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Macedonian Press Agency: News in English, 2001-06-13

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 13, 2001

SECTIONS

  • [A] NATIONAL NEWS
  • [B] INTERNATIONAL NEWS TITLES
  • [Á] NATIONAL NEWS
  • [01] JOURNALISTS HOLD CONFERENCE IN SAMOTHRACE
  • [02] AIRLINE STAFF DECLARE THREE STRIKES: JUNE 15, 29, 30
  • [03] SWAN LAKE ON ICE BY ST. PETERSBURG BALLET
  • [04] BALKAN COOPERATION CONFERENCE IN ATHENS
  • [05] MORE EU RECOGNITION FOR GREECE'S CLEAN COASTS
  • [06] MAIN OPPOSITION CHIEF IN SWEDEN FOR EPP SUMMIT
  • [07] GREEK DM REFERS TO KOSOVO IN BALKAN INTERVIEW
  • [08] OVER TWO TRILLION DRACHMAS FOR NEW ECONOMY
  • [09] HEALTH SECTOR IN DISARRAY DUE TO STRIKES
  • [10] GLIGOROV SAYS HE HAS NO PROOF OF BRIBE OFFER
  • [11] THESSALONIKI MONK DIES BY GUNFIRE AT WEST BANK
  • [12] E. MACEDONIA-THRACE PREFECT LEADS BALKAN C/TEE
  • [13] THE PROTECTION OF THE OKTA REFINERIES IN SKOPJE
  • [14] "WOMAD" ETHNIC MUSIC FESTIVAL IN ATHENS
  • [15] MARGINAL GAINS IN THE ATHENS STOCK EXCHANGE
  • [16] APPEAL FOR PEACE BY THE PATRIARCHATE OF JERUSALEM
  • [17] GREECE WILL PARTICIPATE IN A MISSION TO FYROM
  • [18] APOSTOLAKIS ON THE "GREATER ALBANIA"
  • [19] OTE: COMMUTABLE BOND IN JULY
  • [B] INTERNATIONAL NEWS
  • [20] US-GREEK DEFENSE AGREEMENT

  • NEWS IN DETAIL

    [A] NATIONAL NEWS

    [01] JOURNALISTS HOLD CONFERENCE IN SAMOTHRACE

    The ninth annual conference of Greek journalists is to begin tomorrow, at the northeastern Aegean island of Samothraki.

    The four-day event, themed "Power and the Mass Media", is jointly organized by the local municipality, the Prefecture Administration of Evros, the ministry of press and mass media, the ministry of Macedonia-Thrace and journalists' unions.

    [02] AIRLINE STAFF DECLARE THREE STRIKES: JUNE 15, 29, 30

    The federation of airline employees, OSYPA, has announced that it has declared a 24-hour strike on June 15, followed by a 48- hour strike on June 29 and 30.

    Their demands include the signing of a collective labor agreement, higher bonuses and more hirings.

    [03] SWAN LAKE ON ICE BY ST. PETERSBURG BALLET

    The St. Petersburg ice skating ballet will perform "Swan Lake" in Thessaloniki from June 13 to 16.

    The performance will be based on the choreography of Konstantin Rassadin, in the grand tradition of the Kirov classical choreographies.

    [04] BALKAN COOPERATION CONFERENCE IN ATHENS

    An international conference on economic cooperation in the Balkans and Black Sea after activation of the stability pact for the region is to get underway in Athens today.

    The two-day event is organized by Euroforum International London, in conjunction with the Council for Black Sea Economic Cooperation and the Greek-Turkish Chamber of Commerce.

    The conference is featuring the participation of representatives of business associations from countries of the European Union, Turkey and Greece and by officials of the governments of those countries.

    The conference will be opened by Deputy National Economy Minister Ioannis Zafiropoulos, who will present Greece's plan for restructuring of the Balkans, which will be imminently voted upon by the parliament.

    Speakers include the president of the Athens Stock Exchange, Panayotis Alexakis; the president of the telecommunications commission, E. Yakoumakis; the deputy governor of the Bank of Greece, Panayotis Thomopoulos.

    In addition, Transport and Communications Minister Christos Verelis will outline the government's plans for major infrastructure projects in the two sectors. Culture Minister Evangelos Venizelos will present projects for the 2004 Olympic Games to be hosted by Athens.

    [05] MORE EU RECOGNITION FOR GREECE'S CLEAN COASTS

    The European Union has once again recognized Greece for its clean beaches this year, according to the Hellenic Association for the Protection of Nature, Greece's representative for the EU's "Blue Flags" program.

    France tops the list with 403 beaches with the cleanest rating, followed by Spain with 370 and Greece with 351.

    Beaches must satisfy 27 strict criteria to qualify.

    [06] MAIN OPPOSITION CHIEF IN SWEDEN FOR EPP SUMMIT

    The leader of the main opposition party of New Democracy Costas Karamanlis is to depart today for Goteborg, Sweden, where he will to attend a European People's Party (EPP) summit meeting that gets underway tomorrow.

    Accompanying Mr. Karamanlis is a high-ranking party delegation, which includes deputy Dora Bakoyianni.

    [07] GREEK DM REFERS TO KOSOVO IN BALKAN INTERVIEW

    Defense Minister Akis Tsochatzopoulos expressed his concern over the "political and structural future" of Kosovo, during an interview he granted to three television journalists from Albania, FYROM and Yugoslavia.

    Referring to Kosovo, Mr. Tsochatzopoulos stated that the insistence expressed by some on independence for the province and of some others for respect for the UN resolution that Kosovo should remain a part of Yugoslavia, will mean either confrontation or war for the Balkans.

    "The is not an accepted means," he said, adding "only through negotiations can we create a future Kosovo.

    "UN Security Council decisions constitute a good basis for resolving the issue," he stated, stressing that a democratic system with parallel economic and social development and peaceful relations with all neighbors is the only framework which can safeguard the future of all Kosovo inhabitants.

    Referring to KFOR's role, the Minister stated that the increase of the peacekeeping forces' presence on FYROM's borders is a positive development, which might lead to a solution to the problem of Albanian extremists infiltrating Kosovo.

    When asked to comment on the name issue pending between Greece and FYROM, Mr. Tsochatzopoulos responded that "it isn't fair for a country to proced to unexpected moves –at a time when the other has problems- in order to achieve a ‘better solution' for itself.

    "We have the right, and an obligation, to continue discussion and not take advantage of good or bad opportunities. The question is when will we achieve progress so that we'll arrive at an acceptable solution. That's what's important."

    [08] OVER TWO TRILLION DRACHMAS FOR NEW ECONOMY

    Capital amounting to 2.5 trillion drachmas is to be funneled into the New Economy during the years to come, funded by the Third Community Support Framework (CSF) and the New Economy Development Fund (TANEO).

    Addressing an Economist conference on "New Economy, Society of Information and the Electronic Community" in Athens, National Economy and Finance Minister Yiannos Papantoniou announced that the government has earmarked around one trillion drachmas for investments on information society in the period 2000-2006.

    Mr. Papantoniou said that the government has earmarked 150 billion drachmas for TANEO's activities in the next four years, while investments funded by both the 3rd CSF and TANEO will also facilitate the speedier adoption of new economy and information society policies.

    [09] HEALTH SECTOR IN DISARRAY DUE TO STRIKES

    State hospital doctors and staff are conducting a seven-hour work stoppage today, joining their counterparts from the Social Security Foundation (IKA) who are striking for five-days, demanding higher pay, additional staff and improved pensions.

    All state hospitals will be closed between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. and the National First Aid Center (EKAB) will be on strike from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.

    [10] GLIGOROV SAYS HE HAS NO PROOF OF BRIBE OFFER

    Albeit not retracting the allegation made in his published memoirs, former president of FYROM Kiro Gligorov said yesterday that he had no proof that Greece's then-premier Constantine Mitsotakis had known of an attempt by Greek agents to offer Gligorov a million-dollar bribe in 1992 in order to drop the use of the word ‘Macedonia' from his country's name.

    Mr. Gligorov, who was in Athens to promote the Greek edition of his memoirs, said "I have no proof that this was done on his (Mr. Mitsotakis') orders.

    "I said exactly what happened and what my reply was."

    As soon as Mr. Gligorov's allegation came to light on Monday, Mr. Mitsotakis' response was immediate and to the point: "The specific reference lacks any seriousness", he said, adding that the allegation is "irrational and crude."

    Mr. Mitsotakis, presently the honorary president of the main opposition party of New Democracy, added last night that Mr. Gligorov is selling himself short.

    "If we had decided to try to bribe him, we would have given him a little more than a million dollars."

    [11] THESSALONIKI MONK DIES BY GUNFIRE AT WEST BANK

    The Patriarchate of Jerusalem has filed a demarche with the Israeli government and the Palestinian Authority, over the death of a Greek monk, whose origin is from Thessaloniki, who was killed by a sniper at the West Bank.

    The 36-year-old Germanos Tsibouktakis was the abbot of the St. George Monastery since 1990. His funeral will be held today.

    [12] E. MACEDONIA-THRACE PREFECT LEADS BALKAN C/TEE

    The Prefect of Eastern Macedonia-Thrace Aris Papadopoulos was unanimously appointed as the first chairman of the Board of Directors of the Balkan Committee founded during the course of the first general assembly of Balkan regions.

    The Balkan Committee, founded in the framework of the union of Europe's coastal regions, aims at achieving the best possible cooperation between Balkan regions, fostering initiatives for peace, stability, security, development and local employment, all founded on the premise of respecting the national, religious and cultural characteristics of the participating areas.

    In addition to the chairman, the committee will comprise representatives from each participating country, who will serve as vice presidents.

    The general assembly session was attended by representatives from 32 regions of Italy, Albania, Turkey, Croatia, Greece and Romania.

    The Balkan committee's headquarters are to be established in northern Greece's port city of Kavala, where the first assembly was held.

    [13] THE PROTECTION OF THE OKTA REFINERIES IN SKOPJE

    The issue of the protection of the Greek interest oil refinery in Skopje from a possible attack by ethnic Albanian extremist groups was raised by right-wing main opposition party of New Democracy parliament deputy Giorgos Voulgarakis, in a question he directed to ministers of development Nikos Christodoulakis and foreign affairs Giorgos Papandreou.

    Mr. Voulgarakis wants to be informed on the steps both government ministers intend to take within the framework of NATO and the European Union to avert the eventuality of such an attack. He underlined that Hellenic Petroleum has invested considerable capital in FYROM in the past two years and owns the biggest part of the former state-owned OKTA refinery, while it has undertaken to construct, operate and exploit the oil pipeline linking Thessaloniki with the Skopje oil refinery that is under Greek management and control.

    The US$200 million investment is the largest Greek investment in Skopje and together with other investments in the region contributes to the Greek economy's development and expansion abroad.

    According to international news reports, members of the illegal ethnic Albanian separatist movement UCK have warned that the OKTA oil refinery is a likely target of a terrorist attack.

    [14] "WOMAD" ETHNIC MUSIC FESTIVAL IN ATHENS

    The ethnic music festival "WOMAD", which was an idea of singer Peter Gabriel and was founded in 1982, will take place in Athens on June 22-24.

    The festival is organized by the Greek culture ministry in cooperation with the Cultural Olympiad.

    The organizers' representative Thomas Brumann stressed that it is an honor for the festival to participate in the Cultural Olympiad, the third after Barcelona and Sydney, adding that in the events will participate artists from 17 European, Asian, African and Latin American countries.

    [15] MARGINAL GAINS IN THE ATHENS STOCK EXCHANGE

    Marginal gains were recorded in the Athens Stock Exchange today. The general index rose to +0.39% at 2.899,32 points, while the volume of transactions was at 141.7 million Euro or 52.500 billion drachmas.

    Of the stocks trading today, the majority namely, 298 recorded gains and 44 had losses, while 39 stocks remained stable.

    [16] APPEAL FOR PEACE BY THE PATRIARCHATE OF JERUSALEM

    The Greek Orthodox Patriarchate of Jerusalem in a statement it has issued, made an appeal for peace to Israelis and Palestinians on the occasion of the death of 34yearold Rev. Hieromonk Germanos (civil name, Georgios) Tsibouktsakis, who was killed yesterday by a sniper at an Israeli outpost in West Bank.

    According to the statement, the Patriarchate of Jerusalem expresses concern about the ongoing unstable situation in the Holy Land and the recycling of bloodshed which results in the loss of many innocent victims and appeals, as it has done numerous times in the past, to both Israelis and Palestinians to intensify their peace efforts.

    In an urgent session today, the Holy Synod of the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate condemned this and all similar attacks. It denounced violence, called for peace, and demanded that the authorities conduct a thorough investigation of the incident to uncover its cause and the circumstances of the shooting and bring the perpetrators to justice.

    Rev. Monk-Priest Germanos was born in Evosmos, Thessaloniki in Greece in 1966. He studied at Thessaloniki's Aristotle University and went to Jerusalem in November 1990. He was anointed monk in December 1993. In 1994, he became the acting superior of the Monastery of Saint George in Hozeva (Wadi Kelt). On March 2000, by the decision of the Holy Synod of the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate of Jerusalem, he was ordained Deacon in the church of the Holy Sepulchre and priest in October 2000.

    [17] GREECE WILL PARTICIPATE IN A MISSION TO FYROM

    If it is deemed necessary, Greece will participate in a multi- national force deployed in FYROM, stated acting government spokesman and press undersecretary Tilemachos Hitiris responding to a question by a reporter on whether Greece will send a military force to the country.

    The press undersecretary reiterated that the Greek government is in favor of a solution that will be reached through dialogue and not through the use of force. He pointed out that prime minister Kostas Simitis presented the plan for the solution of the crisis in the region to his counterparts in Brussels today and later in the afternoon he will give a press conference.

    Mr. Hitiris also mentioned that Greek foreign minister Giorgos Papandreou had a telephone communication yesterday with his FYROM counterpart Ms. Ilinska Mitreva.

    [18] APOSTOLAKIS ON THE "GREATER ALBANIA"

    Greek undersecretary of defense Dimitris Apostolakis, speaking before Greek Air Force Cadet School graduates, stated that there is a real danger and many questions behind a concealed idea for the creation of a "Greater Albania" in the Balkan region.

    Mr. Apostolakis maintained that the idea for the creation of the so-called "Greater Albania" is groundless and is condemned to failure as it causes the reaction of the international community and the Albanian political parties. He said that in case FYROM is divided into pieces then there is an increased likelihood for a conflict and Greece cannot be neutral toward the possible developments at its borders.

    Referring to Turkey's overall policy toward Greece and the efforts made by Ankara to have a say in European defense issues, he stated that Greece and its partners are opposed to Turkey's demands.

    On Cyprus' EU accession course, Mr. Apostolakis said that it will contribute to the solution of the political problem, while he expressed reservations on how Turkey will react to this eventuality maintaining that a reaction by Ankara will not be just a reaction to the Cypriot Republic but to the European Union as a whole.

    [19] OTE: COMMUTABLE BOND IN JULY

    The Greek Telecommunications Organization, OTE, is expected to issue its commutable bond in July, through which 15% of the company that belonged to the Greek state will go to private investors. This development will clear the way for changes to be made in the company's charter concerning the election of its management.

    Next month, a regulation will be approved by the Greek parliament that will allow the general assemblies of the state- owned companies to elect their president and managing director under the precondition that the state participation in those companies will be less than 51%.

    The OTE investment program for 2001 is estimated at 250 billion drachmas. Meanwhile, OTE's mobile phone network in Bulgaria is expected to be in operation this summer, while the number of OTE's customers in Albania is on the rise and are estimated at 120.000 after the first expansion of its network last December.

    [B] INTERNATIONAL NEWS

    [20] US-GREEK DEFENSE AGREEMENT

    A US-Greek defense agreement was signed in Brussels today by Greek foreign minister Giorgos Papandreou and US Secretary of State Colin Powell, on the sidelines of the NATO summit meeting.

    In statements he made afterwards, Mr. Papandreou stressed that the agreement has a special importance as it is the result of two-year long negotiations with the US side. He also said that the agreement essentially covers in a transparent way, agreements that were in effect for decades, while it upgrades bilateral cooperation in the defense sector.

    Everything that is in effect for the US citizens in Greece is in effect for the Greek citizens in the United States and this is a proof that cooperation between the two countries is on an equal basis, said Mr. Papandreou.


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