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Macedonian Press Agency: News in English, 99-02-09

Macedonian Press Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Macedonian Press Agency at http://www.mpa.gr and http://www.hri.org/MPA.


MACEDONIAN PRESS AGENCY NEWS IN ENGLISH
Thessaloniki, February 9, 1999

SECTIONS

  • [A] NATIONAL NEWS
  • [B] INTERNATIONAL NEWS

  • NEWS HEADLINES

    [A] NATIONAL NEWS

  • [01] ARCHBISHOP OF AMERICA SPYRIDON IN ATHENS TODAY
  • [02] GREEK FARMERS TAKE TRACTORS TO THE STREETS
  • [03] GREEK GOVERNMENT CONDEMNS BLAST AT KOMOTENE
  • [04] "HAWKS OF THRACE" CLAIMS BLAST AT TURKISH EMBASSY
  • [05] GREECE, UNITED STATES SIGN SPORTS COOPERATION PROTOCOL
  • [06] US ASSISTANT SECRETARY OF DEFENSE IN ATHENS TOMORROW
  • [07] O.A. MANAGING DIRECTOR SUBMITS RESIGNATION, STATE ACCEPTS
  • [08] INTERPRISE BRINGS TOGETHER 65 BUSINESSMEN FROM 4 COUNTRIES
  • [09] ARCHBISHOP SPIRIDON OF AMERICA HAS ARRIVED IN ATHENS
  • [10] REPPAS: THE S-300 MISSILES WILL BE INSTALLED IN EASTERN CRETE
  • [11] NEW PRIVATIZATION OF THE STATE-RUN TELECOMMUNICATIONS ORGANIZATION
  • [12] TRAFFIC IN THE NATIONAL ROAD NETWORK MOVES WITHOUT PROBLEMS
  • [B] INTERNATIONAL NEWS

  • [13] GREEK FM TRAVELS TO ZAGREB TODAY
  • [14] KOSOVO PEACE TALKS CONTINE IN RAMBOUILLET
  • [15] GREECE TO PROVIDE YUGOSLAVIA WITH $100 MILLION IN LOANS
  • [16] MR. BAKARTZIEV WILL BE IN ATHENS TOMORROW
  • [17] THE PANGALOS-JOVANOVIC MEETING WILL BE HELD LATER TODAY
  • [18] THE GREEK-CROATIAN RELATIONS SHOW A POSITIVE DEVELOPMENT
  • [19] MR. LOMAS PRESSURES THE BLAIR GOVERNMENT FOR THE RETURN OF THE PARTHENON MARBLES TO GREECE
  • [20] THE PEACE-TALKS ON KOSOVO CONTINUE

  • NEWS IN DETAIL

    [A] NATIONAL NEWS

    [01] ARCHBISHOP OF AMERICA SPYRIDON IN ATHENS TODAY

    The Archbishop of America Spyridon is to arrive in Athens today, where he will stay until February 15, embarking on a series of contacts with church, state and political leaders.

    This afternoon, Mr. Spyridon will meet with the Archbishop of Athens and All of Greece Christodoulos, while this evening he will address the orthodoxy committee in the old Parliament.

    According to a statement he made to the Archdiocese's radio program prior to his arrival, Mr. Spyridon's visit aims at developing cooperation and stable relations between Athens and expatriate Hellenism.

    Specifically, talks between Mr. Spyridon and members of the government will focus on cooperation with Greece for the improvement of education in the US to secure the viability of the Greek language and the facilitation of more frequent contact between the new Greek generation with the motherland, as well as the exchange of visits between young people in the US and Greece.

    Tomorrow, the Archbishop will lay a wreath at the Unknown Soldier Monument and will meet with the President of the Hellenic Parliament Apostolos Kaklamanis, President of the Hellenic Republic Costis Stephanopoulos, Alternate Foreign Minister George Papandreou, Education Minster Gerasimos Arsenis Defense Minister Akis Tsochatzopoulos and the leader of the main opposition party, New Democracy's Kostas Karamanlis.

    On Thursday, he will meet with other opposition party leaders, the mayor of Athens Dimitris Avramopoulos, and Foreign Minister Theodoros Pangalos.

    [02] GREEK FARMERS TAKE TRACTORS TO THE STREETS

    The country's farmers are blocking the Athens-Thessaloniki national highway junction at Biokarpet, with their tractors, while the government is determined not to allow them to halt traffic .

    According to reports, the state's crisis management committee, which convened last night, has already prepared an action plan which it will enforce in case traffic is impeded.

    The Farmers' Coordinating Committee of Thessaloniki has announced that its members will line their tractors up at the central squares of surrounding villages.

    Most of the farmers are demanding lower debt repayment rates.

    [03] GREEK GOVERNMENT CONDEMNS BLAST AT KOMOTENE

    The Greek government has unequivocally condemned last night's blast across the street from the Turkish General Consulate building in the city of Komotene.

    The Foreign Ministry issued a statement wherein it stressed that there is no doubt that the culprits of this criminal act , who sought to undermine Greek-Turkish relations, are motivated by base grounds and are members of rings which aim to create disturbances.

    The police authorities have taken the necessary steps in order to arrest the outlaws and bring them before justice.

    Furthermore, the Greek government expresses its sympathy towards the Greek police force's pyrotechnist who was wounded during his effort to defuse the explosive device.

    [04] "HAWKS OF THRACE" CLAIMS BLAST AT TURKISH EMBASSY

    A never-heard-of-before organization, "Hawks of Thrace", has claimed responsibility for the bast that occurred last night at a newly-constructed building located near the Turkish consulate in Komotene.

    The explosion occurred shortly before midnight, although earlier calls had been placed to the police and radio stations by individuals who claimed to have placed the bomb, but not citing a reason.

    Aside from minor material damages, there were no victims in the blast.

    A delegation of anti-terrorism experts has traveled to Komotene in order to collect evidence.

    [05] GREECE, UNITED STATES SIGN SPORTS COOPERATION PROTOCOL

    Greece's Undersecretary for Sports Andreas Fouras and United States Ambassador to Greece Nicholas Burns will sign a protocol on bilateral sports cooperation in Athens today.

    The protocol will be signed during a special ceremony to be held at the Greek Olympic Games Committee building.

    [06] US ASSISTANT SECRETARY OF DEFENSE IN ATHENS TOMORROW

    The United States Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Affairs Frank Kramer will arrive in Athens tomorrow for a two day meeting during which he will have high- level consultations with Greek officials.

    According to the U.S. Embassy, the talks will focus on defense issues of mutual interest.

    [07] O.A. MANAGING DIRECTOR SUBMITS RESIGNATION, STATE ACCEPTS

    The state has accepted the resignation of the managing director of Olympic Airways Theodoros Tsakiridis, who said that he is vacating the post in order to facilitate the Transportation Ministry's efforts to find a new manager for the airline.

    The deadline for the expression of interest in taking over the airline's management ends on Friday.

    According to reports, British Airways, Lufthansa and a US operator have already expressed interest in taking over the management.

    [08] INTERPRISE BRINGS TOGETHER 65 BUSINESSMEN FROM 4 COUNTRIES

    An opportunity to embark on a series of contacts among 65 businessmen from Greece, France, Spain and Italy is provided by the INTERPRISE of Marmaro and Petra, which will begin this Thursday in Thessaloniki.

    The event will be inaugurated by the representative of the European Commission's 23rd Directorate Nasos Christoyiannopoulos.

    The event is co-organized by the Business Confederation of Saragosa (Spain), the Regional Chamber of Pyrenees Toulouse (France) and the Trade and Industry chamber of Udine (Italy).

    [09] ARCHBISHOP SPIRIDON OF AMERICA HAS ARRIVED IN ATHENS

    Archbishop Spiridon of America arrived in Athens at noon today and already met with Archbishop Christodoulos of Athens and All of Greece, while later this afternoon he will speak before the Orthodoxy Committee in the Old Parliament.

    This is the first visit of Archbishop Spiridon to Athens and during his stay in Greece he will meet with the state and political leadership as well as, with members of the government and parliament.

    [10] REPPAS: THE S-300 MISSILES WILL BE INSTALLED IN EASTERN CRETE

    The Russian-made S-300 anti-aircraft missiles will be installed in eastern Crete stated Greek government spokesman Dimitris Reppas, while a delegation will go to Moscow next week to discuss the details of the timetable for their deployment.

    Mr. Reppas said that the missiles will belong to Cyprus, while Greece will have the control and the responsibility for their operation expenses.

    [11] NEW PRIVATIZATION OF THE STATE-RUN TELECOMMUNICATIONS ORGANIZATION

    Prime minister Kostas Simitis announced the forth privatization of the state-run Telecommunications Organization, OTE, that will be held in May. Mr. Simitis said that the forth privatization will be done based on the same principles with the previous three and the majority of the shares will not be given to private investors. The prime minister also mentioned that the change of the law on the appointment of new OTE employees is being considered.

    Mr. Simitis, who visited the central offices of the organization today, characterized it as one of the most successful companies. He said that Greece is a country that moves ahead and proves that it can meet the challenges in the new environment that is being created. Mr. Simitis also said that OTE has displayed the ability of the Greek economy, the Greek technology and Greek workers who can deal successfully with the new challenges.

    Mr. Simitis stated that the goal is for OTE to become a competitive limited liability company, stressing that the majority of its shares will belong to the Greek state.

    [12] TRAFFIC IN THE NATIONAL ROAD NETWORK MOVES WITHOUT PROBLEMS

    Special police forces and police cranes have arrived in the city of Larisa, central Greece. On the national road network linking Athens with Thessaloniki at the Viokarpet junction have already gathered 450 tractors which however, do not block the movement of traffic.

    Meanwhile, the farmers' coordinating committee in the prefecture of Thessaloniki decided that tractors should block village squares and renewed the call for new blockades to take place in Malgara, Derveni and the airport junction on Thursday.

    [B] INTERNATIONAL NEWS

    [13] GREEK FM TRAVELS TO ZAGREB TODAY

    Greece's Foreign Minister Theodoros Pangalos is presently in Zagreb where he will be received by his Croat counterpart Mate Granic and the country's president Franjo Tudjman.

    This afternoon, Mr. Pangalos will travel to Belgrade where he will have contacts with his Yugoslav counterpart Zivadin Jovanovic and the President of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia Slobodan Milosevic.

    The main topics dominating Mr. Pangalos' talks with Balkan officials are the promotion of bilateral cooperation and the developments in the Kosovo issue.

    [14] KOSOVO PEACE TALKS CONTINE IN RAMBOUILLET

    The Foreign Ministers of France and Great Britain are to participate in today's session of the Kosovo peace talks, held in Rambouillet, France.

    According to the international mediators who are attending the talks between the Serbs and the ethnic Albanians, some progress has been noted, although they declined to provide further information.

    [15] GREECE TO PROVIDE YUGOSLAVIA WITH $100 MILLION IN LOANS

    Greece will provide Yugoslavia with medium-term loans amounting to $100 million, as part of a bilateral protocol to be signed this week between the two countries.

    Greece's National Bank, Piraeus Bank and Commercial Bank are participating in the loan process, with Yugoslavia's Yugobanka and Beogradca Banka, according to the trade attache of the Yugoslav Embassy in Athens. . According to reliable sources, the negotiations with Bank of Piraeus, which is participating with a capital of $10 million, have advanced significantly.

    The director of Beogradca Banka stated that "under the present conditions, the given loans are the most favorable that have been approved in Yugoslavia."

    The length of repayment ranges from five to ten years, depending on the projects to be funded.

    [16] MR. BAKARTZIEV WILL BE IN ATHENS TOMORROW

    Bulgarian government vice-president and regional development and public works minister Evgeni Balarziev will be in Athens tomorrow to attend the 19th meeting of the joint Greek-Bulgarian committee on economic and scientific-technical cooperation.

    The committee will be co-chaired by Mr. Bakartziev and Greek minister of national economy and finance Yiannos Papantoniou.

    The meeting that will be held on February 11-12 will focus on bilateral investment programs including the modernization of Dupnica-Kulata railway line, the construction of the Kavala- Haskovo fiber optics, the maintenance of road axes and the construction of the new road bridge linking the border stations of Promahonas and Kulata.

    [17] THE PANGALOS-JOVANOVIC MEETING WILL BE HELD LATER TODAY

    Greek foreign minister Theodoros Pangalos, who is in Belgrade coming from Zagreb where he met with Croatian president Franjo Tudzman this morning, is scheduled to meet tomorrow morning with Yugoslav president Slobodan Milosevic.

    Early this afternoon, he will meet with his Yugoslav counterpart Zivadin Jovanovic and after their meeting the two government ministers will make statements to reporters. Mr. Pangalos will also meet with Serb president Milan Miludinovic later on.

    The Yugoslav press mentions today that Mr. Pangalos will discuss with Mr. Jovanovic the further development of the friendly relations between the two countries, the cooperation at a bilateral level and other issues of mutual interest including the multilateral cooperation among the countries of south-eastern Europe.

    [18] THE GREEK-CROATIAN RELATIONS SHOW A POSITIVE DEVELOPMENT

    The development of the Greek-Croatian relations was characterized as positive by Greek foreign minister Theodoros Pangalos and his Croat counterpart Mate Granic, according to the state-run news agency Hina.

    After their talks in Zagreb, the two ministers reached the conclusion that Greece as a member of the European Union is ready to back Croatia's request to be included in the PHARE program and participate in the World Trade Organization, WTO.

    Mr. Pangalos said that Greece thinks that there should be a European strategy on Croatia and added that Athens will request a new discussion on Croatia and the PHARE program as Croatia has not received yet the green light to use it.

    Mr. Granic stated that Greece backs Croatia's WTO participation and added that the Athens government points out that Croatia should be invited to Washington next April for the NATO summit. Mr. Pangalos stated that regardless of how the NATO enlargement will proceed there will be 44 countries attending the April summit meeting and therefore, there is room for one more.

    Mr. Granic stressed that Greece and Croatia are friendly countries and that Mr. Tudzman's visit to Greece gave a new boost to bilateral relations adding that the main role is played by the economic relations, followed by cultural and tourist. He also said that Greece and Croatia back the Italian initiative (also called Adriatic) in the sectors of shipping safety, the war against drugs and the region's tourist development.

    On Kosovo and Bosnia, Mr. Granic stated that he discussed those issues with Mr. Pangalos and added that Greece and Croatia back strongly the positions of the Contact Group for a solution in Kosovo.

    On the Dayton peace accord, Mr. Granic said that the final phase of the drawing up of borders will take place this year based on the agreements reached and referred to the signing of a trade agreement by Croatia and Bosnia as well as, to the signing of an agreement on the special relations issue.

    Mr. Pangalos stressed that Greece backs the return of the refugees to their homes and added that according to his opinion, the international community can help to overcome the economic obstacles in this sector.

    [19] MR. LOMAS PRESSURES THE BLAIR GOVERNMENT FOR THE RETURN OF THE PARTHENON MARBLES TO GREECE

    British Labor party Euro-deputy Alfred Lomas will present to British culture minister Chris Smith the arguments on which Greece's demand for the return of the Parthenon marbles is being based.

    Mr. Lomas, who has drawn up the resolution that has been adopted by the European Parliament calling for the return of the Parthenon marbles, stated among others during an interview with the BBC radio that the European Parliament resolution calls on the British government to see positively Greece's demand for the return of the marbles

    He characterized Greece's demand as very reasonable and stressed that the British government must be persuaded to return the marbles, adding that based on the public opinion polls conducted such a decision will have the approval of the majority of the British people.

    [20] THE PEACE-TALKS ON KOSOVO CONTINUE

    The foreign ministers of Britain and France will participate today in the peace-talks on Kosovo that are being held in Rambouillet, France.

    According to the international mediators in the talks between the representatives of the Serbs and the ethnic Albanians, there has been some progress but they did not give more details.


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