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Athens News Agency: News in English (PM), 99-10-05

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <http://www.ana.gr>

NEWS IN ENGLISH

Athens, Greece, 05/10/1999 (ANA)


MAIN HEADLINES

  • Simitis calls for 'deeds' from Turkey
  • Schroeder optimistic Turkey closer to EU
  • Reppas comments on Simitis-Schroeder meeting
  • Turkish FIR infringements 'routine'
  • 4.6 Richter quake hits Rhodes
  • Athens 2004 merchandise to raise 100 bln
  • Public order minister begins U.S. visit
  • Police continue search for German tourist
  • Weather
  • Foreign Exchange

NEWS IN DETAIL

Simitis calls for 'deeds' from Turkey

Prime Minister Costas Simitis said on Tuesday that the "unprecedented" good climate in Greek-Turkish relations must become deeds and decisions on the part of Ankara which clearly showed that ties between the two countries had entered a new period. Addressing the ruling PASOK party's parliamentary group, Simitis said he was speaking of deeds and decisions by Ankara which would create a solid foundation for the improvement of bilateral relations. Simitis said such deeds and decisions had not yet been forthcoming but expressed the hope that Turkey would "take a substantial step" to advance its European vocation and support efforts being made for closer cooperation.

Schroeder optimistic Turkey closer to EU

German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder, in Athens on a two-day working visit, said on Tuesday that Ankara had taken one step closer to the EU after his talks with Prime Minister Costas Simitis. "I think so, yes," Schroeder told reporters as he met with President Costis Stephanopoulos. He said that he believed Greece was playing a constructive role. Simitis and Schroeder indicated on Monday night that they would search for ways to make possible an endorsement of Turkey's candidacy for EU membership by the Helsinki EU summit in December.

Reppas comments on Simitis-Schroeder meeting

Government spokesman Dimitris Reppas said later that Schroeder had expressed "a wish and not a certainty" that Turkey would be accepted as a candidate country. "For Turkey to be included it must fall into line with the decisions taken at (the EU summits in) Luxembourg and Cardiff," Reppas said. "In this case, Greece will have no objection to upgrading relations between the European Union and Turkey".

Turkish FIR infringements 'routine'

Government spokesman Dimitris Reppas said on Tuesday that infringements of the Athens and Nicosia Flight Information Regions (FIRs) on Monday by Turkish fighter planes was a "routine event". The infringements were reported during the first day of a joint military exercise by Greek and Cypriot forces. "These exercises are being held as normal," Reppas said, in response to press questions regarding comments by Turkish Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit, who requested that Greek fighter planes not land at the Paphos air base on Cyprus.

4.6 Richter quake hits Rhodes

A moderate earthquake measuring 4.6 on the Richter scale jolted the Dodecanese island of Rhodes early today, the Athens Geodynamic Institute and Thessaloiki Geophysics Laboratory said. The quake was registered at 4:05 a.m. with its epicentre 410 kilometres southeast of Athens, in the sea region north of Rhodes. The earthquake was also felt on the nearby island of Cos. There were no immediate reports of damage or injuries.

Athens 2004 merchandise to raise 100 bln

Athens 2004 organisers said on Tuesday they expected to raise more than 100 billion drachmas from the sale of more than 3000 official products bearing the Athens 2004 emblem. Organisers were speaking at Zappeion Hall, during the presentation of the Athens 2004 Games marketing programme. The new emblem - a simple wreath on an azure blue background - was formally unveiled last week. Athens 2004 Managing Director Costas Bacouris said the organising committee expects to make around six billion drachmas from the sale of licensed merchandise: 5.0 percent of this amount would go to the International Olympic Committee and another 5.0 percent to the Greek Olympic Committee.

Public order minister begins U.S. visit

Public Order Minister Michalis Chrysohoidis left on Tuesday for an official visit to the United States where he will have talks on issues related to combatting terrorism and organised crime. Chrysohoidis is being accompanied by the head of the Greek police, Lieutenant-General Ioannis Georgakopoulos and public prosecutor Ioannis Diotis, who is also chairman of the public order ministry's Council for Coordination, Analysis and Investigations. During their stay in Washington, the members of the Greek delegation will meet with FBI director Louis Freeh, CIA director George Tenet and Senator Paul Sarbanes.

Police continue search for German tourist

Police on Tuesday continued to search for a German tourist who went missing on Mount Athos, the all-male monastic community in northern Greece. The German, whose identity remains unknown, apparently lost his way on Monday night after setting out from the monastery of Megisti Lavra where he had been staying. The police said he was in good health and not in any immediate danger, as he had been in contact with the search teams by mobile phone. The German tourist is believed to be in a particularly remote and inaccessible area of the mountainous peninsula. A helicopter of the Pieria fire service is taking part in the search.

WEATHER

Fine weather will prevail in most parts of Greece today with the possibility of rain in the Ionian Sea, Epirus, western central Greece and the Peloponnese. Light southeasterly winds turning to moderate in the Ionian and Aegean seas. Partly cloudy in Athens with temperatures from 19-30C. Same in Thessaloniki with temperatures from 16-28C.

FOREIGN EXCHANGE

Tuesday's rates (buying)
U.S. dollar          303.899
Pound sterling       503.400
Japanese yen (100)   287.204
French franc          49.709
German mark          166.717
Italian lira (100)    16.840
Irish Punt           414.024
Belgian franc          8.083
Finnish mark          54.841
Dutch guilder        147.965
Danish kr.            43.902
Austrian sch.         23.697
Spanish peseta         1.960
Swedish kr.           37.252
Norwegian kr.         39.551
Swiss franc          205.027
Port. Escudo           1.627
Can. dollar          206.177
Aus. dollar          200.196
Cyprus pound         561.472
Euro                 326.070
(M.P.)
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