|Monday, 27 January 2020|
The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English, 00-10-03
From: The Hellenic Radio (ERA) <www.ert.gr/>
NEWS IN ENGLISH ERA 5. THE VOICE OF GREECE
3/10/2000 11:20:27 ðì
 Express Samina ShipwreckThe interrogation procedure of the members of the crew of the ferry Express Samina continues.
Yesterday, the ferryboat's captain Vasilis Giannakis testified for the 2nd day at a preliminary enquiry into the accident, conducted by judicial authorities on the island of Syros. However, late last night, the ship's mate Tasos Psychogios will testify tomorrow.
Meanwhile, the Piraeus public prosecutor has filed criminal charges against the ship-owners, Minoan Flying Dolphins, and the company's chief engineer. According to reports, the examining judge called the president and the four members of the administrative committee of Minoan Flying Dolphins to testify tomorrow.
The plenum of the Aegean Judges of Appeal will decide on Thursday, whether a judge of appeal - examining judge will take the case to speed up the enquiry.
In Luxembourg, during a meeting of the EU transport and shipping ministers council, merchant marine minister Christos Papoutsis yesterday referred to Express Samina shipwreck and to the general situation prevailing in Greek coastal shipping. Among other things, he proposed that the maximum age of ships be reduced throughout Europe.
The Express Samina will be the focus of tomorrow's debate in Parliament, as the prime minister Kostas Simitis will reply to questions political party leaders have raised on the issue.
The New Democracy party announced that it will request the setting up of an inquiry committee to assess the government's political responsibilities for the Express Samina shipwreck.
ND party deputy Miltiadis Evert is also asking for the setting up of a preliminary inquiry committee to look into possible responsibilities on the part of the former merchant marine minister Stavros Soumakis.
Government spokesman Dimitris Reppas yesterday accused the main opposition party of petty partisan expediency, while the political secretariat of the Coalition of the Left Wing and Progress decided to cancel a youth festival scheduled to be held this coming weekend, thus participating in the mourning for the victims of Samina.
 Greek Olympic mission returns to GreeceThe members of the Greek Olympic mission are coming back to Athens from Sydney at 10 am today with the Olympic Games flag and 13 medals. The arrival ceremony will be low-profile and will be attended by the Greek prime minister Kostas Simitis.
On Thursday, the prime minister will meet the president of the Athens 2004 Organising Committee Yanna Angelopoulou- Daskalaki.
Meanwhile EU commissioner responsible for education issues Vivian Retting met yesterday with the Greek culture minister Theodoros Pangalos and pointed out that the Athens 2004 Olympic Games was a European matter and proposed to Mr Pangalos that the Olympic flame should pass from many European capitals before ending up at the Athens Olympic stadium.
 Fuel crisis defusing in GreeceHopes for easing off the Greek fuel market are now visible after the meeting representatives of the petrol tank-truck owners had with the competent ministers yesterday.
The representatives of the strikers, announced that they would make their final decisions at their general assembly this morning.
Interior minister Vasso Papandreou has warned that if a solution is not found soon the government will take all the necessary measures for the market's smooth supply, leaving thus open the eventual political mobilization procedures on the striking drivers and owners of fuel tank-trucks.
Meanwhile, taxi drivers have planned a 24 hour strike for tomorrow across the country, demanding increases on taxi fares.
 11th Defendory International 2000 Fair.National defence minister Akis Tsochatzopoulos will meet today his Turkish counterpart Sabahtin Tsakmakoglu who is visiting Greece to attend the opening of the 11th Defendory International 2000 Fair.
21 defense ministers and undersecretaries from all over the world will visit Greece in the framework of the international fair.
Yesterday afternoon, Mr Tsochatzopoulos met with the Cypriot defense minister Mr Chasikos and later had talks with his Spanish counterpart on the two countries defense cooperation.
Replying to a relative question, Mr Tsochatzopoulos expressed his optimism that the agreement of the purchase of 60 Eurofighter type aircraft will have been signed by the end of the month.
 Turkish president speaks about Greek-Turkish relationsIn a speech to the Turkish national assembly yesterday, Turkish president Ahmet Sezer expressed optimism about a solution to the problems in the Aegean and said he was generally satisfied with the situation prevailing now in Greek-Turkish relations.
Referring to improved bilateral relations since the massive earthquakes in both countries last year, Mr Sezer said a milder climate now prevailed with indications of solidarity between the two peoples. He added that he believed solutions would be found to the main issues concerning the Aegean, which have had a negative effect on relations between Athens and Ankara.
In relation to the Cyprus problem, the Turkish president claimed that the confederation solution was the only realistic one, which would ensure the two communities' coexistence on the island.
 Athens bourseOn the Athens stock exchange, the general share price index went slightly up on Monday by 0.05%, closing at 4,180.91 points.
 EU Transports Ministers CouncilThe Greek transports undersecretary Alekos Voulgaris will participate in the EU Transports Ministers Council meeting today. The meeting will also cover the issue of the liberalization of the telecommunications market, Internet management on European level and the institutional framework regarding the operation of electronic trading.
 Funeral of George Seferis' sisterThe funeral of Ioanna Tsatsou, wife of the late president of the republic Konstantinos Tsatsos and sister of Nobelist poet George Seferis will take place at the Athens first Cemetery today. Ioanna Tsatsou passed away at the age of 97 last Saturday.
 Conference on SeferisMeanwhile, an international conference on the subject of ''George Seferis - A poet in the East and the West'' opens in Smyrna today. The conference is organised jointly by the Greek culture ministry and the Turkish university of Aegean and will end on October 5th.