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Athens News Agency: News in English, 06-08-08

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] Draft law targets 'modern forms' of pedophilia
  • [02] Greek-Albanian study on Lesser Prespes Lake
  • [03] Mount Athos exhibition in Helsinki

  • [01] Draft law targets 'modern forms' of pedophilia

    Justice Minister Anastasis Papaligouras on Tuesday announced that an amendment combating "modern forms of pedophilia" will be included in a draft law on domestic violence, discussed during an inner Cabinet meeting the same day. The inner Cabinet meeting was chaired by Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis.

    Papaligouras said that based on international figures, one in five women and one in 10 men have fallen victim to some form of sexual abuse or molestation, while in eight out of 10 cases the victim knew the perpetrator.

    According to the amendment, an adult accused of sexually abusing a minor who is entrusted with the latter's supervision or guardianship, even on a temporary basis, will be sentenced to at least 10 years in prison if the victim is under the age of 14.

    An adult could also be sentenced to up to six months in prison for gestures, propositions or descriptions of sexual acts to a minor.

    Additionally, an adult coming into contact through the internet or other means of communication with an individual under the age of 16 can face prosecution by making propositions or by describing or portraying sexual acts. Repeated acts can also lead to a sentence of three years in prison.

    In addition, the statute of limitation for such crimes comes into effect beginning from the date the victim reaches adulthood.

    On his part and in reference to tighter provisions combating domestic violence, Interior and Public Administration Minister Prokopis Pavlopoulos said the reinforcement of administrative structures and measures aim to support and protect victims of domestic violence.

    He also said draft legislation will allow for easier funding of NGOs active in fighting or preventing domestic violence and supporting victims.

    [02] Greek-Albanian study on Lesser Prespes Lake

    Desertification on the Albanian side of the Lesser Prespes Lake on the Greek-Albanian frontier is one ominous prospect if uncontrolled agricultural irrigation in the nearby Korce plains persists, according to findings of a first-ever joint Greek-Albanian study focusing on the border lake and the Devoll River ecosystem.

    The study was prepared by the Greek NGO Prespes Lakes Protection Society in cooperation with the Albanian environmental group PPNEA (Protection and Preservation of the Natural Environment in Albania), and co-funded by the Greek foreign ministry and WWF Hellas.

    Based on the study, diversion of the Devoll River in the mid 1970s, by the totalitarian Stalinist regime that ruled Albanian at the time, to Lesser Prespes severely downgraded the southern tip of the lake with notable environmental and socio-economic consequences, mostly felt by the nearby communities that experienced a massive emigration of local residents and the loss of resources.

    The study also concluded that specific environment restoration and management measures must be taken in order to reverse the consequences of past man-made interventions, while additional studies should deal with the Korce plains irrigation issue.

    [03] Mount Athos exhibition in Helsinki

    The "Monastic Life on the Holy Mount" exhibition of Byzantine art, featuring artifacts and rare ecclesiastical heirlooms from the all-male monastic community of Mount Athos in Halkidiki prefecture of northern Greece, will take be displayed in Helsinki with the framework of Finland's EU presidency events.

    The relics -- icons, manuscripts, religious books -- have already been transported to Athens and will travel to Helsinki via special flights.

    The exhibition will be hosted at Helsinki's Tennis Palace Art Museum from Aug. 17 until Jan. 21, 2007, while the opening ceremony will be attended by a large delegation of Mount Athos abbots and elders.

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