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Athens News Agency: News in English, 02-10-14

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

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

CONTENTS

  • [01] Parties assess first round local gov't poll
  • [02] Record hits to MPA site for election information
  • [03] Greece wants EU labelling of genetically modified foods
  • [04] Foreign Exchange Rates - Tuesday
  • [05] Weather Forecast: Cloud, showers in many areas on Tuesday
  • [06] ASE finds support at 1,800 level on Monday

  • [01] Parties assess first round local gov't poll

    14/10/2002 22:35:32

    Interpretation and fallout from Sundays first round municipal and prefectural elections expectedly dominated local media attention and political parties statements a day later, with both major parties (ruling PASOK and main opposition New Democracy) offering their slant on results.

    Government spokesman and Press Minister Christos Protopapas mostly expressed the governments satisfaction over Sundays results, saying that New Democracy had tried to use the local government elections as a ?lever of pressure to topple the government?. He also referred to the main oppositions ?send a message? campaign aired in television spots over the past three weeks, while highlighting results from the Athens-Piraeus super prefecture race -- where PASOK-backed MP Fofi Gennimata gained close to 40 percent of the general vote as opposed to ND-backed Yiannis Tzannetakos 27.5 percent.

    Regarding the issue of whether ruling PASOK and the government received any ?messages? from the first round, Protopapas referred to ?multiple messages that are being evaluated ... as every district has its own problems, and the candidates themselves play a significant role?.

    Finally, Protopapas said the government was satisfied with the way the election was conducted.

    New Democracy spokesman

    Conversely, the main oppositions spokesman offered a diametrically opposing view, stressing that the government experienced an electoral defeat throughout the country.

    Spokesman Thodoris Roussopoulos said the government is merely trying to defray the poor showing of most of its candidates by only pointing to the Athens-Piraeus prefecture race.

    He added that New Democracy elected 11 prefects outright in the first round this year, as opposed to seven in 1998, noting that three prefectures, in fact, passed from PASOK to ND. Moreover, he emphasized that votes gained by NDs candidates in Greeces three largest municipalities Athens, Thessaloniki and Piraeus more-or-less were double than those gained by PASOKs candidates.

    ?New Democracy does not gloat, nor does it relax, instead it listens, respects and trusts all the citizens, remaining devoted to the principles of dialogue, mutual understand and cooperation with all the political forces in the country,? he stressed.

    KKE, Synaspismos

    In terms of other parties, the Communist Party of Greeces (KKE) leadership reiterated on Monday that it will not back any candidates from the PASOK or ND camp during the second round of municipal elections this Sunday.

    As far as the candidates backed by KKE in the election are concerned, party leader Aleka Papariga said KKE posted better results in 31 prefectural races (from 1998). She also mentioned that six KKE-backed candidate won their mayoral race in the first round, whereas 25 KKE-backed candidates have made it into the second round.

    On its part, the Coalition of the Left and Progress (Synaspismos) said the partys affiliated candidates posted better than expected results, and not just in the surprising showing by veteran leftist personality Manolis Glezos in the Athens-Piraeus prefecture race (nearly 11 percent).

    Synaspismos leader Nikos Constantopoulos will unveil the partys official views regarding the Oct. 13 results during a press conference on Wednesday, it was announced.

    [02] Record hits to MPA site for election information

    14/10/2002 22:27:21

    Internet visits to the Macedonian Press Agency (MPA) Internet home page reached record highs on 13 October election night when results of the local government elections were being announced.

    Operated for the election night in cooperation with the Athens News Agency (ANA), state TV Channel ET3 and OTENET, the three servers designated by MPA for the occasion accepted approximately 2,000,000 calls, an impressive increase of 1,000 percent.

    The announcement of the election results was a joint effort of ANA and MPA, the two collaborating national news agencies, in co-operation with ET3 and OTENET, also broadcast by linking to www.ana.gr, www.otenet.gr, www.election2002.gr, www.ota.gr, www.phantis.com, www.elections.gr, www.stockrally.gr and www.pathfinder.gr that also experienced a high number of visits.

    Next Sundays run-off election results will also be broadcast from the same sites.

    [03] Greece wants EU labelling of genetically modified foods

    14/10/2002 19:54:47

    LUXEMBOURG (ANA/M.Kourmousi) - Greece on Monday said that it wanted to see genetically modified (GM) foodstuffs labelled in the European Union in order to give consumers the right to choose.

    ''GM produce is a reality. As mimimum protection for the public, this information must be given. We cannot allow people to buy products containing modified organisms without being aware of it,'' Agriculture Minister George Drys told reporters in Luxembourg.

    ''This consumer information and protection must be imposed,'' Drys added.

    Handling GM produce in the market is be debated by EU committees, with approval expected at a farm ministers' meeting in November.

    [04] Foreign Exchange Rates - Tuesday

    14/10/2002 18:40:47

    Reference buying rates per euro released by the European Central Bank

    U.S. dollar 0.995

    Pound sterling 0.637

    Danish kroner 7.488

    Swedish kroner 9.167

    Japanese yen 123.5

    Swiss franc 1.473

    Norwegian kroner 7.339

    Cyprus pound 0.577

    Canadian dollar 1.577

    Australian dollar 1.820

    [05] Weather Forecast: Cloud, showers in many areas on Tuesday

    14/10/2002 17:57:40

    Cloudy weather and showers are forecast in many parts of the country, with storms in the Cyclades, Crete and Dodecanese islands. The west and north will be sunny. Winds north-northeasterly, moderate to very strong, likely to turn gale force in parts of the Aegean. In the north, temperatures will range from 11C to 21C; in the west from 13C to 24C; and in the rest of the country from 14C to 23C. Temperatures in Athens between 16C and 22C; and in Thessaloniki from 14C to 21C.

    [06] ASE finds support at 1,800 level on Monday

    14/10/2002 16:35:30

    The Athens Stock Exchange found support at the 1,800 level on the first trading session of the week on Monday, reflecting gains in Hellenic Telecommunications Organisation's shares and renewed buying activity in medium-capitalisation stocks.

    On the other hand, banks and smaller-capitalisation stocks came under pressure and lost ground.

    The general index eased 0.06 percent to end at 1,805.97 points, with turnover a low 77.2 million euros.

    The Holdings, Metals and Cement sectors scored the biggest percentage gains of the day (2.87 percent, 2.23 percent and 1.55 percent, respectively), while the Textile, Banks and IT Solution sectors suffered the heaviest percentage losses (2.64 percent, 1.12 percent and 0.95 percent).

    The FTSE/ASE 20 index for blue chip and heavy traded stocks fell 0.23 percent, the FTSE/ASE MID 40 index rose 0.75 percent and the FTSE/ASE SmallCap 80 index eased 0.07 percent.

    Broadly, decliners led advancers by 161 to 143 with another 55 issues unchanged.


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