|Monday, 18 November 2019|
Macedonian Press Agency: News in English, 05-04-22
From: The Macedonian Press Agency at http://www.mpa.gr and http://www.hri.org/MPA.
 KOUMOUTSAKOS ON THE TURKISH AMBASSADOR VISIT TO THRACEAthens, 22 April 2005 (15:44 UTC+2)
Greece has nothing to comment. It has nothing to say and nothing to hide. Equality before the law is a reality in Thrace in accordance with the European standards, principles and values. Greece is a European country and law is applied equally on all Greek citizens, stated Foreign Ministry spokesman Giorgos Koumoutsakos on the occasion of the visit of the Turkish ambassador to Athens to the Muslim villages in Thrace, northeastern Greece.
Referring to the 12th Black Sea Economic Cooperation Foreign Ministers' Council Meeting to take place tomorrow, he said that this is the last ministerial meeting under Greek Presidency. In the meeting the BSEC ministers will adopt the Komotini Agreement on actions concerning the sectors of energy, tourism, good governance, measures against organized crime and illegal human trafficking, transportation, market economic cooperation and specifically, small-medium sized businesses.
He also underlined that the BSEC Greek Presidency was marked in a way by the signing of the cooperation memorandum on the Burgas-Alexandroupolis oil pipeline.
 THE GREEK GOVERNMENT ON THE ETHNIC GREEKS IN TSALKAAthens, 22 April 2005 (15:21 UTC+2)
The Greek government is aware of the problems and the persecution of the estimated 2,000 ethnic Greeks in Tsalka, Georgia stressed Foreign Ministry spokesman Giorgos Koumoutsakos who referred to the moves already made by the government.
Both Deputy Foreign Minister Mr. Skandalakis and the Greek embassy in Tbilisi have become very active to deal with such phenomena, stated Mr. Koumoutsakos. He added that there are results, which have not solved the problem yet but contribute toward the improvement of the situation. He also stated that three days ago, Mr. Skandalakis had met with the ambassador of Georgia to Greece to whom he expressed his strong concern on the situation in Tsalka while certain measures have already been taken by the Georgian authorities.
The Georgian Ministry of Interior has already deployed a 100-men strong force for the protection of the region and the local population while the Georgian government has also stated that it will allocate special funds of US$ 1 million to compensate all those whose property has suffered damages or to those who might wish to abandon their homes.
The Greek embassy has made demarches to the responsible authorities in Georgia repeatedly. Recently, World Council for Hellenes, SAE, President Andrew Athens and his associates met with the Georgian Minister for Refugee issues and the region's Police Chief in the presence of the Greek ambassador to Georgia and requested to strengthen the measures for the protection of the ethnic Greek population. He said that the measures for the protection of the ethnic Greeks' houses have increased in spite of the fact that they are still not enough. As a result of the actions undertaken by the Greek embassy, the local mass media have responded positively and have contributed to the efforts to sensitize the local public opinion regarding the incidents taking place in the region, said Mr. Koumoutsakos. He also added that a lawsuit is in progress in local courts by ethnic Greeks who claim the return of their property.
Finally, the Greek embassy has requested from the Georgian authorities a detailed list with the properties and houses of the ethnic Greeks in the region to have a full picture of the problem. Also, Mr. Skandalakis plans to visit the region of Tsalka to be fully briefed on the spot.
 INITIATIVES FOR THE GREEKS IN TSALKAAthens, 22 April 2005 (13:48 UTC+2)
Athens has undertaken initiatives aimed at solving the problems faced by the ethnic Greeks in Tsalka, Georgia according to Foreign Ministry spokesman Giorgos Koumoutsakos.
The assurance that he will take care of the issues concerning security and the protection of the fundamental human rights of ethnic Greeks in Tsalka himself personally gave Georgian Prime Minister Zurab Noyadeli to visiting World Council for Hellenes, SAE, President Andrew Athens.
 NEGOTIATION IN PROGRESSAthens, 22 April 2005 (13:38 UTC+2)
The government gives a battle to defend the state Constitution and legislation, stressed in Parliament Minister of Interior Prokopis Pavlopoulos responding to the comments made by main opposition Socialist Party of PASOK Parliament deputies on the main shareholder issue.
Speaking in the state-run television station NET, Minister of State and government spokesman Thodoris Rousopoulos had expressed the hope that a solution will be reached by May 31. The negotiation continues and the main goal is not to lose a euro, had stated Deputy Minister of Finance Christos Folias after the meeting he had with the Prime Minister responding to a question concerning the risk for the country to lose funds from the 3rd Community Support Framework as a result of its disagreement with the European Commission on the issue.
The fight against corruption cannot take place within the framework of party politics as New Democracy does during all that time, commented PASOK party spokesman Nikos Athanasakis. LAOS party President Giorgos Karatzaferis stated that he feels vindicated by developments.
 THE GREEK POLICE CHIEF ON A TWO-DAY VISIT TO ALBANIATirana, 22 April 2005 (18:20 UTC+2)
Greek Police Chief Giorgos Angelakos will be on a two-day visit to Tirana on April 24 as a guest of his Albanian counterpart Bajram Ibraj.
He will have meetings with Albanian Minister of Public Order Igli Toska, his counterpart Bajram Ibraj, Albania's Attorney General Theodori Sollaku and head of PAMECA peacekeeping force Klaus Schmidt.
The goal of Mr. Angelakos' visit is to strengthen the common effort for safety, stability and development.
Within the framework of the visit will be discussed, among others, issues concerning organized crime, drug and arms trafficking, illegal immigration and personnel training.
Also, Mr. Angelakos will have a meeting with Archbishop Anastasios of Tirana and All Albania.