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Macedonian Press Agency: News in English, 99-06-01

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.


MACEDONIAN PRESS AGENCY NEWS IN ENGLISH
Thessaloniki, June 1, 1999

SECTIONS

  • [A] NATIONAL NEWS
  • [B] INTERNATIONAL NEWS

  • NEWS HEADLINES

    [A] NATIONAL NEWS

  • [01] TODAY'S SCHEDULE OF GREEK POLITICAL LEADERS
  • [02] NEW "TRANSBALKAN" TRAIN LINKS THESSALONIKI TO BALKAN CITIES
  • [03] KOSOVAR REFUGEES FLY FROM THESSALONIKI TO AUSTRALIA
  • [04] ECUMENICAL PATRIARCH IN THESSALONIKI
  • [05] SOCIALIST YOUTH ORGANIZATIONS OF BALKANS CALL FOR COOPERATION
  • [06] REPPAS: THE LEGALIZATION POLICY FOR IMMIGRANTS WILL CONTINUE
  • [07] REPPAS ON THE OCALAN TRIAL
  • [08] THE FIRST NAMES OF MISSING KOSSOVO REFUGEES APPEARED ON ABNA'S INTERNET WEB SITE
  • [09] PAPATHEMELIS: THE OCALAN STATEMENTS CAN NOT BE CREDIBLE
  • [10] THE EU SUMMIT MEETING WILL BE HELD IN KOLON ON THURSDAY
  • [11] THE ECUMENICAL PATRIARCH VISITED THE MUNICIPALITY OF NEAPOLIS
  • [12] FIVE TONS OF FROZEN POULTRY TAINTED WITH DIOXIN WERE DISCOVERED BY THE BELGIAN AUTHORITIES
  • [13] BLACK SEA BANK LAUNCHES ITS OPERATION TODAY
  • [B] INTERNATIONAL NEWS

  • [14] CHERNOMIRDIN-AHTISAARI-TALBOTT TO MEET AGAIN
  • [15] 10 PEOPLE DIED DURING LAST NIGHT'S NATO'S ATTACK ON YUGOSLAVIA
  • [16] OCALAN TRIAL RESUMES
  • [17] RUSSIAN CABINET APPROVES NEW ECONOMIC MEASURES
  • [18] HUNGARY-BASED US AIRCRAFTS HAVE BEGAN RAIDS AGAINST YUGOSLAVIA
  • [19] MINSK: STAMPEDE KILLS 53 PEOPLE
  • [20] 10,4 MILLION UNEMPLOYED PEOPLE IN RUSSIA
  • [21] BELGRADE CLAIMS TO HAVE SHOT DOWN 190 NATO PLANES
  • [22] ARMENIA: COALITION FOR UNITY WINS 52% IN ELECTIONS
  • [23] SERBIA'S ELECTRICITY NETWORK SUFFERED SEVERE DAMAGE
  • [24] BERISHA BLAMES THE ALBANIAN POLICE FOR THE DEATH OF THE GREEK HOSTAGE
  • [25] BELGRADE MAINTAINS THAT IT HAS STRUCK A SEVERE BLOW ON KLA
  • [26] CHERNOMYRDIN: THERE IS WILL FOR THE SOLUTION OF THE YUGOSLAV CRISIS
  • [27] A MILITARY HELICOPTER CRASHED IN THE SEA OF MARMARA
  • [28] MILO DJUKANOVIC TO VISIT FYROM
  • [29] RUSSIAN FOREIGN MINISTER ON A THREE-DAY VISIT TO CHINA

  • NEWS IN DETAIL

    [A] NATIONAL NEWS

    [01] TODAY'S SCHEDULE OF GREEK POLITICAL LEADERS

    The leaders of the greek political parties continue their pre- electoral appearances, only two weeks before the European elections are held.

    Prime minister Kostas Simitis will give an interview which will be broadcasted by state channel "NET" at 9.00 p.m..

    President of the main opposition party "New Democracy", Kostas Karamanlis will hold a press conference at "Zappeion", open to all media.

    Leader of "Political Spring", Antonis Samaras will also hold a press conference at "Zappeion" at 3.pm, where he intends to talk about every subject concerning internal and foreign political affairs of Greece.

    [02] NEW "TRANSBALKAN" TRAIN LINKS THESSALONIKI TO BALKAN CITIES

    The Greek Railway Organization (OSE) will run the international train "TRANSBALKAN" from today and until November 2nd, in order to facilitate passenger transport outside Greece, that has been hampered because of the Kosovo crisis.

    The international train 460/461, will link Thessaloniki to Sofia, Bucharest and Budapest, and will replace the 334/335 train which is withdrawn from circulation due to the situation in Yugoslavia.

    [03] KOSOVAR REFUGEES FLY FROM THESSALONIKI TO AUSTRALIA

    Another 432 refugees from Kosovo have arrived this morning in Thessaloniki and are due to depart by airplane to Australia. The refugees arrived from FYROM at "Macedonia" airport by buses at 10.00 am and where transferred to special facilities created for them inside the airport.

    According to the representatives of the regional authorities of central Macedonia, who coordinate the operation of transporting the refugees, none of the 432 Kosovars has health problems.

    Employees of the "Macedonia" airport received the refugees offering the refreshments, cigarettes and toys for the children. Around 12.00 the Kosovars went aboard the "Quantas" airplane to Australia.

    During the last two weeks 1234 refugees have been transferred from to Australia via Thessaloniki. On June 17th another group of refugees will depart from Thessaloniki to Australia.

    [04] ECUMENICAL PATRIARCH IN THESSALONIKI

    Ecumenical Patriarch Vartholomeos continues today his tour in the prefecture of Thessaloniki, visiting the municipality of Neapoli.

    Afterwards he will visit the "Georgios Papanikolaou" hospital and mount Chortiatis.

    Mayor of Neapoli, Grigoris Hatzisavas will host a luncheon in his honor.

    [05] SOCIALIST YOUTH ORGANIZATIONS OF BALKANS CALL FOR COOPERATION

    The Balkan Socialist Youths have issued a joint resolution stressing the need of cooperation among the youth organisations of the Balkans and the creation of National Youth Councils' Forum, during their meeting at Chalkidiki held by the Youth of PASOK.

    The representatives of the Youths failed to issue a unanimous declaration on the war in Yugoslavia because of the differences between the Yugoslav and the Albanian representatives regarding the causes of the conflict that the responsibilities of each side.

    The secretary of Public Relations of the Youth of PASOK, Agamemnon Tatsis, stressed that the meeting itself was a very important event because it was the first time that representatives of young socialist organisations of every Balkan country have gathered around the same table, especially during war time.

    The vice president of the Union of the Socialist Youths of Europe, George Tsakos, also described the meeting as a positive step which will be followed by similar meetings to be held in Italy and Thessaloniki.

    The representatives of Yugoslavia presented data according to which some 1000 civilians were killed during the NATO bombings and another 5000 were wounded. The Alliance has lauched some 10.000 bombs against Yugoslavia and 3000 missiles destroying 300 schools and two universities at Nice and Novi Sad, where 500.000 citizens are left without water. According to the same data 500.000 people have been lost their jobs because of the war.

    The Albanian representatives noted that 250.000 Kosovars have been reported missing and spoke of accusations made by refugees regarding the atrocities of serb paramilitary forces against Albanians in Kosovo.

    [06] REPPAS: THE LEGALIZATION POLICY FOR IMMIGRANTS WILL CONTINUE

    The economic immigrants legalization policy will continue and all those who do not meet the necessary pre-conditions in order to become legal they will be sent back to their countries, stated Greek government spokesman Dimitris Reppas.

    Mr. Reppas added that all the immigrants who will remain in Greece would have to respect the laws, while on the tragic case in Elbasan, he stressed that every move in the police operation was made having as a priority the safety of the hostages. He also stated that the truth will come out when the findings of the joint committee will be released.

    [07] REPPAS ON THE OCALAN TRIAL

    Greek government spokesman Dimitris Reppas stated on the occasion of the trial of Kurdish PKK leader Abdullah Ocalan in Turkey that Greece's position is the same with that of the European Union.

    Mr. Reppas stated that there should a fair trial.

    [08] THE FIRST NAMES OF MISSING KOSSOVO REFUGEES APPEARED ON ABNA'S INTERNET WEB SITE

    Two hundred names of missing Kossovo refugees are at the disposal of those who are searching for missing people and can be found in the web site created on the Internet by the Association of Balkan News Agencies, ABNA.

    MPA general director Mr. Spiros Kouzinopoulos stated in a press conference that ABNA decided to create this web site in the extraordinary meeting of its general directors in an effort to assist in the reunion of families that were divided because of the tragic events taking place in the region of Kossovo.

    The web site that is being hosted by MPA began its operation on May 17, 1999 and already have been received the first messages of people who are looking for their missing relatives and friends. MPA has created the web site and data base and it will install two computer terminals in each of the two biggest refugee camps in Albania as soon as the necessary infrastructure is installed by the Albanian authorities, while later on it will do the same in the FYROM refugee camps.

    Mr. Kouzinopoulos stated that ABNA is in contact with the Greek Red Cross that will offer a satellite phone to deal with the problem of the limited telephone lines in Albania.

    [09] PAPATHEMELIS: THE OCALAN STATEMENTS CAN NOT BE CREDIBLE

    The statements made by Abdullah Ocalan in the opening of his trial in Turkey can not have any credibility because of the state he is in, commented to Macedonian Press Agency governing Socialist party of PASOK parliament deputy Stelios Papathemelis.

    Mr. Papathemelis stated that Ocalan is a changed, passive individual who acts under the influence of what he has gone through and continues to go through in the Turkish prisons which can range from taking hallucinatory drugs by force to torture. Therefore, said Mr. Papathemelis, the statements of an accused who is not free as a personality and is not in his normal condition as a human being, can not have any credibility whatsoever.

    [10] THE EU SUMMIT MEETING WILL BE HELD IN KOLON ON THURSDAY

    The institutional restructuring of the European Union and the crisis in Yugoslavia will be among the main issues of discussion in the European Summit meeting that will be held in Germany on Thursday and Friday with the participation of prime minister Kostas Simitis.

    Last week, Mr. Simitis in a letter addressed to the rest 14 EU leaders and governments underlined that this summit meeting is the last chance for the EU to intervene in a decisive way in the Balkan crisis.

    [11] THE ECUMENICAL PATRIARCH VISITED THE MUNICIPALITY OF NEAPOLIS

    Ecumenical Patriarch Vartholomeos continues his tour of the prefecture of Thessaloniki. At 10:30am this morning, he visited the municipality of Neapolis and officiated in the St. George cathedral.

    The head of the Christian Orthodox Church referred to the close ties linking Istanbul with western Thessaloniki, home for a large number of refugees from Asia Minor. The Ecumenical Patriarch also visited the Giorgos Papanikolaou Hospital.

    [12] FIVE TONS OF FROZEN POULTRY TAINTED WITH DIOXIN WERE DISCOVERED BY THE BELGIAN AUTHORITIES

    The Belgian authorities located 5 tons of frozen poultry, whole chicken and parts, contaminated with dioxin.

    The Belgian ministry of agriculture has warned the Greek authorities of the discovery as contaminated poultry has been exported to Greece.

    Greek agriculture undersecretary Mr. Fountas stated that thanks to the timely warning a large part of the contaminated poultry has been confiscated, while only a small quantity has been distributed to the market.

    However, he admitted that there could be a problem with the contaminated egg by-products used in pastry and in making mayonnaise.

    [13] BLACK SEA BANK LAUNCHES ITS OPERATION TODAY

    The official opening of the Black Sea Bank, which launches its operation today, will be held on June 21st in the presence of government officials from 11 member-states of the Black Sea Economic Cooperation Pact (BSEC).

    The BSEC aims at facilitating the transition of the member- states of the BSEC to the free market economy. Thus, funds from its budget will be channeled mainly into projects and programmes which will be co-funded by similar organizations such as the European Bank of Reconstruction and Development.

    Members of the BSEC are Greece, Turkey, Russia, Romania, Ukraine, Bulgaria, Azerbaijan, Armenia, Georgia, Moldavia and Albania.

    [B] INTERNATIONAL NEWS

    [14] CHERNOMIRDIN-AHTISAARI-TALBOTT TO MEET AGAIN

    Intense diplomatic efforts will resume today in search of a solution to the crisis in Yugoslavia. The Russian mediator Victor Chernomirdin will hold a meeting in Bonn with President of Finland Marti Ahtissari and the US Deputy Secretary of State, Strobe Talbott.

    Tomorrow Chernomirdin and Ahtissari will fly to Belgrade in order to hold talks with Yugoslav President, Slobodan Milosevic. We should note that Belgrade has announced that it accepts the principles of the plan drafted by G-8 Foreign Ministers.

    [15] 10 PEOPLE DIED DURING LAST NIGHT'S NATO'S ATTACK ON YUGOSLAVIA

    NATO continued the heavy bombing of Yugoslavia during the night. Serb media report new victims while the major part of the country plunged once again in darkness. NATO planes hit telecommunication, industrial and military facilities throughout Serbia.

    According to the serb media ten people were killed while more than 20 were injured when missiles hit a building in the city of Novi-Pazar. A post office was bombed in the same area, as well as a printing-office and a local television station.

    [16] OCALAN TRIAL RESUMES

    Abdullah Ocalan's trial proceeds today in Imrali island of Turkey. The Kurd leader told the court yesterday that he is ready to cooperate with the turkish authorities on the surrender of the Kurd rebels in Southeastern Turkey.

    He stressed that if he is not sentenced to death he will be able to persuade the rebels to quit the mountain war, in three months time. Ocalan also noted that he has not been tortured and apologized for the victims of war.

    [17] RUSSIAN CABINET APPROVES NEW ECONOMIC MEASURES

    The Russian cabinet approved, at a meeting called by prime minister Sergei Stepashin, the policy plans regarding the reforming of the Central Bank's structure as well as the country's relations with international financial institutions.

    The cabinet discussed proposals for meeting World Bank terms, in order to secure a new loan for Russia. Most of the proposals aimed at the restructuring of the country's economy.

    Representatives of the State Duma took part in the meeting, headed by Duma Budget Committee chairman, Aleksander Zhukov.

    [18] HUNGARY-BASED US AIRCRAFTS HAVE BEGAN RAIDS AGAINST YUGOSLAVIA

    Twenty four US F-18 jet-fighers that were deployed inside Hungary, have began raids against Yugoslavia since last week, according to sources from Taszar air base in southern Hungary.

    Meanwhile, on May 28th, the hungarian government announced that it will allow the deployment of 18 A-10 aircrafts, which are designed to attack tanks, at the same base.

    According to the ministry of Defense of Hungary, three A-10 aircrafts have arrived by today at Taszar base and the rest are due to arrive over the next days. Sixteen KC-135 mid-air refueling planes are already stationed at the airport of Budapest

    [19] MINSK: STAMPEDE KILLS 53 PEOPLE

    At least 53 people were killed last night in the Bellorussian capital and some 100 people were injured as a result of the stampede of 2000 persons who attended a beer festival.

    The crowd rushed into a subway to find shelter from the sudden shower and people, seized in panic, were stamped to death.

    According to Mikhail Mysnikovich, head of the presidential administration, 78 people have been hospitalized, while seven remain in critical condition.

    Bellorussian President, Alexander Lukashenko called the stampede "monstrous" and asked the relatives of the victims "not to blame or judge anybody".

    [20] 10,4 MILLION UNEMPLOYED PEOPLE IN RUSSIA

    The number of unemployed people in Russia rose by 2,3 million after the economic crisis that torments the country since August 1998, and according to the State Statistical Committee about 10,4 million people remained out of work at the end of April.

    Meanwhile the central bank of Russia announced a growth of 2,85% of the state's deposits of gold, which account to 11,6 billion dollars. However, gold deposits have decreased by 5% compared to their amount at the beginning of the year.

    [21] BELGRADE CLAIMS TO HAVE SHOT DOWN 190 NATO PLANES

    The Deputy Secretary of Information of the Serb government, Radmila Visic, claimed that Yugoslavia has shot down more that 190 NATO aircrafts since March 24, when the Alliance launched air raids against the country, in her interview at the Macedonian Press Agency.

    Mrs Visic accused NATO of concealing the actual number of its losses during the two-month war in Yugoslavia and reassured that when the hostilities are over, the Alliance will be forced to inform first of all the mothers of the dead pilots, who still don't know the truth.

    "Of course Americans and the rest of the NATO allies do not admit that they lost 190 aircrafts and they will not admit it in any of their briefings. However, even in the Internet, in NATO web- site there are data that confirm this number and verify the claims of the Yugoslav army", said Mrs. Visic. "I am certain that when this is all over, then the international public opinion and especially the American one will face the Vietnam syndrome and then the mothers of the pilots of the shot down planes will be informed that their sons where killed in the raids against Yugoslavia", she stressed.

    When asked about why the Yugoslav authorities do not present photos or videos that confirm their allegations of having downed 190 planes, the Serb minister noted that even NATO itself has admitted that Yugoslavia has a remarkable strategy.

    "It is part of are tactics, not to show the. I, like a good soldier, will not give more information on this. However, the fact that NATO has announced that it will bring another 1.200 planes against a country with small air force, doesn't that mean anything to you?".

    Mrs Visic also pointed out the ecological side-effects of the war against her country and stressed that "he ecological disaster cannot be refrained inside the borders of Yugoslavia and that right now NATO attacks all the countries around the river Danube".

    She also expressed her regret for all the Greek students that attended Yugoslav universities and were forced to disrupt their studies and return to Greece because of the war.

    She accused NATO of wanting to occupy Yugoslavia and shut off every free source of information while noting that the work of Greek journalists in her country is an objective source of information transmitted all over the world showing exactly what is happening there. "NATO is defeated in the war of information" she stressed.

    Mrs Visic accused the Alliance of causing the massive exodus of the refugees and said that the Albanians are free to chose where they want to go; they are free to go to Skopje, Albania or Greece or even return to Kosovo.

    [22] ARMENIA: COALITION FOR UNITY WINS 52% IN ELECTIONS

    The Coalition for Unity has won 52% of the votes in the elections held in Armenia yesterday, according to preliminary results issued by the Armenian Xentral Electoral Commission.

    The coalition is formed by the Defence minister's Vazgen Sarkissian's Republican Party of Armenia and the People's Party of Armenia, lead by Karen Dermichian.

    The Communist Party of Armenia received 16.33% of the votes, the Armenian Revolutionary Federations received 9.25% and the Right Coalition Block received another 5.4%.

    The premier's Vazgen Manoukian, National Democratic Union failed to surmount the 5% minimum required for representation in the parliament, while voter turnout was 55.7 percent.

    [23] SERBIA'S ELECTRICITY NETWORK SUFFERED SEVERE DAMAGE

    The Yugoslav authorities encounter great difficulties in their efforts to restore the damages in the electricity network of Serbia, caused by NATO missiles.

    The state electricity company of Serbia announced that in the last 24 hours the electricity network has suffered the worst blow since the beginning of the Alliance's raids against Yugoslavia.

    NATO missiles have bombed the power distribution stations at Nice, Obrenovac and Novi Sad as well as the two largest power distribution stations of Serbia located outside Belgrade, while aircrafts attacked power towers between Obrenovac and Belgrade.

    Late last night the authorities managed to restore the electricity supply of areas in the center of Belgrade while the largest part of Voivodina and the suburbs of the yugoslavian capital remain without power.

    [24] BERISHA BLAMES THE ALBANIAN POLICE FOR THE DEATH OF THE GREEK HOSTAGE

    Albanian opposition Democratic Party leader Sali Berisha blames the Albanian police for the death of the Greek hostage during the storming of the bus near Elbasan, pointing out that the tragic incident should not become an excuse for the deportation of Albanian illegal immigrants from Greece.

    Mr. Berisha condemned the way in which the Albanian police handled the case of Albanian bus hijacker Flamur Pisli, putting in danger the lives of the Greek hostages he was holding and called for transparency in the clearing up of the case.

    He said that eight Albanian inmates have been killed while in police custody and those responsible for the crimes were never found which proves that human life has no value in Albania.

    Mr. Berisha also stated that if the Greek version is confirmed on who killed the Greek hostage, which is already proven by the existing video tape, it will be an act of shame for the Albanian government.

    [25] BELGRADE MAINTAINS THAT IT HAS STRUCK A SEVERE BLOW ON KLA

    The Pristina based Yugoslav army units struck a blow on the Kosovo Liberation Army, KLA, rebels who have tried to enter Kosovo from northern Albania, according to Belgrade.

    Based on a news report broadcast by the Serb state television last night, 2.000-3.000 Albanian separatists in cooperation with Albanian and NATO army officers have tried unsuccessfully to widen the front between Djakovica and Vrdnik to create a safe corridor to Kossovo.

    The Serb state television also broadcast footage with the military outposts of Kosara and Gorozup, pointing out that in spite of the allegations of the Albanian mass media that KLA has seized the two outposts, the Yugoslavs continue to control the region and defend the country's borders with Albania.

    [26] CHERNOMYRDIN: THERE IS WILL FOR THE SOLUTION OF THE YUGOSLAV CRISIS

    Russian mediator Victor Chernomyrdin, Finnish president Maarti Ahtisaari and US assistant secretary of state Strobe Talbott discuss in Bonn today the stance they will adopt toward Belgrade.

    Mr. Chernomyrdin stated before leaving Moscow that there is will from all sides for a political solution to the Yugoslav crisis. Mr. Chernomyrdin and Mr. Ahtisaari will visit Belgrade tomorrow for talks with Yugoslav president Slobodan Milosevic.

    [27] A MILITARY HELICOPTER CRASHED IN THE SEA OF MARMARA

    A military helicopter, possibly Turkish, crashed in the Sea of Marmara today and according to available information, 2 people were killed and 4 were injured.

    The causes of the crash are being investigated.

    [28] MILO DJUKANOVIC TO VISIT FYROM

    Montenegrin President Milo Djukanovic is to pay an official visit to FYROM today according to officials of the Foreign Ministry of FYROM.

    Mr Djukanovic is expected to meet Foreign Minister of FYROM, Alexander Dimitrov as well as President Kiro Gligorov. This would be the first visit of the Montenegrin President to FYROM.

    [29] RUSSIAN FOREIGN MINISTER ON A THREE-DAY VISIT TO CHINA

    Russian Foreign Minister Igor Ivanof arrived in China today for a three-day visit, during which he will meet with Chinese President Jiang Zemin.

    Ivanov is to lay the groundwork for a summit to be held this autumn between Jiang Zemin and Russian President Boris Yeltsin, according to the Russian Foreign Ministry.

    Mr. Ivanov will also hold talks with his Chinese counterpart Tang Jiaxuan, concerning the Kosovo crisis while a joint communique is to be issued criticizing the NATO raids against Yugoslavia.

    Russian Foreign Minister will also meet with Chinese premier Zhu Rongji to discuss the yugoslav problem as well as the relations between Russia, China and India.


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