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The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English, 99-09-23

The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Hellenic Radio (ERA) <ert.ntua.gr/>

CONTENTS

  • [01] LEGAL ACTION TO APPORTION BLAME FOR COLLAPSED BUILDINGS
  • [02] MORE MEASURES TO HOUSE THE HOMELESS
  • [03] NEW DEMOCRACY CALLS FOR BRIEFING BY PRIME MINISTER
  • [04] GREEK FOREIGN MINISTER ADDRESSES UN GENERAL ASSEMBLY
  • [05] GREEK FOREIGN MINISTER MEETS UN SECRETARY GENERAL
  • [06] AMERICAN SECRETARY OF STATE MEETS CYPRIOT PRESIDENT
  • [07] EUROSTAT SAYS GREECE CLOSER TO CONVERGENCE WITH EU
  • [08] MORE FIREMEN TO BE HIRED SOON

  • [01] LEGAL ACTION TO APPORTION BLAME FOR COLLAPSED BUILDINGS

    The Athens prosecutor's office has started legal action against all persons responsible for the collapse of buildings in which scores of people lost their lives or were injured during the September 7th earthquake. The charges will be manslaughter and grave bodily harm.

    [02] MORE MEASURES TO HOUSE THE HOMELESS

    After a meeting under the chairmanship of prime minister Kostas Simitis yesterday, with the participation of four prefects of Attica, the ministers of the environment and the interior stated that the state and local administration will cooperate to face the consequences of the recent earthquake and gave assurances that the timetable for housing the earthquake-stricken population living in tents will be respected. According to interior minister Vasso Papandreou, priority is to be given to the improvement of the living conditions in organized camps. It is estimated that the homeless will start gradually moving to prefabricated housing in October, while a special telephone service with information for the quake-stricken population will start operating as of Monday.

    [03] NEW DEMOCRACY CALLS FOR BRIEFING BY PRIME MINISTER

    The New Democracy party has underlined the omissions and delays in the government's handling of problems facing the homeless and called for a briefing session of political leaders by the prime minister at a special session of parliament.

    [04] GREEK FOREIGN MINISTER ADDRESSES UN GENERAL ASSEMBLY

    Addressing the UN General Assembly early this morning, Greek foreign minister Giorgos Papandreou referred to the Cyprus issue saying that the earthquakes in Greece and Turkey were the cause of spontaneous acts of solidarity between the citizens of the two countries, who pressured their governments to speed up the procedure for an improvement of the two countries' relations. He also expressed the hope the impasse in the Cyprus issue would be lifted. Greece, Mr Papandreou said, supports globalization concerning ideas, the economy and human rights, which however must be applied with the same criteria in Cyprus as in other regions of the globe where the international community is intervening. In an interview with the Turkish press, Mr Papandreou announced the creation of a joint unit to deal with natural disasters. He also said Greek-Turkish rapprochement had started even before the earthquakes, with quiet diplomacy.

    [05] GREEK FOREIGN MINISTER MEETS UN SECRETARY GENERAL

    Shortly before addressing the UN general assembly, Mr Papandreou had a lengthy conversation on the Cyprus issue with UN secretary general Kofi Annan. He said afterwards the Cyprus issue was going through an important phase and that Mr Annan might soon send an invitation to both sides to resume dialogue. He also said he discussed with Mr Annan the latest developments in Greek-Turkish relations.

    [06] AMERICAN SECRETARY OF STATE MEETS CYPRIOT PRESIDENT

    During a meeting in New York yesterday, American secretary of state Madeleine Albright gave assurances to Cypriot president Glafkos Kliridis that Turkish Cypriot representative Rauf Denktash would respond positively to an invitation from UN secretary general Kofi Annan for the Cyprus talks to be resumed in mid-October, with no preconditions, but on an equal basis. The first round of the talks would last 3 weeks, to be followed by visits to Greece and Turkey by American president Bill Clinton. A second round of talks would be convened before the Helsinki summit. The American president would make the necessary interventions towards the interested parties during his visits to Greece and Turkey in accordance with the progress of the talks. Meanwhile the American ambassador in Nicosia has expressed reserved optimism about the resumption of the Cyprus talks next month, although he did mention existing differences.

    [07] EUROSTAT SAYS GREECE CLOSER TO CONVERGENCE WITH EU

    The organisation Eurostat has released figures showing that Greece is one step closer to convergence with the EU after the inflation rate went down from 1.8% in July to 1.6% in August. In the euro zone, inflation stood at 1.2% in August as compared with 1.1% in July. According to Eurostat, the inflation rate in Greece was lower in the month of August than inflation in Portugal, Spain, Ireland and Holland, and the same as in Italy.

    [08] MORE FIREMEN TO BE HIRED SOON

    Public order minister Mihalis Chrisohoidis has said that the government plans to hire 2,350 new firemen and buy 9 fire-fighting helicopters. He also said that a bonus of 140,000 drachmas will be given to the 2,000 firemen who took part in efforts to rescue people trapped under the rubble in the recent earthquake.
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