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Athens News Agency: News in English, 09-09-15

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] PM speaks to SME representatives
  • [02] Arrest on child pornography charges
  • [03] Karatzaferis speaks in Athens

  • [01] PM speaks to SME representatives

    Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis, addressing representatives of small and medium-size enterprises (SMEs) on Monday, outlined the government's work in the sector of SMEs over the past five and a half years and criticised main opposition PASOK party, saying that it lacks any plan for the country, whereas his ruling New Democracy (ND) party does not play with the country's future and places the national interest above everything, noting that he had called early elections precisely for this reason.

    Karamanlis said that the preceding PASOK governments had bequeathed to the ND government a huge public debt, which from 30 percentage points of GDP in 1981 (when PASOK took office) they "took it to 100 percent in 2004", when ND assumed office. The prime minister further said that all the measures announced and promises made by PASOK would cost over 10 billion euros, and wondered "where will it find the money" to implement them.

    He went on to say that "as explicit that the crisis and problems are, so vague is the leader of PASOK", and, referring to the main opposition party, he added: "They are living in their own world. They proved this with their announcements in Thessaloniki and for this reason they are dangerous. They are saying that they will do things that, however, cannot be done. It is being proved that they do not know reality. On the one hand they say the situation is tragic but on the other they are promising things that cost over 10 billion euros."

    The prime minister said that PASOK has left no doubt as to what it will do only on two points, namely, that it will increase taxes and the public debt, and added that "they will be forced to do this and this will have dangerous consequences for the country."

    Karamanlis further stressed that SMEs are currently feeling pressure and mentioned that for ND they constitute the foundation of the Greek economy and the fabric of economic life.

    He also said that the government has shown strong reflexes from the very outset of the global financial crisis, and recalled the measures that were taken in support of the economy and of employment.

    Karamanlis referred to privatisations carried out and to energy agreements achieved by the present government, stressing that they serve the national interests, and criticised PASOK of speaking on the one hand of the state regaining control, and on the other of renegotiating.

    "They are making innuendos and the president of PASOK claims quite peculiarly that the Burgas-Alexandroupolis oil pipeline agreement supports the interests of the Russians", he said, and further stressed that PASOK "has no economic policy plan and for this reason it cannot guarantee the country's future."

    Karamanlis underlined that decisions must be taken now for the following day "so that we can turn the national crisis into a national opportunity" and noted that the government has started a specific strategy to confront the crisis, with its axes being containment of public expenditures, cracking down on tax evasion, and structural changes.

    Lastly, he accused PASOK of źextorting elections and, consequently, there was the risk of an election period lasting for many months" and assessed that PASOK would have created tensions, making it impossible for the government to complete its task. In concluding, he said that "I rejected the extortion and am asking for a fresh popular mandate."

    Lastly, he stressed that two difficult years lie ahead, and difficult decisions are necessary immediately.

    [02] Arrest on child pornography charges

    ┴═┴-MPA/┴ 39 year-old man has been arrested by the police's computer crime squad on child pornography charges via the internet and illegal possession of firearms, police announced on Monday.

    A search of his computer and cell phone revealed videos containing child porn material.

    Moreover in his house officers found and confiscated a computer hard drive, a pistol, a cartridge containing nine bullets and a doubled-bladed jack knife, an electric shock gun, a pair of handcuffs and three mobile phones.

    The suspect will appear on Tuesday before a prosecutor.

    [03] Karatzaferis speaks in Athens

    Popular Orthodox Rally party (LAOS) leader George Karatzaferis, in a campaign speech on Monday evening at a downtown Athens hotel, expressed his belief that after the October 4 general elections his party will play a significant role that will be even more important than what he initially believed.

    Karatzaferis, referring to the latest opinion polls, said that his party is "a breath away" from becoming the third largest party in parliament, adding that new political forces have joined his party, including the small Ecologists of Greece party.

    He called on his party MP candidates not to follow ruling New Democracy attitude in "the political decline of insults" despite the fact that, as the LAOS leader said, prime minister Costas Karamanlis is justified because he is very stressed since things are not going very well for him and his party, but added also that "Mr. Karamanlis is responsible for this situation, because he is the one who is 'offering' to PASOK the governance".

    He charged both mainstream parties (ruling ND and main opposition PASOK) are 'afraid' to speak about the national issues and corruption, and stressed that LAOS will leave no provocation unanswered and estimated that the most probable post-electoral cooperation would be one between ND and PASOK because "they are the two sides of the same coin".

    Karatzaferis also reiterated that he will be a candidate in the Rodopi constituency.

    Caption: ANA-MPA file photo of LAOS leader George Karatzaferis

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