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Macedonian Press Agency: News in English, 2001-06-06

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 6, 2001

SECTIONS

  • [A] NATIONAL NEWS
  • [B] INTERNATIONAL NEWS TITLES
  • [] NATIONAL NEWS
  • [01] GREEK, TURKISH DMs TO ESTABLISH RED-LINE PHONE
  • [02] STUDENTS BLOCK ARCHBISHOP'S HONORARY DEGREE
  • [03] LOCAL WORKERS GROUP RALLIES FOR TVX OPERATION
  • [04] INDUSTRIALIST PANAYIOTIS AGGELOPOULOS DIED
  • [05] FYROM DM ADDRESSES SEDM TALKS IN THESSALONIKI
  • [06] PREMIER LOOKS FORWARD TO ONE MORE TERM ONLY
  • [07] GREECE, US REAFFIRM EXCELLENT BILATERAL TIES
  • [08] PROSECUTOR ASKS FOR FILE ON SAUNDERS MURDER
  • [09] ECUMENICAL PATRIARCH AT AGGELOPOULOS FUNERAL
  • [10] HOUSE Oks "IN PRINCIPLE" BILL ON ORGANIZED CRIME
  • [11] BLACK ECONOMY RUNS RAMPANT IN GREECE
  • [12] POLITICAL SUPPORT TO FYROM'S GOV'T BY THE SE EUROPEAN DEFENSE MINISTERS
  • [13] LOSSES IN THE ATHENS STOCK EXCHANGE
  • [14] PRIME MINISTER SIMITIS WILL VISIT BERLIN
  • [15] DECISIONS ON THE BALKAN BRIGADE WILL BE MADE IN THE FALL
  • [16] WORLD CAMP FOR THE YOUNG GREEKS ABROAD
  • [B] INTERNATIONAL NEWS
  • [17] THE ELECTRONIC TRADE NETWORK IN SE EUROPE
  • [18] GREEK STUDIES DEPARTMENT IN THE NIS UNIVERSITY
  • [19] FYROM'S PM WANTS TO DECLARE A STATE OF WAR
  • [20] FIRE ON BOARD A GREEK PASSENGER SHIP
  • [21] THE FYROM AUTHORS ASSOCIATION HONORS A GREEK POET

  • NEWS IN DETAIL

    [A] NATIONAL NEWS

    [01] GREEK, TURKISH DMs TO ESTABLISH RED-LINE PHONE

    Defense Minister Akis Tsochatzopoulos met with his Turkish counterpart Sabahattin Cakmakoglu yesterday evening, on the sidelines of a meeting of defense ministers from southeastern European countries.

    Following their talks, Mr. Tsochatzopoulos announced that Mr. Cakmakoglu agreed to the establishment of a "red-line phone" in order to have direct personal communication every time issues appear which they consider to be important.

    Moreover, Mr. Tsochatzopoulos stated that he and his Turkish counterpart agreed to the holding of joint military exercises, in the framework of Partnership for Peace, in the Ionian Sea and the Adriatic coast with Greece's responsibility, and in the Black Sea with Turkey playing a leading role.

    The two defense ministers further agreed to promoting the confidence-building measures in the Aegean, within the framework of the initiative undertaken by NATO's secretary general Lord Robertson. Mr. Cakmakoglu invited his Greek counterpart to visit Turkey in September 26, in light of an international military materials exhibition. Following their talks, Mr. Tsochatzopoulos said that both sides are interested in the avoidance of tension.

    Also attending the two-day conference are US Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, Romanian DM Mircia Pascu, Ukrainian DM Olexander Kuzmuk, representatives of NATO, the OSCE, the European Union and the special representative for the Stability Pact in southeastern Europe Bodo Hombach.

    [02] STUDENTS BLOCK ARCHBISHOP'S HONORARY DEGREE

    In an unprecedented move, the School of Medicine at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki was forced to cancel the awarding of an honorary professorial degree upon Archbishop of Athens and All Greece Christodoulos yesterday, when a large group of egg-hurling students loudly protested to his nomination.

    Mr. Christodoulos was to be proclaimed an honorary professor of the university's medical faculty by its president Achilles Tourkantonis, when the students entered the amphitheater and began shouting slogans accusing the Archbishop of having adopted a pro-junta stance during the seven-year dictatorship that ruled Greece between 1967-74.

    Following the vociferous reactions, Prof. Tourkantonis merely announced that the ceremony has been cancelled for the time being, albeit not indicating when -or if- the degree will be bestowed upon the Archbishop.

    The students were not alone in their opposition to last night's ceremony; although not as radical in their protestation, a number of university professors who are affiliated with the minor opposition party of Coalition of the Left and Progress (Synaspismos) issued an announcement expressing their displeasure over the honor bestowed upon Mr. Christodoulos, citing his expressed opposition to in-vitro fertilization and denouncement of abortion.

    "The awarding of an honorary professor degree on behalf of a School takes place either for (one's) preeminent contribution to the Nation, or for (one's) substantial contribution to the development of the said School's science," the professors noted in an announcement, implying that Mr. Christodoulos meets neither of the criteria, adding that his nomination runs counter to democratic ideals and academic mores.

    [03] LOCAL WORKERS GROUP RALLIES FOR TVX OPERATION

    A rally in support of the unhindered operation of the TVX-Hellas gold mine project in northern Greece's Halkidiki peninsula is to be organized by a local Employees and Laborers Center in Thessaloniki today.

    The rally, which will commence in front of Thessaloniki's landmark White Tower and will culminate at the Ministry of Macedonia-Thrace, is to coincide with a 24-hour strike throughout the Halkidiki prefecture.

    According to the Center, the $248-million project should not be obstructed, since it would provide a solution to the area's massive unemployment rate and will greatly boost local economy and improve living standards.

    TVX, a Toronto-based mining company, wants to expand its gold mining operations in the area and to build a processing metal plant at the Olympiada site.

    Its polymetallic gold project aims to develop 254,000 ounces of gold on an annual basis, along with 2.3 million ounces of silver, 21,500 tons of zinc and 22,500 tons of lead over the first five years of production.

    Prior to gaining the state's approval of its environmental impact report last year, TVX was subject to a series of protests and obstructive action from various local groups which dogged the planned development of Europe's largest known gold deposit of an estimated 90 tons.

    [04] INDUSTRIALIST PANAYIOTIS AGGELOPOULOS DIED

    One of Greece's largest industrialists and a major benefactor of the Orthodox Church Panagiotis Aggelopoulos died in Athens yesterday, at the age of 93.

    The founder o the "Halyvourgiki" steelworks, Mr. Aggelopoulos was among the forerunners of Greece's heavy industry, while he also became involved in shipping later in his career.

    The late man was named a major benefactor of the Orthodox Church by Ecumenical Patriarch Dimitrios for paying to rebuild the Ecumenical Patriarchate's main building at Phanar, which had been razed during a fire in 1941, as well as helping restore the Patriarchate's library, the church of St. George and other church buildings.

    He is survived by his wife Eleni, sons Theodoros and Constantine and four grandchildren. His funeral will be held in Athens tomorrow and will be attended by the Ecumenical Patriarch Vartholomeos.

    [05] FYROM DM ADDRESSES SEDM TALKS IN THESSALONIKI

    Opening the morning session of the informal meeting of defense ministers from southeastern European countries (SEDM), FYROM's Defense Minister Vlado Bukovski described the present plight of his country and launched a verbal attack against the actions of Albanian extremists.

    Mr. Bukovski issued an appeal for support to his government's efforts in facing the crisis, while, upon his initiative, the attending ministers and representatives observed a moment of silence in honor of the war's victims.

    The SEDM talks are focusing on ways to deal with the ethnic Albanian insurgency in FYROM, the future of Kosovo and the general situation in the Balkans.

    In addition to Greece's Akis Tsochatzopoulos, also attending the two-day conference are US Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, Romanian DM Mircia Pascu, Ukrainian DM Olexander Kuzmuk, Turkish DM Sabahattin Cakmakoglu, representatives of NATO, the OSCE, the European Union and the special representative for the Stability Pact in southeastern Europe Bodo Hombach.

    Other ministers and delegations are also present from Albania, Bulgaria, Croatia, Italy and Slovenia.

    In their last meeting, held in Skopje, the region's defense ministers had agreed on a joint statement condemning extremist actions and supporting the territorial integrity of countries. They had also agreed on stronger measures to prevent ethnic Albanian guerrillas from infiltrating FYROM from Kosovo.

    [06] PREMIER LOOKS FORWARD TO ONE MORE TERM ONLY

    There is no cabinet reshuffle in store for the time being, Prime Minister Costas Simitis stated yesterday, adding that while he will lead the ruling PASOK party to the next elections, it will be the last time he will seek the premier's post.

    In an extensive interview with the public television station NET, Mr. Simitis also stated that government policy in all sectors will proceed as planned.

    Regarding the government's economic policy, the Premier conceded that there have been some unsuccessful moves and some which lacked the element of sensitivity, while others revealed a lack of coordination. Nevertheless, he pointed out that indications on the economy are good and no concern is justified, while he attributed expressed criticism to a "miserable logic" and to "propaganda by the opposition."

    [07] GREECE, US REAFFIRM EXCELLENT BILATERAL TIES

    Greece's leading role in the Balkans was stressed by US Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, who met with his Greek counterpart Akis Tsochatzopoulos in Thessaloniki this morning on the sidelines of the informal meeting of defense ministers from southeastern European countries (SEDM.

    Secretary Rumsfeld expressed his pleasure over Greece's contribution to establishing peace in the Balkan region, as well as over the constant improvement in Greek-Turkish noted rapprochement between Athens and Ankara.

    Following their 50-minute talks, Mr. Tsochatzopoulos said that they had reaffirmed the excellent bilateral relations between Greece and the US, and noted that both countries support the efforts towards consolidating security, cooperation and stability in the Balkans.

    The Greek DM brought up the issue of European security and defense policy with Secretary Rumsfeld, which he said must proceed without delay. The two officials further agreed on the legal regime governing the activities of US military forces in Greece.

    Moreover, Mr. Tsochatzopoulos briefed his American counterpart on the need for immediate advancement of a solution to the political problem in Cyprus within the framework of the United Nations, and expressed hope that Turkish-Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash would return to the intercommunal talks. He also said that Cyprus' accession to the European Union would give new impetus to Greek-Turkish relations.

    In turn, Secretary Rumsfeld stated that the presence of US troops in the Balkans will continue, since he had ascertained the usefulness of the KFOR during his recent visit to Kosovo. He added, however, that the countries in the region where international military forces were deployed should, within a reasonable length of time, develop policies and structures that would enable peaceful cohabitation for their peoples.

    When asked by reporters to comment on statements by western and Balkan officials concerning changes to the existing border status in the Balkans, Mr. Tsochatzopoulos replied that there was no issue of a change of borders.

    [08] PROSECUTOR ASKS FOR FILE ON SAUNDERS MURDER

    The Appeals court prosecutor who heads the department for judicial cooperation between European Union member states, has asked for the file on the murder of Brig. Stephen Saunders, shot on June 8 last year in Athens by the November 17 terrorist group, to be handed over by the police to the judicial authorities.

    The prosecutor has also asked to be briefed on the course of the investigation and as to whether criminal charges against persons unknown are to be made.

    A memorial service for Saunders is to take place at Athens Cathedral at 11 a.m. this Friday, June 8 and it will be attended by Archbishop of Athens and All Greece Christodoulos.

    [09] ECUMENICAL PATRIARCH AT AGGELOPOULOS FUNERAL

    Ecumenical Patriarch Vartholomeos will attend the funeral of Ecumenical Patriarchate benefactor Panayiotis Angelopoulos in Athens tomorrow.

    One of Greece's largest industrialists and a major benefactor of the Orthodox Church, Mr. Aggelopoulos died yesterday, at the age of 93.

    The Ecumenical Patriarchate's Holy Synod also decided that flags at patriarchal offices will fly at half mast. Moreover, the Ecumenical Patriarch will establish a scholarship fund "in memory of Panayiotis Aggelopoulos."

    Mr. Vartholomeos expressed his profound sorrow over Angelopoulos's death, while a memorial service was held at Saint George's Cathedral at the Phanar in his memory.

    [10] HOUSE Oks "IN PRINCIPLE" BILL ON ORGANIZED CRIME

    A bill calling for "the protection of the citizen from organized crime" was approved by the 300-member Hellenic Parliament "in principle" last night, supported by both the ruling PASOK deputies and those from the main opposition party of New Democracy.

    However, the parliamentarians of the Communist Party of Greece (KKE) and Coalition of the Left and Progress (Synaspismos) walked out of the debate in opposition to the bill, which they feel will infringe on civil rights.

    According to Greece's parliamentary proceedings, there are three stages to enacting new legislation: a bill is first approved "in principle" (first reading), followed by an article-by-article debate and approval, before a vote is taken on the finalized legislation.

    [11] BLACK ECONOMY RUNS RAMPANT IN GREECE

    The black economy in Greece has reached 30 percent of the country's economic activity, the most extensive in the European Union, according to a study released by the Institute for Economic and Industrial Research (IOBE).

    The study also found that 75 percent of those working in the armed forces has additional -and untaxed- income, while the state does not pale by comparison: the public sectors with the highest degree of corruption are health, tax offices and city planning offices.

    According IOBE, Greece and Italy have the highest rate of corruption among the EU member states.

    [12] POLITICAL SUPPORT TO FYROM'S GOV'T BY THE SE EUROPEAN DEFENSE MINISTERS

    The southeastern European defense ministers expressed total support to the national unity government of FYROM in their informal meeting that took place in Thessaloniki.

    They condemned the terrorist actions committed by extremist elements and stressed the need for more effective ways to promote political security in the Balkans.

    Presenting the results of the informal meeting, Greek defense minister Akis Tsochatzopoulos stated that the ministers expressed their regret for yesterday's bloody incidents in FYROM and guaranteed political support to the Skopje government, while he appeared optimistic that the problems will be solved.

    The FYROM foreign ministry representative reiterated minister Vlado Bukovski's appeal to NATO, KFOR and the international community to activate every method that is necessary for the terrorists to be removed from the country.

    The Bulgarian defense minister expressed his country's full support to FYROM's appeals.

    The US secretary of defense stated that NATO and the US contribute to the settlement of the crises in the Balkans and offer support to FYROM. Responding to a question on NATO's enlargement with the participation of Balkan states, the US minister stated that the United States are in favor of the enlargement and the open doors policy.

    [13] LOSSES IN THE ATHENS STOCK EXCHANGE

    Losses were recorded in the Athens Stock Exchange today. The general index dropped to -0.27% at 2.209, 83 points, while the volume of transactions was at 204.55 million Euro or 69.69 billion drachmas.

    Of the stocks trading today, the overwhelming majority namely, 232 recorded gains and 65 had losses, while the value of 84 stocks remained stable.

    [14] PRIME MINISTER SIMITIS WILL VISIT BERLIN

    Greek prime minister Kostas Simitis will be in Berlin this afternoon at the invitation of German chancellor Gerhard Schroder. The two men will have talks on the future of Europe.

    Mr. Simitis will return to Athens at the end of the week.

    [15] DECISIONS ON THE BALKAN BRIGADE WILL BE MADE IN THE FALL

    The decisions on the way the Balkan Brigade will be used in the peacekeeping operations in the Balkans, will be made in the southeastern European defense ministers summit meeting, SEDM, that will take place in the fall.

    The above were announced by Greek defense minister Akis Tsochatzopoulos, who pointed out that the issue was discussed in their informal summit meeting held in Thessaloniki today.

    The Balkan Brigade is operationally ready to take action since May 1.

    [16] WORLD CAMP FOR THE YOUNG GREEKS ABROAD

    The World Camp 2001 attempts to lay the foundations for a more meaningful communication among the Greeks living abroad. It is a program organized by the Greek interior ministry, the general secretariat for Greeks abroad and the general secretariat for the new generation in cooperation with the World Council for Greeks Abroad, SAE, and its Youth Network.

    The program is divided into four phases namely, July 10-July 20, July 21-July 31, August 7-August 17 and August 18-August 28.

    In the program can take part young Greeks over the age of 18 with at least one of their parents being of Greek origin.

    The World Camp 2001 will give the opportunity to the young Greeks living abroad to meet, exchange views and experience and lay the foundations for the Greek world community.

    The program includes visits to archaeological sites, trips to Mount Olympus, music nights, Greek films' screenings, cultural events and sports activities.

    [B] INTERNATIONAL NEWS

    [17] THE ELECTRONIC TRADE NETWORK IN SE EUROPE

    The development of cooperation between the southeastern European countries and Cyprus for the creation of an electronic trade network was discussed in the meeting of Romanian prime minister Adrian Nastaze and Greek transportation and telecommunications minister Christos Verelis, who is on a visit to Bucharest.

    Mr. Nastaze insisted that the trade ties between the countries in the region must be strengthened both at a private and a public level.

    The cooperation issue arose last month during the visit to Athens by Romanian communications minister Dan Nica.

    In today's meeting, both Romania and Greece expressed their wish to accelerate the road network and communications projects.

    [18] GREEK STUDIES DEPARTMENT IN THE NIS UNIVERSITY

    A Greek Studies Department was founded in the University of Nis within the framework of the changes adopted in Yugoslavia's higher education system.

    The Greek language and literature became mandatory classes for the Slav Studies students. Athanasios Bintas, was elected to the position of the Greek Studies professor.

    The establishment of the Greek Studies Department opens new prospects of cooperation for the two countries at many levels.

    [19] FYROM'S PM WANTS TO DECLARE A STATE OF WAR

    FYROM's prime minister Ljupco Georgievski wants a state of war to be declared in his country. Government spokesman Antonio Milososki told reporters that the government no longer believes that it can solve the crisis stemming from an ethnic Albanian rebellion through dialogue and that a strong military action is necessary.

    For a state of war to be declared in the country it must be approved by a two-third majority in parliament.

    [20] FIRE ON BOARD A GREEK PASSENGER SHIP

    Fire broke out in the Greek passenger ship "Arethousa" as it was sailing off the Italian coasts with 531 passengers and 111 crew members on board on its way to the port of Patras in southern Greece. The fire broke out in the ship's engine room control panel and was caused by a short circuit. Shortly afterwards, the fire was put out by crew members.

    However, the ship's engines were turned off and the ship was left adrift as its crew was trying to fix the failure. The passengers were at no risk, whatsoever, throughout the incident.

    As it was made known, the ship is now being towed to the port of Bari in Italy escorted by Italian Coast Guard vessels.

    [21] THE FYROM AUTHORS ASSOCIATION HONORS A GREEK POET

    The Slamojat international poetry event prizes were awarded to Greek poet Kostas Asimakopoulos and FYROM's Peter Andreev, according to the state radio in Skopje.

    The prizes of the event, which is organized by the FYROM Authors Association, will be received by the two poets in a special ceremony that will be held in Skopje next week.

    Also, after a decision made by Skopje mayor Risto Penov, the Greek poet will be declared a honorary citizen of Skopje.

    In statements he made, Mr. Asimakopoulos expressed the belief that his presence in Skopje will contribute to the development of bilateral cooperation, dialogue and cultural contacts.


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