|Friday, 22 November 2019|
Macedonian Press Agency: News in English, 00-07-21
From: The Macedonian Press Agency at http://www.mpa.gr and http://www.hri.org/MPA.
 OÍ ÔÇÅ ANNIVERSARY OF THE INVASION OF CYPRUS, SAE'S PRESIDENT URGES PRESIDENT CLINTON TO AID NEGOTIATIONS PERSONALLYChicago, 21 July 2000 (18:46 UTC+2)
Andrew A. Athens, World President of the Council of Hellenes Abroad (SAE) dispatched a message to President Clinton reminding him that we have reached the 26th anniversary of the invasion of Cyprus by Turkey and of the urgent need for substantive, productive negotiations that will lead to a speedy and just settlement of the conflict caused by the continuing occupation of the island nation.
"The grim anniversary of the invasion and occupation of Cyprus by the armed forces of Turkey will soon dawn, again, for the 26th time," Mr. Athens wrote referring to the anniversary, July 20.
"Despite worldwide condemnation of Turkey and unanimous international rejection of the pseudo-state supported by Turkish arms on the occupied part of the island, the aggressor refuses to hold substantive negotiations.
"Mr. President, as you have repeatedly stated, as recently as two months ago, the end result of the negotiations determining the future of the island nation, must be a bi-communal, united Cyprus. SAE and the entire Hellenic American community -- indeed, Hellenes everywhere -- urge you to personally become involved in the negotiations on Cyprus and use the benefit of your experience and the full weight of your office to guide the talks to a just settlement in line with your stated commitment.
"We applaud you for your decisive involvement in the Israeli-Palestinian negotiations. If a long-lasting peace is achieved in that part of the world, it would certainly happen because of your patient involvement in the process."It is the hope of all Americans of Hellenic heritage that you will personally step into the negotiations on the conflict that has lasted a quarter of a century and bring about an end to human suffering, to human rights violations and to the deprivations caused by the Turkish occupation.
"We recognize that it will not be easy. But as we all know, history is made by the great men who struggle against great odds. We will always remember those who wage war, but we will remember with gratitude those who make peace possible."
 PAPANDREOU-DRASKOVIC MEETING ON TUESDAYAthens, 21 July 2000 (15:20 UTC+2)
Serb opposition leader Vuk Draskovic, who is in Greece on vacation, will meet with Greek foreign minister Giorgos Papandreou on Tuesday. The news has been confirmed by both sides.
An official of the Serb Renewal Movement headed by Draskovic stated to the news agency SRNA that the Serb politician came to Greece for vacation because after the assassination attempt against him suffered a strong shock and has psychological problems.
Mr. Draskovic does not want to run in the next elections in Yugoslavia and with the Greek foreign minister he will discuss issues concerning the situation in the Balkans and the course of democratization in his country.
 A RUSSIAN ARRESTED IN ATHENS IS A NOTORIOUS CRIMINALAthens, 21 July 2000 (16:59 UTC+2)
Thirty year old Igor Rintin, who was arrested in Athens, is a leading member of the Russian Mafia. According to police, on July 12 he had reported that was the victim of a robbery committed by 4 Greeks of Armenian origin, who had taken from him the sum of US$ 90.000. He said to the police that his name was Andrei Semenov and that he came to Greece permanently on July 2.
Police believed that he was a suspect because he could not explain where he had found such a large sum of money. They contacted the Russian police and it was found out that his traveling papers were false and belonged to an individual who had been killed in St. Petersburg under unclear conditions.
The Russian police believes that he had participated in a bloody robbery in 1998 when the security guards accompanying an armored car carrying a large sum of money were killed and the robbers got away with US$ 300.000.
 ABOUT 5 MILLION GREEKS USE MOBILE PHONESAthens, 21 July 2000 (16:01 UTC+2)
Even the mobile phone companies are surprised by the number of mobile phone users in Greece, as according to figures provided by the companies themselves their number in the second trimester of the current year reached 4.9 million and is expected to be over the 5 million mark very soon.
Those figures overturn predictions according to which, the mobile phone users in Greece would be close to 5 million at the end of 2001 or in early 2002.
It should be noted that with the speedy development of the mobile phone market in Greece very soon its customers will be more than those of the conventional phone service which has 5.600.000 users after 100 years of operation.
The biggest increase in the number of users was recorded in the second trimester of 2000 in Cosmote with 295.063 new customers and the company occupied the second place in the mobile phone market.
Panafon continues to occupy the first place and it was announced that recently had an increase of 36.2% in the number of its new customers.
Telestet, the third mobile phone company in Greece had also an impressive increase of 52.5% in its number of customers in the second trimester of 2000 compared to the same period last year.
 EXTRAORDINARY MEASURES FOR THE BIG SUMMER EXODUSThessaloniki, 21 July 2000 (14:32 UTC+2)
The big exodus of summer vacationers is expected in Greece today and the responsible authorities have taken all necessary measures for the smooth movement of the holiday-makers.
It is estimated that over 100.000 people will use the port of Piraeus to leave for the islands of the Aegean Sea and Crete during the weekend, while extra measures are in effect on the national road network.
 THE EXTENT OF THE DESTRUCTION BECAUSE OF THE FIRES IS HORRIFYINGAthens, 21 July 2000 (14:25 UTC+2)
Thousands of hectars of forest and farm land have been destroyed in Greece since the start of the year. According to figures provided yesterday by minister of agriculture Mr. Anomeritis, about seventy two thousand hectars of forest land and twenty eight thousand hectars of farm land have been destroyed by the freak fires that raged in the country in the past weeks.
It should be noted that in 1998, which was regarded as the worst year for Greece in terms of fires had been destroyed about 79 thousand hectars of forest land and 16 thousand hectars of farm land.
The fires killed 3.540 sheep and 1.360 pigs, while 169.920 meters of irrigation pipes have also been destroyed as well as, 436 warehouses and stockyards.
 LETTER BY ZAKHEOS TO ANNAN ON THE AIRSPACE VIOLATIONS BY TURKISH AIRCRAFTNicosia, 21 July 2000 (15:34 UTC+2)
Cyprus' permanent representative in the United Nations, Sotos Zakheos protested against the recent violations of the Cypriot airspace by Turkish jets with a letter addressed to UN secretary-general Kofi Annan.
In his letter, Mr. Zakheos stresses that several provocative actions have been made on behalf of the Turkish side in spite of the July 12 appeal made by the UN to both sides to lower the tones during the talks on Cyprus.
 MATERNITY CLINIC IN TIRANA WITH GREEK MONEYTirana, 21 July 2000 (14:58 UTC+2)
Albania's ministers of health and economy Leonard Solis and Anastas Angeli signed a decision according to which, a US$ 4.2 million Greek loan will be used for the purchase of equipment for the new Maternity Clinic in Tirana.
The Maternity Clinic building has 8 floors and a capacity of 200 beds. The construction works began in 1989 and ended in 1999.
 THE SALE OF THE UNITED BULGARIAN BANK TO THE NATIONAL BANK OF GREECE HAS BEEN FINALIZEDSofia, 21 July 2000 (14:54 UTC+2)
The National Bank of Greece bought 89.9% of the United Bulgarian Bank for US$ 207 million.
According to the deal that was signed, the European Bank of Development and Reconstruction will sell the rest 10% of the United Bulgarian Bank to the National Bank of Greece in the next two years for US$ 23 million.
National Bank of Greece governor, Mr. Karatzas stated that he does not intent to make changes in the bank's personnel except from certain changes in its board of directors. He stated characteristically that the United Bulgarian Bank will maintain its Bulgarian character and will continue to back the economic reforms in the country.
 ANGELOPOULOU: THE 2004 OLYMPIC GAMES WILL BE THE BEST IN THE HISTORY OF THE EVENTSLausanne, 21 July 2000 (14:29 UTC+2)
The certainty that the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens will be the best in the history of the institution not just for being successful but because they will be the best organized Olympic Games ever, was expressed by "Athens 2004" Organizing Committee president Ms. Yianna Angelopoulou after the meeting she had yesterday with International Olympic Committee president Juan Antonio Samaranch in Lausanne.
Ms. Angelopoulou stressed characteristically that the 2004 Olympic Games were given to Greece, denying that there was a discussion at any IOC level on the likelihood to change the host country of the games.
Meanwhile, International Olympic Committee (IOC) member and head of the coordinating committee for the Olympic Games in Sydney and Athens, Mr. Rong in an interview with the BBC expressed his satisfaction over the efforts made by the Greek government and prime minister Kostas Simitis in the preparations for the 2004 Olympic Games.
The specific IOC member stated that the statements made by IOC president Mr. Samaranch against the Greek Olympic Committee did not constitute an attack but on the contrary, offered service to the Greek side. He stated to the BBC that now things have changed because the Greek prime minister is using his leverage and the government has proceeded with the restructuring of the Olympic Games' Committee, while the relevant legislation has changed which is very positive.
Responding to the question on whether the change of faces in the "Athens 2004" Organization were toward the right direction, he said that there have been satisfactory changes but the decisive factor for the IOC is that the prime minister is now the one who controls the situation, adding that it remains to be seen how these changes will operate in practice.
Regarding the issue of the security in the Olympic Games, he said that the IOC sees as high priority the issue of the safety of the athletes and the visitors and categorically denied that there was any thought to take away the Olympic Games from Athens. He said that Mr. Samaranch never implied that Greece could lose the games and instead he had warned that the country was at the so-called "yellow phase", which is the phase just before the appearance of very serious problems regarding the organization of the Olympic Games. He said that Mr. Samaranch never hinted or stated that the Olympic Games will be taken away from Greece, stressing that it was a classic case of misinterpretation, while he also added that the games will be held in Greece in spite of the objections of certain circles which are against that.
 ANGELOPOULOU AND SAMARANG MEET IN LAUSANNELausanne, 20 July 2000 (21:32 UTC+2)
Juan Antonio Samarang expressed his satisfaction with the organisational changed made recently within the Athens 2004 committee, following his meeting with Yianna Angelopoulou and the new Executive Committee for the Olympics, in Lausanne. Mr Samarang also relayed his confidence that the Athens 2004 Olympics will be a huge success.
Ms Angelopoulou, accompanied by the undersecretary of Culture, George Florides, in charge of athletic issues, introduced the managing director of Athens 2004, Petros Synadinos and the members of the Board of Directors, Mr Simitsek, Mr Kapralo and Kostas Liaskas to the International Olympic Committee (IOC).
Mr Samarang stressed that the IOC supports Ms Angelopoulou and her team, remarking that the meeting held with the management team of the Athens Organisational committee was an important step. We discussed the new structure and will analyse its progress in a few months. We are convinced that the races will be very successful.
For her part, Ms Angelopoulou stated that the IOC is as interested in the success of the Races as we are. It has helped us in the past and will continue to do so. We are all on the same side and are trying to organise the Games as best we can, bearing in mind the difficulties involved in all preparations.
 SAE WORLD PRESIDENT ANDREW A. ATHENS LAUNCHES HIGH LEVEL MEETINGS IN ATHENS, THESSALONIKIChicago, 21 July 2000 (18:47 UTC+2)
Council of Hellenes Abroad World President Andrew A. Athens will meet with local government officials and officials of the Greek government during a two-week visit beginning July 24 in order to review progress of SAE's projects in the first six months of the year.
Mr. Athens will kick off his visit Monday, July 24, with the inauguration ceremonies for the Olympic Games "Ekheheria" organization sponsored by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Athens. He will then hold meetings with the Mayor of Thessaloniki, the Prefect of Thessaloniki, and the Minister of Macedonia Thrace, and will also visit the new headquarters of SAE in Thessaloniki. Finally, he will meet in Athens with various ministers, government officials and members of the Parliament involved in SAE's work.
"My visit has two purposes," Mr. Athens said. "First, I will update all the interested ministries and agencies about the very active six months completed by SAE, and I will also seek continued cooperation for SAE's programs in Hellenic communities around the world.
"Our activities have focused on ethnic issues, such as meetings with American officials at the very highest level on Cyprus talks and the report on terrorism, and on the philanthropic work of the Medical Care Initiative in the republics of the former Soviet Union and Albania."