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Athens News Agency: Daily News Bulletin in English, 15-11-30

Athens News Agency: Daily News Bulletin in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Athens News Agency at <>

Weekend News Bulletin

Monday, November 30 2015


  • [01] Calm prevails at Greek-FYROM border as country continues raising a fence
  • [02] PM Tsipras says confident EU-Turkey summit will yield results on refugee flows
  • [03] EU's Tusk: 'Without control of external borders, Schengen will become history'
  • [04] Tsipras speaks with Portugal's PM Costa and Hollande
  • [05] Outcome of political party leaders meeting was anticipated, say gov't sources
  • [06] European Commission approves state aid to Piraeus Bank
  • [07] Hollande says EU-Turkey Summit focused on refugee crisis, terrorism
  • [08] Tsipras: Government will push ahead with reforms despite the objections
  • [09] Five parties would make it into parliament if elections were held today-poll
  • [10] FM Kotzias presents spirit and range of Greek diplomacy at University of Tehran
  • [11] Three out of five 'hotspots' to be ready by end of the year, says Migration minister
  • [12] Commissioner Avramopoulos to visit Stockholm and Paris on Monday, Tuesday
  • [13] Turkish PM: 'This is a historic day in our accession to the EU'
  • [14] Hollande: A deal with Turkey on refugee crisis is in everyone's interest
  • [15] It's important to promote cooperation between EU, Turkey on refugees, say gov't sources
  • [16] Greek Red Cross appeals for unobstructed access of refugees to its clinics
  • [17] IMO Assembly re-elects Greece in 40-member Council
  • [18] Thousands march through Athens to demand effective policies for climate change
  • [19] Weather Forecast
  • [20] Athens Headlines at a glance Politics

  • [01] Calm prevails at Greek-FYROM border as country continues raising a fence

    The atmosphere was calm again on Sunday in Idomeni, near the neutral zone between Greece and FYROM, following tensions between economic migrants from Asia and Africa and FYROM's police a day before.

    According to police, about 3,000 refugees from Iraq, Afghanistan and Syria crossed the border into the neighboring country since last night, while 1,000 migrants are still living in flimsy tents, unprotected from the cold and the changes in weather. Meanwhile, authorities in FYROM continue to raise a fence across its border with Greece.

    Authorities also said a Moroccan migrant who was hospitalized on Saturday afternoon after suffering burns from electrocution at the border station is out of danger.

    [02] PM Tsipras says confident EU-Turkey summit will yield results on refugee flows

    Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras expressed confidence on Sunday that today's EU-Turkey Summit on the refugee crisis in Brussels will be constructive and that solutions will be found to tackle the flows.

    "Today the EU-Turkey summit is an important step in our efforts to tackle the refugee crisis effectively and in a humane way. Turkey is a candidate country of the EU, so we're looking forward to trying to reinforce this relation in the existing negotiating framework," he said speaking to journalists as he arrived for the meeting.

    He noted that the EU should make important steps in Turkey's accession process but also ensure that Turkish authorities will do "whatever they have to do" to decrease the flows of refugees and migrants because numbers of arrivals have become unmanageable.

    "We're in the most difficult position since WWII, this is the biggest refugee crisis Europe has ever faced, so we have to move forward rapidly and I'm confident that this summit is in the correct direction," he added. "I think that if we have the same purpose, to try to communicate and cooperate we can find a way."

    He also noted he visited Turkey last week where he held constructive talks with Prime Minister of Turkey Ahmet Davutoglu and President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

    [03] EU's Tusk: 'Without control of external borders, Schengen will become history'

    European Council President Donald Tusk warned on Sunday that if Europe doesn't protect its external borders effectively, the Schengen area will become history.

    "The most important one is the responsibility and duty to protect our external borders. We cannot outsource this obligation to any third country. I will repeat this again: without control on our external borders, Schengen will become history," the official said as he arrived for the EU-Turkey Summit on the refugee crisis in Brussels.

    He said the Summit's goal today is to stem the flow of migrants to Europe. "After many weeks of hard work and tough talks we have reached an agreement which I hope will be accepted today by all parties concerned," he said, adding that another aspect of the meeting is to "re-energize" relations with Turkey concerning its accession process.

    Wanting to note the importance of getting Turkey aboard on the issue, Tusk said: "Turkey is the key partner regarding countering terrorism; we need better cooperation when it comes to Syria and the Cyprus issue. Also recent days have also shown how important is the cooperation in geopolitical and strategic context." He noted however that the country is not the only key to solving the migration crisis.

    [04] Tsipras speaks with Portugal's PM Costa and Hollande

    Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras had a warm conversation with newly-appointed Portuguese Prime Minister Antonio Costa on the sidelines of the EU-Turkey Summit in Brussels earlier on Sunday.

    Tsipras also spoke with French President Francois Hollande to whom he expressed the Greek people's solidarity for the recent terrorist attacks in Paris.

    [05] Outcome of political party leaders meeting was anticipated, say gov't sources

    The outcome of the political party leaders meeting was anticipated by the government which requested the meeting so that every political power takes on its responsibilities towards the people, government sources told ANA-MPA on Sunday, commenting on Saturday's marathon meeting.

    The sources also made some estimations of the meeting and spoke on the possibilities which exist on tackling crucial issues.

    "The government will continue with dialog on all the major issues, first on a societal level and then in parliament. At the same time it is determined during the negotiations it will face, to carve out and defend its red lines, and to defend social cohesion with the support of society," the sources said.

    They also added that the aim remains to complete the first review which constitutes a landmark for a debt write-down.

    [06] European Commission approves state aid to Piraeus Bank

    BRUSSELS (ANA-MPA/ C. Vasilaki) - The European Commission approved on Sunday additional state aid of 2.72 billion euros to Piraeus Bank on the basis of an amended restructuring plan it submitted.

    "In the context of the third economic adjustment programme for Greece, the European Commission has approved additional state aid of 2.72 billion euros to Greek Piraeus Bank under EU state aid rules, on the basis of an amended restructuring plan," the Commission said in a press release.

    "The Commission concluded that the measures already implemented as part of the bank's existing restructuring plan of July 2014, in addition to those envisaged in the amended plan, will enable Piraeus Bank to ensure lending to the Greek economy in line with EU state aid rules, in particular the 2013 Banking Communication, and the Bank Recovery and Resolution Directive," it added.

    EU Commissioner in charge of competition policy, Margrethe Vestager, said she welcomes Piraeus Bank's ability to cover a significant part of its capital needs from private investors.

    "This is a sign of market confidence. The additional public support and further implementation of its restructuring plan should enable the bank to return to long-term viability and continue supporting the recovery of the Greek economy," she noted.

    [07] Hollande says EU-Turkey Summit focused on refugee crisis, terrorism

    BRUSSELS (ANA-MPA/ M. Spinthourakis) - Tackling the refugee crisis - firstly in Syria - and tackling terrorism were at the focus of the ongoing EU-Turkey Summit on Sunday, French President Francois Hollande said before leaving from Brussels, just before the end of the meeting.

    The French president said the key issue of the meeting is the agreement on an action plan which will be implemented by the Turkish government and clarified that the EU funds the country will receive will depend to a large extend on the measures Turkey will take to limit refugee flows towards EU member-states.

    Concerning negotiations on Turkey's accession, he said the framework is known and there's no question of changing it.

    [08] Tsipras: Government will push ahead with reforms despite the objections

    The government will move ahead on the three main issues discussed at the political party leaders' meeting on Saturday - the refugee crisis, social security system reforms, Constitution review - despite any objections, Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras said after the end of the sixhour meeting.

    Concerning the refugee crisis, Tsipras noted the government is facing it responsibly, while the main opposition, New Democracy was against creating reception and identification centers.

    On the issue of reforming the social security system, he accused PASOK and ND of "continuing to undermine the effort with their stance".

    Commenting on the Constitution reform, Tsipras noted that "everyone except ND agreed to open the procedure in an organized manner, even ion the issue of changing the electoral law towards a more proportionate representation," he added.

    "In this crucial time, the country needs national and popular unity and political stability more than ever," he said. "New Democracy, as the main opposition, constitutes an institutional pillar of the political system and unfortunately today proved well short of the circumstances."

    [09] Five parties would make it into parliament if elections were held today-poll

    If elections were held today in Greece, the parliament would include five parties, instead of seven today, according to a poll by Kappa Research conducted for newspaper Vima and published on Sunday.

    Asked "which party would you vote for if elections were held today", 18.4 pct said SYRIZA, 14.9 pct said New Democracy, 5.6 pct said Golden Dawn, 4.5 pct said Democratic Coalition (PASOK-DIMAR), 4.4 pct said the Communist Party, 2.2 pct said Potami, 2.1 pct said ANEL, 2.3 pct said the Union of Centrists, 1.9 pct said Popular Unity, 3.5 pct said another party, 6.1 pct said they'd vote "white" or "invalid", 15.9 pct said they're undecided and another 18.2 pct said they wouldn't vote.

    On the question of who they consider "most suitable for prime minister", participants agave Alexis Tsipras 42.8 pct and Vangelis Meimarakis 28.5 pct and another 29.7 pct said "Don't know/Don't answer".

    Asked "if the government lost its majority in parliament, what should the prime minister do?" 23.5 pct of respondents said he should cooperate with centrist parties like PASOK, Potami and the Centrists Union. Another 37.8 pct said he should call for a unity government with the participation of New Democracy, 25.8 pct said he should resign and call new elections, 9.1 pct answered "Other" and 3.8 pct replied "Don't know/Don't answer".

    [10] FM Kotzias presents spirit and range of Greek diplomacy at University of Tehran

    Foreign Minister Nikos Kotzias presented the overall view spirit and action of Greek foreign policy which is "active and responsible" that wants to unite and "utilize the past for the future, during a speech at the University of Tehran on Sunday.

    His speech at the university is part of his formal two-day visit in Iran where the minister will hold a large number of meetings with the leadership of the country. Kotzias is accompanied by Deputy Foreign Minister Dimitris Mardas, Deputy Minister for Industry Theodora Tzakri and a delegation of Greek businessmen.

    The minister's full speech at the university follows below:

    "Greece and Iran are linked by at least 4,000 years of common history and shared cultural elements. They are two countries and peoples who moved together through history. They tried all forms of peaceful and non-peaceful coexistence. They did not become prisoners to history. They are not living in the past, but they learn from it and are optimistic about the future.

    An element of our common future in the era of globalization is capitalization on history as a sail that will propel us toward tomorrow. The world is changing. Nothing is as it was. This is why foreign policy must be proactive. It has to be able, in a timely manner, to recognize the problems; to study and shape alternative solutions; to be able to choose the best possible strategy and, at the same time, ensure its implementation.

    Those who fear the cost of action should consider the cost of inaction, which, as a rule, is greater. The right actions, with effective implementation, are profit/gains. Waiting is the greatest loss. Because while one fails to take action, there are others who are taking positions and gaining influence on points on the horizon where there is no action.

    The study of international relations - the experience of the foreign policy of smaller states, particularly European states - has led me to the conclusion that, as in the international division of labor, with each state having to find the niche in which it will have the greatest productivity and presence, so it is in international diplomacy that each state must develop the maximum possibilities and capabilities. A specialization. The specialization that we want for our country is what I call - in Greek - the three "Deltas". In English, negotiation, mediation, arbitration. In this way, at the same time, we become useful in the international system.

    The foreign policy of a country like Greece needs to promote all functional aspects of that policy, including public diplomacy - of which today's speech is a case in point - economic diplomacy, within the framework of which dozens of entrepreneurs are accompanying our diplomatic mission. It is of great importance to ensure that the foreign policy will highlight our country's geopolitical role, at the crossroads of three continents: Asia, Africa and Europe. It will offset the loss of power we have in the economic sector. It will support the battle we are waging to resolve the fiscal problem of our country, which is going through the seventh year of a very harsh crisis.

    Greek foreign policy - its agencies - sees itself as an institutional system in the service of relieving the population from poverty. Ensuring, in other words, new possibilities for economic and social policy. The development of understanding of a whole people's apprehension about tomorrow. The shaping of a new movement of solidarity with the Greek people in their suffering. These new possibilities are tools and potential agreements, already, as of today, for the strengthening of economic cooperation with third countries like Iran.

    They contain the potential for (a) recognizing problems - global, regional, in the immediate environment, (b) shaping and setting down alternative solutions and plans, actions and alliances, and (c) gathering the maximum possible intellectual forces and resources. The goal is to ensure the effective implementation of the foreign policy plan that is chosen.

    We have particular potential for working with the emerging countries in today's world. Both to cover our needs and to function as a bridge between the west/EU, where we reside, and these other countries. Greece perceives that in today's world, in many regions, there are piles of stones. It does not choose to throw these stones. Nor does it choose to use them to build dividing walls, but to build bridges of understanding and communication, cooperation and prospects.

    We are living in a transitional era. In a sense, every era contains elements of transition. The world is going through major changes, while the center of gravity is shifting from the West to Southeast Asia. From the Atlantic "pond" to the Pacific. New problems are appearing on the horizon. New countries are making their appearance on the world political stage, while older ones are making their return.

    Greece is a country that went through a long and major positive cycle following the Second World War and its own civil war, but this cycle was disrupted by the seven-year military dictatorship, from 1967 to 1974, and, now, by the economic crisis. The Greece that became the 10th member of the European Union, joining the EEC, at the time - now the EU. It organized two European enlargements that created a Union of 28 states.

    Greece is one of the small countries of the EU; a country with a great history and culture. It is experiencing the contradiction of being a part of one of the three centers of today's world, while not itself being a great power. That is why it sees its special role as one of mediation between the EU and the emerging world. Helping in this direction is the fact that, during the period of Western domination and the domination of capitalism, it never waged unjust/aggressive wars. It did not conquer third countries. It was not a colonial power, as were the majority of EU states (19 of the 28) and it in no way exercises neo-colonialist policy.

    We have all the characteristics of a country that one can and should trust.

    Despite our small size, we are taking international initiatives, such as the recent Athens International Conference on the protection of the cultures and all of the religions in the Middle East, as well as of the cultural heritage of all of the people(s) in the region.

    We take initiatives, when needed, even against the current of our partners' will. A recent example is our refusal to vote for the UN draft resolution on "human rights in Syria", paragraph 14 of which characterized the Iranian revolutionary guard as a terrorist organization, while it is not included in the special list that the EU has drawn up. We refused to support it. Both because our great friendship with the Iranian people and leadership does not allow us to do so, and because, at a time when consultations were under way in Geneva and, more recently, in Vienna for a political solution to the Syrian problem, there are those who want to denigrate some of those with whom they are negotiating.

    The region needs peace. It needs the guns of war to be silent, and it needs the arsenal of peace and diplomacy to be heard. We are convinced, and we are working in such a direction. Of course, incidents like the downing of the Russian jet over Syrian territory do anything but contribute in this imperative direction.

    For the EU to do this, it has to return to its roots, to its values and its principles. Unfortunately, the EU's current trend is to limit its actions to certain tools of international politics that, as a rule, have a negative outlook. This alters its very characteristics. The EU should redesign its position in the 21st century and what it wants its position to be. It needs to shape its vision. As long as it bases its policy on the "punishment" of third countries, on sanctions and embargos against them, it will see its international influence slip away. That is why we, as Greece, insist on looking again at where the 21st century is headed and what our position will be in it; what our dream and aspiration is.

    My analysis of the triangle of stability and instability has now had a unique international career and is a constant in the analysis we carry out in Greek foreign policy of the state of affairs in our wider region.

    Two different forces are clashing in this region: those of instability and destabilization, and those of (democratic) stability. Our region is shaped like a triangle. At the top of the triangle is eastern Ukraine, and at its base is Libya, in the west, and the Middle East on the right (in the east). Old forms of statehood, beyond the nation state, are renewing their appearance with the use of modern technology, means of war and communication: tribal dominance, as in Libya, and the caliphate in the Middle East. Dreams of re-establishing empires for certain others. Voids are also being created that certain parties want to fill with terrorism, lawlessness. These are regions in which, at the same time, millions of refugees and victims of war are on the move.

    The refugees and the countries that have to handle the problems of their influxes, like Greece, are not responsible for the causes behind these refugee flows. There are those who are starting wars, while others, as usual, are paying for them. One set of people is making the decisions, while another set is suffering the consequences of those decisions. In Greece, over the past seven months, 640,000 refugees have passed through six islands with a population of 92,000. That is, the refugees outnumber the local residents 7 to 1. There are small islands, like Simi and Agathonisi, on which there were 17 and 19 times as many refugees as local residents.

    Earlier, from Libya - about which the international community was so concerned last year - there were 1.4 million refugees. Twelve million from Syria. Following behind them, millions from Afghanistan and Pakistan (this year alone, 300,000 arrived in Greece from Afghanistan and Pakistan). Can anyone imagine what will happen in the Mediterranean and in Europe if Egypt destabilizes, with its population of 95 million, including 65 million young people who are, for the most part, unemployed? And behind Egypt there is the civil war in Sudan and the failed state of Somalia.

    We are taking all possible measures to support a policy of stability and security in the Eastern Mediterranean. We are taking special cooperation measures with the states of the region. We are developing the policy of support for Palestine in every possible way. We support the creation of a Palestinian state.

    The refugee issue is a key problem for Greece, for the whole of the EU. We have to find immediate solutions. The most decisive step is to bring peace to Syria itself and to Iraq, followed by the reconstruction of these two states, which will require many billions of dollars, the stability of the institutional system, with the agreement on a new, democratic constitution, the talks between the various sides, the carrying out of fair elections.

    The second important step is the strengthening of infrastructure and the funding of the refugee camps in Jordan and Lebanon.

    The development of investments and ensuring of jobs. The best and most systematic education/training.

    The third is the implementation of the inter-state and international agreements on readmission, like those between Greece and Turkey, Turkey and Pakistan. The creation of refugee processing centers (hotspots) in Turkey itself, so that refugees can be relocated from there, directly to the European countries that have agreed to take them.

    What needs to stop immediately is the transformation of the Aegean Sea into a grave for young souls, young children; a zone of shame for our culture.

    This is why, fourthly, the rings that are trafficking in the fear and needs of the refugees must be broken immediately. The para-institutional mechanisms that capitalize on refugees' pain and fear must be broken in all countries. In my life, I have learned not to fear problems, concerns, pressures. The only thing one has to fear is fear itself, cowardice, those who are frightened.

    Boldly, we are making overtures to the Balkan states. We are promoting the cooperation of the Balkan EU member states and the rest of the states in the Western Balkans. We do not consider successful the plan of certain of our partners to govern the region from outside or to create certain collaborations with the Western Balkans while leaving the region's EU member states out of this cooperation.

    We have a special problem in the Balkans: that of FYROM. A state of two communities - Albanian and Slavs, who like to describe themselves as "Macedonians". Slavs who express an anachronistic and illegal irredentism against Greece, both historically and geographically.

    We are a peace-loving force that takes its risks, in good and difficult times, for human rights. To see international law imposed. To see that all states function based on the principle of the rule of law and the culture of compromise. These two principles are absent from the conduct of the President of FYROM and from the practices of certain other political figures/players in FYROM. A share in responsibility for this goes to those in the West who, in every crisis this country goes through, give FYROM favorable treatment, to the detriment of its neighbours. This hampers the ability of this country's leadership make compromises and rule moderately.

    We are working for a FYROM living in peace and stability. We have agreed on and are elaborating a joint programme of confidence-building measures (CBMs) We are making a very interesting proposal regarding the manner, the process of the issue of our neighbouring country's name. The main thing is for our neighbours to overcome the irredentism and chauvinistic plans.

    Greece is the country hosting the most Albanians in the world. A large percentage of the neighbouring country's GDP comes from them. We are fortunate to have them in our society.

    We are linked to Albania by a long and rich past, common dreams and prospects. There are also many problems from the past, as well as from immature conduct on the part of a portion of the country's leadership. The non-implementation of agreements. Refusal to implement the provisions of international law. Violation of the rights of the indigenous Greek minority.

    We have the desire and will to resolve these problems and overcome any difficulty. We are planning to propose a package of solutions to all of the problems. Realistic solutions; hopeful and in the interest of both peoples, far from the Balkan-style nationalism and conduct that produces more history than the region can consume.

    We are continuing our good relations with Bulgaria and Romania unabated. The promotion of our trilateral cooperation as an anchor of stability in the region. The same holds true for Italy, with whom we have prepared the first agreement on the exclusive economic zone (EEZ).

    Greece's relationship with Cyprus is pivotal. We believe in, we want and support, a Cyprus that is truly independent and sovereign. A federal Cyprus, without the burden of the shame of a third power holding territory of the island and, by extension, of the EU.

    We support and will support an honest solution to the Cyprus issue, without outside pressures. A solution that enables the Turkish Cypriots to feel that the island is their home, and the Greek Cypriots to feel secure. The root of the Cyprus problem is the illegal occupation of the northern section of the island by Turkey. The presence of 39,000 Turkish troops - one for every family in occupied Cyprus.

    We want a comprehensive and real solution to the Cyprus issue. What we don't want is a virtual/mock solution that would have us fooling ourselves. Nor do we want to become prisoners of history. This is why we support a real, substantial solution. We support the bicommunal talks. We want to have an end to the status of guarantor powers. In a Cyprus that is a member state of the EU, there is no need for foreign armies. And what kind of solution would it be if it imposed their continued presence?

    In meetings with my Turkish counterparts, I always propose to them that we work systematically for a solution to the Cyprus issue, and this means an end to the occupation and the violations of the guarantor powers.

    Turkey is our large neighbour to our east. A country we have much in common with in terms of culture and recent history. Good and bad. We have to live together. We have to shape the conditions for cooperation. The solution of the Cyprus issue and an end to any inclination towards violations or threats will open up multiple cooperation forces between the two peoples. To create a better atmosphere of trust, we agreed to promote certain CBMs Greece is proposing to Turkey and to prepare and start the exploratory consultations/talks. At the same time, we are taking measures to develop our economic and cultural relations, despite the many Turkish violations in the Aegean and the ongoing Turkish violations in the air and at sea. We want to live in peace with Turkey, based on the principles of good neighbourly relations, international law, understanding between peoples, progress.

    Overall, our foreign policy is a democratic policy. With positive energy and initiatives. Greek foreign policy is a proactive, responsible policy. It doesn't want to divide, but to unite. It doesn't want to be subjugated by the past, but to capitalize on the past for tomorrow.

    It is a great pleasure and honor for me to speak at this historic university. To talk with young Iranians. We are two proud peoples. Two historic nations. We know that history is not a straight path without difficulties. Life has its zig-zags. Anyone who wants to climb a high mountain has to look for the right path. Seek collaborators. Show fortitude and patience.

    Resolve and faith in principles and values. You have to create friendships. Mediate between disputing parties. Build relations of trust. I hope that today, with this event, we take a step forward."

    [11] Three out of five 'hotspots' to be ready by end of the year, says Migration minister

    Greece will have set up three out of the five temporary accommodation centers - the so-called "hotspots"- on the islands which bear the brunt of refugee and migrant flows by the end of the year, Alternate Minister for Migration Policy Yiannis Mouzalas said in an interview with newspaper Agora, published on Saturday.

    He also said that the government is also preparing 5,000 temporary positions for the relocation programme in northern Greece and Attica, while it will activate the rent subsidy program for 20,000 refugees.

    According to the paper, Mouzalas described as "feasible" the proposal for registering refugees in Turkey, Jordan and Lebanon before relocating them to Europe.

    Commenting on the government's reaction to the refugee crisis, he was quoted as saying:

    "We were initially surprised and there was a difficulty in reaction to these vast flows ... however our reactions in managing this crisis are continuously improving."

    [12] Commissioner Avramopoulos to visit Stockholm and Paris on Monday, Tuesday

    EU Commissioner for Migration, Home Affairs and Citizenship, Dimitris Avramopoulos, will hold a series of meetings in Sweden and France where he will visit on Monday and Tuesday respectively.

    In Stockholm, Avramopoulos is scheduled to meet Minister of Home Affairs Anders Ygeman and Minister of Justice Morgan Johansson to discuss developments on the refugee crisis and security. In Paris, the Commissioner will speak at a special session of the National Assembly's European Affairs Committee on issues of security and migration.

    He will then meet with Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve and the OECD's General Secretary, Angel Gurria.

    [13] Turkish PM: 'This is a historic day in our accession to the EU'

    BRUSSELS (ANA-MPA/ M. Aroni) - Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu called the EU-Turkey Summit a "historic day" for his country, saying it constitutes a new start for Europe.

    "This is a historic day in our accession process to the EU, when 29 heads of states and government will be meeting and having Turkish-EU Summit. It's a historic day to reenergize Turkey's accession process as well as to discuss recent developments in and around Europe," he said as he arrived for the Summit in Brussels.

    [14] Hollande: A deal with Turkey on refugee crisis is in everyone's interest

    BRUSSELS (ANA-MPA/ M. Spinthourakis) - Achieving a deal between the EU and Turkey to tackle the refugee crisis is in everyone's benefit, French President Francois Hollande said as he arrived at the EU-Turkey Summit in Brussels on Sunday.

    "It's in the interest of Europe, Turkey and the refugees," he added and called on Turkey to intensify its controls at its borders with the EU. Hollande also noted that cooperation with Turkey is necessary, not just for dealing with the refugee issue, but also for combatting terrorism and resolving the Syrian crisis.

    [15] It's important to promote cooperation between EU, Turkey on refugees, say gov't sources

    BRUSSELS (ANA-MPA/ M. Aroni) - There is a need to promote cooperation between the EU and Turkey on tackling the refugee crisis, government sources in Brussels said on Sunday.

    According to the sources, Europe must make some important steps and take up its responsibilities on relocating refugees. Commenting on Turkey's accession talks, the same sources said Greece's position is that the issue is directly related to the refugee crisis and that it should therefore be re-energized through the existing negotiating framework.

    "We're positive [on this issue], but there must be an analytical discussion and to register the positions and concerns that have been expressed from time to time around the issue."

    Concerning the issue of visa relaxation for Turkish citizens, diplomatic sources said Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras will promote the issue, connecting it with the need to enforce the readmission agreement between the EU and Turkey and between all the EU countries with Turkey.

    Commenting on the mini-Summit between Germany, Austria, Finland, Sweden, Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxembourg and Greece, which met shortly before the official Summit, government sources said these countries strongly support relocating refugees and discussed the conditions to facilitate the process.

    General News

    [16] Greek Red Cross appeals for unobstructed access of refugees to its clinics

    Greek Red Cross appealed on everyone on Sunday to respect its neutrality, facilitate refugees' free access to its clinics and allow it to take care of the injured in the Greek border town of Idomeni, following the injury of a Moroccan migrant on Saturday.

    The NGO said it faced difficulties when it tried to provide first aid to the Moroccan man who suffered burns from electrocution by people unrelated to its humanitarian work.

    "The evacuation of the injured by Red Cross volunteers was obstructed because the area had filled with people who had nothing to do with the humanitarian work of the Red Cross, thus preventing the transfer of the patient with the stretcher, as well as the provision of first aid, because they had blocked the medical tent and were trying to enter in it, complicating the work of staff and volunteers," the NGO said in a press release.

    Police said earlier the injured man is recuperating in hospital.

    [17] IMO Assembly re-elects Greece in 40-member Council

    Greece was re-elected in the International Maritime Organization's 40-member Council for 2016-2017, as part of the "Category A" member-states which have "the largest interest in providing international shipping services", the organization announced after the election in London.

    The country's re-election at the IMO Council is a very positive development, which reflects the active presence in the field of international shipping for many decades and is particularly important for the promotion of Greek shipping interests internationally.

    The other countries included in the same category are China, Italy, Japan, Norway, Panama, Republic of Korea, Russian Federation, United Kingdom and the United States.

    The Council is the executive organ of IMO and is responsible, under the Assembly, for supervising the work of the Organization.

    [18] Thousands march through Athens to demand effective policies for climate change

    Thousands of Athenians marched in the Greek capital on Sunday to join efforts with millions of people around the world who want to pressure politicians to come to a legally binding agreement at the Paris Climate Conference which will run from November 30 to December 11 and will be attended by Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras.

    People of all ages held placards and whistles and chanted slogans for the environment, in the sounds of live music. The march started from Dionysiou Areopagitou Street that meanders around the Acropolis Hill and reached the Greek parliament, where it called for immediate decisions to address climate change and achieve a better future for all.

    A six-year-old boy who came with his parents and was painting a placard with his friends that read "100 pct clean energy", told ANA-MPA that "we're here to save the planet".

    The march was organized by WWF, Greenpeace and Avaaz which coordinated all the actions in the Greek capital. According to the three organizations, climate change is estimated it will cost Greece about 700 billion euros by the end of the century.

    "Our country, along with other Mediterranean countries, is expected to be hit hard by the consequences of climate change: It will affect agriculture, tourism, all production activities.

    We will have a significant increase in the frequency and intensity of wildfires, and other extreme weather phenomena," chief executive of WWF Greece, Dimitris Karavelas, told ANA-MPA.

    "Athens' mobilization was a positive surprise. Thousands of people have sent a message to the political leadership in Greece and the rest of the world in the name of our fellow citizens in Paris, where, for security reasons, demonstrations were banned," said Nikos Charalambidis, director general at Greenpeace's Greek office.

    [19] Weather Forecast

    Mostly fair with some rain in the southern parts is forecast on Monday. Wind velocity will reach 6 on the Beaufort scale. Scattered clouds in the northern parts of the country, with temperatures ranging from 03C-14C. Partly cloudy in the western parts with temperatures between 07C-17C. Partly cloudy in eastern parts with rain later in the day and temperatures between 08C-17C. Some clouds which will bring rain over the Aegean islands and Crete, 11C-18C. Sunny in Athens, 08C-16C; the same for Thessaloniki, 07C-13C.

    [20] Athens Headlines at a glance

    DEMOKRATIA: At [Labour minister] Katrougalos' guillotine

    ETHNOS: Preferential tax zones to strengthen social security

    AVGI: Deep changes before it's too late

    VRATHINI: All pensions below 1,000 euros

    ELEFTHEROS TYPOS: Tsipras' trick with the consensus

    KATHIMERINI: Double challenge until the holidays

    RIZOSPASTIS: We all strike on Dec. 3! No consensus for the attack against social security

    KONTRA NEWS: Former King set up a party

    PROTO THEMA: Pass the measures all parties together and get it over with. Strong intervention by Stournaras

    TO ARTHRO: From insults to pleadings

    TO VIMA: Situation clarifies in Parliament

    TO PARON: Tsipras to opposition parties-We continue together, otherwise I'll proceed alone

    TO HONI: Tsipras' budget vs Samaras' assessment

    O LOGOS: Restart for six major infrastructure projects

    I EPOHI: Dialog with society

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