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Macedonian Press Agency: News in English, 98-03-25

Macedonian Press Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Macedonian Press Agency at http://www.mpa.gr and http://www.hri.org/MPA.


Last Update: 21:31 GMT+2

SECTIONS

  • [A] GREECE
  • [B] EUROPE

  • NEWS HEADLINES

    [A] GREECE

  • [01] INDEPENDENCE DAY CELEBRATED IN GREECE TODAY
  • [02] THE PRESIDENT'S MESSAGE ON INDEPENDENCE DAY
  • [03] YASSER ARAFAT SALUTES GREEK INDEPENDENCE DAY
  • [04] EXTRA MEASURES TO BE TAKEN IN LIGHT OF RISING CRIME RATE
  • [05] COUNCIL OF EUROPE SECRETARY GENERAL ARRIVES IN ATHENS
  • [B] EUROPE

  • [06] COMMISSION: IN SPITE OF SACRIFICE, GREECE NOT READY FOR EMU
  • [07] CONTACT GROUP CONVENES TODAY IN BONN

  • NEWS IN DETAIL

    [A] GREECE

    [01] INDEPENDENCE DAY CELEBRATED IN GREECE TODAY

    Web Posted: 21:31 GMT+2

    Thessaloniki, March 25 (MPA)

    The 177th anniversary of Greece's independence from the Turkish rule was celebrated in Greece today, with fanfare and military parades in both Athens and Thessaloniki. The President of the Republic Kostis Stephanopoulos attended a Te Deum at the Athens Cathedral, along with members of the cabinet, leaders of political parties, armed forces leaders and Greek and foreign dignitaries.

    In Thessaloniki, Culture Minister Evangelos Venizelos attended the Te Deum at the St. Sophia Church.

    [02] THE PRESIDENT'S MESSAGE ON INDEPENDENCE DAY

    Web Posted: 21:31 GMT+2

    Athens, March 25 (MPA)

    The President of the Republic Kostis Stephanopoulos has given a message in honor of the Greek Independence Day, celebrated today, March 25.

    "Today, our freedom is safeguarded. However, our national, sovereign rights are questioned and we have the burden of overcoming economic problems and to take the road to development", he said.

    President Stephanopoulos expressed his certainty that all the productive and social forces will set the nation's well-being as the top goal.

    [03] YASSER ARAFAT SALUTES GREEK INDEPENDENCE DAY

    Web Posted: 21:31 GMT+2

    Athens, March 25 (MPA)

    The leader of the Palestine Authority Yasser Arafat has forwarded a letter to Greek President Kostis Stephanopoulos and Prime Minister Kostas Simitis in honor of the celebration of Greece's Independence Day.

    Mr. Arafat expressed his "particular esteem" for Greece's standing positions with regard to "the Palestinian people's fair struggle to put an end to its land's occupation by Israel..."

    [04] EXTRA MEASURES TO BE TAKEN IN LIGHT OF RISING CRIME RATE

    Web Posted: 21:31 GMT+2
    _The Public Order Ministry is to proceed to taking extra measures to combat the rising occurrence of criminal activity in the country. _ One of these measures is the beefing up of checks at the Greek-Albanian borders, as well as more frequent patrols in the large urban areas, such as Thessaloniki and Athens.

    Public Order Minister George Romeos has attributed the rise in criminal activity to the process of legalization of foreign immigrants in Greece. He did add that even with the recent spate of crimes, Greece continues to have the lowest crime rate in Europe.

    [05] COUNCIL OF EUROPE SECRETARY GENERAL ARRIVES IN ATHENS

    Web Posted: 21:31 GMT+2

    Athens, March 25 (MPA)

    The Council of Europe (CoE) Secretary-General Daniel Tarschys has embarked on an official, three-day visit to Athens today, in light of Greece's reign as president of the CoE, to start in May.

    Tomorrow, Mr. Tarschys is scheduled to meet with President Kostis Stephanopoulos and will be received by Prime Minister Kostas Simitis on Friday as well as the parliament president Apostolos Kaklamanis, members of the Greek representation at the CoE and the foreign ministry leadership.

    [B] EUROPE

    [06] COMMISSION: IN SPITE OF SACRIFICE, GREECE NOT READY FOR EMU

    Web Posted: 21:31 GMT+2

    Brussels, March 25 (MPA)

    Greece will not be ready to join the European Union's single currency on January 1, 1999,the European Commission announced today, since the country has yet to meet any of the targets contained in the Maastricht Treaty, which aims to align member states' economies ahead of the monetary union.

    The drachma joined the Exchange Rate Mechanism on March 14, when it was also devalued by 14 percent, in order to ease entry.

    The Commission also said that Greece had adapted its national legislation for economic and monetary union, including granting autonomous status to the Bank of Greece, the country's central bank.

    Commission President Jacques Santer welcomed progress Greece's socialist government had achieved in tightening up the economy.

    "Greece's economy is on the right track and the Greek government has the political will to implement policies needed for the drachma's entry into the single European currency," Santer said in Brussels.

    Economic indicators in recent years showed that the economy was improving. Strict adherence to the country's economic convergence program would enable entry into the single currency in the near future, he said.

    [07] CONTACT GROUP CONVENES TODAY IN BONN

    Web Posted: 21:31 GMT+2

    Bonn, March 25 (MPA)

    Significant decisions are expected to arise from the meeting of the "contact group" for the former Yugoslavia, held today in Bonn.

    In addition to the United States Secretary of State, and the Foreign Ministers of Great Britain, Germany, France, Italy and Russia, the foreign ministers of the Balkan countries are to also participate and will develop their positions on the Kossovo issue. Greece is represented by alternate foreign minister George Papandreou.


    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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