|Thursday, 15 April 2021|
Macedonian Press Agency: News in English, 02-08-19
From: The Macedonian Press Agency at http://www.mpa.gr and http://www.hri.org/MPA.
 KIDNAPPED HUNTERS WERE FOUND MURDEREDLamia, 19 August 2002 (12:49 UTC+2)
The police have begun an operation to retrieve the bodies of three hunters, found in a gorge in Bralos, in a remote region of Mt. Iti. Rescue teams have been trying to descend the gorge, which is 1000 meters deep, since early this morning, in order to retrieve the bodies.
A 30-year-old seasonal fireman, Ilias Liaskonis, confessed to the kidnapping and murder of the three hunters, after many hours of intense questioning. The victims are 25-year-old Vassilis Adamou, 32-year-old Giorgos Triantafyllou, and 58-year-old Giorgos Pournaras.
Liaskonis confessed to the police that with the help of an Albanian man, who is still at large, they forced the three men into their car, drove them to the remote location, killed them and threw their bodies into the gorge.
The motive for the triple homicide has not yet been made clear, however the police believe that it concerned financial differences. Liaskonis will be taken to the DA today.
 PASOK AND ND PLAN THEIR FALL STRATEGIESAthens, 19 August 2002 (14:00 UTC+2)
Prime Minister Kostas Simitis is returning from his vacation in Sifnos today, giving the message to intensify work within the government and PASOK, with terrorism, the Fall visit to the TIF, the announcement of tax lightening, the October municipal and prefectural elections and dealing the cotton producers' problems as his main points of interest.
Tomorrow Mr. Simitis will meet with the Secretary of PASOK's Central Committee, Kostas Laliotis and in the next few days he will hold meetings with the Minister of Finance Nikos Christodoulakis, the Minister of Public Order, Michalis Chrysochoidis, and Agriculture, Giorgos Drys. On Thursday morning the Cabinet will come into session and in the evening, PASOK's Executive Committee will meet.
At the same time, the President of New Democracy, Kostas Karamanlis, met with ND high officials at noon today. During the meeting, terrorism, Mr. Karamanlis' visit to the 67th TIF and current political affairs were discussed.
 SIMITIS MESSAGE FOR THE 67TH TIFAthens, 19 August 2002 (18:39 UTC+2)
The goal of real financial and social convergence, the Greek Presidency of the EU, Thessaloniki's role in the Balkans, the 2004 Olympics and the course of the economy, were mentioned in Prime Minister Kostas Simitis' message concerning the 6th Thessaloniki International Fair.
According to the Prime Minister, the key to achieving the goal of real social and financial convergence will be given by:
The competitiveness - productivity - entrepreneurship triptych
The stability of our choices
Emphasis on social cohesion
The developmental strength of Greek economy.
«The fruits of this effort are undoubtedly the increase in employment with higher quality job openings, greater prosperity and cohesion.
Despite the difficult international juncture we are at, Greece will not only achieve, but surpass the foreseen developmental rate of 3.8% in 2002, and will move at above 4% in the next few years».
The Prime Minister continued to say that the means at our disposal to maintain this high development rate for the Greek economy, as well as its further acceleration, are:
a. The National Development Programme, along with the Community Support Framework and the National Investments Programme.
b. The Olympics: It is certain that this eminent athletic event will further continue to the improvement of Greece's image worldwide.
c. The mobilization of private capital from Greece and from abroad to participate in businesses in the progress of being privatized and in founding new businesses in the liberalized markets.
d. The restructuring of Greek businesses, which is the basic ingredient of Greece's developmental strategy. The utilization of modern technology, its improved competitiveness, and international cooperation are a guarantee for a powerful presence in the European and world market.
e. Greece's comparative geo-financial advantage at present in the Southeastern Europe and Mediterranean region.
«As a consequence:
a. Greece's secure developmental rates make the atmosphere more favorable for new investments and the spreading of entrepreneurship.
b. Continuous structural changes and interventions in the private and broader public sector of the economy contribute to the improvement of the Greek economy and, of course, to increasing employment.
c. The tax reform underway and the upcoming developmental law are expected to provide the necessary motive for the repatriation of investments, as well as for the increase in direct foreign investment.
In the framework I have just described, N. Greece plays a very significant part. Its powerful productive web and its intense export orientation, have turned it into the steam engine of Greek economy. The cosmogony of projects being carried out in the broader region, as well as the opening of borders to Central and Southeastern Europe in recent years, have released creative forces. In the bipolar post war world, N. Greece was on the rim. Today it is at the crossroads of a region with enormous resources of potential development, with endless dynamics.
We aspire that Thessaloniki, which will hold the regular Summit Meeting of the European Council in June of 2003, during the Greek Presidency of the EU, will become the capital of the Balkan mainland in coming years.
The vision for a Thessaloniki - metropolis in the 21st century is attainable. Our hard and ambitious goals, however, demand strenuous effort, hard and systematic work from all of us, perseverance and stability in our choices.
 N17: LEAKS AND CIVIL SUITSAthens, 19 August 2002 (16:49 UTC+2)
Criminal charges against all parties involved were pressed by the Athens Court of First Instance DA, Sotiris Bagias, concerning "violation of service confidentiality", after new leaks in the "November 17" case briefs.
It should be noted that similar charges had been pressed concerning the leaking of the suspects' preliminary examinations to the press two weeks ago.
Meanwhile, the first civil suit against N17 suspects was submitted to Special Examiner Leonidas Zervobeakos this morning, by Eleni Athanasiadis, widow of Alexandros Athanasiadis, who was murdered by N17 on Kifisias Avenue in 1988.
At the same time, Mrs. Athanasiadou is seeking financial compensation for the psychological distress she has undergone. The suit was submitted by Mrs. Athanasiadis' attorney, Alexandros Lykourezos.
 MARKET OPEN ON SUNDAYS?Athens, 19 August 2002 (16:32 UTC+2)
The government is looking into the possibility of allowing certain businesses in areas with tourist activity - but which have not been characterized as "tourist sites" by the National Tourism Organization (EOT)- to remain open on Sundays.
According to today's "Imerisia" newspaper, the specific issue was discussed by relevant parties of the Ministries of Development and of Labor and Social Securities, after the submission of a pressing request from commercial business owners in areas which have not officially been claimed as tourist sites by EOT, but which remain open on Sundays with the discreet tolerance and even support of local authorities.
Other relevant ministries are considering passing the responsibility of deciding whether an area exhibits tourist interest and traffic or not, from EOT to the Prefectures with these areas.
In any case, before any such decision is made, local organizations, employers and employees will be asked to give their opinion.
While the government is discussing this point however, the phenomena of excessive overpricing is giving it a serious headache, after the discovery that it was not observed exclusively in tourist areas and concerning produce.
This tend to increase prices is mainly observed in the foods sector, affecting both local and imported goods in the same way.
Specifically, according to information from the Ministry of Development, consumers have been paying 33% more for basic food products since the beginning of 2002, while a 75% increase was observed in cleaning products.
Meanwhile the large number of complaints concerning the significant overpricing of small bottles of water, which in some areas is sold for as much as 2 euro (with 0.45 being the normal price), is attributed to the decision to stop recording the proposed price on product packaging.
Worries increased when the relevant services of the Ministry of Development discovered that altered prices are easily stabilized and it is very difficult to reverse the process.
The number of complaints concerning overpricing reached 8,023 by June 31, 2002, with accommodation sites, mini markets, kiosks and fuel stations concentrating the largest number of complaints.