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Athens News Agency: Daily News Bulletin in English, 09-07-27

Athens News Agency: Daily News Bulletin in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Athens News Agency at <>

Monday, 27 July 2009 Issue No: 3255


  • [01] Athens calls on Turkey to meet EU obligations; cease provocations
  • [02] Comments from Hania on Saturday
  • [03] Papandreou: Citizens' freedom paramount
  • [04] Continued custody for former OTE exec charged in Siemens case
  • [05] Strike causes problems on Corfu-Igoumenitsa ferry route
  • [06] Pella peach growers lift roadblocks
  • [07] 3 wildfires in southern Peloponnese under control
  • [08] Wildfire in eastern Crete
  • [09] Athens' Sunday newspapers at a glance
  • [10] Church of Cyprus: Application to ECHR must be well documented

  • [01] Athens calls on Turkey to meet EU obligations; cease provocations

    Greek Foreign Minister Dora Bakoyannis was again quoted over the weekend on relations with neighbouring Turkey, just prior to the beginning of an EU foreign ministers' summit, the first hosted by the new Swedish presidency of the Union.

    "Today, Turkey is moving through a slow, and possibly painful process of Europeanisation; in a sense, it (process) be characterised as historic. I understand the political, social and economic processes in a country of the size, geographic location and history of Turkey. I also understand the domestic political reality (in Turkey) and the struggle of Mr. (Tayyip) Erdogan (the Turkish premier)," she said, adding, "However, thuggery does not wash in Europe. And I say this as an old friend of the Turkish people and as a long-standing supporter of Turkey's European course. Turkey is obliged to adhere to what it has agreed to. It doesn't have a good tradition in doing so, though, but in Europe there is no other way. In December, Turkey will be judged by all of us (EU members) based on what has been agreed to, and this is a significant milestone, not for the end of the course ... this is what gives it an even greater value in our standing position, namely, 'full adaptation (of EU criteria), full membership'," she underlined.

    Additionally, Bakoyannis said she has accepted, in principle, an invitation by her Turkish counterpart to visit Ankara, "and I will make this visit taking into consideration all of my other obligations and the most suitable moment in order for it (visit) to be beneficial and effective."

    Finally, the Greek FM flatly dismissed a recent high-profile statement by main opposition PASOK leader George Papandreou that the government will exploit an "incident" in the Aegean this summer to manipulate the president of the republic parliamentary election, charging that "Mr. Papandreou's strategy is a dead-end street, that's why the issue of the president's election has already become an internal PASOK problem."

    [02] Comments from Hania on Saturday

    A day earlier on Saturday from Hania, Bakoyannis reiterated that Athens will brief its EU partners over the recent negative stance exhibited by candidate-state Turkey, an indirect reference primarily to recent warplane violations in the eastern Aegean but also to growing dissatisfaction in the Greek capital with Ankara's failure to stem the tide of illegal immigration emanating from its territory.

    Bakoyannis said she will have the opportunity to brief EU counterparts on Monday during the first session of foreign ministers' under the recently convened Swedish presidency.

    "We believe our partners should have comprehensive knowledge (of these incidents) so they can assess Turkey, as it now enters the evaluation phase, with all the facts at their disposal," she said during brief statements to reporters in the Cretan port city.

    [03] Papandreou: Citizens' freedom paramount

    Main opposition PASOK president George Papandreou on Sunday was quoted by an Athens daily as saying that the global economic crisis demonstrated the "strong connection between the financial system, the real economy and the political elite".

    He added that "therefore, the political system's re-acquiring its autonomy and a strengthening of democratic institutions in politics and the economy comprise basic priorities of the new international foundation."

    "The wager is not the freedom of the markets, but citizens' freedom; protection of their rights, so that markets and state can serve our common interests. The challenge of the 21st century is to align ourselves with the global economic system with principles and values of a democratic, human, environmentally sensitive and just society," he underlined.

    His comments were published in the Athens financial daily "Imerissia".

    [04] Continued custody for former OTE exec charged in Siemens case

    A former top executive Hellenic Telecoms (OTE) was ordered to remain in police custody on Sunday following his testimony before a special investigative magistrate and in relation to the ongoing Siemens bribery and money-laundering investigation.

    Giorgos Skarpellis was taken into custody following his tabling of an 80-page statement, where he denies the charges against him, including an allegation that he managed a suspect bank account under the code-name "Franz".

    Skarpellis had initiative refused to provide a statement in June 3, claiming improper handling by relevant judicial officials.

    [05] Strike causes problems on Corfu-Igoumenitsa ferry route

    Serious traffic problems were reported on Saturday at the extreme northwest port of Igoumenitsa, as thousands of vehicles carrying tourists and vacationers for Corfu and the small isle of Paxos were lined up for several kilometres outside the port area, awaiting to board ferryboats.

    The traffic jam stems from a two-day strike by crews on ferryboats servicing the Igoumenitsa-Corfu route. Backed up vehicles have also more-or-less choked off traffic in the town of Igoumenitsa.

    [06] Pella peach growers lift roadblocks

    A series of roadblocks set up by peach growers in the northern prefecture of Pella, the biggest peach-growing area in Greece, have been reportedly lifted, reports state.

    Growers in the prefecture had used tractors to block the roadways, in demand of higher prices for their crop, amongst others.

    [07] 3 wildfires in southern Peloponnese under control

    Three separate wildfires were reported on Sunday in the southern Peloponnese, with all three luckily being extinguished towards the evening hours, given the extremely arid conditions prevailing in the country over the weekend due to a mini heat wave.

    A first blaze erupted on Saturday evening in the Chrysokelaria site of Messinia prefecture, and near the town of Koroni. A massive fire-fighting effort, including 11 vehicles, two aircraft and three helicopters, finally put out the wildfire on Sunday. Some 150 hectares of forestland and crops were destroyed.

    Moreover, another wildfire was reported in the Metaxada site of Messinia prefecture, claiming a total of 200 hectares of forest and crops, while the third blaze was reported in nearby Arcadia prefecture, which burned only a handful of hectares of cultivations.

    All three blazes were reported as extinguished by nightfall.

    [08] Wildfire in eastern Crete

    A major wildfire was reported Friday evening between the Males and Selekano communities of eastern Crete, with the blaze threatening the nearby village of Males after reportedly beginning at the Mesada site. A nearby children's camp ground was evacuated as a precaution.

    Two fire-fighting aircraft were dispatched to the remote mountainous site where the wildfire was reported.

    [09] Athens' Sunday newspapers at a glance

    The economy, a plan to withdraw antiquated private vehicles, political speculation and the state of the economy mostly dominated the headlines in the Sunday edition of Athens' dailies.

    ADESMEFTOS TYPOS: "Winners, losers from withdrawal of older vehicles. 730,000 old passenger vehicles going to scrap heap".

    APOGEVMATINI: "Private sector salaries in public sector".

    AVGHI: "Gov't borrowed 130% of annual target in six months!"

    AVRIANI: "Commandos on rock islets being sent by defence ministry".

    CHORA: "Bankruptcies and social unrest in the autumn".

    ELEFTHERI ORA: "Thomas Fleming: the left is a satanic movement".

    ELEFTHEROTYPIA: "The big trick with the vehicle withdrawal scheme".

    EPOCHI: "Problems aren't going on holiday".

    ETHNOS: "Twin attack on Agathonissi and Kastellorizo: New expansionist plan by Turkey in Aegean, Mediterranean".

    KATHIMERINI: "Shock scenario by IMF for (Greek) social security system".

    LOGOS: "End of political scenario speculation ordered by PM's office".

    PARON: "(PM Costas) Karamanlis' 'ace in the hole': Surprise October ballot if opinion polls favorable".

    PROTO THEMA: "How four million Greeks will be vaccinated".

    RIZOSPASTIS: "Defend heavy, hazardous professions; protest on July 30".

    VIMA: "Flu's turnover: fear-mongering, the vaccine and multinationals".

    VRADYNI: "Which pensions will rise".

    Cyprus Affairs

    [10] Church of Cyprus: Application to ECHR must be well documented


    Archbishop Chrysostomos II said the Church's application to the European Court of Human Rights to report Turkey for violation of its rights and usurpation of its property in the Turkish occupied areas must be well prepared before it is submitted.

    To a question on Sunday about the application, the Primate of the

    Greek Orthodox Church on the island said "we are trying through the Land Registry Office and the Church Committees to obtain all evidence because we want an application that is complete as possible, from every angle".

    Ásked when the application will be submitted, the Archbishop replied "this might take place tomorrow morning or in two months. The application must be well documented".

    In a press conference last May, the Archbishop had said the Church will base its defense on the case law of private cases and the 4th Interstate application of Cyprus against Turkey.

    Many churches have been converted into stables, stores, hen-houses, night clubs, libraries, cultural centers, morgues, mosques and military camps, since the Turkish invasion against Cyprus in 1974.

    36, TSOCHA ST. ATHENS 115 21 GREECE * TEL: 64.00.560-63 * FAX: 64.00.581-2 INTERNET ADDRESS: * e-mail: anabul@ana gr * GENERAL DIRECTOR: GEORGE TAMBAKOPOULOS

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