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Athens Macedonian News Agency: News in English, 15-10-18

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <http://www.ana.gr/>

CONTENTS

  • [01] Latest measures touch on issues no other government dared address, Mardas tells ANA-MPA radio
  • [02] Three children, two women dead in latest incidents with refugee boats
  • [03] Tourist police Visitors' Help Office opens in Athens
  • [04] IMF leadership has decided to send a mission to Athens, Washington sources say

  • [01] Latest measures touch on issues no other government dared address, Mardas tells ANA-MPA radio

    ANA-MPA -- The recent measures passed in Parliament touch on issues that no other government had ever dared address before, Deputy Foreign Minister for International Economic Relations Dimitris Mardas said on Sunday, talking to the ANA-MPA radio station 'Praktorio 104.9'. One such issue were tax fines for businesses, he said, which were reduced by half and could now be collected. "Some may have considered this a negative element, because they possibly would like to see fines of 100 pct, believing that in this way tax justice was being served, but I assure you that 100 pct fines do not exist in any country on the level of the European Union. Consequently, what is the aim: to break business people or to collect some money and serve justice? With this specific policy, we consider that justice is served," he said. He clarified, also, that the reduction concerned the fine imposed and not the main tax, which would remain as it was. Mardas outlined practical examples where the high fines - as high as 120 pct - led to nonsensically high debts due to delays in the processing of the violations by state services and the courts, noting that one business that was found liable to pay an additional 385,000 euros for something it had done and now owed 1.4 million euros for the same violation. Commenting on the refugee issue, Mardas noted that it was now "given the dimension that it had deserved from the first" and stressed that it was a European problem, that Europe had to deal with as the European Union. "But also the rest of the world, since it is not only the EU that faces this problem," he added. He said that Europe had to enhance its contribution in this area because if it were left up to each individual member-state to implement its own policy, "then we blow sky high the international agreements - on a European level also - that have been signed." "The solution, of course, is Turkey, which will take advantage of this fact," he added, noting that Turkey stood in the path of the entire refugee wave heading north out of Syria.

    [02] Three children, two women dead in latest incidents with refugee boats

    ANA-MPA -- Three children and two women were found dead, while one man is still missing, following the two latest incidents involving refugee boatloads on Sunday, at the islands of Farmakonissi and Kastellorizo. One child was brought ashore dead on the island of Farmakonissi, among a boatload of 110 people that landed on the island. Soldiers at a military guardpost on the island saw that the child was not conscious and informed the Leros coast guard, which sent a doctor who pronounced the child dead. It was identified by its parents, who said that it had fallen off the boat into the sea and was not breathing by the time it was recovered. All the refugees on Farmakonissi were transferred to the island of Leros. The second incident was in Kastellorizo, where a sailing yacht came and dropped off 11 individuals that those on board had earlier saved at sea, including one dead boy. The survivors reported that another four people were missing and a search has so far recovered the bodies of two women and another boy, while one man is still missing. In an earlier incident late on Friday night, another four children drowned and a fifth was reported missing after a boat carrying 17 refugees capsized due to poor weather conditions near the island of Kalymnos.

    [03] Tourist police Visitors' Help Office opens in Athens

    ANA-MPA -- The Hellenic Police has launched its tourist police Visitors' Help Office in Athens, completing a plan initiated by the previous leadership of the civil protection ministry, in collaboration with the Greek hoteliers' chamber. Inaugurated on Saturday, the new help desk seeks to assist tourists visiting Greece, providing them with necessary guidelines and information of a police and more general tourist interest. It is also envisaged as a service to manage and rapidly response to the more common problems or incidents that arise involving foreign visitors, such as loss of travel documents, thefts and the issue of necessary certificates, reports and other documents. The Help Office is manned by specially trained staff that speak foreign languages and is located near Klafthmonos Square in central Athens, in an arcade at 4 Dragatsaniou Street. It will operate on a full-time basis throughout the year, between the hours of 7:30-22:00, and can be contacted at the telephone numbers 210 3222230 and 210 3222232.

    [04] IMF leadership has decided to send a mission to Athens, Washington sources say

    ANA-MPA -- International Monetary Fund (IMF) Managing Director Christine Lagarde has made the decision to send an IMF mission to Greece, according to Washington-based sources. Along with the IMF mission led by Delia Velculescu, the heads of the other institutions representing Greece's creditors are also expected in Athens, the same sources said on Saturday.
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