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Athens News Agency: News in English, 01-06-27

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

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

CONTENTS

  • [01] Artist-Pavlos-Exhibition
  • [02] PASOK-Executive Bureau-Simitis
  • [03] Foreign Exchange Rates- Thursday
  • [04] Olympiad-Organising Committee-Hytiris
  • [05] Vangelis - Concert - Ancient temple site
  • [06] Weather Forecast: Sunny skies on Thursday
  • [07] Greek stocks end up in technical rebound
  • [08] US embassy - ceremony - 17 November victim
  • [09] Foreign Exchange Rates- Wednesday
  • [10] Weather Forecast: Sunny skies on Wednesday
  • [11] Greek firm announces patent on promising new cholesterol drug
  • [12] First ethnic Greeks receive nationality under new laws in Macedonia
  • [13] Greek stocks continue their free fall on ASE

  • [01] Artist-Pavlos-Exhibition

    27/06/2001 23:22:41

    An exhibition by the artist Pavlos entitled "Flags of Europe" was inaugurated on Wednesday at the Museum of Cycladic Art in Athens.

    The exhibition presents 16 works depicting the flags of European Union member-states with which Pavlos hopes to highlight the spirit, particularities and character of the EU and its members.

    [02] PASOK-Executive Bureau-Simitis

    27/06/2001 23:13:02

    Prime Minister Costas Simitis on Wednesday ruled out the possibility of a government reshuffle until his ruling PASOK party's congress on October 11-14.

    In a statement after the party's Executive Committee meeting on Wednesday night, Simitis said categorically there is was case of a government reshuffle until the congress and attributed relevant talk to "rumours and scenarios in circulation".

    He added that a reshuffle now would be incompatible with the purpose of the congress which judges policies and persons and defines policies.

    Simitis, who said he would make a statement on behalf of all the Executive Bureau's members as well, said the government has democratic and constitutional legalisation and its period of office expires in 2004 and both PASOK and the government are determined to meet the popular mandate.

    The prime minister rejected characterisations such as a "caretaker government" and said that the two previous congresses in 1996 and 1999 took place with a PASOK government which was not a caretaker government and neither is it now.

    Simitis said the congress will not lead to a suspension of the government's work, adding that the government's effort will continue intensively and its work will be promoted with determination. He said the congress will help the government's effort and will constitute a new beginning.

    The prime minister said the government was struggling on a daily basis to achieve its targets and for this to be achieved accord and clear policies are necessary. Internal distractions and introversion make such a task difficult, he added.

    Simitis said the congress will be one of unity and not one for the settling of scores since, as he said, there are no unsettled scores in PASOK which require resolution.

    He clarified that the congress was decided to take place October to avoid a prolonged period of waiting which would not benefit anyone. He added that through its congresses and conferences PASOK has secured its political predominance and has showed the opposition's destitution.

    In statements after the Executive Bureau's meeting, PASOK's Central Committee Secretary Costas Skandalidis said it decided that the party's congress will take place on October 11-14 and will make a recommendation to the Central Committee which will convene on July 9.

    Skandalidis said the Central Committee meeting whic was due to be held on July 13-14 in Ancient Olympia on local administration issues, will not take place and a one-day meeting will be held in Athens with the proclamation of the congress being the only issue. He added that the first meeting of the new Central Committee to be elected by the forthcoming congress, will be held in Ancient Olympia.

    The Central Committee which will decide on positions to be submitted to the congress will convene together with the Parliamentary Group between August 31 and September 1.

    [03] Foreign Exchange Rates- Thursday

    27/06/2001 19:45:30

    Buying rates for Thursday

    U.S. dollar 392.027

    German mark 172.829

    French franc 051.531

    Pound sterling 554.958

    Irish punt 429.202

    Belgian franc 008.379

    Luxembourg franc 008.379

    Dutch guilder 153.389

    Italian lira (100) 017.457

    Austrian schilling 024.565

    Danish kroner 45.384

    Swedish kroner 36.582

    Finnish mark 056.852

    Spanish peseta 002.032

    Portuguese escudo 001.686

    Japanese yen (100) 315.772

    Swiss franc 222.044

    Norwegian kroner 042.793

    Cyprus pound 588.463

    Canadian dollar 259.362

    Australian dollar 203.785

    [04] Olympiad-Organising Committee-Hytiris

    27/06/2001 19:45:17

    Deputy Press Minister Telemahos Hytiris said on Wednesday "the Olympic Games provide the opportunity for a nationwide mobilisation because they concern all Greeks."

    Hytiris was speaking on the first day of the Olympic Information's second cycle, organised by the Athens 2004 Organising Committee for press representatives.

    Hytiris referred to the positive repercussions for the country as a result of the Athens 2004 Olympic Games and said all, from volunteers to IOC members and visitors who will watch the games, will become the best propagandists for Greece all over the world.

    On his part, main opposition New Democracy party spokesman Theodoros Roussopoulos said the Olympic Games were given to Greece in an effort to upgrade the Olympic Spirit, adding that ND has started a campaign for volunteerism with the first volunteers being ND leader Costas Karamanlis and his wife Natasa.

    [05] Vangelis - Concert - Ancient temple site

    27/06/2001 19:05:49

    A large-scale musical production by Oscar-winning composer Vangelis Papathanasiou is scheduled at the Temple of Olympian Zeus in downtown Athens on Thursday, complete with a laser-light show and international broadcast coverage amid the ancient columns in the shadow of the Acropolis.

    Afterwards, French Education Minister Jack Lang will bestow the title of ?Chevalier de legion d honneur? to Vangelis as he is known outside Greece -- for his contribution to Greek and European culture. The concert is part of events for the four-year ?Cultural Olympiad?, scheduled in the run-up and during the 2004 Olympics in Athens.

    The concert will also be broadcast live for music aficionados without a ticket on a ?video wall? set up nearby at the all-marble Panathenian Stadium a 100,000-seat ancient venue restored in the late 19th century for the holding of the first modern Olympics in 1896.

    Vangelis also responded to recent criticism over the lavish productions cost by another Greek musical icon, in this case noted composer Mikis Theodorakis.

    [06] Weather Forecast: Sunny skies on Thursday

    27/06/2001 18:08:21

    Sunshine is forecast throughout the country on Thursday. Winds northerly, light to moderate, turning strong in the southern Aegean. In the north, temperatures will range from 17C to 33C; in the rest of the mainland and the Ionian from 18C to 35C; and in the Aegean islands from 21C to 30C. Sunny in Athens, with temperatures between 20C and 34C. Same in Thessaloniki, with temperatures from 19C to 33C.

    [07] Greek stocks end up in technical rebound

    27/06/2001 16:41:13

    Equity prices ended higher on Wednesday in what traders described as a technical rebound - a normal reaction of the market after a seven-day decline which pushed the general index 7.74 percent down to three-year lows.

    Traders said domestic institutional investors reappeared in the market during the last half hour of trade, attracted by very low share price levels. Analysts said the Greek market was undoubtedly attractive, currently trading at a 20 percent discount on P/E terms, with an estimated EPS increase of 10.6 percent, more than double the European average.

    The general index ended 2.27 percent higher at 2,698.19 points, near the day's highs, with turnover a low 165.310 million euros, or 56.329 billion drachmas.

    The FTSE/ASE 20 index for blue chip and heavy traded stocks ended at 1,554.21 points, up 2.33 percent, the FTSE/ASE 40 index rose 2.39 percent to 303.68 points, and the Small Cap index ended at 854.60 points, up 2.81 percent.

    The parallel market index for smaller capitalisation stocks ended at 256.83 points, up 1.97 percent.

    [08] US embassy - ceremony - 17 November victim

    27/06/2001 14:35:47

    A private ceremony to mark the 13th anniversary since the murder of US Navy Captain William Edward Nordeen was held at the US Embassy on Wednesday morning, attended by the Embassy's Greek and American staff.

    Nordeen was killed by a bomb blast near his house in Kefalari on June 28, 1988, shortly before he was due to leave Greece. The Greek terrorist group 'November 17' later claimed responsibility for the attack.

    US Ambassador to Greece Nicholas Burns officiated the ceremony, which recalled the life of the man and the injustice of his death:

    "In a cold-blooded attack thirteen years ago, the 17 November terrorist group killed Navy officer, husband and father William Nordeen. An explosive device was rigged to a car near his house, and detonated as he passed by on his way to work".

    Describing the attack as "senseless", the ambassador said it had achieved nothing other than to cause extensive suffering among members of Captain Nordeen's family and his friends.

    "Today's ceremony attests to our commitment to remember the five members of this Embassy community who have been killed by 17 November. We will never forget them. As we remembered Richard Welch in a ceremony on December 23, 2000, the 25th anniversary of his assassination, so we will remember Captain Nordeen, Captain Tsantes, Nicholas Veloutsos and Sargeant Roland Stewart every year on the anniversaries of their cruel murders," Burns continued.

    "Working with our partners in the Greek government, we will not rest until the assassins of the 17 November terrorist group have been brought to justice," he concluded.

    [09] Foreign Exchange Rates- Wednesday

    26/06/2001 18:50:07

    Buying rates for Wednesday

    U.S. dollar 392.569

    German mark 172.829

    French franc 051.531

    Pound sterling 555.048

    Irish punt 429.202

    Belgian franc 008.379

    Luxembourg franc 008.379

    Dutch guilder 153.389

    Italian lira (100) 017.457

    Austrian schilling 024.565

    Danish kroner 45.358

    Swedish kroner 36.665

    Finnish mark 056.852

    Spanish peseta 002.032

    Portuguese escudo 001.686

    Japanese yen (100) 316.770

    Swiss franc 222.059

    Norwegian kroner 042.593

    Cyprus pound 588.606

    Canadian dollar 258.320

    Australian dollar 203.372

    [10] Weather Forecast: Sunny skies on Wednesday

    26/06/2001 18:13:37

    Sunshine is forecast on Wednesday, turning to scattered cloud on the northern mainland later in the day. Winds northerly, light to strong, turning very strong in the southern Aegean. In the north, temperatures will range from 17C to 32C; in the rest of the mainland and the Ionian from 18C to 34C; and in the Aegean islands from 20C to 30C. Sunny in Athens, with temperatures between 20C and 33C. Same in Thessaloniki, with temperatures from 19C to 30C.

    [11] Greek firm announces patent on promising new cholesterol drug

    26/06/2001 17:07:18

    ISTANBUL (ANA) A new drug for lowering cholesterol has been patented by the Greek pharmaceuticals firm Elpen SA, which hopes to put its discovery on the market within the next two to three years.

    The announcement was made during a press briefing in Istanbul on Tuesday by Elpen managing consultant and vice president Theodoros Tryfon, who is also president of the Panhellenic Union of Pharmaceuticals Industries.

    According to Tryfon, the initial research into the safety and effectiveness of the new drug has been encouraging, while clinical trials with volunteer patients are due to begin next year.

    This is the first time that a Greek firm has independently developed a new drug for treating heart disease, while Tryfon stressed the role of Elpen's hyper-modern research department in achieving this.

    [12] First ethnic Greeks receive nationality under new laws in Macedonia

    26/06/2001 16:31:52

    Repatriated ethnic Greeks can now expect to have their applications for Greek nationality processed within a fraction of the time needed previously, Macedonia region general secretary Vassilis Valasopoulos said on Tuesday.

    Valasopoulos was speaking after the swearing-in ceremony of the first 130 ethnic Greeks, all from former Soviet Union countries, to receive Greek nationality under the new laws.

    The new procedure calls for an interview with the applicant, a check on the documents he or she has submitted and the unanimous agreement of a special committee. Greek nationality is then granted by decree of local regional or prefectural authorities.

    According to Valasopoulos, the simplified procedure would mean that applications would be processed within 15 days, instead of three months under the previous system. He added that 11,000 repatriated Greeks had made applications for nationality so far, the vast majority of which would be granted. He predicted that 30,000 applications would be received by the end of 2001.

    The process of acquiring Greek nationality, which is granted only to members of established ethnic Greek communities abroad, is distinct from the process of acquiring Greek citizenship, which is open to all foreign nationals that fulfil certain requirements.

    [13] Greek stocks continue their free fall on ASE

    26/06/2001 16:20:03

    Equity prices continued their free-fall towards new three-year lows on the Athens Stock Exchange on Tuesday, with the general index recording its seventh consecutive record-low this year and the market unable to find solid support at the 2,700 level.

    Traders said rumours of an imminent cabinet reshuffle had only a temporary positive impact on share prices, that soon came under heavy pressure, with blue chip stocks like Hellenic Telecoms (-4.16%) and National Bank (-4.0%) leading the decline.

    A total of 82 shares ended at their lowest levels this year, along with the majority of sector indices.

    The general index ended 2.37 percent lower at 2,638.27 points, off the day's lows of 2,616.01 points, for a net loss of 22.15 percent since the beginning of 2001. The index has lost 14.58 percent since ASE's upgrading into a developed market on May 31.

    Turnover was an improved 186.70 million euros, or 61.57 billion drachmas.

    The FTSE/ASE 20 index for blue chip and heavy traded stocks ended at 1,511.62 points, off 3.11 percent, the FTSE/ASE 40 index fell 2.47 percent to 296.33 points, and the FTSE/ASE SMALLCAP 80 index ended at 830.61 points, off 1.69 percent.

    The parallel market index for smaller capitalisation stocks ended at 251.38 points, off 1.84 percent.


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