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Macedonian Press Agency: News in English, 99-12-08

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, December 8, 1999

SECTIONS

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

  • NEWS HEADLINES

    [A] NATIONAL NEWS

  • [01] PM CAN'T RULE OUT EARLY VOTE, "OPPOSITION WOULD BE TO BLAME"
  • [02] CABINET CONVENES TODAY TO DETERMINE STANCE AT HELSINKI
  • [03] COUNCIL OF HELLENES ABROAD TO ELECT ITS PRESIDIUM TODAY
  • [04] INTEREST RATES TO DROP NEXT WEEK, BANK GOVERNOR ANNOUNCES
  • [05] SAE RESOLUTION VIEWS CYPRUS PROBLEM AS TOP NATIONAL ISSUE
  • [06] HUNGARY'S DEFENSE MINISTER ARRIVES IN GREECE TODAY
  • [07] SAE SCIENTISTS FORUM DECIDES TO FORM SERIES OF SUBCOMMITTEES
  • [08] SAE'S CULTURE FORUM PROPOSES FOUNDING OF DIASPORA MINISTRY
  • [09] SAE WOMEN'S FORUM RESOLVES TO TAKE ACTION FOR THOSE IN NEED
  • [10] EXPATRIATE ENTREPRENEURS FORUM KINDLES NEW INTERESTS
  • [11] MPA TO HOST INTER-BALKAN CONFERENCE ON REGIONAL PEACE
  • [12] THE CANDIDATES FOR SAE'S PRESIDIUM AND REGIONAL COUNCILS
  • [13] TURKEY SHOULD PUT PRIORITIES INTO HIERARCHY, PROFESSOR SAYS
  • [14] THE OVERWHELMING MAJORITY OF THE PEOPLE HAVE A POSITIVE OPINION OF PRESIDENT STEPHANOPOULOS
  • [15] ANDREW ATHENS WAS RE-ELECTED TO THE SAE PRESIDENCY
  • [16] PAPANTONIOU: THE INFLATION INCREASE WILL NOT CONTINUE
  • [17] SCIENTIFIC CENTER OF STUDIES IN ALEXANDRIA ESTABLISHED BY THE GREEK COMMUNITY AND THE AEGEAN UNIVERSITY
  • [18] PROFESSOR DIMITROV SITORAN WILL BE AWARDED A HONORARY DOCTOR'S DEGREE FROM ARISTOTLE UNIVERSITY OF THESSALONIKI
  • [19] MORE LOSSES OF 1.45% IN THE ATHENS STOCK EXCHANGE
  • [20] ANDREW ATHENS: THE CYPRUS PROBLEM IS A PRIORITY FOR SAE
  • [21] RESOLUTIONS ADOPTED BY THE SAE WORLD ASSEMBLY
  • [22] PROPOSAL FOR AN IPEKCI PRIZE TO BE AWARDED TO THE TURKISH FOREIGN MINISTER
  • [23] SIMITIS WANTS TURKEY AND THE EUROPEAN UNION TO ADOPT A CLEAR STANCE
  • [24] REPPAS: WE WILL RESPOND WITH A "YES" OR A "NO" IN HELSINKI
  • [25] THE REGISTRY OF THE GREEKS LIVING ABROAD IS OF STRATEGIC IMPORTANCE
  • [B] INTERNATIONAL NEWS

  • [26] BRITISH FOREIGN SECRETARY: GREECE'S CONCERNS ARE JUSTIFIABLE - - - - - - - - - - - - -

  • NEWS IN DETAIL

    [A] NATIONAL NEWS

    [01] PM CAN'T RULE OUT EARLY VOTE, "OPPOSITION WOULD BE TO BLAME"

    The country could be led to early elections in the Spring should the parliament fail to vote on a president, according to Prime Minister Costas Simitis, who also stressed that if this were to happen, the opposition parties would bear the brunt of the blame.

    Addressing the 10th Symposium of the Hellenic-American Chamber of Commerce, Mr. Simitis blamed the opposition for refusing to reach a consensus over the re-election of incumbent president Kostis Stephanopoulos who, it should be noted, is favored by public opinion.

    The Premier also launched an attack against the main opposition party of New Democracy, stating that it is a party unsuitable for the role of opposition.

    Mr. Simitis vowed that the government will press on with its policy, supported on two axes: development and social justice.

    [02] CABINET CONVENES TODAY TO DETERMINE STANCE AT HELSINKI

    Prime Minister Costas Simitis is to chair a Cabinet meeting today where the government officials are to finalize the stance to be adopted by Greece during the forthcoming European Union Summit at Helsinki, particularly over Turkey's bid for candidacy to the EU.

    Foreign Minister George Papandreou has stated that he is not pleased with the course of discussion he has held with the European allies concerning Turkey's bid and has added that the ongoing negotiations are tough. Regarding the statement made by Turkish Foreign Minster Ismael Cem, who said that Ankara will abide by the EU's regulations regarding the Aegean, Mr. Papandreou assessed that Turkey has shown the will to resolve its pending issues with Greece within the EU.

    [03] COUNCIL OF HELLENES ABROAD TO ELECT ITS PRESIDIUM TODAY

    The Council of Hellenes Abroad (SAE) is to conclude the proceedings of the Third International Assembly, presently held in Thessaloniki, with the election of its 11-member presiding board today.

    Vying for the board's top seat are incumbent president Andrew Athens, with Constantinos Pappas, Evangelos Constantinou and Vasilis Gonopoulos being the candidates for the vice-presidency.

    Candidates for the secretaries seats are: Dimitrios Constantinides, Christos Karypides, Dimitris Kafkas, Costas Georganas, Kyriakos Maragoudakis, Dimitris Constantinou, Eleni Constantinidou, Ioannis Garefalakis, Gennadios Tsopozof, Alexandra Procenko, Komninos Haideytos, Panayiotis Souvantzis, Ioannis Damianides and Ioannis Maragos.

    [04] INTEREST RATES TO DROP NEXT WEEK, BANK GOVERNOR ANNOUNCES

    Addressing the Parliament's Economic Affairs Committee, the governor of the Bank of Greece Lukas Papademos announced last night that interest rates are to be reduced next week.

    Mr. Papademos added that the drachma's central parity is to be revaluated with the Euro, a move that will produce gains which will surpass any mishaps occurring as a result of market competition.

    [05] SAE RESOLUTION VIEWS CYPRUS PROBLEM AS TOP NATIONAL ISSUE

    The World Council of Hellenes Abroad (SAE), presently holding its Third International Assembly in Thessaloniki, has adopted a resolution describing the Cyprus problem as the top national issue.

    The resolution says that it is high time to end the protracted injustice against Cyprus and its people, and to implement all those resolutions that call for a just solution to the problem.

    "The Cyprus issue ranks first on the list of national issues," the SAE resolution adds.

    "The present status quo is unacceptable. The fait accompli will not stand. We strongly condemn the Turkish invasion and the continuing occupation of its (Cyprus') territory and the inhuman stand of Turkey on issues of the enclaved, the refugees and over the whereabouts of the missing persons, which violates every meaning of justice and the declaration of human rights. The international organization of ethnic Greeks abroad stressed that toward that end, "it (SAE) adopts and supports the resolutions of the United Nations; the UN General Assembly and the Security Council; those of the European Union; the G-8 group, the British Commonwealth and those of the Non- Aligned Movement".

    [06] HUNGARY'S DEFENSE MINISTER ARRIVES IN GREECE TODAY

    Hungarian Defense Minister Janos Szabo is embarking on a two-day visit to Greece today at the invitation of his Greek counterpart Akis Tsochatzopoulos.

    The two ministers will initially hold private talks while, tomorrow, Mr. Szabo will meet Parliament foreign affairs committee chairman and former FM Karolos Papoulias before being received by President Kostis Stephanopoulos.

    [07] SAE SCIENTISTS FORUM DECIDES TO FORM SERIES OF SUBCOMMITTEES

    The expatriated Greeks scientists who recently held a forum in Thessaloniki, within the framework of the Council of Hellenes Abroad (SAE) Third International Assembly, have resolved to create an international think tank in the form of various sub-committees.

    Specifically, the sub- committees will each deal with an area of science, education and technology, all aiming at bridging their fields of interest and activity abroad with Greece in the form of consultation, cooperation and collaboration.

    [08] SAE'S CULTURE FORUM PROPOSES FOUNDING OF DIASPORA MINISTRY

    Participants at a culture forum held within the framework of the Council of Hellenes Abroad (SAE) Third International Assembly in Thessaloniki have proposed the establishment of a Ministry of Hellenes Abroad, an essential upgrade from the present general secretariat, as well as the creation of a register listing distinguished Greeks active abroad in the fields of culture and arts.

    The forum is represented by an 11-member coordinating body, featuring officials from every corner of the world.

    [09] SAE WOMEN'S FORUM RESOLVES TO TAKE ACTION FOR THOSE IN NEED

    In a forum held within the framework of the Council of Hellenes Abroad (SAE) Third International Assembly, the world-wide coordinating committee of Greek Women has resolved to become actively and economically involved in areas of need, through examining the women's access to decision-making centers and review legislation pertaining to women's rights.

    The women's coordinating committee also issued a resolution protesting the exclusion of Women Olympic Champions from the SAE's honorary plaque.

    Moreover, the committee issued additional resolutions requesting the just solution to the Cyprus issue, the establishment of an international truce during the course of the Olympic Games and the return of the Parthenon Marbles to Greece.

    [10] EXPATRIATE ENTREPRENEURS FORUM KINDLES NEW INTERESTS

    In a forum held within the framework of the Council of Hellenes Abroad (SAE) Third International Assembly, expatriated entrepreneurs were encouraged to meet with commerce officials in their countries in order to propose trade missions to Greece and reviewed review Greece's role as a starting point for the development of economic cooperation with Balkan and Black Sea countries.

    Participants had the opportunity to discuss potential ventures in the sectors of industry, exporting, trade, banking, construction, energy, telecommunications, transportation, high technology and tourism.

    [11] MPA TO HOST INTER-BALKAN CONFERENCE ON REGIONAL PEACE

    The Macedonian Press Agency is to host a journalism conference, titled "the Prospect of Inter-Balkan cooperation after Kosovo: the Role of the Media", which will be attended by senior journalists from 60 of the Balkan region's largest media organizations.

    The event, to be held in Thessaloniki on December 10-11, will feature the participation of leading journalists from Albania, Bulgaria, Bosnia-Herzegovina, the Czech Republic, FYROM, Moldova, Romania, Slovenia, Turkey and Yugoslavia, as well as directors and chief editors from Greece's largest media.

    The strife-torn region of Kosovo will also be represented at the conference; the publisher of the "Koha Ditore" daily Beton Suroi will attend, as well as the director of the "Rilidia" daily Plerim Reka, the journalist-historian Skelcem Ratsa, and others.

    Moreover, the event will feature the participation of officials from the United Nations and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, as well as FYROM's alternate Minister of Press and Information Dragi Arsov and Albania's Minister of Press Musa Oulkini.

    The conference is taking place under the auspices of the Ministries of Press and Mass Media, Development, and Macedonia-Thrace, as well as with the assistance of the Thessaloniki Trade and Industry Chamber and the Northern Greece's Journalists Association.

    [12] THE CANDIDATES FOR SAE'S PRESIDIUM AND REGIONAL COUNCILS

    The Electorate Board of the Council of Hellenes Abroad (SAE) has announced the names of the candidates for the Presidium and five Regional Councils.

    Nineteen candidacies were submitted for the presidium's 11 seats, while there were 23 contenders for the six seats of SAE Europe Region, 18 for the six seats of SAE America Region, 18 for the four seats of SAE Oceania Region and seven for the four seats of SAE Asia- Africa Region.

    The candidates are as follows:

    President of Central SAE:

    Andrew Athens

    Alternate President of SAE:

    Costas Papas, Evangelos Constantinou, Vasilis Gonopoulos

    SAE Secretaries:

    Dimitrios Constantinides, Christos Karypides, Dimitris Kafkas, Costas Georganas, Kyriakos Maragoudakis, Dimitris Constantinou, Eleni Constantinidou, Ioannis Garefalakis, Gennadios Tsopozof, Alexandra Procenko, Komninos Haideytos, Panayiotis Souvantzis, Ioannis Damianides and Ioannis Maragos.

    REGIONAL SAE

    1) Oceania Region

    Vice-President -Coordinator of Regional SAE of Oceania: Tsouhadaris Thanasis, Vergayias Costas

    Advisers: Luka, Chrysa, Athanasiou-Ioannou Barbara, Douni Cosntantina, Devari Kiki, Salsman L. Anna, Yiavris Vasilis, Petrou Stavros, Robotis Spyros, Yiannoudes Panayiotis, Papademetropoulos Kyriakos, Toumazos Pavlos, Krasopoulaki Genny, Mantelis Nikolaos, Nikolakis Ioannis, Theodorakopoulos Pavlos, Polentas Christos.

    2) Regional SAE of America:

    Vice President - Coordinator of Regional SAE of America: Tomaras Christos, Stathakos Vasilis

    Advisers: Nikolaou Panos, Chryustodoulakou-West Eugenia, Grintzos Ilias, Stefanides Demosthenes, Karavias Edward, Komodronos Andreas, Markakos George, Gregoriades Christos, Mataragas Vasilios, Galatoulas Petros, Alevizatos Evangelos, Labrou eleni, Dimopoulos George, Kavalaris Haralabos-Thomas, Sourounis George, Stavrianides Panos.

    3) Regional SAE of Europe:

    Vice President - Coordinator of Regional SAE Europe: Aslanides Agathangelos

    Advisers: Staboualtzis Theodoros, Siskou Athanasia, Iordanides Kuriakos, Constantinides Theodoros, Kutsogiannakis Emmanuel, Kizas Constantinos, Nikolaides Moses, Aslanides Demetrius, Mischos Nicolaos, Rousou Maria, Prassas Christos, Amarantides George, Fotopoulos Sotiris, Adam Efstratios, Theodorides Vasilis, Pateras Diamantis, Saltouridou Despina, Karellas Theodoros, Gingis George, Thomaides Grigoris, Ulis Panayiotis, Varsani Victoria.

    4)Regional SAE of Asia-Africa

    Vice President - Coordinator of Regional SAE Asia-Africa: Tamvakis Stephanos

    Advisers: Vasilios Magdalinos, Charalambos Guvelis, Flora Varnali, Pavlos Theodorides, Maria-Despina Varakla, Barbara Papageorgiou.

    5) Regional SAE of Cyprus

    Vice President - Coordinator of Regional SAE Cyprus: Haris Sofoklides

    [13] TURKEY SHOULD PUT PRIORITIES INTO HIERARCHY, PROFESSOR SAYS

    In an address delivered before Istanbul's Bilgi University, assistant professor at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Department of Economics, Dimitris Mardas stressed that Turkey must place its strategic priorities into a hierarchy, in the context of its EU integration process.

    Addressing a conference organized by TESEV (Foundation for Economic and Social Life) which was also attended by Turkish Foreign Minister Ismael Cem, Professor Mardas stressed that Turkey has to classify its objectives and then focus its attention on the most important of them.

    " If Turkey's EU membership is a top priority for the country, then policies and practices (related for example to the conflict regarding Aegean sea, Cyprus etc.), which can lead to inverse results have to be revised. In the opposite case Turkey is expected to support a significant cost," professor Mardas stated.

    He added that so far as the Turkey-EU integration process is concerned, Turkey, whenever it becomes a candidate member, has to fulfill Copenhagen criteria of 1993. These are classified in two major groups. The political and economic criteria. As for the political criteria, there is an interesting discussion in this field, which finally shows that serious adjustments on behalf of Turkey have to take place. However, the fulfillment of economic criteria by Turkey, remains a difficult task to confine, because Turkish economy faces high inflation rate and interests rates, budget deficits etc. In that context Turkey has to correct all these imbalances, if it wants to follow EU. Turkey needs time for that.

    The Greek professor outlined Greece's economic policy, citing that the country has been applying austerity policies since 1990.

    "During the beginning of the '90's the budget deficit accounted 20% of its Gross Domestic Product (GDP), while now the correspondent rate is 1.2%. The inflation, which accounted 15%-20% during the beginning of 90's, has been reduced to 2,2% this year. Greece during 1999-2000 cannot depreciate or devaluate the drachma freely because it wants to meet Maastricht criteria," he stated.

    He further added that Turkey has to develop a similar economic policy, which must be compatible to the menu of economic criteria applying at the EU. This implies huge efforts which in turn can increase social domestic conflicts.

    "The EU integration process, referring to new candidates of Eastern and Central Europe inserts, in addition to political and economic criteria, an "accession partnership". This means that every candidate has to fulfill some specific criteria. Turkey has to face an " accession partnership" as well, which will include a series of conditions specific to the country. This does not mean that EU established a discriminatory process against Turkey. Simply EU points out some issues (for example the Aegean sea problem) which must be solved before Turkey's accession to the EU," he added.

    Lastly, professor Mardas referred to Mr. Cem, who analyzed his country's policy and stated that the Turkish FM has pointed out that the accession towards EU is a top priority of Turkey and not an obsession.

    "He also mentions that Turkey has other alternatives. Turkey can probably have many alternatives, following its politicians. Every state has alternative solutions, regarding its integration process to the international economy. However Turkey's market and the 4600 foreign firms which have invested in Turkey suggest only one alternative, which is its path towards Europe."

    [14] THE OVERWHELMING MAJORITY OF THE PEOPLE HAVE A POSITIVE OPINION OF PRESIDENT STEPHANOPOULOS

    The overwhelming majority of the Greeks have a positive opinion of president Kostis Stephanopoulos, who leads every other candidate for the Greek presidency based on the results of the opinion poll which was published today in the newspapers "TO VIMA" and "Karfi" and was conducted by the polling company "Metron Analysis".

    Based on this opinion poll, 63.3% of the people want the government to complete its term in power and only 22% are in favor of early elections.

    The opinion poll, that was conducted on November 2-16 on a sample of 1.608 people from all over the country, showed that 88.5% of the people have a positive view of Mr. Stephanopoulos and 5% have a negative one. With possible rival right-wing opposition party honorary president Konstantinos Mitsotakis, Mr. Stephanopoulos gets 75.4% compared to Mr. Mitsotakis' 15.5%. He also gets 66.3% compared to 23.7% of mayor of Athens Dimitris Avramopoulos and 84.7% compared to 5% of Coalition of the Left candidate for the Greek presidency Leonidas Kirkos.

    [15] ANDREW ATHENS WAS RE-ELECTED TO THE SAE PRESIDENCY

    Andrew Athens was re-elected to the World Council of Hellenes Abroad, SAE, presidency in a spirit of union of hearts among the Greeks who live abroad. Earlier, Theodoros Spiropoulos had withdrawn his candidature for the post.

    Mr. Athens spoke about SAE's efforts in the past four years and referred to the establishment of medical centers in the countries of the former Soviet Union. Referring to the Cyprus problem, he said that now is the time to take crucial decisions, stressing that the Cyprus problem will be resolved now or never. He also called on the Greeks of the Diaspora who can influence situations to do everything in their power for the solution of the problem.

    [16] PAPANTONIOU: THE INFLATION INCREASE WILL NOT CONTINUE

    Minister of national economy and finance Yiannos Papantoniou, speaking in the Hellenic American Chamber, characterized the inflation increase as an unpleasant development and expressed the view that its rise will not continue.

    Mr. Papantoniou stated that inflation has an external origin and will not affect the interest rates' de-escalation course. He said that vigilance is needed especially on behalf of the businessmen in order to keep the prices under control. Mr. Papantoniou stated that the course of the interest rates will not be affected by the inflation increase in November and added that the interest rates' cut can not be delayed as by December 2000 they must drop to 3.5- 4%.

    [17] SCIENTIFIC CENTER OF STUDIES IN ALEXANDRIA ESTABLISHED BY THE GREEK COMMUNITY AND THE AEGEAN UNIVERSITY

    A Scientific Center of Studies will be established in Alexandria, Egypt at the initiative of the Greek community in the city in cooperation with the Aegean University.

    President of the Greek community in Alexandria Stefanos Tambakis stated to MPA that the goal of the scientific center is to make the Greek cultural activity more intense.

    An initial agreement has been signed by the Greek community in Alexandria and the Aegean University representative and according to Mr. Tambakis, the center will start operating in the first four months of the year 2000. In the center will be taught languages such as Arabic, Aramaic, and ancient Greek, as well as comparative history and papyrology.

    [18] PROFESSOR DIMITROV SITORAN WILL BE AWARDED A HONORARY DOCTOR'S DEGREE FROM ARISTOTLE UNIVERSITY OF THESSALONIKI

    Distinguished Romanian professor Dimitrov Sitoran, who is a special adviser to UNESCO's general director, will be awarded a honorary doctor's degree from Aristotle University of Thessaloniki in a special ceremony that will take place in the Old Philosophy School Building this afternoon.

    After he receives his doctor's degree Mr. Sitoran will give a lecture on Peace and Political Freedoms: the Role of Universities. Professor Sitoran taught in the University of Bucharest and in other foreign universities, while he served as university department president, dean and deputy dean of academic affairs and international relations.

    Since 1983 he serves in UNESCO as director of the European Center for Higher Education, Higher Education Department director and special adviser to the UNESCO general director on higher education issues.

    As a UNESCO official he contributed greatly to the creation of the UNESCO institutions having as a goal the international cooperation and solidarity of universities and the rapprochement and understanding of the people through university studies.

    [19] MORE LOSSES OF 1.45% IN THE ATHENS STOCK EXCHANGE

    The general price index in the Athens Stock Exchange closed with losses of 1.45% at 5.271,42 today confirming the scenarios according to which it will drop under the 5.200 mark.

    The bad psychological state of investors and the panic moves made on behalf of the small investors exerted pressures on the general index which at some point recorded losses of 3%.

    [20] ANDREW ATHENS: THE CYPRUS PROBLEM IS A PRIORITY FOR SAE

    World Council of Hellenes Abroad, SAE, president Andrew Athens, in his speech today while presenting his bid for re-election to the presiding board of SAE, issued an appeal to the delegates participating in the 3rd World Assembly to fight for the solution of the national problems such as the Cyprus problem.

    Mr. Athens, who was the only candidate for the post of SAE's presidency after the withdrawal of Theodoros Spiropoulos' candidature, gave a special emphasis to the Cyprus problem and pointed out that words are not enough. He said that now is the right time for the solution of the Cyprus problem and that all the efforts of the Greeks abroad must be made toward this direction.

    Mr. Athens also referred to the initiatives of SAE for the establishment and operation of health centers in the new democracies that were formed after the breaking up of the former Soviet Union underlining that after the assembly proceedings are completed there will be a coordinated cooperation with Archbishop Anastasios of Tirana and All of Albania for the construction of a health center in south Albania where the Greek minority lives.

    [21] RESOLUTIONS ADOPTED BY THE SAE WORLD ASSEMBLY

    The priority of the Cyprus problem in the list with the issues of national importance is underlined in the resolution adopted in the 3rd World Assembly of the World Council of Hellenes Abroad, SAE which took place in Thessaloniki.

    The resolution hails the cooperation between Greece and Cyprus and calls for a fair solution to the Cyprus problem. It also stresses Greece's role as a factor of peace and stability in the Balkans, while it underlines that the name Macedonia or any of its derivatives will not be accepted to be included in a name for FYROM.

    SAE's World Assembly also adopted resolutions on education, cultural, and sports issues as well as on administrative and operational issues.

    The delegates of SAE's World Assembly also praised the stabilizing role of the Greek government in the Balkans and called on the Albanian government to respect the political, education and religious rights of the Greek minority

    [22] PROPOSAL FOR AN IPEKCI PRIZE TO BE AWARDED TO THE TURKISH FOREIGN MINISTER

    The members of the Ipekci Prize secretariat proposed that the special Peace and Friendship Ipekci Award be given to Turkish foreign minister Ismail Cem stressing that the award ceremony must take place as soon as possible either in Athens or in Ankara.

    Ismail Cem is a cousin of pacifist journalist Abdi Ipekci and the prize bearing his name has been established in his memory.

    [23] SIMITIS WANTS TURKEY AND THE EUROPEAN UNION TO ADOPT A CLEAR STANCE

    Greek prime minister Kostas Simitis demanded from Ankara and the European Union member-states to adopt a clear stance and assume their responsibilities for the promotion of Turkey's European candidature and the safeguarding of security in the region without tensions.

    Mr. Simitis briefed the governmental committee members on the situation created in view of the Helsinki EU Summit meeting. In statements he made afterwards, he stressed that Turkey's participation in the European enlargement procedures is a positive step stressing however, that its candidature will lead to problems and tensions if there are no clear positions on the problems that are still open.

    The prime minister stated that the framework of relations between the European Union and Turkey and between Turkey and Greece must be clearly defined and added that the rules of the game must be clarified regarding the Cyprus problem, the Greek-Turkish relations and any problem that may be created in the future.

    Mr. Simitis reiterated that it is to the interest of Greece and Turkey to have good neighborly and friendly relations. He said that it is evident that the periodical and repeated crises and tensions in Greece's relations with Turkey have as a result to maintain a climate of mistrust which is negative for both sides as it creates an uncertainty for the future. Therefore, said Mr. Simitis, it will be useful to have positive steps toward peace, good neighborly relations and cooperation between the two countries.

    [24] REPPAS: WE WILL RESPOND WITH A "YES" OR A "NO" IN HELSINKI

    We will respond with a "yes" or a "no" after weighing things and after taking under consideration the national interest, stated Greek government spokesman Dimitris Reppas commenting on the stance Greece will adopt on Turkey in the Helsinki EU Summit meeting.

    Our position will depend on the stance that will be adopted by the other sides, stated Mr. Reppas clarifying that it will depend more on the stance of the European Union and less on Turkey's stance. Mr. Reppas reiterated that the Cyprus problem is still an issue for Greece.

    [25] THE REGISTRY OF THE GREEKS LIVING ABROAD IS OF STRATEGIC IMPORTANCE

    The establishment of a registry of the Greeks living abroad which has been undertaken by the international organization "Istos" is characterized as an inspired and difficult effort.

    According to "Istos" representative, Mr. Yiannis Michopoulos, there are difficulties in the collection and categorization of the historical data as they are spread in registry offices and diplomatic authorities around the world as well as in history books.

    The registry of the Greeks abroad can contribute decisively in cases of mobilizations for national purposes, while it can also help in locating the businessmen who are active in different sectors of the economy in the countries where they live. It also has a more sentimental side as it can define the family- tree of the Greeks living abroad.

    [B] INTERNATIONAL NEWS

    [26] BRITISH FOREIGN SECRETARY: GREECE'S CONCERNS ARE JUSTIFIABLE

    Greece's concerns surrounding Turkey's bid for European Union candidacy have been deemed as "justifiable" by British Foreign Secretary Robin Cook, who, nevertheless, maintained that his country intends to support Ankara's EU prospect.

    In a radio interview broadcast by the BBC, Mr. Cook stated that "we believe Turkey should be recognized as a candidate country. However, it concurrently must understand, and its government has to realize, that we cannot embark on negotiations until it has fulfilled all the criteria pertaining to democratization, human rights and minority issues."

    The Foreign Secretary added that "Turkey has accepted these criteria and we want to cooperate with (this country) so as to secure their fulfillment and in turn embark on negotiations."

    Referring to Greece's concerns, Mr. Cook stressed that it is not yet clear to what degree Turkey's candidacy will be recognized at the forthcoming EU Summit in Helsinki, adding that Britain understands Greece's positions.

    "We understand these concerns and I hope that we will discover a basis on which we will all be able to proceed and unanimously recognize Turkey as a candidate," he said.

    Regarding Cyprus's accession course, the Foreign Secretary said that the British Foreign Office's position is that it would be preferable - and would make things easier for the EU - if the Cyprus issue was first resolved so that the island could enter the EU united.

    However, he added, in case this settlement is not achieved, if for example the Turkish side refuses to agree to a resolution, "then we mustn't view the settlement as a prerequisite for Cyprus's accession. The Republic of Cyprus deserves to have its petition reviewed on the basis of its worth."

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