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Athens News Agency: News in English, 00-05-03

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] EU Commission - Greece - EMU recommendation
  • [02] Slovakia
  • [04] Earthquakes

  • [01] EU Commission - Greece - EMU recommendation

    03/05/2000 14:14:28

    BRUSSELS (ANA - M. Spinthourakis) -- The European Commission on Wednesday announced that it was recommending Greece as eligible to join the 'euro-zone' as its 12th member.

    Pedro Mira Solbes, the EU Commissioner for economic and monetary affairs, presented the Commission's assessment report on the Greek economy to the European Parliament's committee of economic and monetary affairs.

    In his address, the Spanish commissioner underlined the progress made by the Greek economy and noted that Greece now fulfilled all EMU convergence criteria, adding that membership should begin by January 1, 2001.

    European Central Bank vice-president Philippe Noyet, filling in for president Wim Duisenberg, also emphasised Greece's economic progress although he stressed the need for measures to limit public debt and to promote structural changes in the economy.

    [02] Slovakia

    03/05/2000 12:38:04

    The President of the Republic of Slovakia, Rudolf Schuster arrives here on May 8 for a two-day official visit, following an invitation from his Greek counterpart Costis Stephanopoulos, the presidential office announced on Wednesday.

    He will be accompanied by Mrs. Schuster.


    03/05/2000 12:00:51



    Hope for progress in Cyprus

    US terrorism report 'unfair'

    Greece's euro-zone bid

    Albanian marijuana smugglers

    Ferry links for Greece, Turkey

    Prince Charles on Mount Athos

    OA resumes flights to Libya

    Greek merchant fleet increases


    Hope for progress in Cyprus

    Foreign Minister George Papandreou has expressed hope that there will be progress towards a settlement of the festering Cyprus problem in the next round of the UN-led talks in New York later this month. Speaking to reporters after talks with his Turkish counterpart in New York, he said that common interest in the region have helped Greece and Turkey take the first steps in ironing out their differences.


    US terrorism report 'unfair'

    Foreign Minister George Papandreou said on Tuesday that Greece had been judged unfairly in the US State Department's 1999 report on terrorism. "The efforts of the Greek government to combat terrorism have been overlooked," he said in a radio interview from New York.


    Greece's euro-zone bid

    The European Commission and the European Central Bank are expected to endorse on Wednesday Greece's bid to join the euro-zone, but with a warning that it must continue to reduce debt and keep inflation in check.


    Albanian marijuana smugglers

    Five Albanian illegal immigrants were arrested in two separate incidents on Tuesday, while trying to smuggle 120 kilos of marijuana across the northern Greek border with Albania, police said.


    Ferry links for Greece, Turkey

    According to the semi-official Turkish news agency Anadolu, regular ferry boat connections between the Greek island of Kos, in the Dodecanese, and the port of Bodrum (ancient Halicarnassus) on the Asia Minor coast will be scheduled daily over the forthcoming summer. Monday, Wednesday and Friday sailings are planned for the off-season months.


    Prince Charles on Mount Athos

    Britain's Prince Charles, who arrived in Greece unexpectedly on Monday, landed on the all-male monastic community of Mount Athos at noon on Tuesday and reports from London said he mighth stay there for a whole week.


    OA resumes flights to Libya

    National carrier Olympic Airways has resumed flights to Libya after the United Nations lifted an embargo on that country in effect since 1990. OA now runs three flights a week to Benghazi - on Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays.


    Greek merchant fleet increases

    The capacity of the Greek merchant fleet increased by 494,000 DWT in April after the Greek flag was hoisted on 12 ships and removed from another two. According to official data, 12 ships totalling 618,283 tons DWT, hoisted the Greek flag in April, while the Greek flag was removed from two others having a capacity of 124,477 DWT. The average age of the ships registered in April is seven years and for those that left the fleet, 18 years.



    MANILA: Two foreign hostages among the 21 held by Moslem

    rebels on Jolo island in the southern Philippines were found

    dead after clashes between troops and guerrillas, local TV


    HARARE: Zimbabwe government supporters were reported to

    have killed another opposition party member as Commonwealth

    ministers, meeting in London, called for "fair elections, free

    of intimidation".

    RIO DE JANEIRO: Brazil braced for another wave of protests

    after angry landless peasants clashed with police and invaded

    public buildings and farms and truck drivers launched a

    nationwide strike.

    CAMP ZEIST, Netherlands: More than 11 years after the Pan

    Am jumbo jet Maid of the Seas was blown out of the sky over

    Lockerbie, Scotland, two Libyans go on trial accused of the

    terrorist bombing.

    UNITED NATIONS: Poised to dispatch a force of 5,500 to the

    Congo, a U.N. Security Council delegation visits five African

    nations this week before before making a decision on sending in

    the peacekeepers

    WASHINGTON: In a major trade-policy victory for President

    Bill Clinton, U.S. congressional leaders reached a final

    agreement on legislation extending new trade privileges to

    Africa, the Caribbean and Central America, aides said.

    SEATTLE: Microsoft Corp said it will ask for more time to

    prepare a detailed defence against the U.S. government's

    proposal to break up the software giant to curb its monopoly in

    computer operating systems.

    LYON, France: - British Formula One driver David Coulthard

    told rescue crews he "should be dead" after miraculously

    walking away from the wreckage of a private jet which crashed

    in Lyon killing two pilots.

    ATLANTA: Time Warner Inc Vice Chairman Ted Turner refused

    to discuss the details of a deal with Walt Disney Co which

    temporarily put aside a nasty dispute that left millions of

    Americans without access to ABC television.



    ADESMEFTOS TYPOS(Rizos): "A rotten state; nine in 10 youths believe that our society is rotten...".

    ADESMEFTOS TYPOS(Mitsis): "The EU Commission's report on Greece's E.M.U. admission expected today; 7 'maybes' ".

    APOGEVMATINI: "With flat instructions from the E.U.; salaries on a new basis".

    ATHINAIKI: "The findings of the Athens Bourse inquiry after two months result into a 'bubble'".

    AVGHI: "The EU Commission's report expected today: a 'tight' E.M.U. admission".

    AVRIANI: "Profiteers in the Athens Bourse caught in a trap; four stock brokers and foreign institutional investors set up the big trick".

    ELEFTHERI ORA: "Albright and Cem in New York to: George (Foreign Minister Papandreou)....give us everything....".

    ELEFTHEROS: "The perfect crime in the Athens Bourse".

    ELEFTHEROS TYPOS: "Income tax: who will pay money back and who will get money back: winners and losers of this year's income tax returns".

    ELEFTHEROTYPIA: " A 'yes' is expected today from European bankers and technocrats on (Greece's) E.M.U. admission".

    ESTIA: "Package solutions on the Cyprus problem and Greek-Turkish issues expected within the year".

    ETHNOS: "Crucial settlements for the Higher Educational Institutions".

    EXOUSIA: "Fatigue tests for parents and students; eight successive exam test trials within two months".

    KATHIMERINI: "Structural changes under European Union pressure".

    LOGOS: Front-paged the findings of the Athens Bourse inquiry under the headline: "responsibilities without giving....names".

    NIKI: "Austere recommendations from the EU Commission and the European Central Bank: tighten your belts..."

    RIZOSPASTIS: "A terrorising report and ....dialogue; blatant U.S. interventions".

    STO KARFI: "Give (money) without the homeless, professionals and farmers".

    TA NEA: "Health Minister Alecos Papadopoulos dismisses from the Sparta hospital, the doctor who received a kickback".

    TO VIMA: "All close professions will open; the government assures its European partners that it will abolish closed professions that are estimated to be more than 2,000...".

    VRADYNI: "Public services do not function without 'kickbacks'; without a kickback you are lost...".



    Cloudy weather is forecast throughout the country on Wednesday, turning to rain in many areas. Storms are expected in the Aegean. Winds will be northeasterly, moderate to very strong. Temperatures in northern mainland Greece will range from 6C to 19C; in the rest of the mainland and Ionian from 9C to 22C; and in the Aegean islands from 12C to 21C. Cloud over Athens with temperatures ranging from 12C and 22C. Same in Thessaloniki with temperatures between 10C and 19C.



    Athens 22

    Thessaloniki 19

    Alexandroupoli 18

    Kavala 19

    Larissa 20

    Ioannina 18

    Patra 22

    Kalamata 22

    Iraklio 21

    Rhodes 21

    Corfu 21



    Berlin 20

    Brussels 20

    Budapest 23

    Geneva 19

    Larnaca 23

    London 12

    Madrid 16

    Moscow 06

    Paris 14

    Rome 19

    Stockholm 07

    Vienna 24



    Kalamata made a decisive step towards managing to stay in the Greek first division soccer championship after beating Kavala 1-0 away on Tuesday. Kavala, on the other hand, is now threatened with relegation to the second division. After the 30th round, Kalamata is in 11th place with 35 points and Kavala 15th with 30. For the remaining games of the 30th round, seven matches will be played on Wednesday and one on Thursday.


    NBA-playoff results


    New York 87 TORONTO 80

    New York wins best-of-five series 3-0


    MINNESOTA 94 Portland 87

    Portland leads best-of-five series 2-1

    SACRAMENTO 99 LA Lakers 91

    Lakers lead best-of-five series 2-1



    Wednesday's rates (buying)

    Euro 333.550

    U.S. dollar 366.494

    German mark 170.542

    French franc 050.849

    Pound sterling 572.721

    Irish punt 423.522

    Belgian franc 008.269

    Luxembourg franc 008.269

    Dutch guilder 151.358

    Italian lira (100) 017.226

    Austrian schilling 024.241

    Danish kroner 044.759

    Swedish kroner 040.926

    Finnish mark 056.100

    Spanish peseta 002.005

    Portuguese escudo 001.664

    Japanese yen (100) 337.260

    Swiss franc 213.731

    Norwegian kroner 040.989

    Cyprus pound 589.248

    Canadian dollar 248.000

    Australian dollar 214.470



    Equity prices ended sharply higher on Tuesday after a four-day Easter holiday on the Athens Stock Exchange. Traders said sentiment was encouraged by optimism over positive reports on the Greek economy to be published on Wednesday by the European Central Bank and the European Commission, paving the way for the country's EMU membership. Analysts expect the market to test the 4,400 level on Wednesday, a psychologically critical barrier. The general index ended at 4,368.21 points, up 2.79 percent. Turnover was 193.6 billion drachmas, reflecting a block trade in Eurobank of 120 billion drachmas.

    [04] Earthquakes

    03/05/2000 10:27:38

    Two successive moderate earthquakes jolted the seabed in central Greece early Wednesday without reports of damage or injuries.

    The tremors measuring 4.3 and 4.2 on the Richter scale were recorded by the Thessaloniki Observatory at 07.59 and 08.09 local time and their epicentre was the seabed in Aegion near the central Greek port city of Patras in the Peloponnese, struck by a strong 5.1 earthquake last Thursday without damage or injuries. Seismologists believe that Wednesday's tremors were aftershocks of the original quake.

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