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Athens News Agency: News in English, 05-07-09

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] Greek becomes an IOC vice-president
  • [02] Opposition party wants to see EU, UN action on Iraq
  • [03] Fire breaks out in woodland near Athens
  • [04] Government keen to hold annual science and technology display

  • [01] Greek becomes an IOC vice-president

    Greece's Lambis Nikolaou became a vice-president of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) on Saturday following elections held at a meeting in Singapore.

    Nikolaou, now one of four IOC vice-presidents, formerly headed the Hellenic Olympic Committee and has served as a member of the IOC since 1986.

    Also elected was Chiharu Igaya of Japan, replacing Russia's Vitaly Smirnov and South Korea's Un-yong Kim.

    Retaining their posts under the four-year tenure rule are James Easton of the United States and Sweden's Gunilla Lindberg, the news agencies said.

    [02] Opposition party wants to see EU, UN action on Iraq

    The head of the Coalition of the Left, Movements and Ecology on Saturday urged the government to seek action on Iraq at the United Nations and within the European Union.

    "The government should make use of its UN Security Council presidency, taking the initiative in the EU and in the international organisation to bring an end to the occupation of Iraq," Alekos Alavanos told a meeting of his party's central committee.

    A member of the EU, Greece is also president of the UN council for the month of July.

    The party recently called for a conference on the Middle East and Iraq that would seek a fair solution to the Palestinian issue and try to set in motion the restoration of Iraq's independence.

    In addition, Alavanos repeated his abhorrence for Thursday's bomb attacks in London.

    "This act has nothing to do with visions of liberation and the struggles waged by peoples for their independence and rights," the party leader noted.

    "On the contrary, they reinforce options for violence and oppression by the leading powers, and favour plans to undermine and marginalise the large and multi-faceted movement against war and neo-liberal globalisation," Alavanos said.

    Efforts should be increased in Europe to change the conditions that fuel terrorism, triggering a fresh cycle of of violence. "The attack in London symbolises the failure of politicians against terrorism," he added.

    [03] Fire breaks out in woodland near Athens

    A wildfire broke out in woodland at the foot of Mount Hymettus near Athens on Saturday, destroying pine trees and scrub. Residential areas were not at risk, authorities said.

    Sent to tackle the blaze in the coastal suburb of Ilioupoli were 60 firefighters in 20 trucks, five water-dropping planes and three helicopters, backed by a 30-strong land contingent of the state's emergency rapid-reaction force.

    The blaze, which raged near a monastery in Kareas and a memorial to fallen firemen, was brought under control after an hour and a half, but firefighters remained to tackle any fresh outbreak, the authorities said.

    [04] Government keen to hold annual science and technology display

    Development Minister Dimitris Sioufas says that the government is eager to hold an annual science and technology week, following the success of the event held in Greece for the first time recently.

    "As an annual institution, this could become a reference point for the technological achievements of our country and our era," Sioufas told visitors.

    Thirty five research bodies, universities and companies took part in science week, presenting the findings of their projects in terms comprehensible to the general public.

    The event aimed to familiarise people with new technologies and their impact on day-to-day life.

    The minister made special mention of work by Athens Academy's research centre to introduce into hospitals by October a new early diagnosis method for breast cancer.

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