Athens News Agency: News in English (AM), 98-08-30
NEWS IN ENGLISH
Athens, Greece, 30/08/1998 (ANA)
- Greek-Albanian border zone to be established next year
- Border patrols beefed up
- Violence mars Thessaloniki soccer derby
- French Prime Minister Jospin in Athens
- Cultural Olympics foundation to be set up
- Kranidiotis on Cyprus issue
- Government on money market crisis
- Cheating taxi drivers sentenced
- Foreign exchange
NEWS IN DETAIL
Greek-Albanian border zone to be established next year
A border zone on the Greek-Albanian frontier will be introduced next year,
foreign minister Theodoros Pangalos announced today on a visit to Korce,
where he inaugurated a new Greek Consulate in the Albanian town.
Greeks and Albanians living within the zone -- the depth of which will be
decided later -- will be allowed free movement on either side of the border
inside the zone, and will have a special, common identification card,
This would enable residents inside the zone to live in one country and work
across the border in the other country within the designated zone.
Border patrols beefed up
Greece begins procedures to hire some 1,300 new border guards for a special
squad to patrol the border between Greece and Albania in September, Public
Order Minister George Romeos announced on Saturday.
Speaking at the Prespes '98 cultural festival, at Lake Prespes in Florina,
Romeos said the squad would be charged with beefing up security on the
borders and preventing the entry of illegal immigrants, primarily from
Greece's northern neighbour, Albania.
"Military, police and border officials will shortly have secured the
borders, increasing as far as possible the security of the residents of the
border regions," Romeos said.
The special squad's jurisdiction will extend from Thesprotia to Florina.
The creation of the force would also aid in the fight against unemployment
as all the appointments would be made from applicants in the border areas,
the minister said.
A 10-metre speed boat would be on patrol on the waters of Lake Prespes on a
24-hourly basis to avert illegal immigrants from crossing the lake.
According to statements from Romeos, the justice ministry will be in charge
of the policing of border regions, a decision which would free 800 police
officers for other duties.
Violence mars Thessaloniki soccer derby
Ten people were injured - none seriously - during violence at Saturday
night's football match in Thessaloniki when local Aris beat hometown PAOK,
4-1 in a Greek soccer championship match.
Among the injured were the mayor of Thessaloniki municipality Kalamaria and
Thessaloniki mayoral candidate Thrasyvoulos Lazaridis, eight policemen and
a fan, who was attacked some distance from the stadium.
The unrest began before the start of the match, at the city's Toumba
district, but reached a pinnacle when Aris scored its third goal at the
Fans rushed the VIP's section and threw bottles, stones and chairs.
Lazaridis received a head injury when he was hit by a bottle.
Members of the PAOK management were escorted from the stands under police
Twelve people involved in the violence were arrested and are expected to be
charged on Monday.
French Prime Minister Jospin in Athens
French Prime Minister Lionel Jospin arrives in Athens on Monday where he
and Greek Prime Minister Costas Simitis will be the keynote speakers at an
open discussion later in the evening.
The premiers will speak on "Democratic Socialism, prospects for the Left
and the role of the 'society of citizens' in the Europe of 2000". The
discussion will be held at the Grande Bretagne Hotel and begins at 7.30
The French and Greek prime ministers will have a private meeting in the
course of the day to discuss the recent financial crisis and ways the
European Union can deal with it.
Cultural Olympics foundation to be set up
International Olympic Committee chairman Juan Antonio Samaranch and
Greece's Culture Minister Evangelos Venizelos are due to sign a protocol of
cooperation to create a foundation for the Cultural Olympics this
Speaking at the four-day Prespes '98 cultural festival on Saturday,
Venizelos said the Cultural Olympics would be run in tandem with the
The agreement is due to be signed in Athens on Wednesday, during Samaranch's
visit to Greece.
Athens is hosting the 2004 Olympic Games.
Kranidiotis on Cyprus issue
The need of an international initiative to defuse tension, restart
intercommunal dialogue and reduce armaments on Cyprus were stressed
yesterday by Deputy Foreign Minister Yiannos Kranidiotis, addressing the
European Socialist Party (ESP) ''Summer University'' in Halkidiki.
Kranidiotis noted that the European Union and the United Nations must work
toward a solution of this international problem, which stems from the
continued occupation of one third of the island republic.
Government on money market crisis
National Economy and Finance Minister Yiannos Papantoniou said on Friday
that a crisis in international money markets stemming from Russia remained
serious although there were signs it was coming under control.
He said external pressure on the economy, and in particular on the drachma
and stock market, were in line with that being felt in
Cheating taxi drivers sentenced
The Athens first instance court yesterday convicted two taxi drivers each
to 40 days in jail and fines of 50,000, on charges of fraud, since both
overcharged their customers by manipulating their taxi meters.
Polykarpos Argyriades and Anastasios Pazvantis were arrested two days ago,
the first for overcharging foreign tourists on their way from the airport
to the Acropolis and the second for charging the nightsift fare to a police
officer in civilian clothes.
There were another 4 such arrests and convictions in August alone, in
effort by the state to crack down on such behaviour.
Mild weather is forecast for the entire country on Monday, turning cloudy
in the afternoon in central and northern Greece with chances of showers in
the north. Mild in Athens, with temperatures between 21-31 C. Same in
Thessaloniki, with local clouds in the afternoon and temperatures between
Friday's rates (buying) U.S. dollar 308.710
British pound 510.582 Japanese yen (100) 215.700
French franc 51.463 German mark 172.509
Italian lira (100) 17.454 Irish Punt 433.504
Belgian franc 8.363 Finnish mark 56.609
Dutch guilder 152.867 Danish kr. 45.273
Austrian sch. 24.501 Spanish peseta 2.029
Swedish kr. 37.631 Norwegian kr. 38.023
Swiss franc 208.494 Port. Escudo 1.681
Aus. dollar 175.678 Can. dollar 195.999
Cyprus pound 588.256