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Macedonian Press Agency: News in English, 99-05-20

Macedonian Press Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Macedonian Press Agency at http://www.mpa.gr and http://www.hri.org/MPA.


MACEDONIAN PRESS AGENCY NEWS IN ENGLISH
Thessaloniki, May 20, 1999

SECTIONS

  • [A] NATIONAL NEWS
  • [B] INTERNATIONAL NEWS

  • NEWS HEADLINES

    [A] NATIONAL NEWS

  • [01] ECUMENICAL PATRIARCH VARTHOLOMEOS ARRIVES IN GREECE TODAY
  • [02] PRESIDENT OF GREECE TO CONDUCT OFFICIAL VISIT TO BULGARIA
  • [03] GREEK FOREIGN MINISTER TRAVELS TO RUSSIA TOMORROW
  • [04] FIRST GROUP OF KOSOVO REFUGEES IN THESSALONIKI TODAY
  • [05] BURGAS-ALEXANDROUPOLIS OIL PIPELINE PROJECT EDGES FORWARD 06] GREECE RANKS FIRST AMONG EUROPE'S CLEAN COASTS
  • [07] BSTDB DIRECTORS TO MEET IN THESSALONIKI TOMORROW
  • [08] A MAKESHIFT DEVICE EXPLODED IN THE AUSTRIAN EMBASSY COMMERCE DEPARTMENT
  • [09] MESSAGE BY THE GREEK GOVERNMENT TO THE YUGOSLAV LEADERSHIP FOR A POLITICAL SOLUTION TO THE CRISIS
  • [10] KRANIDIOTIS BELIEVES THAT THERE HAS BEEN SOME CONVERGENCE BETWEEN NATO AND BELGRADE
  • [11] 377 KOSOVO REFUGEES LEFT FOR AUSTRALIA FROM THESSALONIKI'S MACEDONIA AIRPORT
  • [12] MESSAGE OF THE ECUMENICAL PATRIARCH TO THE GREEK PEOPLE
  • [13] THE NEWSPAPER OF THE COMMUNISTS AROUND THE WORLD
  • [B] INTERNATIONAL NEWS

  • [14] PRESIDENT OF HELLENIC PARLIAMENT IS IN LISBON FOR CONFERENCE
  • [15] MACEDONIA-THRACE MINISTER MEETS WITH CYPRIOT PRESIDENT
  • [16] NATO ESCALATES ATTACKS AGAINST YUGOSLAVIA, BOMBS BELGRADE
  • [17] SWEDISH EMBASSY IN BELGRADE DAMAGED BY NATO BOMBING
  • [18] CHERNOMYRDIN TO MEET ANEW WITH MILOSEVIC ON MONDAY
  • [19] CZECH PRESIDENT SUFFERING FROM SEVERE RESPIRATORY ILLNESS
  • [20] SECURITY COUNCIL TO SUPERVISE TROOP DISTRIBUTION IN KOSOVO
  • [21] YUGOSLAV NEWS AGENCY SIGNS COOPERATION ACCORD WITH CNN
  • [22] THE SWEDISH EMBASSY IN BELGRADE WAS HIT BY NATO BOMBS
  • [23] 7.000 US SOLDIERS ARE READY TO PARTICIPATE IN THE PEACEKEEPING FORCE IN KOSOVO
  • [24] AHTISAARI AND TALBOTT WILL BE IN MOSCOW TODAY

  • NEWS IN DETAIL

    [A] NATIONAL NEWS

    [01] ECUMENICAL PATRIARCH VARTHOLOMEOS ARRIVES IN GREECE TODAY

    The Ecumenical Patriarch Vartholomeos, the spiritual leader of all of the world's Orthodox Christians, is arriving in Greece today for a two-week visit as the official guest of the Orthodox Church of Greece.

    Granted all the honors accorded a head of state, upon his arrival the Ecumenical Patriarch will be greeted by the President of the Hellenic Republic Kostis Stephanopoulos and the Prime Minister Costas Simitis.

    He will visit the Thessaloniki suburb of Kalamaria on May 31, the feast of the Holy Spirit, accompanied by Archbishop Christodoulos of Athens and All Greece.

    [02] PRESIDENT OF GREECE TO CONDUCT OFFICIAL VISIT TO BULGARIA

    The President of the Hellenic Republic Kostis Stephanopoulos is to conduct an official visit to Bulgaria next week.

    President Stephanopoulos will embark on his visit on Wednesday, May 26, and will return to Athens on Friday, May 28.

    [03] GREEK FOREIGN MINISTER TRAVELS TO RUSSIA TOMORROW

    Greek Foreign Minister George Papandreou will conduct a one- day working visit to Moscow tomorrow, where he will have talks with his Russian counterpart Igor Ivanov and Russia's Balkans envoy Viktor Chernomyrdin.

    One of the issues to be discussed will be a plan of further work within the framework of the Russian-Greek-Swiss initiative called Focus, which is designed to provide humanitarian aid to the victims of the Kosovo crisis.

    The plan was approved by the initiative's coordinating committee at its meeting in Athens yesterday.

    Mr. Papandreou will return to Athens in the evening.

    [04] FIRST GROUP OF KOSOVO REFUGEES IN THESSALONIKI TODAY

    A group of about 450 refugees from Kosovo are arriving at Thessaloniki's Macedonia Airport this afternoon, where they will have a brief stopover prior to boarding a foreign airplane that will transport them to Australia.

    The relevant consultations were made by the UN High Commission for Refugees and the Greek government. Greece's Ministry of the Interior has provided the necessary preparations for their reception at the airport.

    [05] BURGAS-ALEXANDROUPOLIS OIL PIPELINE PROJECT EDGES FORWARD

    "Transbalkan Pipeline", the company that will undertake the construction and operation of the Burgas-Alexandroupolis oil pipeline, is to found its articles of association during the month of July, thus bringing the project a step closer to reality, according to a memorandum signed in Athens this week between Russia's Deputy Fuel and Energy Minister Yelena Telegina and Greece's Minister of Development Evangelos Venizelos.

    The Burgas-Alexandroupolis oil pipeline will be jointly constructed by Greece, Russia and Bulgaria and envisions a transport link for Russian oil between the Bulgarian port of Burgas and the Greek port of Alexandroupolis.

    Greece is participating in the tripartite project with a 10 percent share, while Russia's input amounts to 50 per cent. Bulgaria's share continues to be a sore point, as no agreement has been reached as of yet, resulting in the project's delay.

    The pipeline will have the transport capacity of 30-35 tons of crude oil which will be delivered to Burgas (Bulgaria) from the Russian port of Novorosisk with tankers. In turn, the crude oil will be transport to Greece's Alexandroupolis via a subterranean pipeline whose length surpasses 280 kilometers.

    The project is budgeted at $688 million, although the figure will be closer earmarked once the first phase of the study is completed.

    [06] GREECE RANKS FIRST AMONG EUROPE'S CLEAN COASTS

    An astounding 98.7 percent of Greece's coasts are suitable for swimming, thus giving the country first rank among European states in regards to coastal cleanliness.

    According to the Swim Waters Quality Control Program, out of 1,737 swim points examined throughout the country last year, only 17 were deemed unsuitable to swim in.

    The said program, a GRD170 million project, was drawn by Greece's Ministry of Environment, Land Planning and Public Works.

    [07] BSTDB DIRECTORS TO MEET IN THESSALONIKI TOMORROW

    The Board of Directors of the Black Sea Trade and Development Bank

    (BSTDB) is to hold a two-day meeting in Thessaloniki tomorrow, in order to draw the final touches prior to the financial institution's operation.

    The meeting will concern the BSTDB's latest financial policies which are subject to approval, matters concerning project strategy and investment policies and assessment of risk management.

    While the Bank will embark on full operation mode on the 1st of June, the official inauguration will take place on the 21st of that month.

    The bank's budget, which is expected to be 150 million dollars in 1999, will finance projects and programs funded jointly with other credit organizations, such as the European Bank of Reconstruction and Development (EBRD).

    The shareholders of the Black Sea Bank are the 11 member- states of the Black Sea Organization of Economic Cooperation: Greece, Turkey, Russia, Romania, Ukraine, Bulgaria, Azerbaijan, Armenia, Georgia, Moldavia and Albania.

    [08] A MAKESHIFT DEVICE EXPLODED IN THE AUSTRIAN EMBASSY COMMERCE DEPARTMENT

    A makeshift explosive device blew up in the Austrian embassy commerce department at the center of Athens today causing limited material damage.

    There was no warning prior to the attack and no one claimed responsibility for the action. The Austrian ambassador arrived on the site and in statements he made he spoke of political dimensions to the attack.

    [09] MESSAGE BY THE GREEK GOVERNMENT TO THE YUGOSLAV LEADERSHIP FOR A POLITICAL SOLUTION TO THE CRISIS

    Greek foreign minister Giorgos Papandreou conveyed a message of the Greek government to the Yugoslav leadership calling it to use this chance for a political solution, stressing that it should not be missed.

    Greek government spokesman Dimitris Reppas stated that Mr. Papandreou conveyed the message to the Yugoslav foreign minister.

    [10] KRANIDIOTIS BELIEVES THAT THERE HAS BEEN SOME CONVERGENCE BETWEEN NATO AND BELGRADE

    "We are on the right path for the solution of the Yugoslav crisis", stated deputy foreign minister Yiannos Kranidiotis adding that he does not know how long it will take for the necessary procedures to be completed.

    Mr. Kranidiotis stated to "Flash" radio station in Athens, that cool-headedness is needed and there should be neither excessive optimism nor pessimism, expressing the belief that there has been some convergence between NATO and Belgrade on the role and the composition of the international peacekeeping force in Kosovo. He said that the international force must have the mandate of the UN Security Council and be armed. He also stressed that Milosevic must realize that this is a last chance because in a different case the situation will become even worse in Yugoslavia.

    [11] 377 KOSOVO REFUGEES LEFT FOR AUSTRALIA FROM THESSALONIKI'S MACEDONIA AIRPORT

    Eight buses brought 377 Kosovo refugees from camps in FYROM to Thessaloniki's Macedonia Airport at 11:15 this morning and they have already departed for Australia with an Australian airline flight. They are 225 adults (the majority of them women), 133 children and 19 infants, who stayed for a while at a specially prepared area at the airport looking tired and insecure about their future.

    Central Macedonia regional administrator Charalambos Sofianos stated to MPA that everything went well in this first operation for the transportation of refugees and added that the second group of refugees is expected to arrive in Thessaloniki after a week. According to information, a total of 20.000 refugees will leave to different destinations from Macedonia Airport.

    [12] MESSAGE OF THE ECUMENICAL PATRIARCH TO THE GREEK PEOPLE

    Ecumenical Patriarch Vartholomeos sent a message with wishes and blessings to the Greek people from the balcony of Great Britain Hotel in Athens. The head of the Orthodox Church expressed his joy for the warm reception he had by the state authorities, the Church of Greece and the people of Athens. The Patriarch blessed the crowd of faithful gathered to see him and stressed the importance of the Christian love, while he praised the personality of Archbishop Christodoulos of Athens and All of Greece.

    The Patriarch was welcomed with honors reserved for state leaders at Athens' Eastern Airport. He was welcomed by president of the republic Kostis Stephanopoulos, prime minister Kostas Simitis, Archbishop Christodoulos, leader of the main opposition party of New Democracy Kostas Karamanlis, mayor of Athens Dimitris Avramopoulos, government ministers, the leadership of the armed forces and other dignitaries. The Ecumenical Patriarch officiated together with Archbishop Christodoulos in the Athens Cathedral later at noon.

    [13] THE NEWSPAPER OF THE COMMUNISTS AROUND THE WORLD

    A very important and historical decision will be made in Athens tomorrow by over 60 representatives of Communist and Leftist Parties from around the world who will lay the foundations for a global newspaper of at least 80 communist and progressive parties from an equal number of countries which initially will be published in the form of a press release.

    The Greek Communist Party has played a decisive role in this effort and it has called the conference that will be held in the Pantion University of Athens aimed at reaching a final decision after a 10-year preparation. The conference that will open tomorrow will last until Sunday.

    [B] INTERNATIONAL NEWS

    [14] PRESIDENT OF HELLENIC PARLIAMENT IS IN LISBON FOR CONFERENCE

    The President of the Hellenic Parliament Apostolos Kaklamanis has departed for Lisbon where he will participate in the conference of the Presidents of Parliaments of European Union member-states and the European Parliament.

    The participants are to discuss the consequences borne by globalization on the parliamentary principles, and the Inter- Parliamentarian Cooperation following the Amsterdam Treaty.

    [15] MACEDONIA-THRACE MINISTER MEETS WITH CYPRIOT PRESIDENT

    The Minister of Macedonia-Thrace Yiannis Magriotis was received yesterday by the President of the Republic of Cyprus Glafcos Clerides with whom he discussed the island's European Union accession course, the developments in the Balkans and the consequences of the Yugoslavia war on Greece and Cyprus.

    Mr. Magriotis, who was accompanied by a delegation of local businessmen during his two-day visit to Cyprus, said that cooperation between the two countries over the past few years has been developing in the economy, culture, education and art sectors, while he expressed the desire to expand this cooperation even more.

    Mr. Magriotis stated that the start of Cyprus's accession negotiations with the European Union has paved the way for the solution to the Cyprus issue.

    The Minister visited Cyprus at the invitation of the Cypriot Minister of Trade, Industry and Tourism, Nikos Rolandis.

    [16] NATO ESCALATES ATTACKS AGAINST YUGOSLAVIA, BOMBS BELGRADE

    Yugoslavia's capital city of Belgrade resembled an inferno last night when NATO aircraft dropped two missiles, one of them on a neurological clinic.

    The attack took place immediately after the talks held between Russian envoy for Kosovo Viktor Chernomyrdin and Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic.

    According to Serb authorities, three patients were killed and two pregnant women were wounded in the strike. Moreover, the Allied aircraft struck a chemical substances plant in Bari, water reservoirs and electricity substations which serve Belgrade.

    [17] SWEDISH EMBASSY IN BELGRADE DAMAGED BY NATO BOMBING

    The Swedish embassy in Belgrade was damaged as a result of the NATO raids that occurred late last night.

    According to the Swedish ambassador in Yugoslavia, none of the staff members of the embassy was killed or injured.

    [18] CHERNOMYRDIN TO MEET ANEW WITH MILOSEVIC ON MONDAY

    Russia's Balkans envoy Viktor Chernomyrdin will continue coordinating the positions held by Russia and Western countries on the Kosovo crisis during today's with U.S. Deputy Secretary of State Strobe Talbott and Finnish President Martti Ahtisaari.

    Following his meeting with Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic in Belgrade, with whom he will meet anew on Monday, Mr. Chernomyrdin said that the settlement of the Kosovo crisis must be based on the principles worked out at the G-8 summit, and those principles "must be developed".

    [19] CZECH PRESIDENT SUFFERING FROM SEVERE RESPIRATORY ILLNESS

    Czech President Vaclav Havel has been diagnosed as suffering from a severe respiratory disease caused by virus.

    According to the Russian news agency Itar-Tass, Mr. Havel's physician stated that the President "has been prescribed an out- patient treatment and for the time being no antibiotics are used. "

    The president's illness is believed to be the result of an excessive work load he had carried through in the past six months. During this period the Czech president paid a number of visits abroad.

    "His work schedule is always tough to a maximum," the doctor said, adding that "doctors have no grounds for concern over Vaclav Havel's health although he has undergone several major surgeries over the past 2,5 years. His temperature is normal and we are hoping that he will recover in about five days."

    [20] SECURITY COUNCIL TO SUPERVISE TROOP DISTRIBUTION IN KOSOVO

    The United Nations Security Council is to pass a resolution under which the UN will supervise the distribution of troops in Kosovo and the setting up of a provisional administration in the province, UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan said yesterday at a press conference in Skopje.

    According to the Russian news agency Itar-Tass, Mr. Annan, who arrived in FYROM yesterday, said that all concerned parties view the UN as a central place for finding a peaceful solution to the crisis, and the UN is taking considerable diplomatic efforts in this direction.

    The Secretary-General said he did not know how long it would take to achieve a political agreement on Kosovo until Yugoslav President Slobodan Mr. Milosevic's response was made known to the "Group of Eight" countries.

    Mr. Annan stressed that all persisting issues over Kosovo should be ironed out before demanding a clear answer from Mr. Milosevic.

    Furthermore, he said that the fact that all countries involved in the conflict are interested in finding a diplomatic solution is "encouraging" and added that "key steps are expectable" in this direction within two weeks.

    During his stay in FYROM, Mr. Annan visited refugee camps and met with the country's president Kiro Gligorov.

    [21] YUGOSLAV NEWS AGENCY SIGNS COOPERATION ACCORD WITH CNN

    The Yugoslav state news agency TANJUG and the Atlanta-based Cable News Network (CNN) have signed a cooperation accord in Belgrade, which will allow the American network to freely transmit and broadcast all of TANJUG's reports.

    This is the first agreement signed by a Yugoslav news agency with CNN, as well as TANJUG's first agreement with a US network.

    [22] THE SWEDISH EMBASSY IN BELGRADE WAS HIT BY NATO BOMBS

    The building of the embassy of Sweden in Belgrade was hit last night during the NATO bombing of the Yugoslav capital and according to the Swedish ambassador there were no victims.

    The Swedish foreign ministry condemned the bombing of Belgrade by NATO that resulted to the destruction of the Swedish embassy building. It stated that the use of such powerful weapons that can cause extensive destruction in the center of big cities is unacceptable and added that Sweden will mention this to NATO which has the responsibility for the bombing.

    [23] 7.000 US SOLDIERS ARE READY TO PARTICIPATE IN THE PEACEKEEPING FORCE IN KOSOVO

    The US Pentagon announced through its representative Kennett Bacon that is ready to send 7.000 US soldiers to Yugoslavia to participate in the peacekeeping force in Kosovo clarifying, however, that US president Bill Clinton has not given yet his approval.

    Mr. Bacon also stressed that the basic question at this moment is whether the 13.000 NATO soldiers who are in FYROM as well as the 6.000 stationed in Albania will become the basic nucleus of the peacekeeping force.

    [24] AHTISAARI AND TALBOTT WILL BE IN MOSCOW TODAY

    The international community and Belgrade make efforts for a solution to be found in the Kosovo crisis after yesterday's meeting of Russian mediator Victor Chernomyrdin with Yugoslav president Slobodan Milosevic, stated an adviser of German chancellor Gerhard Schroeder today. Finnish president Maarti Ahtisaari and US assistant secretary of state Strobe Talbott will be in Moscow today for new talks with the Russian mediator.

    Meanwhile, 17 US House Representatives have appealed to justice accusing US president Bill Clinton of starting the war illegally by-passing the US Congress.


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