|Sunday, 17 November 2019|
Macedonian Press Agency: News in English, 02-03-20
From: The Macedonian Press Agency at http://www.mpa.gr and http://www.hri.org/MPA.
 KARAMANLIS-SIMITIS HARSH DEBATEAthens, 20 March 2002 (12:40 UTC+2)
A discussion in parliament for the approval of the Nice treaty, turned into a personal confrontation between the Prime Minister and the Head of the Opposition, with especially harsh language used by both sides.
The tension started to rise when the Prime Minister reacted intensely to accusations of ND President that the present government is the only one that does not inform political leaders, and that shows the magnitude of its inability to fight for national interests. In fact, Mr. Karamanlis supported that the last Summit Meeting of EU leaders in Barcelona was unfavorable for our country, since all issues directly involving Greece, such as the Euroarmy, were postponed indefinitely, and are still pending.
Answering, the Prime Minister made mention of flag-waving and cultivating fear and uneasiness in the Greek people, noting that it was this government that has reached the greatest national achievements, achievements that have made Greece powerful, such as its accession to the Economic Monetary Union.
Kostas Simitis referred to the meetings he had during the last four months with the Administration of the US, Russia and Japan, a fact that shows that Greece's voice counts and that is a result of the government's efforts, not your denials.
The fact that you can sit at the same table as your counterparts, is something you owe to Karamanlis, never forget that and never provoke, was the reply of Mr. Karamanlis, who added:
It is obvious that Mr. Simitis is aiming at aggressiveness in order to cover up for not acting as he should have in certain cases. And do not accuse us of flag waving, because that is a very heavy term.
As far as the essence of the Nice Treaty is concerned, the Prime Minister underlined that with its approval, Greece comes out stronger, especially with the accession of Cyprus to the EU. At the same time he cauterized the position of both the KKE and the Coalition of the Left, because he cannot comprehend how they can deny this national need.
He recognized that we will never have the perfect adjustments to fully satisfy us, but that it should not deny Cyprus its incorporation to the EU.
The Nice treaty may not respond to our vision, nor does it clear up the basic requirements for the enlargement, he noted and added:
We want a Europe close to the citizen and society, with democratic institutions, without directorates and interventions from outside institutions. We want a powerful Europe, which means a powerful political union, stable and prosperous, and we are arriving with a complete schedule. The Greek Parliament will have the opportunity to contribute to this formation of Europe, and I call you to approve it.
The Secretary General of the Greek Communist Party, Aleka Papariga, was against approving the Treaty, which, she said, enlarges the chasm between the rich and the poor, and supports large capital at the expense of smaller businesses and employment, while trespassing social rights.
At the same time she characterized the belief that political unification will protect the rights of the masses, that are reacting intensely, as delusions.
She also supported that the accession of Cyprus will lead to the entombment of a fair resolving of the Cyprus issue.
The President of the Coalition of the Left, Nikos Konstantopoulos, referred to the dispute between the Prime Minister and the President of ND, by mentioning a repertoire of polarization in the two major parties, on an issue they both agree upon.
 BALKAN COMMUNISTS MEET IN THESSALONIKIThessaloniki, 20 March 2002 (12:50 UTC+2)
A two-day meeting of Balkan communist parties and movements has been organized for March 23-24, at Macedonia University in Thessaloniki, by the Balkan AntiNATO Center.
More than 25 organizations, parties and movements have been invited from Albania, Yugoslavia, Romania, Turkey, FYROM, Bosnia-Herzegovina and Cyprus. The meeting will also be occupied with preparations for a fighting answer to the EU Summit Meeting of 2003 in Thessaloniki.
The works of the two-day meeting will be greeted by Greek Communist Party Secretary General Aleka Papariga, Thessaloniki Prefect candidate and member of the Political Secretariat of DIKKI, Giorgos Rokkos, member of the Communist Renewal, as well as representatives of bodies and movements of Thessaloniki.
 DEATH TOLL AT 32 IN EVROS MINEFIELDSAlexandroupoli, 20 March 2002 (12:49 UTC+2)
The death of two Kurds after entering a minefield has raised the death toll to 32. that is the number of people who have lost their lives, while 16 have been seriously injured, while entering the Evros region minefields for various reasons in the past six years.
The latest victims are two illegal immigrants from Turkey of Kurdish decent, who entered an fenced in minefield in the Kastanies community in Evros, and were instantly killed when stepping on a mine, while one more was severely injured, and is being treated in critical condition in an Alexandroupoli hospital.
A similar tragedy took place in 1997, when a group of 67 Iraqis entered a minefield in the Vissa region. Three of them were killed, eleven were seriously injured, two of whom had to be amputated.
 THE VOICE OF THE ECUMENICAL PATRIARCHY THROUGH THE MPAThessaloniki, 20 March 2002 (16:35 UTC+2)
The voice of the Ecumenical Patriarchy will now be heard live over the Internet, starting on the Sunday of Orthodoxy, thanks to an in initiative taken by the Macedonian Press Agency, funded by the Themeliodomi Group. As announced during a press conference, thousands of Internet users will be able to watch Sunday Mass held at the Patriarchical church of St. George in Fanari and the messages of the Ecumenical Patriarch, through the website of the Macedonian Press Agency. Thanks to this initiative, the most important events of the Patriarchy will broadcasted through the Internet, while the infrastructure created at Fanari, will allow the Ecumenical Patriarchy to participate in teleconferences.
 HASCOVO DELEGATION IN EVROSAlexandroupoli, 20 March 2002 (14:50 UTC+2)
A delegation from the Hascovo Prefecture will make an official visit to the Evros prefecture. The delegation is headed by Hascovo's Alternate Prefect, Velin Balkanski.
The visit will take place in the framework of cooperation of the prefectures of Evros and Hascovo, and in its duration, issues included in the cooperation protocol signed by both sides will be discussed. These issues will concern regional development, inter-border cooperation, administrative and financial issues, as well as emergency situation and political protection issues.
 DEVELOPMENT MINISTRY PRIORITIESAthens, 20 March 2002 (12:44 UTC+2)
The priorities of the Ministry of Development for the next decade, were presented by Minister of Development Akis Tsohatzopoulos to Greek EuroMPs, during a special event that took place on Friday in the Ministry. Mr. Tsohatzopoulos focused on issues concerning the energy market and tourism, while he was informed on recent developments that took place in the European Parliament, related to those issues.
Specifically, the Minister of Development pointed out that the decade afoot will be a decade of growth for Greece at the financial, social and environmental level. In this framework, as he said, the Ministry of Development is aiming at forming common policies with it social partners and social bodies, to connect the economy with society, the environment and culture, and to strengthen the society of knowledge with people as its main lever. Mr. Tsohatzopoulos also stressed that further goals of his Ministry are the promotion of business ideas, the mobilization of the private sector, the utilization of funds of the 3rd Communal Support Framework, and the completion of regional development.
Specifically on the energy sector, the Development Minister underlined that the Ministry's actions aiming at full liberalization of the energy market, are concentrated on securing sufficient, inexpensive and clean power for the whole of the Greek people, and the transformation of Greece into a energy crossroad for Europe. In the direction of sufficiency, agreements with Iran and Turkey are already being promoted, for the further supply of natural gas quantities. At the same time, after proposals made by RAE and DEPA, new and cheaper prices have been finalized for the transfer of natural gas through Greece, which will come into effect in 2003. In the meantime, as Mr. Tsohatzopoulos said, the public dialogue for the composing of an Energy Stock Market, that will adjust production and trading on the Greek market, is under way.
Presenting the priorities of the Ministry on Tourism, Mr. Tsohatzopoulos stressed that their slogan is strategic planning with a ten-year horizon. The Ministry is already setting the bases for the materialization of Greece's new tourism policy, indicative of which is the increased, compared to previous years, funds, of 31,107,850 euro (10.6 billion drs), with which this years tourist promotions will be reinforced.
 GREEK PARLIAMENT DELEGATION IN MARRAKECHAthens, 20 March 2002 (12:43 UTC+2)
An Interparty Parliamentary Delegation is in Maroco, where it is participating in the works of the 107th Convention of the Interpaliamentary Association, which started two days ago in Marrakech.
During the works, issues concerning the international political, financial and social situation, the contribution of Parliaments in securing the respect and promotion of international humanitarian law, as well as the need to revising the existing global economic-monetary model, will be discussed.
The Greek delegation is composed by MPs: Floros Konstantinou, Elsa Papadimitriou, Nikos Gatzis, and Maria Damanaki.
In the framework of the Convention, works of the Meeting of the Association of Parliament Secretaries General, in which diplomatic consultant of the Greek Parliament Ambassador Haris Karabarbounis will also participate, will also take place.