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The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English, 08-06-19
From: The Hellenic Radio (ERA) <www.ert.gr/>
 Removed Due to Siemens CasePASOK in Turbulence
19 Ιουν 2008 14:37:0 (Last updated: 19 Ιουν 2008 19:08:5)
Sources: ΝΕΤ, ΝΕΤ 105.8, ANA-MPA
The Siemens scandal has brought about radical political developments. The Panhellenic Socialist Movement (PASOK) said Thursday it decided to suspend the party identity of its officials implicated in the case. Former minister Tassos Mantelis and former MP Theodoros Tsoukatos are the first to lose the party identity. As per party spokesman Giorgos Papakonstantinou this decision cannot serve as evidence for the result of the judicial procedure. In parallel, he accused the government of keeping silent on PASOKs provocations on how to combat corruption. Meanwhile, it appears the Prosecutor, who is investigating the case, has serious evidence on politicians graft. Tassos Mantelis rejected rumors yesterday as per which he had received money from any company; while Thedoros Tsoukatos reported that he had not been involved in the case personally, adding that he had mediated in receiving one million marks from Siemens in form of a donation to PASOK for its pre-election campaign. PASOK Economy sector Head Spyros Avgerinos rejected Tsoukatos accusations.
"Not Forejudging the Result of the Investigation"
"Contrary to the cover-up tactic followed by the ruling party of ND (New Democracy), PASOK decided to strip its officials implicated in the Siemens case off their capacity as party member," said PASOK Press spokesman Giorgos Papakonstantinou.
The PASOK spokesman claimed that the case above has surfaced the weaknesses of the Greek political system, while he did not miss touching on George Papandreous anti-corruption proposals, which, apart from a package of measures, include a public invitation to the Prime Minister and a meeting of the political leaders under the President of the Hellenic Republic.
Papakonstantinou also said that PASOK and its leader George Papandreou have repeatedly requested a committee of inquiry to address the Siemens case.
Finally, he accused the government of keeping silent against PASOKs provocations regarding the combating of corruption, at a time when ample light should be shed on the case and Greeces political system protected.
Commenting on developments in the Siemens case, Mr Antonaros stated that the government had done what was necessary to help justice investigate the case. He said that the government trusts justice and respects its independence, awaiting the completion of the investigation.
SYRIZA (Coalition of the Radical Left) Parliamentary Group President Alekos Alavanos proposed a fast and an in depth check to all sides, adding that in inquiry committee should be set up.
Tsoukatos-Mantelis Reject Accusations
In a written statement, Theodoros Tsoukatos reports that he received former managing director of Siemens Hellas Michalis Christoforakos, who donated 420,000 euros for PASOKs pre-election campaign in 2000. "All money ended into PASOKs funds," said Tsoukatos, adding that had never been personally involved. He also said he reserved the right to protect his name if more accusations are launched against him.
PASOK Economy sector Head Spyros Avgerinos reacted arguing that PASOK had never received the above some in that period.
Tassos Mantelis, from his side, rejected the accusations as per which he received millions of marks from Siemens, demanding all existing evidence to be released.
 Pan-European Campaign against Price HikesEU Summit in Brussels
19 Ιουν 2008 12:19:0 (Last updated: 19 Ιουν 2008 15:23:4)
Sources: ΝΕΤ, ΝΕΤ 105.8, ANA
The vaulting fuel and food prices will run high on the agenda of the EU Summit in Brussels, just a few days after it inflation in eurozone broke was announced to have broken a 12-year record and the Irish "no" to the EU reform treaty. On Wednesday, the centre of Brussels was packed with hundreds of lorry and cab drivers and farmers who were protesting against the skyrocketing oil prices. Upon his arrival in Brussels, Greek Prime Minister Kostas Karamanlis said that Europe has entered a turning point. The EU, argued Karamanlis, has to prove it can effectively meet challenges, stressing that the problem of the high cost of living is ravaging Europe and reminding that, in his letter to European Commission President Jose Manual Barroso, Karamanlis underlined the need to have the thorny issue of spiraling prices brought up at the EU Summit so that a joint course of action can be shaped. Commenting on the Lisbon Treaty, Karamanlis noted that the ratification process will continue and be completed in the best possible way to the benefit of European cohesion and the citizens of Europe.
Amid Grave Concerns
Consumers groups and trade unions across Europe are holding demonstrations against spiralling oil and food prices.
Bringing Brussels under siege with tractors, cabs and lorries was the highlight of the revolt that swept through the eurozone from Portugal to Germany to convey the citizens feeling of frustration to the doorstep of the EU Summit.
The pressure exerted was felt by everyone, said European Commission President Jose Manual Barroso, who heralded Wednesday an emergency package of measures to help people make ends meet.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel, on the other hand, fearing that inflation in the eurozone could go out of control, has opposed tax relief on fuels promoted by French President Nicolas Sarkozy, who has put down the Irish "no" to the Lisbon Treaty to the feeling of frustration fuelled by the high cost of living.
Street Protests in Athens
In Athens, the private and public sector umbrella unions, (GSEE and ADEDY) are stating a street protest in central Athens at 7.30pm, while All Workers Militant Front (PAME) is staging a rally at Omonoia Square.
Speaking on NET 105.8, Socialist MP Panos Beglitis estimated that the Brussels Summit would not take any pivotal decisions against spiralling prices, despites the initiatives that have been undertaken. He further added that it has been proved that domestic factor give rise to profiteering in Greece.
Translated by Areti Christou
Britain Ratifies the Treaty
Brussels under Siege
 Scorching Hot Temperatures19 Ιουν 2008 12:23:0
Sources: NET, ANA-MPA
Scorching hot temperatures have prevailed across Greece, with the mercury forecasting to climb up to 40C. A fall in temperature is expected as of Friday. People are advised to take self-protection measures.
 Gang Stealing Cars Arrested19 Ιουν 2008 17:40:0
By Andreas Roditis
A gang consisting of border guards, policemen, a customs officer, Greek and Albanian citizens was selling stolen cars mainly from Italy and Germany. In parallel, they were helping Albanian illegal immigrants pass to Greece. The police arrested nine Albanians, three border guards, two policemen, five civilians, a police officer and one customs officer. The gang was in Ioannina prefecture and also used to receive 1,000-2,000 euros for each illegal immigrant they would help pass to Greece.
The policemen and border guards used to get 300-800 euros. The police blocked 656,000 euros in bank accounts of the accused.
Translated by John Crystallidis
 Jean Delannoy Passes Away19 Ιουν 2008 17:37:0
French filmmaker Jean Delannoy, who was crowned at the 1946 Cannes film festival for "La symphonie pastorale" (Pastoral Symphony), has died at age 100, his family said Thursday. The actor-turned-director gained prominence for his screen adaptations of literary classics such as the 1943 version of "Leternel retour" (Love Eternal) produced with Jean Cocteau. He also directed US actor Anthony Quinn and Italian bombshell Gina Lollobrigidia in "Notre Dame de Paris" (The Hunchback of Notre Dame) in 1956.
Delannoy died late Wednesday at his home in the town of Guainville, southwest of Paris, his family said.
A director of more than 30 films, Delannoy was harshly criticised by the younger generation of new wave filmmakers like Jean-Luc Godard and Francois Truffaut who dismissed his work as lacklustre "poetic realism." His best-known work, "La symphonie pastorale" which tells the story of a Protestant pastor living in the Swiss Alps, was awarded the Grand prize at Cannes in 1946.
 From 16-20 JulyKavala Hosts Cosmopolis Festival
19 Ιουν 2008 17:30:0
Cosmopolis Eighth Festival promises punk and world music for this year, choosing green as its colour to exhibit its interest in the environment. Cosmopolis is cooperating with WWF and supports the struggle for a better environment and world through events.
In the Mohamed Ali square, there is the stage of the traditional dance groups that give their colorful performance. Next to the scene, there is the outdoor restaurant, where people are able to experience traditional tastes. When we finish dancing and food-tasting, we continue our celebration at the Breakwater, where famous artistic schemes are invited to give concerts in the rhythm of the world music.
At the same time, in the backspace of the Mohamed Ali square, open-air cinema is in use, playing movies of the countries that take part. As we pass through the marvelous and full of scents narrow streets of Panagia, we reach the castle that has been transformed into an area of festivities. People may visit the plastic arts exhibitions in the cells of the old prisons, while in the yard a scene for children is set, where puppet shows are held. Children are also free to take part in many games from all over the world and in many other activities that reinforce creativity.
The countries that will be participating in Cosmopolis Festival 2008 will present their dance groups, pavilions, cuisine, and films. In the stage of Cosmopolis will perform some of the greatest artists of the world music scene. Well known Djs promise an unforgettable party and seven non-governmental organizations will be informing visitors for their actions.
Wednesday, July 16 19:30 OPENING TIME OF STREET BAZAAR (Th. Poulidou str) 21:00 OPENING CEREMONY - COSMODANCES (Stage A - M. Ali Square) 21:30 COSMOtastes: TAJIK PILAF (Tajikistan) (Th. Poulidou & M. Ali Square) 21:30 COSMOcinema: THE EMPERORS JOURNEY (WWF) (Zephyrus) 22:30 MAD MANOUSH IN CONCERT (Breakwater-Customhouse) support band X DARAWISH
Thursday, July 17 11:30 COOKING DEMONSTRATION: D. STAROVAS & S. PANAGIOTOPOULOS ("Hangry Bear" tv show) WITH ETHNIC TASTES (St. Nicolas Quarter) 19:00 SMALL MUSIC SCENE (St. Nicolas Quarter) 19:30 OPENING TIME OF STREET BAZAAR (Th. Poulidou str) 21:00 COSMODANCES (Stage A - M. Ali Square) 21:00 COSMODANCES Plus+: EXCLUSIVE PERFORMANCE BY RUSSIA (N. Ossetia) (Stage B - Falirou Park) 21:30 COSMOtastes: MALAYSIAN CHICKEN WITH CARRY (Malaysia) (Th. Poulidou & M. Ali Square) 21:30 COSMOcinema: THE 11th HOUR (WWF) (Zephyrous) 22:30 "BalkanXpress" Dj SET BY KOSTA KOSTOV (Breakwater-Customhouse)
Friday, July 18 11:30 COOKING DEMONSTRATION: EFTICHIS BLETSAS ("Mamas Kitchen" tv show) WITH ETHNIC TASTES (St. Nicolas Quarter) 19:00 SMALL MUSIC SCENE (St. Nicolas Quarter) 19:30 OPENING TIME OF STREET BAZAAR (Th. Poulidou str) 21:00 COSMODANCES (Stage A - M. Ali Square) 21:00 COSMODANCES Plus+: EXCLUSIVE PERFORMANCE BY MALAYSIA (Stage B - Falirou Park) 21:30 COSMOtastes: BROILED MEAT WITH YOGURT (Albana) (Th. Poulidou & M. Ali Square) 21:30 COSMOcinema: THE ORPHANAGE (Spain) (Zephyrous) 22:30 THE LOCOS IN CONCERT (Breakwater-Customhouse) support band VICTORY COLLAPSE
Saturday, July 19 11:00 SMALL MUSIC SCENE (St. Nicolas Quarter) 19:30 PANEL DISCUSSION ON THE CLIMATE CHANGE (Th. Poulidou str) 19:30 OPENING TIME OF STREET BAZAAR (Th. Poulidou str) 21:00 COSMODANCES (Stage A - M. Ali Square) 21:00 COSMODANCES Plus+: EXCLUSIVE PERFORMANCE BY PUERTO RICO (Stage B - Falirou Park) 21:30 COSMOtastes: CHEESE-STUFFED EGGPLANTS & CHICKEN WITH SAUCE (Russia / N. Ossetia) (Th. Poulidou & M. Ali Square) 21:30 COSMOcinema: ANDREI RUBLEV (Russia) (Zephyrous) 22:30 THE TOSSERS IN CONCERT (Breakwater-Customhouse) support band COSMICRAY
Sunday, July 20 19:30 OPENING TIME OF STREET BAZAAR (Th. Poulidou str) 21:00 COSMODANCES - CLOSING CEREMONY(Stage A - M. Ali Square) 21:30 COSMOtastes: MEATBALLS WITH ONION AND TRACHANAS (Siatista / Greece) (Th. Poulidou & M. Ali Square) 21:30 COSMOcinema: I JUST BROKE UP (Greece) (Zephyrous) 22:30 ALKISTIS PROTOPSALTI IN CONCERT (Breakwater-Customhouse)
 Olive Oil Price Regulation Lifted19 Ιουν 2008 16:27:0
Deputy Development Minister G. Vlachos has decided to lift the price regulation of olive oil imposed as of Monday. The price regulation was imposed as per provision 6/2008.
This decision concerns Extra Virgin Olive, Oil Virgin Olive Oil and Pure Olive Oil in the following packing (in litres): 0,10- 0,25- 0,50- 0,75- 1- 2- 3- 5.
Provision 6/2008 remains in effect for other types of olive oil.
Translated by John Crystallidis
 Danger for Fire Break-out19 Ιουν 2008 16:10:0
The General Secretariat of Political Protection has issued a warning on high risk for fires in eastern Attica and Euboea on Friday. In parallel, it warned the state services, as well as self-governments of the above areas to be on alert.
Thus, citizens are advised to avoid lighting fires, use machinery that produce sparks or throw lit cigarettes as a fire may break out. They are also advised to call 199 in case a fire breaks out.
Translated by John Crystallidis
 Oil Prices Drop below $136 per Barrel19 Ιουν 2008 15:07:0
By Athina Saloustrou
Oil prices dropped below $136 per barrel in international markets in view of the meeting between the oil-producing and consuming nations in Jeddah at the weekend. Saudi Arabia is expected to announce a rise in oil output by 200,000 barrels a day. Earlier, oil prices had climbed above $137 per barrel in the aftermath of the news that Royal Dutch Shell suspended output in one important oil well off the coast of SE Nigeria following a guerrilla attack. US crude oil for July delivery was 98 cents down standing at %135.70 on Thursday noon.
Translated by Areti Christou
 Major Military Operation in Afghanistan19 Ιουν 2008 11:41:0
By Betty Savourdou
Hundreds of Taliban militants were allegedly killed or injured during a NATO-led operation in the outskirts of the city of Kandahar. The Talibans were ousted from the the Arghandab district, suffering many losses, said a local governor, further adding that several Pakistanis were among the dead.
The NATO forces deployed in Afghanistan have yet to confirm the information. A NATO army spokesman spoke of minor incidents, making it clear that the Taliban fighters chose not to fight.
About 1,000 Afghan and NATO troops took part in the operation in the Arghandab district, some 20 km off Kandahar.
Translated by Areti Christou