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The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English, 08-02-23

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

From: The Hellenic Radio (ERA) <>


  • [01] Hard Diplomatic Bargain
  • [02] G. Papandreou's Interview with NEA
  • [03] Runoff Vote in Cyprus on Sunday
  • [04] Electing SYN Party's Secretary
  • [05] B. Spears will soon See her Children
  • [06] Uranium Enrichment Plant
  • [07] Turkish Troops Pound N. Iraq

  • [01] On the FYROM Name Row

    Hard Diplomatic Bargain

    23 Feb 2008 14:16:00

    By Katerina Ioannidou

    Sources: - 105.8

    The diplomatic marathon between Athens and Skopje, so that the two sides can take a stand on Nimetzs proposals concerning the name dispute, is in full swing. Talking from the Parliament podium, Greeces head of Government Kostas Karamanlis issued a stern message to FYROM. Karamanlis made it plain that unless a mutually acceptable solution to the problem is found, FYROM will not be invited to enter NATO. Prompted by an interpellation filed by the LAOS (Popular Orthodox Rally) George Karatzaferis, the Greek Prime Minister stressed that the neighbouring country has to prove that it wishes to become a real ally and respects the principles governing international law. Touching on the Kosovo row, Karamanlis argued that the Greek Government will take into serious consideration the nations interests and regional stability before deciding on the recognition issue, while he disconnected the matter from Cyprus. The Greek Foreign Ministry, which has assigned Greeces negotiator Adamantios Vassilakis to travel to New York and gives Greeces answer to the UN envoy, is getting ready to address outcome that will result from the talks.

    Socialist President George Papandreou voiced his objection to a solution based on a double name in his interview with paper Ta Nea. Branding it as the worst possible development, he blasted the Government for being willing to negotiate such a proposal.

    Aleka Papariga, the general secretary of the Greek Communist Party (KKE), estimated that Athens will exercise its veto right. On the other hand, Alexis Tsipras, President of the Coalition of the Radical Left (SYN), said, "The partys policy on the FYROM issue was proved right."

    In FYROM, on the other hand, the political leaders are to hold a fresh session on Sunday to determine the countrys stance on Matthew Nimetzs proposal.

    Translated by Areti Christou

    Related News:

    No Solution-No Invitation

    [02] He Spoke about Everything

    G. Papandreou's Interview with NEA

    23 Feb 2008 12:47:00

    By Katerina Ioannidou

    Sources: NET-ANA-MPA

    In his interview with paper Ta Nea, PASOK (Panhellenic Socialist Movement) President George Papandreou touched on the partys future, the possibility for a cooperation with the Coalition of the Radical Left (SYN), the corruption cases and the developments in the Balkans. Papandreou stressed that PASOK is against a double name and accused the Government of "being willing to negotiate the proposal calling for a double name." Shifting his focus on the breakaway province of Kosovo, he branded unilateral recognitions as the worst possible development, and urged the Government to refrain from such a move. As for Cyprus, the Socialist leader championed a UN-sponsored solution and pledged to stand by the side of the new Cypriot Presidency both as PASOK and Socialist International President. Distancing himself from former Prime Minister Kostas Simitis, who had backed a special EU-Turkey partnership, Papandreou underlined that Turkey has the right to earn an EU membership, as well as the obligation to commit itself to the pledges she made towards the EU member states. Asked whether PASOKs call for a committee of enquiry into the SIEMENS scandal was built upon a hidden agenda, Papandreou said that PASOK has nothing to fear and that it has never hesitated to take harsh decision when it comes to transparency.

    Translated by Areti Christou

    [03] Runoff Vote in Cyprus on Sunday

    23 Feb 2008 11:36:00

    By Katerina Ioannidou

    Sources: ANA/MPA, NET

    Fridays televised debate between the two hopefuls for the Cypriot Presidency, Ioannis Kasoulides and Demetris Christofias, put an end to the pre-election campaign for the runoff vote. Commenting on the debate, journalists and analysts said it was probably the best ever staged. The two candidates unveiled their positions and in the end they shook hands. Interpreting this move, Christofias said they wished each other good luck, while Kasoulides claimed he thought it right to reach out to his rival.

    Two of the five television channels that aired the debate carried out televotings, whose results were rather conflicting. The televoting conducted by ANT1 Cyprus showed that 50.5% of the participants gave a positive rating to Christofias, as opposed to 49.5% for Kasoulides, whereas the one carried out by SIGMA television, Kasoulides rate stood at 73% and Christofias at 27%.

    The Two Hopefuls

    Kasoulides key message was that Cyprus future rests within Europe and the alliances that have to be forged with the European nations, so that the island state gains backing with regard to the Cyprus standoff and adjusts to the European economy model that bolsters free market. Kasoulides appeared as the leader who can implement a modern European model, as opposed to Christofias.

    Christofias, on the other hand, dismissed Euro-skepticism, drew his attention to the support he got by the European Socialists and portrayed himself as the man who can guarantee that his programme will not be reduced to mere pledges.

    Another issue that was brought up during the debate was the Cyprus Archbishop Chrysostomos involvement in the pre-election campaign and his backing to Ioannis Kasoulides. Christofias blasted the Archbishop and claimed that Kasoulides undertook certain obligations towards the Prelate of the Cypriot Church, especially with regard to the appointment of the Education Minister. Kasoulides dismissed the accusations, saying he pledged nothing.

    Translated by Areti Christou

    Related News:

    Cyrpiot Pre-election Campaign Ends

    [04] Electing SYN Party's Secretary

    23 Feb 2008 11:02:00

    By Katerina Ioannidou

    Sources: - 105.8

    SYN (Coalition of the Radical Left) President Alexis Tsipras speech opened the session of the partys Central Political Committee, which convened to elect a new party secretary. Tsipras slammed Greeces two major political parties for their refusal to strike a blow to corruption. He also blasted Aleka Papariga, the general secretary of the Greek Communist Party (KKE), for opposing a KKE-SYN cooperation, proposing, at the same time, leftists join forces to make up a big, united Left. Touching on the crucial foreign affairs, the SYN leader claimed that the Greek Government should not even think about recognising the breakaway province of Kosovo just to gain some lead regarding the FYROM name row in return. He also said that SYN was vindicated when it proposed some 16 years ago that a geographically determined composite name is the only realistic solution to the problem with FYROM.

    Translated by Areti Christou

    [05] Los Angeles, US

    B. Spears will soon See her Children

    23 Feb 2008 15:58:00

    By Katerina Ioannidou

    Sources: NA-PA

    Britney Spears will soon see her children after negotiations with her former husbands, Kevin Federline attorney Mark Vincent Kaplan who told People magazine that the 26 year old singer will be allowed to see her two sons, Sean Preston, two, and Jayden James, one.Spears hasnt seen her two boys since her first breakdown on January 3rd. Spears was placed under her fathers control on February, 1st, a measure of American courts when an adult can not look after himself.

    Translated by Chrisanthi Sarantis

    [06] Brazil- Argentina to Create

    Uranium Enrichment Plant

    23 Feb 2008 15:40:00

    By Katerina Ioannidou

    Sources: NA-PA

    In Buenos Aires today, Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva and Argentine President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner announced the neighbouring countries plan to create a joint company to enrich uranium for nuclear power, thus strengthening their cooperation in the nuclear sector.

    Brazilian Foreign Minister, Celso Amorim said that the each country will initially work on the grounds of its technology. The two largest countries in South America will also set up a committee aimed to develop a nuclear reactor. Energy issues dominated the agenda during the visit of Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula to Buenos Aires. Today he had successive meetings with his Argentinian counterpart, Cristina Kirchner as well as with Bolivian President, Evo Morales. Bolivia exports natural gas to both countries, however, it has difficulty in meeting demand. Argentina, which exports nuclear technology worldwide, is the first country in south America to develop nuclear industry. On his part, the Brazilian president last year decided to push forward his countrys nuclear program. Brazil holds one of the world largest uranium reserves.

    Translated by Chrisanthi Sarantis

    [07] Turkish Troops Pound N. Iraq

    23 Feb 2008 13:56:00

    By Katerina Ioannidou

    Sources: NET, ANA/MPA, AFP

    Turkish artillery kept pounding Kurdish rebels until late on Friday. People living near the border with Turkey said the exchange of fire went on for quite some time and that jet and helicopters did not stop flying over their heads. The ground offensive the Turkish troops unleashed in northern Iraq on Thursday night has claimed the lives of 40 Kurdish rebels and five solders. It is the fiercest military operation Turkey has mounted in northern Iraq in the last decade. The government of the Iraqi Kurdistan blamed the operation on the USA. A government spokesman said that Turkey would never violate Iraqs territorial integrity without the US consent. "The regional government condemns these military operations and the air bombing targeting infrastructure," he told AFP. "The problem will not be solved militarily, but rather by peaceful means," he concluded.

    In the meantime, rockets hit Saturday Baghdads "green zone" where the US embassy and the seat of the Iraqi government are situated. There has been no report of damage or casualties so far. A US army spokesman confirmed the hit. Washington blamed Shiite cleric Moqtada al-Sadrs Mehdi Army militia for the attack. Sadr extended the ceasefire he declared last August by six months on Friday,

    Translated by Areti Christou

    Related News:

    Fearing Destabilisation

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