|Thursday, 14 November 2019|
Macedonian Press Agency: News in English, 00-07-01
From: The Macedonian Press Agency at http://www.mpa.gr and http://www.hri.org/MPA.
 THE GREEK MINISTER OF DEFENSE IS ON A VISIT TO ALBANIAThessaloniki, 1 July 2000 (17:02 UTC+2)
Minister of defense Akis Tsochatzopoulos is on a visit to Albania for contacts with government officials to discuss the withdrawal of the Greek military force from the country and other issues of bilateral cooperation.
Responding to a question on whether the withdrawal of the Greek military force from Albania constitutes a negative development for Greece, the minister of defense stated that on the contrary this is a positive development.
He said that the 2.5year presence of the Greek armed forces in the country was completely successfully as it has contributed decisively to the consolidation of peace and offered considerable assistance in the efforts aimed at facing the consequences of the big crisis in Kosovo. It also contributed to the impressive growth of Albania.
Mr. Tsochatzopoulos said that the armed forces will continue to offer their assistance for the completion of the infrastructure projects in Durres, Girokastra and Tirana, while Greece's overall intervention in Albania is placed within the European Union policy which is a policy of security, stability and cooperation.
Responding to a question by a reporter on whether there is a likelihood the issue concerning the name that will be used by FYROM to close before the end of the summer, Mr. Tsochatzopoulos stated that there is nothing on that issue.
 THREE DIVAS IN THESSALONIKIThessaloniki, 1 July 2000 (18:13 UTC+2)
The three divas of the international music scene Misia, Julia Migenes and Ute Lember, are expected in Thessaloniki and according to the organizers of their concerts, that will be given on July 3,5 and 7, they have many demands.
The common demand expressed by all three of them was that they want to stay at hotel suites with a 24-hour security service, while the limousines with their chauffeurs must be on stand-by whether they need them or not.
The concert organizers must take care of the transportation and accommodation of a 21-member entourage that will travel by plane and will stay at the same hotel with them.
Their demands have to do mainly with their diet, while the strangest demand expressed was that of Ute Lember who request full-length mirrors in her dressing-room as well as a motorcycle to be at her disposal after her late night rehearsal.
 HALBROOKE IS PESSIMISTIC OVER THE 3RD ROUND OF TALKS ON CYPRUSThessaloniki, 1 July 2000 (17:05 UTC+2)
US ambassador to the United Nations Richard Halbrooke expressed doubts over the likelihood the third round of talks on Cyprus, which are held under the UN auspices, to bring closer the Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots.
He expressed the hope that there will be progress but added that he is not very optimistic, adding that the positions of the Turkish Cypriots on the issue of sovereignty block the procedure.
The talks will be launched in Geneva on Wednesday and are aimed at the reunification of Cyprus based on the UN security council decisions for a two-zone, two-community federation to which the Turkish Cypriots are opposed.
Cypriot president Glafkos Clerides and Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash will not have direct talks. They will have contacts through mediators who will try to bring the two sides closer as in the two previous rounds of talks in New York and Geneva that did not bring the desirable results.
 STEPHANOPOULOS: THE EMU ACCESSION BOOSTS GREECE'S PRESTIGEDramas, 1 July 2000 (17:01 UTC+2)
President Kostis Stephanopoulos is visiting the northern Greek city of Dramas on the occasion of the 87th anniversary of its liberation from the Bulgarian forces.
Mr. Stephanopoulos in his speech in the City Hall where he became honorary citizen of Dramas referred to Greece's accession into the EMU, stressing that it makes the country stronger and does not take anything away from the national identity of the Greeks.
He said that the EMU membership upgrades Greece not only from an economic point of view but in terms of prestige as well.
 A BRITISH DOCTOR SWIMS FOR THE PARTHENON MARBLESParos, 1 July 2000 (16:59 UTC+2)
A British doctor decided to swim the distance between the Aegean islands of Dilos and Paros in an effort to promote the issue of the return of the Parthenon Marbles from Britain to Greece.
Dr. Christopher Stockdale left the island of Dilos at 6am this morning and he is expected to arrive at Naousa, Paros at 9pm in the evening.
 PAPANDREOU: GREECE FOLLOWS A POLICY OF CREATIVE STABILITYAthens, 1 July 2000 (15:07 UTC+2)
The improved cooperation among the Balkan national news agencies is at center of the Association of Balkan New Agencies (ABNA) general assembly meeting that is being held in Athens today and tomorrow.
In his message to the general directors of the Balkan news agencies, Greek foreign minister Giorgos Papandreou referred to the main axes of the Greek policy in the Balkans and emphasized that the Greek foreign policy is a policy of creative stability, active cooperation and development, adding that the basic principles characterizing the Greek foreign policy are founded on the respect of human rights, stability and the inviolability of the borders, the peaceful settlement of bilateral problems within the framework of the international treaties and the ability to appeal to the International Court of Justice in The Hague.
Mr. Papandreou stated that this is a policy that through meaningful initiatives it is aimed at forming a framework of principles and rules and of democracy and law that will be in effect in the wider Balkan region. He said that an overall strategy for the Balkan rapprochement has been formed especially after the crisis in Kosovo aimed at putting under control the crisis hot spots and creating the preconditions for the region's political stability and economic development having as an ultimate goal the incorporation of the region into the European institutions. This strategy is founded on the principles of the respect of the sovereignty and the territorial integrity of all the states in the region, the absolute respect of the existing borders and the discouragement of any secessionist tendencies. At the same time, added Mr. Papandreou, Greece backs the strengthening of democratic procedures, the protection of human rights and minority rights.
In conclusion, the Greek foreign minister stressed in his message that was read in the ABNA general assembly meeting that Greece believes in the so-called common Balkan approach namely, a regional approach to democracy, security and prosperity. He also said that the international community must develop a consistent, comprehensive and cohesive approach in south-eastern Europe, adding that the spheres of influence and the logic of double standards must stop. Mr. Papandreou said in his message that the Stability Pact that was Greece's main demand and the Helsinki decisions create new conditions and form a framework of principles and a "road map" for the Balkans in their course toward their incorporation into the European Union.
ABNA's president and general director of the Athens News Agency Mr. Andreas Christodoulidis referred to its future goals, while ABNA's general secretary Macedonian Press Agency general secretary Mr. Spiros Kouzinopoulos referred to ABNA's contribution in the improvement of the climate in the region of south-eastern Europe in the 5 years since its establishment.
The ABNA general assembly meeting is attended by the general directors of the national news agencies from Greece, Bulgaria, Turkey, FYROM, Albania and Romania. One of the first decisions reached by the general assembly was to approve the membership of the national news agency of Moldavia "Moldova Press".