|Wednesday, 20 November 2019|
Macedonian Press Agency: News in English, 05-04-25
From: The Macedonian Press Agency at http://www.mpa.gr and http://www.hri.org/MPA.
 PRESSURES DENIEDAthens, 25 April 2005 (13:29 UTC+2)
The request by the Greek authorities to Italy for the extradition of Apostolos Vavilis will be made in the following days, while Foreign Minister Petros Molyviatis will make a similar request as well.
Minister of Public Order Giorgos Voulgarakis categorically denied that pressures have been exerted on Vavilis who has a seven-year prison sentence to serve in Italy.
The Greek authorities are racing against time to complete as soon as possible the procedures that will bring Vavilis before the Greek justice given the fact that the Italian authorities cannot question him on offences that have to do with his activities in Greece.
Apostolos Vavilis is expected to be transferred to a Venice prison in the next two to three weeks to serve a prison term for drug trade. The man with the thousand faces has received a 7-year prison sentence in absentia when he was found guilty of having in his possession 1,800 grams of heroin.
Vavilis is held in a Bologna prison since his arrest by the Italian police last week. However, the Bologna prosecutor stated that if he wants he can ask to serve the prison term in Greece.
 MOLYVIATIS-TSIZOV MEETINGAthens, 25 April 2005 (14:27 UTC+2)
Foreign Minister Petros Molyviatis met today with Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Vladimir Tsizov and discussed issues concerning bilateral relations, Cyprus, the Greek-Turkish relations and developments in the wider Middle East region.
Mr. Tsizov stressed that there is notable improvement in the Russian-Greek relations and used as example the recent signing of the political memorandum for the Burgas-Alexandroupolis oil pipeline by Russia, Bulgaria and Greece as well as the Greek-Russian business forum held a few days ago in Athens.
 REPRESENTATIVES OF GREEKS FROM IMVROS MET WITH THE TURKISH PRIME MINISTERThessaloniki, 25 April 2005 (16:46 UTC+2)
The meeting the representatives of the Imvros Associations in Greece, America, Australia, Germany and South Africa had in Imvros yesterday with Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan is characterized as a milestone in the history of the Imvros issue. The Greeks from Imvros Community welcomes the meeting during which Mr. Erdogan received a memorandum with demands that are pending for decades.
In a statement they have issued, the Greeks from Imvros living abroad point out that within the framework of Turkey's negotiations with the EU and based on the European acquis the time has come for the Imvros issue to become a topic for discussion in Europe after the recognition of the Greeks from Imvors Associations as representatives of the minority in Turkey's supreme state level.
Also, they mention that the public statement by the Turkish Prime Minister on the growing friendship with Greece and the equal treatment of the Greeks living in the island of Imvros is a boost to their morale.
The Associations of Greeks from Imvros praise the decisive contribution of Metropolitan Bishop Kyrillos of Imvros and Tenedos to the materialization of the meeting and thank Greek Foreign Minister Petros Molyviatis for his immediate response to convey their request for a meeting with the Turkish Prime Minister during his recent visit to Ankara.
In the memorandum the Greeks from Imvros outline the main pending issues, among them, the drawing up of a land registry, the land expropriation problem, the minority schools, the protection of churches and the creation of a shipping line linking Imvros with the port of Piraeus.
Mr. Erdogan also spoke about certain circles that want to create problems to the Greek-Turkish relations stressing that they will not succeed, while he pointed out that bilateral relations must be further improved.
Regarding the Greek minority in Imvros, Mr. Erdogan stated that Turkey must solve the problems faced by the minority because it is its own minority and is responsible for it. Everybody living in these regions will enjoy the service of the state agencies, assured the Turkish Prime Minister.
 BANK OF GREECE GOVERNOR: INFLATION 4%-GROWTH RATE 3%Athens, 25 April 2005 (15:00 UTC+2)
Bank of Greece Governor Nikolaos Garganas presented his annual report on the year 2004 and predicted that inflation will be at 4% and the GDP growth rate at 3%.
Mr. Garganas praised the government effort aimed at facing the fiscal imbalances characterizing the revised three-year stability and development program as a positive first step in the specific process.
He also characterized as positive the government decision to launch a dialogue with the social partners on the reform of the social security system as soon as possible pointing out that Greece is faced more than any other European country with an major demographic challenge.
Mr. Garganas also recommended extensive reforms in the labor front and the product and services markets to strengthen the competitiveness and productivity of the economy.
Based on the Bank of Greece figures, in the first trimester of 2005 housing loans accelerated and their rate was at 25.8%, while the consumer loans' rate remained at high levels at 33.9%.
 THE GREEK DEFENSE MINISTER ON A VISIT TO THE UNITED STATESAthens, 25 April 2005 (13:49 UTC+2)
The Greek Minister of Defense is on a three-day formal visit to the United States since yesterday evening for talks with his US counterpart Donald Rumsfeld.
They will examine issues concerning bilateral defense cooperation, developments in Europe, Balkans and particularly in Kosovo, Greece's participation in peacekeeping missions (Balkans, Afghanistan), NATO-EU relations, the situation in the Middle East and Iraq.
The meeting is scheduled to take place on Wednesday while during his stay in Washington the Greek Defense Minister will also meet with White House officials, members of the US Senate and representatives of Greek-American organizations.