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Macedonian Press Agency: News in English, 2001-12-17

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 Thessaloniki, December 17, 2001

SECTIONS

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

  • NEWS HEADLINES

    [A] NATIONAL NEWS

  • [01] MINISTERIAL COMMITTEE ON THE OLYMPICS
  • [02] G. PAPANTONIOU IN BRUSSELS
  • [03] PARLIAMENT DISCUSSION ON BUDGET BEGINS
  • [04] STATEMENTS ON THE LAAKEN SUMMIT MEETING
  • [05] HEAVY SNOWFALL IN MANY PARTS OF GREECE
  • [06] GREECE WILL PROMOTE NEW PROPOSALS AND IDEAS ON THE EURO-ARMY
  • [07] THE STATE BUDGET DISCUSSION OPENS TODAY
  • [08] BALKAN WOMEN MPs ASSOCIATION FOUNDING MEETING
  • [09] LOSSES IN THE ASE
  • [10] EURO COINS FAMILIARIZATION PACKAGES
  • [B] INTERNATIONAL NEWS

    NEWS IN DETAILS

    [A] NATIONAL NEWS

  • [01] MINISTERIAL COMMITTEE ON THE OLYMPICS The progress of the 2004 Olympics will be discussed by the Ministerial Committee during their meeting scheduled for 12 noon, and presided over by Kostas Simitis.
  • [02] G. PAPANTONIOU IN BRUSSELS Minister of National Defense Giannos Papantoniouis going to Brussels today to participate in the emergency meeting of NATO Ministers of Defense, which will last until December 19.

    On Wednesday, Mr. Papantoniou will travel to Antalya, Turkey, to participate in the annual meeting of Ministers of Defense of countries of Southeastern Europe, which will take place on December 19 and 20.

  • [03] PARLIAMENT DISCUSSION ON BUDGET BEGINS The Parliamentary discussion of the budget begins today, which will be concluded on Friday with the speeches of party leaders and the division. However, the meeting is taking place in the shadow of the strikes taking place.

    Employees of state hospitals are on a 24-hour strike, while elementary and high-school teachers are on a three hour strike, from 12-3pm, and during the same hours Civilian Aviation employees are also on strike.

  • [04] STATEMENTS ON THE LAAKEN SUMMIT MEETING Government spokesperson Christos Protopapas responded to the statements of New Democracy's President, Kostas Karamanlis, who accused the government of not being able to secure the self-evident, in relation to the Euroarmy issue discussions at the Laaken Summit Meeting.

    "While Kostas Simitis successfully defended our national interests in the European Council, Mr. Karamanlis, with his statements, is objectively undermining the national effort, said Mr. Protopapas characteristically. The Minister of Press made mention of

    pettiness and characterized New Democracy's position as irresponsible and dangers, also expressing the government's sorrow for the Oppositions reaction.

    New Democracy responded to the government's spokesperson with statements from their spokesperson, Thodoris Roussopoulos.

    It is sad and dangerous that the government conceives the invitation for national cooperation and understanding expressed by the President of New Democracy, thus", stressed Mr. Roussopoulos, who added that the postponement which the government is celebra ting today, guarantees nothing in a solution in favor of Greece's national interests.

    "This operational readiness of the so called Euroarmy which was agreed upon in Laaken, without political conditions for controlling its actions, without clearly defining the relation between the Euroarmy and NATO member-countries, does not warrant the Pr iministerial satisfaction", stressed the press office of the Coalition of the Left.

    "Mr. Simitis is pleased because we avoided the worst, by postponing relative decisions. But he does not go to the trouble to take responsibility and explain why we found ourselves in such a situation. The postponement of the related discussion to the nex t Presidency does not change the framework of pressures which will continue in view of the upcoming Simitis visit to the US", stressed the party.

  • [05] HEAVY SNOWFALL IN MANY PARTS OF GREECE About 500 mountain villages have become inaccessible in northern Greece as a result of the heavy snowfall that continues for a second day. In the city of Florina and in other regions in northwestern Greece the snow is over one meter high. The bad weather

    is expected to continue until tomorrow afternoon.

    Throughout northern Greece cars can move only with non-skid chains, while since this morning traffic has stopped in the rural road networks of Kozani-Ioannina, and Kozani-Larisa as well as, in the mountain road network in the regions of Voion in Kozani a nd in Rodopi and Orestiada in northeastern Greece.

    The Lake of Doiran in Kilkis is frozen since yesterday, while a big part of the lake of Kastoria is also frozen.

    Thirty five villages are inaccessible in the prefecture of Florina, 16 in the prefecture of Grevena and more than 100 in the prefecture of Kozani. Eleven villages are inaccessible in the prefecture of Imathia, 28 in the prefecture of Kastoria, 11 in Pier ia and over 70 in Orestiada and Rodopi.

    Thessaloniki's Macedonia Airport is closed since yesterday afternoon because of the snow and ice that cover the runways, while also closed is the airport of Alexandroupolis. The port of Kavala is closed as well because of the 8 Force strong winds blowing

    in the region.

    Meanwhile, the rescue crews continue their search to locate 53yearold Alexis Antonopoulos and his 9yearold son Yiannis, who were swept away by Diakoniaris torrent that passes through the city of Patras, southern Greece. The prefecture of Achaia has been declared in a state of emergency and serious damage has been caused to shops and houses by the flood waters.

  • [06] GREECE WILL PROMOTE NEW PROPOSALS AND IDEAS ON THE EURO-ARMY Greece prepares new proposals and ideas, to be presented during the Spanish EU presidency, in an effort to reach a mutually acceptable solution and avert the involvement of non European Union members in the Euro-army's operational decisions.

    The above were stressed by Foreign Ministry spokesman Panos Beglitis pointing out that new conditions for a new negotiation are being created within the framework of the EU and its institutional bodies after the Laeken EU Summit results

    Mr. Beglitis stressed that before and during the EU Summit meeting in Laeken all the EU countries realized and understood Greece 's sensitivity on the objections it had raised concerning Turkey's involvement in the EU decisions on the Euro-army.

  • [07] THE STATE BUDGET DISCUSSION OPENS TODAY The discussion on the state budget opens today in parliament and will be completed on Friday with speeches by the political party leaders and an open vote.

    However, the state budget is being discussed in the shadow of a wave of strike mobilizations.

    The public hospital employees are on a 24hour strike, while the high school professors and the elementary school teachers participated in a 3hour work stoppage.

    A work stoppage was also held by the Public Employees Union, while the Civil Aviation employees also participated in a work stoppage.

  • [08] BALKAN WOMEN MPs ASSOCIATION FOUNDING MEETING The founding meeting of the Balkan Women Members of Parliaments Association got underway in a central Athens hotel today, aimed at promoting the multi-cultural dialogue in the Balkans.

    The Winbalkans initiative was undertaken by Coalition of the Left parliament deputy Maria Damanaki.

    The association numbers 45 women parliament deputies representing 8 Balkan countries.

    Addressing the meeting, Foreign Minister Giorgos Papandreou underlined the role of women in the promotion of peace and stability in the Balkans.

    Right-wing main opposition party of New Democracy parliament deputy Dora Bakoyianni stated that the mind of women is oriented toward democracy and peace.

  • [09] LOSSES IN THE ASE Losses were recorded in the Athens Stock Exchange today. The general index dropped to -0.35% at 2.562,82 points, while the volume of transactions was at 102.4 million Euro or 34.9 billion drachmas. Only, the securities, food and beverages and non metal minerals and cements indexes had marginal gains, while the banking index remained unchanged and all the rest indexes had losses.
  • [10] EURO COINS FAMILIARIZATION PACKAGES The banks in Greece began the distribution of 5.000 drachmas worth Euro coins familiarization packages today.

    Each of the 3 million packages contains 45 coins with a total value of 5.000 drachmas or 14.67 Euro. The content of the packages is not collectible as it will be used in regular transactions after January 1, 2002.

    The small businesses' timely and adequate supply with Euro coins and bank notes is regarded as necessary to avoid having problems after January 1, 2002.

  • [B] INTERNATIONAL NEWS


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