reuters, BBC
First unofficial results indicate that Pakistani opposition parties are well ahead in the countrys elections, held yesterday. According to television networks, many high profile members of the ruling PML-Q party, supporting President Musharraf, including party president and former prime-minister, Chaudry Shujaat Hussain were reported to lose their seats in the Parliament.
Unofficial and provisional results showed big gains for PML-N of former prime-minister, Nawaz Sharif and PPP of assassinated opposition leader Benazir Bhuttos parties. The latest figures appeared to give both parties about 30% of the vote and more than 50 seats each, with Benazir Bhuttos party slightly ahead. PML-Q party and its close allies, supporting president Musharraf appear to have won only 57 seats in 241 electoral districts and even if they win the total of the rest districts they can not win the 272 seats majority.
Most official counts will be declared later on Tuesday, however, supporters of opposition parties have been celebrating in the streets of. Lahore, Rapalwindi and Karachi.
Mr Musharraf insists he will accept the result, regardless of who wins. "The result will be the voice of the nation and whoever wins we should accept it - that includes myself," said Mr Musharraf.
Violent Incidents on Election Eve
In the meantime, 15 people were killed, among them a candidate of the opposition, and 100 injured in violent incidents on the eve of parliamentary and regional elections. Six people were killed during exchange of fire between supporters of opposition parties in Penzamb province, two others in similar incidents in Sid and one person in Karak, in the north-western part of the country. Also unknown people fired against a car carrying a candidate of former prime-minister, Nawaz Sherif party, killing opposition candidate Asif Asraf and 4 of his relatives. Luckily bomb attacks did not continue, however, fears of violence had dissuaded many of the countrys 80 million eligible voters from leaving their homes, and voter turnout was estimated to be less than 40%.
Translated by Chrisanthi Sarantis
 Guideline by Ministry of EconomyTime for Income Tax Statements
19 Feb 2008 15:23:00
By Anna Kourti
Sources: ÁNA-ÌNA, www.taxisnet.gr
The time for the submission of income tax applications has already started for some rate payers from January 2. New categories of expenses have been added this year which are going to be deducted from incomes. Ministry of Economy has issues a Guideline for citizens in order to facilitate them to complete their Income Tax statements which are going to be submitted until 2008. It will include helpful advice and answers to basic questions expressed by ratepayers regarding Tax Identification Numbers, dates of submission, costs and all papers needed attached with the statement. In parallel, the electronic service TAXISnet for VAT Statement submission will work from February 11, as it was announced my Ministry of Economy. So far, 52.719 electronic submissions have been made.
Translated by Sofia Gartziou
 Obama Looks Set to WinPrimaries in Wisconsin and Hawaii
19 Feb 2008 10:21:00
Democrats in Wisconsin and Hawaii make their choices on Tuesday in a heated presidential battle, with Hillary Clinton hoping to snap Barack Obamas winning streak ahead of big contests in March. The pairs hard-fought nominating duel featured a sharp exchange on Monday over Obamas uncredited use of a political allys speech lines, the latest in a series of sometimes harsh charges between the two White House contenders. Public opinion polls show Obama and Clinton in a tight race in Wisconsin, where Obama aims to extend his string of eight straight victories in Democratic nominating contests. Obama, a Hawaii native, is a heavy favorite in that state.
 Italian Top Mobster Arrested19 Feb 2008 09:29:00
Italian police have arrested the leader of the powerful Calabrian mafia, Interior Minister Giuliano Amato said on Monday. Pasquale Condello, 57, was captured in a house in Reggio Calabria in the southern tip of mainland Italy, police said. There were no further details of his capture. Amato said in a statement that Condello was "the number one boss of the Ndrangheta", the name of the Calabrian mafia which, largely through drug trafficking, has become far more powerful than the more famous Sicilian mob. Police called Condello "the Provenzano of Calabria", Amato said, a reference to Bernado Provenzano, the Sicilian "boss of bosses" who was arrested in April 2006.