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Athens Macedonian News Agency: News in English, 13-09-16

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] Russia's Federation Council Chairwoman in Athens
  • [02] Larissa of Argos medieval castle to get repairs with EU funds

  • [01] Russia's Federation Council Chairwoman in Athens

    ANA/MPA--In statements ahead of her three-day visit to Greece starting on Sunday, Russian Federation Council Chairwoman Valentina Matviyenko said that she intends her talks in Athens to cover a broad range of topics on the agenda in bilateral relations between Greece and Russia.

    "They will include the prospects of activating inter-Parliamentary contacts, exploring and legal support of the legal-contractual basis of our bilateral relations. We also want to examine the possibility of developing inter-regional cooperation," she said prior to her departure.

    A former Russian ambassador in Greece and governor of St. Petersburg - and currently occupying the third-highest office in Russia - Matviyenko said her talks in Athens will also touch on bilateral trade and ensuring the flow of investments from Russian firms, several of which have shown interest in collaborating with Greece in the energy and transport sectors.

    The talks are also expected to touch on international affairs, namely Syria and the situation in the Middle East, where Matviyenko noted that Greece and Russia often have very similar positions on fundamental issues on the international agenda. She referred to Greece's upcoming EU presidency in the first half of 2014, which she said would allow discussion on issues concerning relations between Russia and the EU, such as the abolition of the visas for short visits on either side.

    Matviyenko will be arriving in Athens at the head of a sizeable delegation from the Russian upper Parliament or Federation Council and will have meetings with Prime Minister Antonis Samaras, Greek Parliament President Evangelos Meimarakis, main opposition Radical Left Coalition (SYRIZA) leader Alexis Tsipras, government Vice-President and Foreign Minister Evangelos Venizelos, Archbishop Ieronymos of Athens and All Greece, as well as Greek government officials and business people.

    During the visit she will address the 3rd Greek-Russian Forum marking the 185th anniversary since the establishment of Greek-Russian diplomatic ties and meet the head of the Greek representation at the Council of European Parliamentary Assembly Dora Bakoyannis.

    [02] Larissa of Argos medieval castle to get repairs with EU funds

    ANA/MPA--One of the oldest and most historic castles in Greece, that of Larissa in Argos, is getting preserved and promoted with the help of National Strategic Reference Framework funds.

    The Peloponnesian castle was declared a national monument by Greece in 1992; its preservation project that the EU is partly funding is worth 945,000 euros.

    Located on the top of a hill which was used since prehistoric times for defence purposes, the castle was repaired and augmented by the Argives in the 5th and 6th centuries. It was built up by the Byzantines in the 10th century, who turned it into a major fortress in the Peloponnese.

    Its history reflects the turbulence of the Middle Ages and later, as it came under the jurisdiction of the lord of Nafplio, Leon Sgouros, in 1203; was taken over by the Franks, who rebuilt it into its present form in 1212; was sold to the Venetians in 1394; and fell to the Ottoman Turks in 1463 - with a brief interlude when it became Venetian again - until 1822, when it was taken over by Turkish Ottoman general Dramalis, after the Greeks had declared their war of independence in 1821.

    During World War Two, the castle was severely damaged by bombs dropped by the Germans, who were trying to flush out resistance fighters.

    Today little survives of a 12th-century Byzantine church, while architectural members of earlier constructions including from the Classical era were used to build and repair the fortress walls and are still discernible today.

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