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Macedonian Press Agency: News in English, 98-01-16

From: Macedonian Press Agency <mpa@philippos.mpa.gr>

Macedonian Press Agency: News in English Directory

MACEDONIAN PRESS AGENCY NEWS IN ENGLISH

Thessaloniki, 16 January 1998


NEWS IN ENGLISH

[A] NATIONAL NEWS

[B] INTERNATIONAL NEWS


TITLES

[A] NATIONAL NEWS

  • [01] TURKISH DINGHIES SAIL NEAR IMIA ISLETS, GREECE ASKS U.S. TO INTERVENE [02] DEFENSE MINISTER TO ATTEND EUROPEAN SOCIALIST PARTY CONFERENCE

  • [03] FOREIGN UNDERSECRETARY: TURKEY NEEDS TO ABANDON DEAD-END POLICY

  • [04] ALTERNATE FOREIGN MINISTER COMMENTS ON US AMBASSADOR’S STATEMENT

  • [05] TERRORIST SUSPECT TO BE INTERROGATED TOMORROW

  • [06] TOURISM EXPECTED TO INCREASE IN 1998 AT HALKIDIKI’S RESORTS

  • [07] EXHIBITION OF MT. ATHOS TREASURES RE-OPENS IN THESSALONIKI

  • [08] THESSALONIKI TO HOST LEGAL CENTER FOR TRAINING OF BALKAN LAWYERS

  • [09] THE GOVERNMENT AVERTS THE TURKISH PROVOCATION CALMLY

  • [10] GREEK CABINET MEETING

  • [11] K.KARAMANLIS: NEW DEMOCRACY WILL WIN THE NEXT ELECTIONS


  • [B] INTERNATIONAL NEWS

  • [12] CYPRUS CONDEMNS ALTERATIONS OF PLACE NAMES IN OCCUPIED REGION

  • [13] BRITAIN’S F.M.: CYPRUS’ CANDIDACY FOR SCCESSION TO EU IS STRONGEST

  • [14] TURKISH-CYPRIOTS WILL NEED VISA TO TRAVEL TO ENGLAND FROM NOW ON

  • [15] US SECRETARY OF COMMERCE RICHARD DALEY IN ATHENS TOMORROW

  • [16] THE EU AMBASSADORS WERE BRIEFED ON THE TURKISH PROVOCATION

  • [17] NEW INTER-BALKAN CONFERENCE OF THE EUROPEAN SOCIALIST PARTY WILL BE HELD IN GREECE NEXT JUNE

  • [18] THE GREEK GOVERNMENT SUGGESTED THE HOLDING OF A MILOSEVIC- NANO-RUGOVA MEETING IN ATHENS

  • [19] ENCOURAGING MESSAGES FOR THE GREEK ECONOMY, ACCORDING TO “LE MONDE”

  • [20] THE ITALIAN PRIME MINISTER WILL VISIT SKOPJE ON JANUARY 21

  • [21] THE US SECRETARY OF DEFENSE WILL VISIT ANKARA IN MID FEBRUARY

  • [22] Á.ATHENS:THE COUNCIL FOR HELLENES ABROAD CONTRIBUTES TO GREEK- AMERICAN TRADE RELATIONS

  • [23] TURKISH CONSTITUTIONAL COURT BANS WELFARE PARTY


  • NEWS IN DETAIL

    [A] NATIONAL NEWS

    [01] TURKISH DINGHIES SAIL NEAR IMIA ISLETS, GREECE ASKS U.S. TO INTERVENE

    Greece’s Foreign Ministry has asked the United States Ambassador in Athens Nicholas Burns to arrange an American intervention in ending the Turkish provocation in the Aegean Sea.

    Mr. Burns was summoned to the foreign ministry yesterday by the head of the Foreign Ministry’s Greek-Turkish affairs department, Ilias Klis, who briefed him on the Turkish provocativeness in the Aegean.

    The request was prompted by yesterday’s massive violations of Greece’s air space by Turkish fighter jets, as well as the Turkish dinghies that sailed near the Imia islets.

    Alternate Foreign Minister George Papandreou stated that the Greek government, with cool-headedness, is averting every Turkish provocation, while Undersecretary of Foreign Affairs Dimitris Apostolakis said that the dinghies sailing near the Imia islets are a combination of a chance incident and a provocation. A.F.

    [02] DEFENSE MINISTER TO ATTEND EUROPEAN SOCIALIST PARTY CONFERENCE

    Greece’s Defense Minister Akis Tsochatzopoulos is to depart for Strasbourg today where he will attend the European Socialist Party's presidium conference, representing Greece’s ruling PASOK party.

    Among the issues to be discussed are coordinating the activities of the European Council, latest developments in southeastern Europe, preparing a conference on culture, set for Vienna in 1998,and preparing the ESP's congress.

    Mr. Tsochatzopoulos, who is the ESP’s vice-president, will be accompanied by Foreign Undersecretary Yiannos Kranidiotis. A.F.

    [03] FOREIGN UNDERSECRETARY: TURKEY NEEDS TO ABANDON DEAD-END POLICY

    Greece’s Undersecretary of Foreign Affairs Yiannos Kranidiotis called on Turkey to adopt a policy of cooperation and to change its dead-end tactic that distances this country from Europe.

    Mr. Kranidiotis spoke to the Macedonian Press Agency upon his arrival in Strasbourg where he met with the Secretary-general of the Council of Europe Daniel Tarschys.

    Referring to the “protocol” of a gradual integration of the occupied territory to Turkey, and which foresees the participation of Turkish-Cypriots in Turkish delegations attending international conferences, Mr. Kranidiotis stated that “this leads to nowhere. It is Turkey’s dead-end policy and the only thing it will achieve is to further isolate itself from the European family.”

    Moreover, Mr. Kranidiotis added that “it is to Turkey’s and the Turkish -Cypriot community’s best interest to cooperate with the Cypriot government so that Cyprus can become a member of the European Union the soonest possible. This is to equally serve the interests of both communities.” A.F.

    [04] ALTERNATE FOREIGN MINISTER COMMENTS ON US AMBASSADOR’S STATEMENT

    Greece’s alternate Foreign Minister George Papandreou stated that “the US’s position on the issue of the ten nautical miles in the Aegean Sea’s air space is known and we have heard it many times,” commenting on the statements made by the United States Ambassador in Athens Nicholas Burns, who is thought to have challenged the Greek territorial right within that air space.

    Meanwhile, on the same subject, government spokesman Dimitris Reppas stated that Athens would not allow any challenges of its policy, "according to which Greek airspace has extended to 10 nautical miles for about the past 60 years and no one has disputed this for very many years."

    Albeit noting that Mr. Burns had retracted some of his initial statements on the subject, Mr. Reppas said that Athens does not agree with the position of the US Ambassador, since "it does not conform with the principles of international law adhered to for decades in the region".

    Asked whether there was a problem with Mr. Burns, Mr. Reppas replied that the government had not been occupied with any issue concerning the ambassador.

    Mr. Burns has stressed that his recent statements regarding Greek national airspace are “an outright distortion by many Greek media outlets.”

    He stated that "a number of newspapers and later television and radio commentators alleged that I had proposed some kind of Aegean compromise that would reward sovereignty of the Kalogeri islets to Greece in exchange for a reduction of the air space that Greece has long claimed.

    “In fact, I neither said that nor would I ever imagine it. The two issues are not and should not be linked. The story had no basis in fact. But the result was a debate that could only sow suspicion, create distrust and detract from discussion of the real issues. We have serious issues to debate. Let's not waste our time and efforts on imaginary ones," he emphasized. A.F.

    [05] TERRORIST SUSPECT TO BE INTERROGATED TOMORROW

    A 28-year-old man, Nikos Maziotis, arrested on Tuesday, is expected to be charged for last month’s unsuccessful bomb attack at the Development Ministry, and will be interrogated tomorrow.

    Maziotis is thought to be the ring leader of the group calling itself the Anarchist Urban Guerrillas. Police believe this group is part of the Fighting Guerrilla Formation (MAS) which has claimed six attacks in the past 14 months, including the December 10 bombing of the office of Development Minister Vasso Papandreou.

    A fingerprint found on the bomb led police to Maziotis, a conscientious objector to military service who once went on a 57- day hunger strike for his release from jail. A.F.

    [06] TOURISM EXPECTED TO INCREASE IN 1998 AT HALKIDIKI’S RESORTS

    This year’s tourist season is starting off with the best outlook, since the first estimates, derived from up-to-date bookings, show a whooping 30 per cent increase in tourism from Britain, while the German aficionados of the scenic peninsula are expected be increased by 10% in comparison to last year’s German vacationers.

    According to the President of Macedonia-Thrace’s Tourism Offices Panayiotis Bamides, the region’s overall increase in tourism activity is expected to amount to seven per cent this summer. A.F.

    [07] EXHIBITION OF MT. ATHOS TREASURES RE-OPENS IN THESSALONIKI

    The exhibition "Treasures of Mt. Athos", currently being held at Thessaloniki's Byzantine Museum which was temporarily closed for maintenance work, will reopen on Tuesday, January 20.

    The exhibition, taking place as part of the events held during Thessaloniki's reign as Cultural Capital of Europe ‘97, was extended until April 30 by popular demand.

    Other cultural activities that have continued into the new year include an exhibit of traditional Turkish rugs at the old Archaeological Museum, to run until January 22, the exhibition "Alexander and the East" as well as other art exhibitions to be held until the end of this month. A.F.

    [08] THESSALONIKI TO HOST LEGAL CENTER FOR TRAINING OF BALKAN LAWYERS

    The Minister of Macedonia-Thrace Philippos Petsalnikos and the president of Thessaloniki’s Bar Association George Ignatiadis announced the creation of a center for further training of Balkan lawyers in European law, to operate within the framework of the Union of Balkan Bar Associations.

    The Thessaloniki-based center will be funded with GRD 15 million, granted by the Ministry of Macedonia-Thrace, within the framework of the Ministry’s efforts to promote inter-Balkan cooperation at all levels and to illustrate Thessaloniki’s role as a metropolis in Southeastern Europe. A.F.

    [09] THE GOVERNMENT AVERTS THE TURKISH PROVOCATION CALMLY

    The Greek government averts every Turkish provocation with calm, stressed deputy foreign minister Giorgos Papandreou. Undersecretary of defense Apostolakis stated that the presence of Turkish fishing boats near the islets of Imia can be characterized as both an accidental incident and a provocation.

    Minister of Aegean Ms.Papazoi suggested calm, while minister of justice Yiannopoulos condemned the Turkish provocation. Opposition party Coalition of the Left leader Nikos Konstantopoulos stressed that Turkey’s behavior does not comply with International Law.

    [10] GREEK CABINET MEETING

    The Greek cabinet meets today under the presidency of prime minister Kostas Simitis to discuss the ministry of health draft bill.

    The draft bill provides for deep changes in the way the welfare institutions operate in the country as well as, mergers or abolition of certain of them. The goal of the ministry of health is to balance the management of the financial resources of the institutions in question and the better use of the people working in the sector.

    [11] K.KARAMANLIS: NEW DEMOCRACY WILL WIN THE NEXT ELECTIONS

    Leader of main opposition party of New Democracy Kostas Karamanlis in an interview to a Greek private television channel expressed the certainty that his party will win the next elections, while he did not rule out the likelihood of early elections.

    The leader of the main opposition party also said that even if he loses in the elections he will continue to be psychologically balanced and calm.


    [B] INTERNATIONAL NEWS

    [12] CYPRUS CONDEMNS ALTERATIONS OF PLACE NAMES IN OCCUPIED REGION

    Cyprus’s United Nations representative Prodromos Vasilou has reported the massive alterations conducted by Turkey on geographical names in Cyprus’s occupied part, which will be addressed by the seventh United Nations Conference on Standardization of Geographical Names, which will convene in Tehran from 9 to 18 September.

    Mr. Vasiliou has reported that Turkey is proceeding to a systematic and organized effort to change placenames, in an attempt to grant a “Turkish character” to the occupied region and to destroy the area’s cultural heritage.

    He stated that such efforts constitute intervention in the affairs of an independent state and a blatant violation of the international law, as they violate the UN’s relevant resolutions.” A.F.

    [13] BRITAIN’S F.M.: CYPRUS’ CANDIDACY FOR SCCESSION TO EU IS STRONGEST

    British Foreign Minister and European Council President Robin Cook, on an official visit to Washington yesterday where he met with US Secretary of State Madleine Albright, has stated that there is no legal obstacle for Cyprus to become a full European Union member.

    “ On the contrary, we consider Cyprus as being one of the strongest candidates," Mr. Cook stated.

    "Cyprus has the highest standard of living among all the candidates. Naturally, it would be much better if Cyprus were to join the EU as one country. For this reason we encourage the Republic of Cyprus to include the Turkish-Cypriots in its negotiations team. Nobody has more to gain from the accession of Cyprus to the EU than those living in the Turkish-Cypriot sector of the island, because their standard of living is only a quarter of the corresponding one for the Greek Cypriots and they (the Turkish Cypriots) will have huge benefits from economic support by the EU," Mr. Cook added. A.F.

    [14] TURKISH-CYPRIOTS WILL NEED VISA TO TRAVEL TO ENGLAND FROM NOW ON

    The British government announced yesterday that the Turkish- Cypriots who wish to travel to England will need to acquire a visa from now on.

    In an announcement forward to the Turkish-Cypriot Airlines, the Turkish-Cypriot residents, who up to date needed only their passport in order to travel to Great Britain, will need to also have a visa, otherwise they will be subject to a fine.

    The decision to enforce the visa requirement was drawn after the British government realized that over 1,000 requests for political asylum were filed by Turkish-Cypriots. A.F.

    [15] US SECRETARY OF COMMERCE RICHARD DALEY IN ATHENS TOMORROW

    United States Secretary of Commerce Richard Daley is to arrive in Athens tomorrow, where he will hold talks with Prime Minister Kostas Simitis and other ministers on ways to increase trade between the two countries.

    Speaking in a press conference in Washington yesterday, Mr. Daley stated that he will also promote the participation of US firms in tenders announced by the Greek government for state procurements and named the sectors of telecommunications and environmental protection as areas of investment potential.

    Trade between Greece and the United States currently stands at $1.5 billion. A.F.

    [16] THE EU AMBASSADORS WERE BRIEFED ON THE TURKISH PROVOCATION

    The EU ambassadors to Athens were briefed today by Greek foreign ministry ambassador Elias Klis, director of the Greek- Turkish affairs office, who had met earlier with US ambassador Nicolas Burns and requested the US intervention to end the Turkish provocation that it is expressed both through the violations of the Greek air space and the presence of 9 Turkish fishing boats in the region of the Imia islets in the Aegean. Mr.Klis presented documents to the EU ambassadors that prove the violations of the Greek air space by Turkish fighter jets.

    Greek government spokesman Dimitris Reppas again rejected any dispute over the 10-mile Greek national air space limit.

    [17] NEW INTER-BALKAN CONFERENCE OF THE EUROPEAN SOCIALIST PARTY WILL BE HELD IN GREECE NEXT JUNE

    The European Socialist party presiding board adopted a proposal made by its vice-president Greek minister of defense Akis Tsochatzopoulos and its member Greek undersecretary of foreign affairs Yiannos Kranidiotis and decided to hold the new Inter- Balkan Conference of the European Socialist party and the Balkan Socialist, Social-democratic and Labor parties in Greece next June as a follow up to the conference that was held in Thessaloniki last April.

    In the meeting that was held today in Strasbourg it was also adopted a second proposal made by Mr.Tsochatzopoulos to hold in Greece next summer the European Conference on issues of employment, social security and the welfare state.

    [18] THE GREEK GOVERNMENT SUGGESTED THE HOLDING OF A MILOSEVIC- NANO-RUGOVA MEETING IN ATHENS

    The Greek government issued an invitation to Yugoslav president Slobodan Milosevic, Albanian prime minister Fatos Nano and leader of the Albanian-speaking population in Kosovo Ibrahim Rugova to hold a meeting in Greece in an effort to solve the problem and defuse the tension in Kosovo.

    The above were stated by deputy foreign minister Giorgos Papandreou in response to a question made in Parliament by a New Democracy deputy. The three leaders have not responded yet to the Greek proposal and the Greek deputy foreign minister expressed the hope that their response will be positive.

    Mr.Papandreou stated that Greece has undertaken significant diplomatic initiatives aimed at the solution of the problem in Kosovo and the safeguarding of peace in the wider region. He said that the principles that should condition such political practices are the respect of borders, human rights and minorities. Greece’s position coincides with that of the European Union which rules out the option of an independent Kosovo, while at the same time, it points out that there is a need to change the existing status quo and also, that the prospect of a wider autonomy should be open.

    Mr.Papandreou stated that the problem in Kosovo is not an isolated event but concerns Tetovo, Albania, Yugoslavia and the Balkans in general.

    [19] ENCOURAGING MESSAGES FOR THE GREEK ECONOMY, ACCORDING TO “LE MONDE”

    The determination of Greek prime minister Kostas Simitis to bring Greece back on the European track and follow the example of its EU partners by implementing a strict economic convergence plan, were underlined in an article of the French newspaper “Le Monde” on Greece, included in its annual edition “World Review - 1998 Edition”.

    In the article, under the headline “Before the Olympic Games”, it is stressed among others, that the main target set by prime minister Kostas Simitis after his victory in the September 1996 elections namely, Greece’s accession into the EMU on January 1, 2001, was sought through the modernization of the Greek economy.

    It is stressed that the government was able to curb inflation to 5% compared to 7,5% in 1996, while its goal for 1998 is 2,5%. The fight against inflation is the corner-stone of the economic policy followed by Mr.Simitis, mentions the article, and is based on the preservation of the “hard drachma” which the Greek authorities managed to protect from the turbulence caused all over the world by the current crisis in the Asian stock markets.

    [20] THE ITALIAN PRIME MINISTER WILL VISIT SKOPJE ON JANUARY 21

    Italian prime minister Romano Prodi will be on a formal visit to Skopje on January 21 at the invitation of his counterpart from FYROM Branko Tservenkovski.

    As it was announced in Skopje, the talks of the two prime ministers will focus on bilateral relations and the improvement of their economic cooperation.

    [21] THE US SECRETARY OF DEFENSE WILL VISIT ANKARA IN MID FEBRUARY

    US Secretary of Defense William Coen is scheduled to visit Ankara in mid February, while he is likely to travel to European capitals within the framework of the materialization of a wider US defense opening in combination with the developments underway in the central European region.

    According to information, the agenda of the US official during his visit to the Turkish capital will include the issue concerning the 3 frigates that are going to be delivered to the Turkish Navy and also, Washington’s reaction to Turkey’s request regarding the supply of the Turkish Air Force with 40 F-15 fighter planes, in response to the increased Greek interest in the purchase of the same type of planes.

    [22] Á.ATHENS:THE COUNCIL FOR HELLENES ABROAD CONTRIBUTES TO GREEK- AMERICAN TRADE RELATIONS

    The President of the Council for the Hellenes Abroad Andreas Athens arrived today in Athens, after an invitation by the US ambassador in Greece Nicholas Burns, in order to participate in the meetings the American Trade Minister William Daley will have with the Greek government officials tomorrow aiming at the development of tighter trade relations between the two countries.

    Mr Athens stressed that mr Daley intends to encourage Greece in finding the appropriate mechanisms to improve the Greek- American trade transactions and in developing favourable reforms in the fields of public finance, protection of copyright and telecommunication”.

    [23] TURKISH CONSTITUTIONAL COURT BANS WELFARE PARTY

    The Constitutional court of Turkey decided today that the pro- Islamist Welfare Party be dissolved The verdict strips the party’s leader Necmettin Erbakan, the ex-Minister of Justice Sevket Kazan and the deputies Ahmet Tekdal, Sevki Yilmaz, Hasan Housein Ceilan and Ibrahim Halil Celik of their seats in parliament.

    They as well as Soukrou Karatepe, according to a unanimous court decision, will not have the right to establish a new party or join another party for a five-year period. The assets of the Welfare Party will devolve to the government.


    Complete archives of the Macedonian Press Agency bulletins are available on the MPA Home Page at http://www.mpa.gr/ and on the U.S. mirror at http://www.hri.org/MPA/

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