|Wednesday, 25 November 2020|
Macedonian Press Agency: News in English, 05-08-03
From: The Macedonian Press Agency at http://www.mpa.gr and http://www.hri.org/MPA.
 VERY HIGH TEMPERATURESThessaloniki, 3 August 2005 (12:42 UTC+2)
The very hot weather continues for a second day today as yesterday temperature rose to 40 degrees Celsius in many parts of Greece.
In Athens, temperature reached 38 degrees centigrade and in Thessaloniki were recorded temperatures as high as 36 degrees.
The Fire Department is in a state of alert as the risk of forest and brush fires is high due to the high temperatures across the country, according to the Civil Protection General Secretariat.
 US WARSHIP VISITS THE PORT OF THESSALONIKIThessaloniki, 3 August 2005 (17:48 UTC+2)
The US destroyer USS MITSCHER (DDG 57) is visiting the Port of Thessaloniki since Monday coming from Virginia, USA. Its mission is mainly to locate ships with suspicious cargo within the framework of the international battle against terrorism.
US Navy officers received members of the press on board the warship and referred to their mission code-named Operation Active Endeavor, which will be completed in November. Within its framework the US warship is on patrol in the Mediterranean Sea.
It has a 318-member crew and is armed with a high-tech weapons system that has the infrastructure to elude enemy fire coming from submarines, warships or aircraft.
During the past 10 years, the US destroyer has participated twice in the Gulf War. The US warship sets sail tomorrow to visit Italy.
In spite of the latest terrorist attacks in London, no additional security measures were necessary stated its captain and stressed that he is charmed by the hospitality and friendly attitude of the Greek people.
 VALUE-ADDED TAX OF 19% ON REAL ESTATEAthens, 3 August 2005 (13:34 UTC+2)
Minister of Finance Giorgos Alogoskoufis announced that a value-added tax, VAT, of 19% will be imposed on the newly constructed buildings with a construction license issued after Jan. 1, 2006. The same will be in effect for real estate with a license that will be revised after the date mentioned and in case the construction work has not gotten underway by then.
The tax will have to be paid by the constructors. The first house purchase will be exempt.
Main opposition party of PASOK press spokesman Nikos Athanasakis stated that the measures will put a burden on the Greek people and will limit investment in the construction sector, slow down growth rate and increase unemployment.
 SENATOR RAPTAKIS ON THE NON RECOGNITION OF CYPRUS BY TURKEYRhode Island, 3 August 2005 (14:17 UTC+2)
The European Union will have to send a loud message to Ankara that the time has come to abandon the dead-end policy it follows on the divided Cyprus, stated US Senator Leonidas Raptakis elected in the State of Rhode Island.
Mr. Raptakis regards Turkey's refusal to recognize the Cypriot Republic as a show of contempt toward the world community.
Mr. Raptakis responding to the news that the Turkish government has signed the Customs Union Protocol with the EU members, Cyprus included, but refused to de facto recognize the Cyprus Republic, called on the EU to settle the Cyprus issue before Turkey's accession into the European Union.