|Monday, 11 November 2019|
Macedonian Press Agency: News in English, 00-07-06
From: The Macedonian Press Agency at http://www.mpa.gr and http://www.hri.org/MPA.
 PAPANDREOU-DOBINS MEETINGAthens, 6 July 2000 (19:02 UTC+2)
The latest developments in Cyprus and the provocative Turkish action in Strovilia, near Famagusta dominated in the two-hour talks held in Athens between Greek foreign minister Giorgos Papandreou and US assistant secretary of state James Dobins.
Mr. Papandreou stated that they discussed the efforts made on behalf of the UN and the US government on the Cyprus problem and the recent issue that has been created in the region of Strovilia. He also stated that they discussed the Greek-Turkish and the EU-Turkish relations as well as issues concerning the Balkans.
They also exchanged views on the issue of terrorism and Mr. Papandreou stated that Mr. Dobins will have extensive talks on the issue with the responsible public order minister Mr. Michalis Chrisochoidis, who will visit the United States soon to sign a memorandum of police cooperation between the countries.
Mr. Dobins referring to the Geneva talks on Cyprus stressed that a team of US high ranking officials is there and follows the developments. He avoided to respond to the question on how the US government comments on the movement of the Turkish forces in the buffer zone in Strovilia, stating that the United Nations are dealing with the issue and the US support the effort aimed at finding a solution.
Mr. Dobins praised Greece's role in the crisis in Kosovo and characterized as important Greece's influence and presence in the Balkans, stressing that it is a model for the rest Balkan countries that want to become members of the European Union.
 REPPAS' COMMENTS ON THE TURKISH CYPRIOT PROVOCATION IN STROVILIAAthens, 6 July 2000 (18:39 UTC+2)
The new provocation of the Turkish Cypriots in Strovilia was characterized as unacceptable by Greek government spokesman Dimitris Reppas, stressing that Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash's stance was adopted on grounds of expediency and it is an absolutely negative development in the effort to find a solution to the Cyprus problem.
Mr. Reppas said that there is no involvement of the National Guard in Strovilia, adding that the region is in a British base and its commander has appealed to the United Nations. The United Nations have undertaken initiatives to deal with the issue after the movement of the Turkish occupation forces, stressing that it was a movement inside the occupied territories and not an advance in the free territories of Cyprus. He said that the village of Strovilia is under a special regime and there is no change of status.
On the Cyprus talks in Geneva, he said that this is a very good opportunity to promote the efforts made by all sides to find a solution to the problem. He added that the least that can be achieved is to show for one more time to the international community that Turkey and Denktash are not ready to comply with the UN decisions.
He reiterated that Greece wants the relations with Turkey to normalize because this will contribute both to the better cooperation between the two countries and the solution of the Cyprus problem, stressing that the Cyprus problem is a test for the credibility of the Turkish foreign policy.
Finally, the Greek government spokesman responding to a relevant question by a reporter stated that the government is in absolute agreement with the statements of defense minister Akis Tsochatzopoulos according to which, there is no issue of a political negotiation with Turkey.
 COMMENTS ON THE ISSUE OF FYROM'S NAMEAthens, 6 July 2000 (18:14 UTC+2)
The issue of the name of FYROM is dealt within the framework of the United Nations, stated Greek government spokesman Dimitris Reppas responding to a relevant question by reporters.
When asked to confirm if foreign minister Giorgos Papandreou discussed the issue of the name of FYROM in the talks he had with the Greek political party leaders he stated characteristically that he can not deny or confirm it because he was not present. He said that Greece has stated that this pending issue must be settled because the improvement of relations between the two countries is important.
Mr. Reppas stated that the improvement of relations with FYROM must be accelerated and this will be achieved if a fair solution is found on the issue of the name, adding that the stance adopted by the other side does not help this effort to succeed.
 REPPAS' STATEMENTS ON THE GERMAN WAR REPARATIONSAthens, 6 July 2000 (17:54 UTC+2)
The government's disagreement with the execution of a Greek court decision on the German war reparations case leading to the confiscation of Goethe Institute property was expressed by Greek government spokesman Dimitris Reppas.
Mr. Reppas reiterated that the issue of the war reparations is sensitive and serious and for this reason it must be examined very carefully. He called on all sides to display cooperation and understanding in order to deal with the issue with the necessary sense of responsibility taking under consideration the national interest without by-passing the rights of the people in favor of whom the court has ruled.
 THE ISSUE OF FYROM'S NAME WAS DISCUSSED IN THE MEETINGS THE GREEK FOREIGN MINISTER HAD WITH THE POLITICAL PARTY LEADERSAthens, 6 July 2000 (17:24 UTC+2)
The issue of FYROM's name was discussed in the meetings foreign minister Giorgos Papandreou had yesterday with right-wing main opposition party of New Democracy leader Kostas Karamanlis, Communist Party general secretary Aleka Papariga and Coalition of the Left leader Nikos Konstantopoulos to brief them on foreign policy issues.
According to the Athens newspaper "Eleftherotipia", the Greek government is working on a final solution to the problem of FYROM's name and considers a one-word name such as "Novamakedonia". However, there are no similar moves on behalf of FYROM as its government faces the hard-line stance of the internal opposition on the issue. According to the newspaper, the Greek government was ready to publicize this effort but it had to postpone it because of the issue of the identity cards.
According to information, Mr. Karamanlis allegedly said that New Democracy will back a mutually acceptable solution, while he pointed out that a number of mistakes made in the past led to today's deadlock. In favor of the solution of the issue as soon as possible were Ms. Papariga and Mr. Konstantopoulos.
 FOREIGN MINISTER PAPANDREOU WANTS ACTIVE EU INVOLVEMENT IN CYPRUSAthens, 6 July 2000 (17:05 UTC+2)
The issue of the provocative action by the occupation regime of Rauf Denktash in Strovilia, Cyprus will be raised in Brussels on Monday by Greek foreign minister Giorgos Papandreou in the working launch he will have his counterparts within the framework of the general affairs council meeting.
Mr. Papandreou wants to make Cyprus an issue of the European Union in order to be actively involved in the developments. At the same time, he will continue the efforts for the intervention of the United Nations and the restoration of the status quo in the region.
Meanwhile, Cypriot minister of defense Sokratis Hasikos, speaking before the defense parliamentary committee, expressed the view that the Turks want to consolidate the situation they have created with their advance in the region of Strovilia, pointing out that the Turkish actions humiliate the United Nations.
Mr. Hasikos also stated that the National Guard is in a state of readiness and has taken all necessary measures, while the government continues the diplomatic efforts for the restoration of the status quo in the region.
 PART OF OTE AND OLYMPIC AIRWAYS WILL BE SOLD TO PRIVATE INVESTORSAthens, 6 July 2000 (15:59 UTC+2)
The French telecommunications group France Telecom is interested in purchasing 15% of the Greek Telecommunications Organization, OTE, while the German airline Lufthansa and Greek investors have expressed interest in the management of Olympic Airways and the purchasing of the majority of its shares.
The above were made known by minister of national economy Yiannos Papantoniou and minister of transportation and telecommunications Christos Verelis during their meeting with Credit Swiss First Boston and Warbrug representatives.
Mr. Papantoniou referring to OTE stated that in any case even if the Greek state loses the absolute majority of the organization's shares the management will remain under its president Nikos Manasis.
On the privatization of Olympic Airways, Mr. Verelis stated that a necessary precondition for the sale of the majority of the company's shares will be to keep the flight network of the Greek national airline intact.
 LOSSES OF 1.42% IN THE ATHENS STOCK EXCHANGEAthens, 6 July 2000 (15:31 UTC+2)
Losses of 1.42% were recorded in the Athens Stock Exchange today with the general index dropping to 3.968,83 points, while the volume of transactions was disappointing under 84 billion drachmas.
The course of today's session confirmed the speculations of the most pessimistic market analysts, who expressed reservations regarding the duration of yesterday's upward trend in the Athens Stock Exchange.
 GREECE HAS BECOME A HUGE GREENHOUSE BECAUSE OF THE HEATWAVEThessaloniki, 6 July 2000 (15:22 UTC+2)
Greece became a huge greenhouse as just before 12 at noon today the temperature in most regions in the country exceeded the 40 degrees Celsius, while according to an emergency weather bulletin temperatures will soar to 43 degrees and locally to 44 degrees Celsius.
A small drop in the temperature is expected tomorrow but starting on Saturday it will rise again. In Athens, the temperature rose to 43 and 44 degrees, while in Thessaloniki it was at 40 degrees Celsius.
Meanwhile, the consumption of electricity in the country reached a new record high at 8.580 megawatt because of the heatwave. The state Electricity Company suggested to the people to make reasonable use of the household electric appliances and especially the air-conditioners and its president Dimitris Papoulias stated that there is sufficiency of electricity but precautionary measures must be taken as these are extraordinary weather conditions.
According to meteorologists, the temperature will drop slightly tomorrow to 39 degrees, while it will rise again in the weekend. Specifically, on Sunday it will be at 42 degrees, on Monday the temperature will be lower, while on Tuesday it will rise again and it will reach the 42 degrees Celsius. Meteorologists warn that the heatwave will continue for many days into the next week.
 UNANIMOUSLY THE POLITICAL WORLD REJECTS THE ALLEGATIONS ON TERRORISMAthens, 6 July 2000 (14:33 UTC+2)
Unanimously the Greek political world rejected the unfounded and provocative allegations on terrorism according to which, Greece is a "terrorist paradise" putting in doubt the country's ability to organize safe Olympic Games in 2004.
The total of the Greek political world rejected the recent "Wall Street Journal" report. The minister of environment, public works and land planning as well as the minister of press, the vice-president of "Athens 2004" Organization and the leader of the Coalition of Left party as well as the New Democracy party spokesman all agreed that those publications are unfounded.
Minister of press and government spokesman Dimitris Reppas stated that these are subversive publications and expressed the belief that Athens will organize a perfect Olympiad like those in Seoul, Barcelona and Los Angeles but not like the Atlanta Olympic Games which was used as a negative example. Mr. Reppas attributed the attack launched against Athens "to games that have to do with the operation of the international Olympic family", as he stressed characteristically.
After his meting with foreign minister Papandreou, Coalition of the Left leader Nikos Konstantopoulos stated that the issue of terrorism is being used to exert destabilizing pressures on the country's prestige internationally and domestically. Mr. Konstantopoulos pointed out that even those who speak against Greece now do not have an effective policy in their country, reminding that the terrorism and crime problems in the United States are impressive. He also stressed that all the political parties in Greece have condemned terrorism admitting however, that there is a problem because of the weakness in dealing with it.
Minister of environment, public works and land planning Kostas Laliotis stated that the Olympic Games in Athens will be better than the Olympic Games in Atlanta, while New Democracy party spokesman Aris Spiliotopoulos stressed characteristically that Greece is a hospitable and safe country for the foreigners. Olympic Committee chairwoman Yianna Angelopoulou and vice-president Mr. Nikolaou characterized the newspaper reports as exaggerated.
Minister of public order Michalis Chrisochoidis stated that the US press publications are libelous and groundless and attempt to create a terrorism issue in Greece in view of the 2004 Olympic Games. Mr. Chrisochoidis also stated to the Athens radio station "Flash" that it is the first time that the citizens participate in the prevention of crime based on the "Laokratis" program.
 NEW TENSION IN STROVILIA, CYPRUSNicosia, 6 July 2000 (15:41 UTC+2)
The Turks raised again the flags of the occupied territories and Turkey in the region of Strovilia, Cyprus where the Turkish occupation forces built a new checkpoint within the framework of the measures implemented against the UNFICYP.
Meanwhile, the contacts and consultations with the Turkish side continue on behalf of the United Nations for the restoration of the situation in the way it was before last Friday when the occupation regime in the northern part of Cyprus began implementing the measures against UNFICYP.
Earlier, the flags had been lowered but the Turkish occupation forces remained in the region, according to statements made by Cypriot minister of defense Sokratis Hasikos.
 THE PROXIMITY TALKS ON CYPRUS CONTINUE IN GENEVAGeneva, 6 July 2000 (16:40 UTC+2)
The third round of the proximity talks on Cyprus continues in Geneva in the shadow of the Turkish provocation in the buffer zone, near Famagusta in the Turkish occupied part of Cyprus, and the intransigent statements made by Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash.
United Nations secretary general Kofi Annan stressed yesterday that he discussed with Cypriot president Glafkos Clerides and Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash the way of approach that will be followed and the fact that the effort will intensify in order to reach a solution in the next few months.
In statements he made to reporters, Mr. Annan said that no one must say or do anything that will create tension during the talks.