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Athens News Agency: News in English, 01-10-14

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

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

CONTENTS

  • [01] Simitis re-elected as PASOK president with 71.16 percent (New Lead)
  • [02] Simitis re-elected as PASOK president
  • [03] Greek foreign minister holds talks with Syrian political leadership
  • [04] Lightning visit by Greek FM to Damascus set

  • [01] Simitis re-elected as PASOK president with 71.16 percent (New Lead)

    14/10/2001 22:24:12

    Prime Minister Costas Simitis was re-elected as ruling PASOK president at the party's congress on Sunday evening with 71.16 percent of the votes.

    Addressing delegates after his re-election for the third time, Simitis conveyed two messages, the first being that "as of this moment work is beginning", and the second that "following the congress no introversion is justified."

    Simitis stressed that "introversion and personal disputes are not justified given that during the congress substantial content was made to the word 'unity', which was build upon clear objectives."

    "This new unity", the prime minister said, "has as an unshakeable point of reference the historic responsibility of all the members towards the clear positions for the nation's fortification, for the country's european prospects and PASOK's new victory."

    Simitis thanked the delegates for again re-electing him as president of PASOK and commited himself to honour the clear and strong mandate given to him by the congress to keep PASOK and Greece high.

    Replying to journalists' questions as to when a government reshuffle will take place, Simitis answered that his first priority was to attend the European Union summit in Brussels and the first meeting of the PASOK Central Committee from which will be elected the new Executive Bureau and the new Secretary.

    The registered delegates numbered 6,439 and of those, 6,196 voted. The valid votes were 6,069, 127 were invalid and 1,753 were blank votes.

    Simitis received 4,316 votes or 71.16 per cent of the votes.

    [02] Simitis re-elected as PASOK president

    14/10/2001 21:10:21

    Prime Minister Costas Simitis was re-elected as ruling PASOK president at the party's congress on Sunday with 71.11 percent of the votes, according to latest information.

    According to the sources, the registered delegates numbered 6,338 and of those 6,196 voted. The valid votes were 6,069, 127 were invalid and 1,753 were blank votes.

    Simitis received 4,316 per cent or 71.11 per cent of the votes.

    [03] Greek foreign minister holds talks with Syrian political leadership

    14/10/2001 20:57:54

    DAMASCUS (ANA - M. Savva) - Greek Foreign Minister George Papandreou held talks here on Sunday with the Syrian leadership on issues focused on the Middle East and international efforts to combat terrorism.

    Following his meeting with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, which Papandreou described as "useful and constructive," the Greek foreign minister said that Syria plays a very important role in the region and the Arab world and that the two men decided that this close cooperation could develop into a broader dialogue. Papandreou stressed that the crisis which broke out in the aftermath of the terrorist attack in the United States could be regarded as an opportunity to handle regional crises.

    In his lengthy meeting with the Syrian president, Papandreou discussed an initiative which was processed quite a few years ago by the late president Hafez-al Assad and the late Greek prime minister Andreas Papandreou. It concerns the idea of the convening of an international conference against terrorism under the auspices of the United Nations at which representatives of the western, Arab and Moslem world will be called upon to attend.

    This initiative had been discussed at a meeting the then Greek prime minister had in Damascus in 1995.

    The Greek foreign minister, in a press conference he gave following his talks in Damascus, said that Sypria plays a particularly major role in the region and can contribute to a solution of the Palestinian problem. Papandreou said he supported an overall solution, based on UN resolutions and stressed that the international coalition against terrorism is very difficult to operate when there is such tension on a regional level.

    Syrian Foreign Minister Farouq al-Sharaa, when asked by journalists whether in the eventuality of his country becoming a target of military operations in case it does not answer satisfactorily to American demands, said "I will make no comment."

    According to reports, during the meeting Papandreou had with the Syrian president, it was made clear that Syria would wish to receive even symbolic messages by the United States, in order for it to be included in the international efforts against terrorism. In any case, the fact that Syria had been accepted at the United Nations Security Council constitutes proof that the alignment of Damascus in the condemnation of international terrorism could bring about a further improvement in Syria's relations with the United States.

    Papandreou also had talks with Patriach Ignatios of Antiochia, with whom he discussed the proposal for an international conference to be held of religious leaders from the various religious faiths.

    Papandreou briefed his fellow speakers on the contacts he had over the past ten days in Moscow, Washington and Europe, and commited himself to brief Greece's partners in the West on the contacts he had in Damascus.

    [04] Lightning visit by Greek FM to Damascus set

    14/10/2001 17:26:45

    Greek Foreign Minister George Papandreou leaves Athens for Damascus, Syria on Sunday afternoon to meet with the leadership of the Mideast country as part of a Greek initiative to aid efforts at decreasing tension in the region.

    Papandreou already met in Athens this week with Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat, who arrived in the Greek capital to participate and speak at the inauguration of ruling PASOK party's 6th congress. The Greek FM later held talks with visiting Israeli Transport Minister Ephraim Sneh, who was also invited to address the same event a day after Arafat.

    On Monday morning, Papandreou is scheduled to meet in Athens with Czech Deputy Premier and Foreign Affairs Minister Jan Kavan.


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