|Sunday, 17 November 2019|
Macedonian Press Agency: News in English, 05-08-30
From: The Macedonian Press Agency at http://www.mpa.gr and http://www.hri.org/MPA.
 HURRICANES AND "BUBBLES"Athens, 30 August 2005 (12:34 UTC+2)
The average price for unleaded gas reached 0.976 euro, according to prices in an estimated 2,300 gas stations across Greece.
Oil companies in the United States stated that oil refineries were not seriously damaged by hurricane Katrina and as a result oil prices that were over a barrel dropped closing however, over the 67-dollar a barrel mark.
Saudi Arabia announced that is ready to increase its production to the maximum (11 million barrels a day) to cover any shortages in the international market after the suspension of oil production in the Gulf of Mexico because of the hurricane.
Steve Forbes, publisher of Forbes business magazine, attributed the oil price rise to a speculation bubble which will burst in the next year leading oil prices to 35-40 dollars a barrel. I do not know what will make it burst but one day it will. It cannot be possible to be at odds with offer and demand. I do not believe that oil prices will reach 0 a barrel but if it happens then the decline of oil prices will be even more impressive. Then, the deflation of the Internet bubble will look like a picnic, stated Mr. Forbes.
 POLITICAL SHOW-DOWN OVER THE AIR TRAGEDYNicosia, 30 August 2005 (12:59 UTC+2)
If there is proof of political responsibility for the August 14 air tragedy the government and himself personally, are ready to assume it, stated Cypriot President Tassos Papadopoulos, while DHSY has called for an extraordinary Parliament session to investigate any criminal or administrative responsibility for the accident.
The findings of the investigation into the causes of the Helios Airways crash will be out possibly in six months, stated Akrivos Tsolakis, president of the committee investigating the accident, who is in Cyprus within the framework of the investigation into the causes of the tragedy.
 THE EUROPEAN COMMISSION HAS REPEATEDLY RAISED TO TURKEY THE ISSUE OF RELIGIOUS FREEDOM AND THE REOPENING OF THE HALKI THEOLOGY SCHOOLBrussels, 30 August 2005 (17:13 UTC+2)
The European Commission has repeatedly raised to the Turkish authorities the issue of religious freedom and the reopening of the Theology School of Halki. The above is mentioned among others in the European Commission response to a question raised by Greek main opposition party of PASOK Euro-deputies Panos Beglitis, Stavros Lambrinidis and Nikos Sifounakis concerning the ecumenical character of the Ecumenical Patriarchate in Istanbul and the Theology School of Halki.
Specifically, the Greek Euro-deputies inquire about the moves the European Commission intends to make immediately for Turkey to respect the EU decisions, the Copenhagen political criteria and the European acquis in view of the debate on the negotiating framework submitted by the European Commission and the opening of the EU accession negotiations with Turkey, keeping in mind Turkey's firm negative position regarding the recognition of the ecumenical character of the Orthodox Patriarchate in Istanbul, the reopening of the Theology School of Halki and the respect of the religious rights of the Greek minority in Istanbul.
In the European Commission response signed by European Commissioner Olli Rehn, responsible for EU enlargement issues, it is stressed among others that one of the basic difficulties met by the non Muslim religious minorities in Turkey - the Greek Orthodox Community included - is the lack of building facilities for the training of the clergy. For this reason, the European Commission has repeatedly raised to the Turkish authorities the issue of the reopening of the Theology School of Halki within the framework of the regular monitoring aimed at determining if the Copenhagen political criteria are being met.
Also, it is pointed out that in its regular reports the European Commission always stresses that the religious freedom of the non Muslim religious communities still faces obstacles in spite of the fact that the freedom to express religious beliefs is guaranteed by the Constitution and the freedom of religious worship is unhindered to a great degree. They have no legal identity, have limited private ownership rights, interventions are being made in the financial management of their institutions and are not allowed to train their clergy. Therefore, the necessary moves have to be made, including the adoption of legislation for the solution of those problems, stated Mr. Olli Rehn.
Finally, the European Commission response also mentions that the accession negotiations draft plan submitted by the European Commission on June 29 points out the need for Turkey to continue the reform process and makes a special reference to religious freedom.
 THREE GREEK ORTHODOX CHURCHES SURVIVED HURRICANE KATRINANew York, 30 August 2005 (14:46 UTC+2)
As Hurricane Katrina leaves Louisiana and Mississippi in the south United States and moves toward the north of the country authorities are assessing the damage caused in the regions hit.
The extent of the damages caused by the floods to the Holy Trinity Cathedral in New Orleans is unknown because telephone service has been cut off and until the curfew is lifted nobody can visit the Greek Orthodox church to see the state it is in.
However, it appears that the Holy Trinity church at Baton Rouge, Louisiana has suffered no damages and according to the Voice of America, the region was not directly in the path of the hurricane.
Other two Greek Orthodox churches in Louisiana, St. Konstantinos and Eleni church in Monroe and St. Georgios church in Shreveport also survived Katrina.
Archbishop Dimitrios of America watches closely the situation from New York and prays for the safety of all those in the path of the hurricane in the cities and towns in the Gulf of Mexico area and especially in New Orleans where the Greek Orthodox Church of America was first founded.