|Thursday, 21 November 2019|
Macedonian Press Agency: News in English, 02-09-25
From: The Macedonian Press Agency at http://www.mpa.gr and http://www.hri.org/MPA.
 SCHROEDER-SIMITIS ON PHONEAthens, 25 September 2002 (12:18 UTC+2)
Prime Minister Kostas Simitis had a discussion with the reelected Chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany, Gerhard Schroeder, congratulating the leader of the German Social Democrats on their victory in the elections.
The Prime Minister greeted the electoral victory of the SPD coalition and the Greens and wished Mr. Schroeder every success in continuing his mission for the progress and prosperity of the German people. He also characterized the Schroeder reelection as a guarantee for social justice and social cohesion.
Then, the Prime Minister had a telephone communication with the Head of the Green party, and German Foreign Minister, Joshka Fischer, whom he congratulated on the decisive contribution of his party in the victory of the coalition government.
Mr. Simitis also praised Mr. Fischer's persistence on policies distinguished by ecological sensitivities and radicalism, and expressed his respect towards him, because he showed the necessary realism in the effort to materialize his policy.
Meanwhile, at the first press conference held by Mr. Schroeder after his reelection, answering a Greek journalist, he underlined that Greece, though a small country, is playing a positive role in the Balkans, as well as in Europe in general.
I appreciate the Greece's role, led by my friend Kostas Simitis, whose voice is very important in the circle of the European partners stressed Mr. Schroeder.
 MILLER: I FEEL SAFE IN GREECEAthens, 25 September 2002 (12:21 UTC+2)
I feel safe in Greece, otherwise I wouldn't be here, stated US Ambassador to Greece Thomas Miller, who met with Minister of Transports and Communications Christos Verelis.
At the meeting, the issue of flight safety was discussed and Mr. Verelins asked Mr. Miller that a US FAA delegation visit Greece, in order to ascertain the progress that has been made in the sector of flight safety, so that Greece can leave Category 2 of the FAA, and return to Category 1.
Mr. Verelis presented the report of the International Civil Aviation Organization to the Ambassador, in which it is shown that Greece has taken care of the 30 of the 36 pending security issues that had been pointed out 2 years ago, and which led to Greece's demotion.
The Minister of Transports estimated that the necessary checks that will put Greece back into category 1 will have been completed by the end of the year.
When asked if he recommends travel to Greece to US citizens, Mr. Miller answered: I don't tell US citizens where they should travel to. That is a decision they can make alone. When people ask me if they should visit Greece I tell them it is a wonderful country that one should visit and there is not question about that.
 DNA ANALYSIS FOR N17 SUSPECTSAthens, 25 September 2002 (13:30 UTC+2)
The 17 suspects in the November 17 case held in the Corydallos penitentiary will undergo DNA examinations tomorrow.
In the meanwhile, Christodoulos Xeros' additional testimony is expected to be taken to Special Examiner Lenidas Zervobeakos today. According to information it will refute all statements previously made, concerning Papanastasiou, Kostaris, Psaradelis and Georgiadis.
As far as Christodoulos Xeros himself is concerned, he is expected to support that he was a peripheral member of N17, and that his confession was extracted with blackmails made by the Security Police.
Also, the Court of First Instance rejected Aggeliki Sotiropoulou's request for a temporary order to be issues, forbidding the media from referring to her personal life and her family.
 CHRISTODOULAKIS: GROWTH RATE WILL BE AT 4.1% IN 2003Athens, 25 September 2002 (19:30 UTC+2)
The 2003 state budget draft plan was approved by the cabinet today in the middle of very negative international developments and insecurity.
According to Minister of Finance Nikos Christodoulakis, the 2003 state budget draft plan predicts a growth rate of 4.1% and fiscal surplus of 0.5%, while public debt will be limited by 4%.
The goal for annual inflation is at 2.5% under the precondition that there will be no military strike against Baghdad, while on the 2002 inflation the Minister of Finance predicted that it will be at 3.3%.
According to Mr. Christodoulakis, the new state budget will support development and for this reason public investments are expected to be at 6.2% of the GDP.
 SIMITIS ON THE LIKELIHOOD OF A US ATTACK ON IRAQAthens, 25 September 2002 (19:09 UTC+2)
The need to observe the UN Security Council decisions was pointed out by Prime Minister Kostas Simitis in today's cabinet meeting. Mr. Simitis made the statement referring to the situation in Iraq and the likelihood of a US attack.
Government spokesman Christos Protopapas stated that the Prime Minister briefed the cabinet members on the talks he had with European leaders, among them French President Jacques Chirac. Mr. Simitis came to the conclusion that the overwhelming majority of the EU member-states are in favor of dealing with the issue of Iraq within the framework of the UN.
Mr. Simitis also briefed the cabinet on the Blair report which was delivered yesterday to the Greek Foreign Ministry, while another report was delivered today by US ambassador to Athens Thomas Miller.
Greek government spokesman Christos Protopapas stated that the EU state governments reached a decision according to which, the likely problems created by the Iraqi government stance should be faced within the framework of the UN Security Council decisions. He added that the UN examines a detailed draft resolution on the problems created by the Iraqi government.
Responding to relevant questions, he said that it is not certain that there will be war, a view that was expressed by the Foreign Minister as well. He stated characteristically that none wishes for war, stressing that Greece always backs the peaceful settlement of differences. He concluded that in case a UN inspection shows that Iraq has developed dangerous weapons it is clear that the UN will have to take measures.
 THE PRIME MINISTER ON THE 2003 STATE BUDGETAthens, 25 September 2002 (18:09 UTC+2)
The Greek economy is characterized by stability and confidence, stated Prime Minister Kostas Simitis in the cabinet meeting held today on the 2003 state budget.
In his introductory speech the Prime Minister referred to international developments and the effects a military intervention in Iraq will have on Greece, stressing that Greece will suffer the smallest economic consequences compared to the other European Union states because its economy is strong. Even in case of an intervention in Iraq the growth rate of the economy will not fall under 3%.
Referring to the 2003 state budget, the Prime Minister stressed that it guarantees the continuation of the country's course with security and confidence and called on all the members of the government to back the budget which is socially fair and characterized by development. He said that a special attention is given to the government's pre-election commitments. Namely, the social security reform, tax reform, the Olympic Games and public investments.
When government spokesman Christos Protopapas was asked to comment on the government ministers' disagreement regarding the new state budget, he said that since 1974 all the government ministers disagree with the Minister of Finance concerning the distribution of budget funds. On the compensation for those who were damaged by floods, he said that the budget includes a provision on natural disasters.
The government spokesman also stated that the Prime Minister conveyed to the cabinet ministers his impressions of the EU and the SE Asian countries Summit meeting in Copenhagen. Mr. Simitis stated that outside the EU there is a climate of uncertainty and insecurity, using the Asian economies as an example.
 GAINS IN THE ASEAthens, 25 September 2002 (17:04 UTC+2)
Gains were recorded in the Athens Stock Exchange today. The general index rose to +0.97% at 1.836,22 points, while the volume of transactions was at 91.9 million Euro.
Of the stocks trading today, 164 recorded gains and 143 had losses, while the value of 67 stocks remained unchanged.
 THE 3RD INTERNATIONAL EXHIBITION ZOOTECHNIA OPENS TOMORROWThessaloniki, 25 September 2002 (16:20 UTC+2)
The 3rd International Exhibition ZOOTECHNIA opens in Thessaloniki tomorrow and will last four days.
The exhibition, which is held every two years, will cover a space of 6.750 square meters compared to the 5.677 square meters it covered the last time. A total of 335 direct and indirect exhibitors from Greece and other 22 countries will participate in the event. Specifically, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, France, Germany, Denmark, Switzerland, United States, Japan, Ireland, Spain, Italy, Canada, Korea, Cyprus, Britain, New Zealand, Norway, Holland, Hungary, Poland and Turkey.
It is the only specialized exhibition in Greece concerning poultry and stock breeders as it covers different sectors such as equipment, animal feed, etc.
 GREEK HUMANITARIAN AID TO ALBANIAAthens, 25 September 2002 (16:15 UTC+2)
Greece has sent humanitarian aid to Albania at the request of the neighboring country which faces huge problems as a result of the heavy rainfall recorded in the past few days.
The Greek humanitarian aid, part of which arrived in Albania yesterday, includes 450 tents, 2.350 blankets, 700 sheets and about 70 tons of food.
 PAPANDREOU-MILLER MEETINGAthens, 25 September 2002 (16:12 UTC+2)
Greek Foreign Minister Giorgos Papandreou met with US ambassador to Athens Thomas Miller.
According to the Greek Foreign Ministry spokesman Panos Beglitis, they discussed the latest developments in the Palestinian issue and Iraq.
Mr. Miller delivered a text to Mr. Papandreou with evidence collected by the US authorities concerning the construction of weapons of mass destruction by Iraq.
 ESPIONAGE SUSPECT TESTIFIESMytilini, 25 September 2002 (12:21 UTC+2)
Pekinel Mourat Mehmet, 54 years old, was arrested in Limnos yesterday photographing military installations and was charged with espionage. The Turkish man will be taken to the Mytilini DA this afternoon in order to testify.
The 54-yeal-old, carrying a temporary German passport, had in his possession a total of 57 rolls of film, which were sent to be developed at the Athens Direction of State Security.