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Macedonian Press Agency: News in English, 2001-06-07

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 7, 2001

SECTIONS

  • [A] NATIONAL NEWS
  • [B] INTERNATIONAL NEWS TITLES
  • [] NATIONAL NEWS
  • [01] ECUMENICAL PATRIARCH AT AGGELOPOULOS FUNERAL
  • [02] EPP-ED HOLDS FIFTH DIALOGUE CYCLE WITH CHURCH
  • [03] SLOVENIAN BUSINESS DELEGATION IN THESSALONIKI
  • [04] POLICE RECOMMENDS DECRIMINALIZATION OF POT
  • [05] SIGN OF THE TIMES, TEN-DIGIT PHONE NUMBERS SOON
  • [06] HOUSE Oks 5 AMENDMENTS TO ORGANIZED CRIME BILL
  • [07] HOUSE SPEAKER RECEIVES SLOVENIAN PRESIDENT
  • [08] FM ADDRESSES CONFERENCE ON G/T RAPPROCHEMENT
  • [09] S.E. EUROPE'S COUNTRIES TO FORM E-TRADE NETWORK
  • [10] TWO GREEK SAILORS REMAIN HOSTAGE IN TAIWAN
  • [11] PUBLISHER TO PAY DAMAGES OVER LIBELOUS REPORTS
  • [12] PSEKA HOLDS 12TH CONFERENCE IN WASHINGTON
  • [13] CASINO BARS GREEK GAMBLER OVER CARD COUNTING
  • [14] MAY INFLATION TO BE ANNOUNCED TOMORROW
  • [15] GAINS IN THE ATHENS STOCK EXCHANGE
  • [16] MISSING CYPRIOT CHILDREN SINCE THE TURKISH INVASION
  • [17] REPPAS ON THE BLEEDING FEVER IN KOSOVO
  • [18] GREEK PROPOSAL FOR THE NORMALIZATION OF THE SITUATION IN FYROM
  • [B] INTERNATIONAL NEWS
  • [19] CHRISTODOULAKIS-EVANS MEETING
  • [20] POSITIVE PROSPECTS FOR THE GREEK ECONOMY
  • [21] OTE MUSIC EVENT IN BUCHAREST
  • [22] NO FIR VIOLATION BY ISRAELI JETS IN CYPRUS

  • NEWS IN DETAIL

    [A] NATIONAL NEWS

    [01] ECUMENICAL PATRIARCH AT AGGELOPOULOS FUNERAL

    Ecumenical Patriarch Vartholomeos is expected in Athens today, here he will attend the funeral of Ecumenical Patriarchate benefactor Panayiotis Angelopoulos who passed away on Tuesday.

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

    Aggelopoulos was distinguished for his philanthropic works and his active support for the Ecumenical Patriarchate in Istanbul, which led the late Patriarch Dimitrios to appoint him to the post of Grand Benefactor and Grand Logothete. He is survived by his wife, two sons and four grandchildren.

    In honor of the late Aggelopoulos, the Ecumenical Patriarchate's Holy Synod has 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.

    [02] EPP-ED HOLDS FIFTH DIALOGUE CYCLE WITH CHURCH

    The Fifth Dialogue Cycle between the Orthodox Church and the Parliamentary Group of the European Peoples' Party-European Democrats (EPP-ED) is to get underway today at the Orthodox Academy of Crete, featuring the participation of Orthodox Church personalities from all over the world and representatives of other Christian Churches.

    Addresses will be made at the opening of the two-day session by main opposition New Democracy party leader Costas Karamanlis, EPP-ED Parliamentary Group President Hans-Get Petering, EPP President Wilfried Martens and ND Honorary President Constantine Mitsotakis.

    The dialogue between the Orthodox Church and the EPP-ED's Parliamentary Group has been organized on an annual basis since 1996. This year's session will focus on fundamental and human rights, the society of citizens and the roles of the Church and the state.

    [03] SLOVENIAN BUSINESS DELEGATION IN THESSALONIKI

    Investment and trade opportunities in Slovenia are to be showcased to Northern Greece's investors during an event jointly organized in Thessaloniki by the city's Chamber of Industry and Commerce (EVETH) and the corresponding Slovenian chamber.

    The meeting, to be held tomorrow, will also be attended by Slovenian ambassador to Athens Borut Mahnic who will give an address on his country's economic situation.

    A delegation of Slovenian entrepreneurs is to also attend the meeting.

    [04] POLICE RECOMMENDS DECRIMINALIZATION OF POT

    In a report sure to rekindle debate over drug policy, top officials of the Greek police force have proposed the legalization of marijuana, at least for personal use, along with the establishment of premises designated for heroin users.

    According to the Athens daily "To Vima", the top echelons of the Greek police force, along with criminology experts, made the said groundbreaking proposals in a report mandated by the Minister of Public Order Michalis Chrysochoides.

    The report also calls for the establishment of drug-use prevention programs targeting "high-risk" groups, mobile units for emergency intervention and aid, as well as providing police with on-line information services.

    While the report does not advocate the blanket legalization of drugs, arguing that it would increase drug addiction, it does cautiously promote a "medicalization" model - allowing addicts to receive treatment on demand and, in some cases, allotments of drugs.

    [05] SIGN OF THE TIMES, TEN-DIGIT PHONE NUMBERS SOON

    Greece is moving up to ten-digit telephone numbers for the country throughout as of next month, while cell phone numbers will henceforth begin with 6, instead of the current 0.

    The changes are to be implemented in three stages, in order to facilitate customer use. Namely, the first (introductory) phase will take place between July-December of this year, followed by January-September 2002 (where a recorded message will direct callers to the new number). From October 2002 and on the new system will be fully enforceable.

    Under the new format, all calls, local and long-distance, will have to be dialed with the city's area code, followed by a zero. For example, calls to Thessaloniki will have to be dialed as 0310 followed by the number, while, during the second and third phases of the implementation, the number will have to be preceded by 2310.

    The new system is expected to result in 100 million new phone lines, a large number of which are to be used by the emerging phone companies.

    [06] HOUSE Oks 5 AMENDMENTS TO ORGANIZED CRIME BILL

    Five amendments to a bill calling for "the protection of the citizen from organized crime" have been approved by the 300-member Hellenic Parliament, supported by both the ruling PASOK deputies and those from the main opposition party of New Democracy.

    The bill features amendments to articles on DNA testing and leniency for informants. Specifically, under the amendments, subjects testing positive in a DNA test must be notified of the result and have the right to demand a repeat test.

    The genetic imprints stay with the service and the genetic sample is destroyed. If a test should come out negative, the genetic sample is destroyed immediately. In regards to leniency measures for those who have committed crimes but express their repent and supply evidence or information that implicates a criminal organization or gang, these can be suspension of their sentence from three to 10 years.

    The parliamentarians of the Communist Party of Greece (KKE) and Coalition of the Left and Progress (Synaspismos) refuse to take part in the debate, as they believe the bill will infringe on civil rights.

    [07] HOUSE SPEAKER RECEIVES SLOVENIAN PRESIDENT

    House Speaker Apostolos Kaklamanis assured visiting Slovenian President Milan Kucan of Greece's support of Slovenia's accession agreement with the European Union, provided that the said enlargement include the Republic of Cyprus.

    "We believe that it is not possible for the European Union to function under Turkey's raw extortion which, by keeping hostage 40 percent of an independent state, such as Cyprus, is in essence blackmailing the international community", Mr. Kaklamanis stated.

    President Kucan also visited the Athens Chamber of Commerce and Industry (EBEA) where he invited Greek businessmen to invest in his country.

    During President Kucan's visit, Greece and Slovenia signed a bilateral agreement to avoid double taxation investments in his country.

    [08] FM ADDRESSES CONFERENCE ON G/T RAPPROCHEMENT

    The period between 2002-03 will be most crucial for the Cyprus issue, Foreign Minister George Papandreou stated during his address at a conference on "Greek-Turkish rapprochement and the Cyprus problem: international, European and internal parameters".

    Organized by Panteios University's International Relations Institute, the conference also examined Turkey's stance towards the international community and the European Union.

    Mr. Papandreou stressed that the island's EU accession course should be dissociated from a solution to the Cyprus issue, adding that turning the Cyprus issue into an international one is of great importance, primarily following the Nice summit and its highlighting as a European affair.

    Furthermore, he said that the deadlock in Turkish insistence is not only stressed by Greece or the UN and the EU, but by many voices in Turkey as well which are showing an increasingly critical stance.

    [09] S.E. EUROPE'S COUNTRIES TO FORM E-TRADE NETWORK

    Romania is ready to participate in an e-trade network that will be created by countries of Southeastern Europe and Cyprus, Romanian Minister of Telecommunications Dan Nica stated during his talks with his visiting Greek counterpart Christos Verelis.

    The establishment of a joint electronic trade company aimed at the exchange of information between the state services of countries in southeastern Europe was decided yesterday in Bucharest by the transport and communications ministers of countries in the region.

    During his talks with his S.E. European counterparts, Mr. Verelis requested simplification of processes and a decrease in dues that will facilitate commercial transportation and the harmonization of Romania's laws with the European Union.

    [10] TWO GREEK SAILORS REMAIN HOSTAGE IN TAIWAN

    Authorities in Taiwan continue to hold two Greek sailors in custody since January, when their vessel AV Amorgos ran aground at a Taiwanese coast and its parent company Hermes refuses to pay a fine for the resulting environmental pollution.

    The two sailors, captain Evangelos Lazarides and chief engineer Vasilis Sardis were the only two crew members detained by the local authorities who have prohibited their release before the imposed fine is paid.

    According to Lazarides and Sardis, the pollution occurred four days after the ship ran aground and at a time when no crewmembers were onboard the ship.

    As Greece and Taiwan have no diplomatic ties, the Greek sailors have forwarded a letter to the Ministry of Merchant Marine, as well as to offices maintained by Taiwan in Greece.

    [11] PUBLISHER TO PAY DAMAGES OVER LIBELOUS REPORTS

    An Athens court has ordered the owner of the Athens daily "Eleftherotypia" Christos Tegopoulos Publishing, to pay 10 million drachmas in damages to Socrates Kokkalis, owner of the Intracom Group.

    The court ruled that reports published by the said paper between April and June 1998 branding Mr. Kokkalis a "black marketeer" and a "recipient of kickbacks" were libelous.

    Mr. Kokkalis had originally sued for five billion drachmas, which he said he would donate to the Tzaneio Hospital.

    [12] PSEKA HOLDS 12TH CONFERENCE IN WASHINGTON

    The need for unity and coordinated action was the prevalent message at the 12th annual conference of the International Coordinating Committee for Cypriot Struggle (PSEKA), presently held in Washington.

    Featuring the attendance of approximately 100 representatives from the US, Canada, UK, Australia, Greece and Cyprus, the conference was addressed by Greece and Cyprus's ambassadors to the United States, Alexandros Philon and Erato Markouli-Kozakou, respectively.

    In her address, Ms. Markouli-Kozakou stressed that significant developments are awaited over the Cyprus issue, which require vigilance and unity.

    She also stressed the importance of the recent ruling issued by the European Court for Human Rights, which found Turkey guilty of human rights violations in Cyprus, stating that "the ruling constitutes a good peaceful weapon, designating the legal government of the Republic of Cyprus, refuting all of Turkey's expectations."

    Ambassador Philon also referred to Cyprus, stating that the Turkish-Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash will have to be pressured into entering inter-communal talks under the UN auspices, adding that any viable solution to the Cyprus issue will have to based upon the Helsinki accord.

    [13] CASINO BARS GREEK GAMBLER OVER CARD COUNTING

    A local businessman who claims to have the ability to memorize numbers, is seeking 300 million drachmas in damages from the Hyatt Regency Casino of Thessaloniki, where staff have prohibited his entry after characterizing him as a card counter, i.e. one who is able to keep track of the cards played in blackjack.

    In his claim, Makis Outziolas asserts that he suffered moral damages, resulting in loss of reputation and dignity and so forth. He also claims that as soon as he started winning, the Casino began changing the game rules, over which he sought the involvement of an official from the Ministry of Development in order to resolve the issue.

    On the other hand, casino officials have argued that they can legally refuse entry to players who they deem should not enter the casino's premises.

    [14] MAY INFLATION TO BE ANNOUNCED TOMORROW

    Inflation in May is expected to be at 3.5-3.6%, according to the government's economic staff, while the official figures are expected to be announced tomorrow.

    The structural inflation that does not include the liquid fuel and fruit and vegetable prices is expected to remain unchanged.

    It is pointed out that the fuel prices were increased by 5% in May but the effect of this increase on inflation was neutral because a similar increase was recorded in May last year as well.

    [15] GAINS IN THE ATHENS STOCK EXCHANGE

    Gains were recorded in the Athens Stock Exchange today. The general index rose to +2.78% at 2.983,48 points, while the volume of transactions was 200.4 million Euro or 68.27 billion drachmas.

    Of the stocks trading today, 217 recorded gains and 110 had losses, while the value of 47 stocks remained stable.

    [16] MISSING CYPRIOT CHILDREN SINCE THE TURKISH INVASION

    The issue of the 28 children, between 5 months and 15 years old, missing since the Turkish invasion of Cyprus in 1974 will be raised in UNICEF and the United Nations and this is another proof that Turkey continues to violate human rights and international rules and principles.

    Already, the Greek foreign ministry is in close cooperation with the Cypriot government as well as associations for people missing since the Turkish invasion and especially, with the Cypriot cultural association "TAMA" which deals specifically with the issue.

    The above were stated in parliament by deputy foreign minister Elisavet Papazoi.

    Ms. Papazoi stated that representatives of the association will be in Athens in July and the Greek foreign ministry will receive all information available for each child to raise the issue to the responsible international organizations. She also stressed that the recent Council of Europe decision against Turkey allows for a more specific intervention in the issue of the missing.

    [17] REPPAS ON THE BLEEDING FEVER IN KOSOVO

    The Greek citizens currently in Kosovo are in no danger as a result of the bleeding fever cases recorded in the region, stated Greek government spokesman Dimitris Reppas, underlining that all necessary measures have been taken for the total protection of the Greek citizens.

    On the delay recorded in the briefing of the Greek authorities regarding the epidemic, Mr. Reppas stated that the slow pace is characteristic of the specific region.

    [18] GREEK PROPOSAL FOR THE NORMALIZATION OF THE SITUATION IN FYROM

    The Greek government is making efforts with the European Union for the normalization of the situation in the region of FYROM, stated Greek foreign ministry spokesman Panos Beglitis.

    He also announced that foreign minister Giorgos Papandreou will present to his European counterparts the Greek initiative for stabilization in FYROM in the General Affairs Council meeting that will be held in Luxembourg on Monday. Greece proposes the resumption of dialogue based on a specific timetable and a binding framework for all involved political forces in FYROM.

    Mr. Papandreou met this morning with Bosnian Serb prime minister Bladen Ivanic and discussed with him the developments in the Balkans.

    [B] INTERNATIONAL NEWS

    [19] CHRISTODOULAKIS-EVANS MEETING

    The cooperation potential between Greece and the United States in the sectors of tourism, energy and technology was at the center of the talks Greek minister of development Nikos Christodoulakis had in Washington with US secretary of commerce Donald Evans.

    Mr. Christodoulakis stressed that he had a cordial and very constructive discussion with the US minister and added that tourism almost monopolized the talks in view of the renewed interest in Greece expressed by the US tourists. The number of US tourists visiting Greece is expected to increase in the next years on the occasion of the Athens 2004 Olympic Games.

    Minister of development Mr. Christodoulakis also characterized as interesting the talks on energy issues he had with Mr. Evans. He stressed that already many US companies have expressed interest in investing in Greece and applications have been submitted for power plants construction and participation in energy projects namely, oil supply projects like the Burgas- Alexandroupolis pipeline or natural gas supply projects.

    [20] POSITIVE PROSPECTS FOR THE GREEK ECONOMY

    Greek minister of development Nikos Christodoulakis, in an interview with the US television network "Bloomberg" in Washington, referred to the positive prospects of the Greek economy, the significance of Greece's EMU membership, the liberalization of the energy market, the structural changes in the Greek economy and Greece's role in the Balkans.

    Mr. Christodoulakis underlined that the prospects for the Greek economy are very positive and stressed that for a fifth year in a row the Greek economy grows with a quicker pace than the European average namely, its growth rate is 2% higher than the average EU growth rate and this means convergence with the rest European countries and investment opportunities. He said that the high growth rates are due to the liberalization of the market, the construction of big infrastructure projects and the creation of new businesses.

    On the EMU membership, he said that it is a stabilizing factor for the Greek economy, offers macro-economic stability and lower interest rates, while it attracts foreign investors.

    On Greece's role in the Balkans, the minister stated that the country is the "key" for economic stability and cooperation in southeastern Europe, helps the countries in the region in their efforts for economic reforms and the liberalization of their markets, adding that many Greek companies have invested in the Balkans in the sectors of oil, food, banking, steelworks and constructions.

    [21] OTE MUSIC EVENT IN BUCHAREST

    The special event organized in Bucharest last night by the Greek Telecommunications Organization OTE International, Romtelecom and Cosmorom with the participation of famous Greek singer Anna Vissi and Yugoslav film director Emir Kostunica, was very successful.

    The music event was held in front of an audience of 30.000 people, while also present were Greek students studying in Romania.

    The message that peace and communication between the Balkan countries can replace violence and armed conflicts was the dominant slogan in the event.

    [22] NO FIR VIOLATION BY ISRAELI JETS IN CYPRUS

    Cypriot government spokesman Michalis Papapetrou denied a press report on the Cypriot newspaper "Phileleftheros", according to which there were violations of the Nicosia FIR by Israeli jets last Sunday, clarifying that a permission was granted to Israeli aircraft to use the specific region.

    The Cypriot government spokesman stated that on April 15 Israel requested the Cypriot Civil Aviation permission to use a region 90-100 kilometers off the coasts of Limassol in Cyprus for no live ammunition large-scale exercises.


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