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The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English, 99-11-12

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

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

CONTENTS

  • [01] CONTROVERSY CONTINUES OVER AMERICAN PRESIDENT'S VISIT
  • [02] ARCHBISHOP OF AMERICA OPTIMISTIC ABOUT VISIT
  • [03] AMERICAN PRESIDENT TO VISIT TROOPS IN KOSOVO
  • [04] EU COMMISSIONER VISITS ATHENS
  • [05] MASKED MEN ATTACK MEMBERS OF GREEK COMMUNIST PARTY
  • [06] GREECE CLOSER TO INCLUSION IN EURO ZONE
  • [07] CULTURE MINISTER RECEIVES REPORT ON PARTHENON MARBLES
  • [08] POPE TO APOLOGIZE TO ORTHODOX CHURCH FOR CRUSADES
  • [09] NEW COACH FOR OLYMPIAKOS OF PIRAEUS
  • [10] 5.7 RICHTER EARTHQUAKE IN TURKEY

  • [01] CONTROVERSY CONTINUES OVER AMERICAN PRESIDENT'S VISIT

    The change in the date of the visit to Athens by the American president, Bill Clinton, has provoked strong reaction from Greece's opposition parties. The issue is to be discussed at a cabinet meeting this morning along with the question of whether the planned anti-American demonstrations should be banned. According to statements issued in both Washington and Athens, President Clinton will now visit Athens on November 19th, immediately after the meeting of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe in Constantinople.

    Speaking yesterday after his meeting with the New Democracy party leader, Kostas Karamanlis, the prime minister, Kostas Simitis, said President Clinton's visit was an opportunity for the Greek side to promote Greece's national interests. He underlined that only through its presence could the Greek side express the country's positions over important issues. The prime minister was harshly critical of the opposition parties, especially the New Democracy party, which he accused of irresponsibility and of seeking to turn the American president's visit to political advantage. As regards the other political parties, he said they were not concerned about the country's true interests.

    For his part, Mr Karamanlis accused the prime minister of being unable to deal effectively with crises and claimed the postponement of President Clinton's visit at the last minute was detrimental to Greece. He added that Washington should realise its policy of equal distances between Athens and Ankara served only to make Turkey bolder and boost its expansionism in the Aegean. The Greek Communist party announced the developments gave the Greek people an opportunity to step up their protests, while the Coalition of the Left Wing and Progress spoke of blackmail and pressure on the part of the United States.

    The president of the Democratic Social Movement, Dimitris Tsovolas, said the postponement was an American ploy aimed at exerting pressure on Greece, while the Liberal party described the decision to postpone the visit as a blow to the country. The government spokesman, Dimitris Reppas, has clarified that the Cyprus dispute, Greek-Turkish relations and Greece's role in the Balkans will be the main topics for discussion during the American president's visit to Athens.

    [02] ARCHBISHOP OF AMERICA OPTIMISTIC ABOUT VISIT

    The Archbishop of America, Dimitrios, who is accompanying the American president on his trip along with other members of the Greek American community, has expressed his optimism over the outcome of the visits to Greece and Turkey. The Greek community in the United States, he said, saw the visit as an opportunity to strengthen relations between the two countries. He added that he had been briefed about the difficulties involved but felt sure the visit would prove beneficial in resolving the various problems facing the countries in the region.

    [03] AMERICAN PRESIDENT TO VISIT TROOPS IN KOSOVO

    President Clinton has confirmed that he will visit American troops stationed in Kosovo later this month. Meanwhile, speaking after his meeting with the Yugoslav president, Slobodan Milosevic, in Belgrade yesterday, the chairman of the Greek parliament's defence and foreign affairs committee, Karolos Papoulias, said he was concerned about developments in the former Yugoslavia and condemned the crimes against Serbs and the non-Albanian population in Kosovo.

    [04] EU COMMISSIONER VISITS ATHENS

    The European commissioner with responsibility for regional policy issues and inter-governmental meetings, Michel Barnier, is paying a visit to Athens today for talks with prime minister Kostas Simitis, national economy minister Yannos Papantoniou and foreign minister Giorgos Papandreou.

    [05] MASKED MEN ATTACK MEMBERS OF GREEK COMMUNIST PARTY

    The government and the opposition parties have strongly condemned yesterday's attack by six masked men against three members of the Greek Communist party at the party's offices in Athens. The victims are being treated in hospital, while the Greek Communist party has attributed the attack to the government's anti-Communist propaganda.

    [06] GREECE CLOSER TO INCLUSION IN EURO ZONE

    Greece has taken yet another step towards inclusion in the euro zone. Following a report by the European commissioner responsible for economic and monetary matters, Pedro Sobles, the European Commission has proposed that a recommendation concerning a reduction in Greece's national deficit, imposed in September 1994, should be lifted. The initiative was taken in view of the fact that the deficit has now fallen by 2.5%. However, the final decision will be taken by the ECOFIN council on 29th November.

    [07] CULTURE MINISTER RECEIVES REPORT ON PARTHENON MARBLES

    The culture minister, Elisavet Papazoi, announced yesterday that she had received the report by the Greek experts who examined the Parthenon Marbles, kept in the British Museum. She made the announcement during the presentation of a book by the historian, William St Clair, entitled "Lord Elgin and the Marbles", which has been translated into Greek.

    [08] POPE TO APOLOGIZE TO ORTHODOX CHURCH FOR CRUSADES

    Cardinal Miroslav Vlik announced in Athens yesterday that Pope John Paul II planned to make a formal apology for the Crusades to the Orthodox Church.

    [09] NEW COACH FOR OLYMPIAKOS OF PIRAEUS

    The Italian, Alberto Bigon, is to succeed Dusan Bajevic as coach to the football team, Olympiakos. Mr Bigon arrived in Athens yesterday to sign the contract.

    [10] 5.7 RICHTER EARTHQUAKE IN TURKEY

    One person died and 85 others were injured in yesterday's earthquake in north-eastern Turkey, measuring 5.7 on the Richter scale, with its epicentre in the same area as the devastating earthquake of August 17th. An after-shock measuring 4.4 occurred a few minutes later in the city which is to host the summit of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe.
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