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Athens News Agency: News in English, 02-11-30

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] Greece will not accept obstacles in Cyprus' EU accession, Simitis says
  • [02] Nine-million-year-old elephant tusk discovered on Crete

  • [01] Greece will not accept obstacles in Cyprus' EU accession, Simitis says

    30/11/2002 00:00:17

    Greece will not accept obstacles in Cyprus' accession to the European Union, Prime Minister Costas Simitis said on Friday, during his closing address to the joint meeting of ruling PASOK's Parliamentary Group and the party's Executive Bureau.

    Speaking at the second and final day of the meeting, Simitis stressed that Greece's ''no'' will be categorical in front of any procedural tactic, which will obstruct the accession of Cyprus, adding that ''the time has come to conduct with resolve the fight we prepared for the last few years''.

    Simitis called the discussions that took place during the two days of the meeting as fertile, but responded to various positions expressed in the meeting according to which the UN Chief Kofi Annan's plan for a Cyprus solution was a solution of defeat, saying that the only policy of defeat is that which accepts the partition of the island republic, the one that leads to the partition of Cyprus.

    Simitis also stressed that the current conditions are helping the Greek Cypriot side while, at the same time, they are exerting pressures on the Turkish Cypriot side, which is hesitant, but can not reject the Annan plan.

    He said that Greece has achieved an international rally, which helps, but if the chance is lost, the support for the Greek side will also be lost.

    Addressing all those who criticized negatively the UN plan, he reiterated the position held by Cyprus President Glafcos Clerides, according to who, all those that speak positively or negatively of the Annan plan can only cause damage.

    Responding to the question on whether a Cyprus settlement can conclude in Copenhagen, he said that if this can happen it would be the best outcome.

    ''If it does not happen, we will continue our effort after Copenhagen as well. What is of the outmost importance is the essence of the agreement and not haste,'' he said.

    [02] Nine-million-year-old elephant tusk discovered on Crete

    29/11/2002 23:59:07

    The Natural History Museum of Crete on Friday announced the discovery of a major fossil find in the Cretan bay of Sitia, consisting of a tusk, teeth and other fossilised bones belonging to an ancestor of present-day elephants that lived on the island seven to nine million years ago.

    The fossils were discovered during excavations at a site pointed out by local inhabitants and included a whole, well-preserved tusk measuring 1.4 metres long, the first ever to be found in Greece, seven teeth in good condition, three vertebrae, sections of ribs, a shoulder blade and other bone segments.

    The new finds provide paleontology experts with important clues about the fauna and flora on the island at the time. The remains have been identified as the species Deinotherium giganteum, an ancestor of present-day elephants measuring some 4.5 metres high with downturned tusks.

    Deinotherium is believed to be a forest dweller and the find confirms the conclusions of previous studies concerning the Cretan vegetation of this period.

    Bones belonging to this species have been found elsewhere in Greece and Europe but never further south than Samos. Some believe the bones of these gigantic animals may have inspired the myths of giants and the battle of the titans in Greek mythology.

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