|Friday, 22 November 2019|
Macedonian Press Agency: News in English, 00-07-13
From: The Macedonian Press Agency at http://www.mpa.gr and http://www.hri.org/MPA.
 THE EU MONETARY COMMISSIONER PRAISED THE GREEK PREPARATIONS ON THE EUROThessaloniki, 13 July 2000 (15:01 UTC+2)
Portuguese EU Commissioner on monetary affairs Pedro Solbes praised the Greek government for the adequacy of the preparations made for its transition to the Euro.
Mr. Solbes stated that the preparations are adequate and that he is absolutely certain that the country will be ready to adopt the Euro on January 1, 2001.
However, he is not optimistic regarding the timely adaptation of the European businesses to the new situation signaled by the entry to the Euro-zone. He underlined on that issue that the preparation of the European businesses toward this direction is inadequate.
 WARNINGS BY GERMANY ON THE WAR REPARATIONSAthens, 13 July 2000 (13:49 UTC+2)
The Greek court decision in the central Greek city of Livadia, which ruled that the relatives of the victims of the Distomo massacre committed by the Nazis in WWII can demand compensation by Germany creates problems in the relations between Greece and Germany, according to the British newspaper "The Guardian".
The newspaper cites statements made by a high ranking Greek official who is kept anonymous and allegedly has stated that the German government has warned the Greek side that things can become hard for Greece if the German state property confiscation procedure proceeds.
Meanwhile, in statements to Athens radio station "Sky" the lawyer of the relatives of the Distomo victims Mr. Yiannis Stamoulis said that within the next few days an appeal will be made to the Human Rights Court for Germany to comply with the Livadia court decision.
He also characterized as legally incomprehensible the allegations made by the German side disputing the court's jurisdiction.
 EVROS IS IN QUARANTINE AS A RESULT OF FOOT-AND-MOUTH DISEASE CASES - LIVESTOCK ARE BEING DESTROYEDThessaloniki, 13 July 2000 (13:26 UTC+2)
The process of livestock destruction will start in Evros, north-eastern Greece today within the framework of the measures taken to prevent the spread of the foot-and-mouth disease cases recorded in the region.
The disease came to Greece from Turkey and the first cases appeared in the Evros River Delta last Monday, according to statements made to MPA by deputy prefect Michalis Kougioumtsis.
Mr. Kougioumtsis said that the region is in quarantine and the movement of livestock and dairy products has been forbidden, while the region of the Delta has been placed off limits for everyone.
The situation created will have serious economic consequences as it is estimated that over 1.000 animals will be destroyed.
 TENS OF FIRES ARE IN PROGRESS ACROSS GREECEAthens, 13 July 2000 (13:21 UTC+2)
The country is in flames again. Many villages in central Greece are threatened by the fires that are fanned by the strong winds making very difficult the fire-fighting efforts. Because of the strong winds the fire-fighting aircraft are unable to fly and in the efforts to put out the fire participate only 2 helicopters.
Fires are in progress in Egion, in the Peloponese southern Greece, in the prefecture of Grevena and in the region of Konitsa in the north-west of the country, in the Aegean island of Chios and in Halkida, Evia. The fire-fighting forces are in a state of alert fearing rekindling of the fires in the Aegean island of Samos where two fire fronts are still burning.
Meanwhile, the government and the meteorologists are warning of a high-risk four-day period because of the strong north winds.
Tomorrow, prime minister Kostas Simitis is scheduled to visit the regions on the island of Samos that were destroyed by the recent fires.
 LAURENCE OF ARABIA HAD LOOTED THE HELLENISTIC CITY OF ZEVGMAAnkara, 13 July 2000 (16:45 UTC+2)
Laurence of Arabia had looted the ancient Hellenistic city of Zevgma, which will soon be under the waters of the Birecik dam. According to the Turkish newspaper "Hurriyet", the city's antiquities which are of incomparable beauty had been looted in the early 20th century by the British spy, known as Laurence of Arabia.
The newspaper publication is based on statements made by former director of the Archaeological Museum in the city of Gaziantep Mr. Rifat Ergets, who maintained that Laurence of Arabia participated in the excavations that were held in the early 20th century in the city of Zevgma, at the banks of the Euphrates River, in order to get antiquities for himself and the British Museum. Mr. Ergets also mentioned that the elderly people in the region still remember that in 1917-18 Laurence of Arabia had visited the specific region with the motorcycle that is now being exhibited at the Archaeological Museum of Gaziantep.
 PROPOSAL FOR THE ESTABLISHMENT OF A GREEK-BULGARIAN BUSINESS LEAGUESofia, 13 July 2000 (15:47 UTC+2)
Bulgarian Commerce and Industry Chamber president Bizidar Bizinov suggested the establishment of a Greek-Bulgarian business league in a meeting he had with Greek ambassador to Sofia Michalis Christidis.
Based on Mr. Bozinov's proposal, in the Greek-Bulgarian business league will be called to participate Bulgarian and Greek companies active in the Bulgarian market.
 THE SITUATION IN STROVILIA REMAINS UNCHANGEDNicosia, 12 July 2000 (15:55 UTC+2)
The situation in Strovilia, near Famagusta in Cyprus remains unchanged, stated Cypriot minister of defense Sokratis Hasikos avoiding to make other comments, while parliamentary committee on defense president Takis Hatzidimitriou stated that the situation as it has been formed is an "expansion of occupation".
In statements he made after the committee meeting, Mr. Hatzidimitriou stated that the Turkish action in Strovilia had a huge effect domestically and abroad.
 GREECE HAS NOT MISLED THE IOC ON THE ISSUE OF SECURITY IN THE OLYMPIC GAMESLondon, 12 July 2000 (16:57 UTC+2)
It is categorically denied that Greece misled the International Olympic Committee, IOC, on the issue of security in the Olympic Games as it was alleged in an article by A. Graig Copeta published on the newspaper "Wall Street Journal".
The newspaper published letters on the issue by Greek embassy to London charge d'affaires Mr. Bitsios and former parliament deputy Mr. Andrianopoulos in response to Mr. Copeta's article published on the July 4, 2000 issue.
Mr. Bitsios stresses that the Greek authorities will take all necessary measures for the safety of the athletes, visitors, tourists and spectators, while he denies the allegations included in the article according to which, Greece misled the IOC on the Olympic Games security issue.
Mr. Adrianopoulos in his letter to the newspaper characterizes as exaggerated the fears expressed by the journalist on the safety of the Olympic Games that will be held in Athens in 2004.
 GERMANY IS ANNOYED BY THE CONFISCATION OF ITS PROPERTY IN GREECELondon, 12 July 2000 (15:04 UTC+2)
The German government appears annoyed by the Greek court decision to start the procedure for the confiscation of Goethe Institute property in Athens.
Already, the German ambassador to Athens delivered a protest demarche to the Greek foreign ministry. The newspaper "Financial Times" point out that the war reparations' sum that is demanded by the relatives of the Distomo massacre committed by the Nazis during WWII is not a very large one, but it could provoke a chain reaction in other eastern and southern European countries that could launch similar procedures against the German state.
A representative of the German foreign ministry in Berlin stressed to BBC's Greek radio service that for Germany the issue has ended and stated that based on international law the Livadia court decision is invalid and illegal. Also, the German foreign ministry representative mentioned that the Livadia court decision can not be implemented without previous approval by the Greek justice ministry and given the fact that no such approval has been issued the confiscation procedure can not start.
Berlin also mentions that Germany's federal government recognizes its moral responsibility for the plight of the Greek people during the Nazi occupation and for this reason Germany signed an agreement with Greece in 1960 and paid war reparations of DM 115 million. The then Greek government undertook to distribute the money to the relatives of the Nazi victims and therefore, the issue ended for Germany.
 PAPANDREOU DOES NOT RULE OUT THE "FREEZING" OF THE DIALOGUE WITH TURKEYLondon, 11 July 2000 (15:32 UTC+2)
It is self-evident that actions like that of Turkey in the region of Strovilia, near Famagusta in Cyprus have a negative effect on the Greek-Turkish relations, stated Greek foreign minister Giorgos Papandreou in an interview with the BBC.
As it was reported from London, Mr. Papandreou, responding to the question if Greece intends to "toughen" its stance toward Turkey on the occasion of the incident in Strovilia, stressed that Greece sees the Cyprus problem not as a bilateral Greek-Turkish issue, adding that there is an issue for the United Nations as the international organization has the supervision especially, in the issue of Strovilia. Mr. Papandreou stated, however, that such issues and especially the developments in Cyprus can affect bilateral relations negatively or positively according to the developments.
Mr. Papandreou did not rule out the "freezing" of the dialogue with Turkey, saying that the Greek-Turkish relations will be affected negatively if such actions continue, while he stressed that it will be a mistake to react at this moment based on sentiment and not make decisions based on pure logic.
He said that talks are being held between the two communities under the UN auspices and Greece must support these procedures, while he added that the strategy decided in Helsinki must continue and this can have only positive results for Greece and Cyprus.
Mr. Papandreou also linked Turkey's European course with the developments in Cyprus and with the developments in bilateral relations.
 EFFORTS FOR THE RESTORATION OF THE COPY OF ARCHIMEDES' MANUSCRIPTNew York, 12 July 2000 (15:59 UTC+2)
Scientists in the Rochester Institute of Technology in the United States have begun the restoration of a copy of a manuscript by ancient Greek mathematician Archimedes dated back to the 10th century AD.
The manuscript which is the only known copy of Archimedes' code was damaged by a monk in the 12th century AD, 200 years after it was written and in 1998 it was bought by an anonymous buyer for US$ 2 million in an auction in the United States.
Using digital cameras and film development techniques as well as ultraviolet and infra-red filters the scientists have captured images of Archimedes' authentic words and drawings which were erased and then covered by a new text by the monk who caused the damage.
 THE PAN-MACEDONIAN ASSOCIATION OF US-CANADA ELECTED A WOMAN PRESIDENTNew York, 10 July 2000 (18:06 UTC+2)
The proceedings of the 54th annual conference of the Pan-Macedonian Association of US-Canada held for the election of a new supreme presiding board were concluded in New York late last Saturday afternoon.
The role of women in the new presiding board is notable as four of the six positions have been occupied by women.
Pan-Macedonian Association president was elected its former vice-president Ms. Nina Peropoulou from Texas, vice-president is Sotiris Proios from New York, secretary is Alexandra Avgitidou from New Jersey and treasurer is Varvara Papigioti from New York. Babis Moutidis was elected vice-president of the association for Canada, while Eleftheria Achtaridi was elected vice-president for the association's youth. The supreme council is also made up of the 16 governors of the different departments of the Pan-Macedonian Association in Canada and the United States many of whom are young and take over the post of the governor for the first time.