|Monday, 20 January 2020|
Macedonian Press Agency: News in English, 2002-07-26
From: The Macedonian Press Agency at http://www.mpa.gr and http://www.hri.org/MPA.
MACEDONIAN PRESS AGENCY Thessaloniki, July 26, 2002
[A] NATIONAL NEWS
[B] INTERNATIONAL NEWS
[A] NATIONAL NEWS
According to a "To Vima" newspaper publication, a new round of arrests is expected, which will possibly be the last one as far as the organization is concerned, and which will be based on this evidence, which is being deciphered by the authorities, in an
attempt to get closer to their targets.
Dionysis Georgiadis referred to the existence of electronic data in his testimony, while it seems that Pavlos Serifis' implication was proven by the information concentrated from these files.
The peculiar accounting book of N17 with nicknames and amounts of money was found in Pavlos Serifis' house, is the new find of the counter-terrorism service. This notebook possibly mentions the amounts that "November 17" immediate and external members re ceived. Specifically, according to the evidence, the primary members of the organization received a regular paycheck, like Pavlos Serifis, who seems to have been being paid 586 euro per month.
The book in question, apart from the organization's financials, also reveals the number of individuals implicated. Specifically, it came to light that 4 more basic members of the organization are still at large. These are Dimitris Koufontinas, who has es caped arrest so far, Aris, whose identity is known and is expected to be arrested within the next few hours, and two more individuals, one of which is a woman whose identity is also known to the authorities.
As far as individuals with a secondary role in the organization are concerned, the book reveals that they are more than 10, and their arrest is expected immediately after the eradication of the organization's core, possibly by the end of next week.
The book was apparently kept by Dimitris Koufontinas, an event that makes his role in the organization even more important, since apart from being the planner and basic "hitman", the evidence so far reveals that he also did the book-keeping.
The cofounder, who seems to have the code name "Sardanapalus", is estimated to be 60 years old, known to the authorities and that by having close relations with Pavlos Serifis, was the link between the high ranking organization members. "Sardanapalus" is
speculated to have participated in the murder of CIA Station Chief Richard Wells and that he was involved with the "ELA" and "May 1" organizations.
According to today's press, the counter-terrorism service has begun an operation in Mytilini for the arrest of Dimitris Koufontinas or a couple connected to N17.
Meanwhile, the police found photographs, various documents and a computer in Patroklos Tselentis' apartment in Elliniko.
The police searched his car, while a motorcycle was found covered up behind the building, which is also being searched.
The 42-year-old was arrested this morning in Elliniko and is being questioned in the offices of the counter-terrorism service.
Information mentions that Patroklos Tselentis, who is referred to as "Alekos" or the "Film" by the other arrested suspected members, was negative during the first few hours of his preliminary examination, while he then accepted his participation in "Nove mber 17" and in specific organization actions and he identified individuals who also participated in the organization.
after the Vranopoulos killing, Koufontinas changed his nickname to "Lukas".
He supported that Koufontinas had explained to him that he would at times participate in subversive actions.
Thomas Serifis seems to have confessed participating in the theft of rockets from the Sykourio military camp and the theft of military equipment from the Athens War Museum.
He also supported that near the end of 1993 he was in charge of keeping Michalis Vranopoulos' car under surveillance, although he did not participate in his killing.
According to information, he also supported that he received money from the organization's so called "treasury" from 1989 to 1993. He supported that he recognized Alexandros Giotopoulos, Christodoulos and Savvas Xeros, Vassilis Tzeortzatos, Theologos Psa radelis, Kostas Karatsolis and Iraklis Kostaris as organization members. According to information, Serifis presented ideological motives and mentioned that he may have hurt some people but he had no personal gain from his actions. Specifically, he said he
wanted a better society and equal human rights.
Thomas Serifis will appear before the 4th Regular Examining Judge today.
On the other hand, Patroklos Tselentis stated he had no participation in N17, despite the persistent questioning of the counter-terrorism service, following in the footsteps of the organization's suspected leading member, Alexandros Giotopoulos, and desp ite the information given about him by arrested organization members.
Specifically, Christodoulos Xeros and Vassilis Tzortzatos designated him as one of the terrorists that participated in the murders of industrialist Dimitris Aggelopoulos, "Apogevmatini" newspaper publisher Nikos Momferatos and his driver Panagiotis Rouss etis.
Also, always according to the statements of the two arrested members, he seems to have participated in many bombings and robberies, among which the 1984 Petralona National Bank robbery, in which officer Christos Matis was killed.
Counter-terrorism officers mentioned that Tselentis seems to be on the organization's "tough guys" and is suspected of participating in many attacks, while the evidence held by the authorities places him right after Alexandros Giotopoulos in the organiza tion's hierarchy.
Patroklos Tselentis is expected to be taken to the Magistrates' Court DA today.
Also, Savvas Xeros is expected to be taken to the DA by the middle of next week, provided his health does not deteriorate, in order to receive the legal period to prepare for his testimony.
the issue of forming a European military force be re-discussed with new terms and with the condition that Athens, which seems reserved at present, present its own proposals. The issue, as was pointed out, was raised in view of the imminent attack on Iraq .
During a meeting Mr. Hain had later that evening with alternate Foreign Minister Tassos Giannitsis he stated that the EU's position on the accession of Cyprus is the same, regardless of whether the Cyprus issue is resolved or not. Mr. Hain stressed that it would be very important for a unified Cyprus to join the EU, instead of a divided one which would bring its problems with it.
The two ministers also discussed enlargement, immigration and asylum issues, as well as the latest developments on the terrorism front.
Mr. Hain congratulated the government on its excellent work concerning the terrorist arrests.
do what the law says".
The larger part of the funds will be used to supply the funding for substructure works and the reinstatement of the Leskovats-Vrania freeway during the next two years, as was made known by the Vice President of the Federal republic of Yugoslavia, Mirolju b Labus, who signed the agreement with deputy Foreign Minister Andreas Loverdos.
Based on the agreement, 93% of available funds will be directed to Serbia and the rest to Monte Negro. In the future, another 15 million euro is expected to be disposed to Kossovo. For the time being however, the legal formula based on which the allocati on of the specific funds will proceed is being searched for, and it may possibly be through the use of non-governmental organizations.
Pavlos Serifis admitted during questioning by the examining judge last night that he participated in the terrorist group in the period 1975-1980. He also admitted that he took part in the assassinations of Richard Welsh, Pantelis Petrou and his driver So tiris Stamoulis. He stated that in both cases the executioner was Alexandros Giotopoulos or "Lambros" identifying him as the leader of 17N.
Pavlos Serifis maintained that he left the terrorist group after an accident he had in 1981. According to law experts, the assassination of CIA Station Chief has been erased based on the statute of Limitations because it was committed more than 20 years ago.
According to statements by Undersecretary of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Loverdos the court trials of the "17 November" terrorists will start in 10 months.
The two newspapers had published the Turkish authorities' views according to which, the organization Revolutionary People's Liberation Front (former Revolutionary Left) was cooperating with terrorist group "17 November". The protesters accused the Turkis h secret service MIT and the CIA of organizing a provocation against DHKC (former DEVRIMCI SOL).
Referring to their presence in Greece, the protesters stressed that they requested political asylum in Greece and it was granted to them. They also underlined that throughout its history DHKC was openly and actively involved in the Turkish society.
Mr. Protopapas also stated that the issue of terrorism is not up for political party exploitation, while the mass media should avoid involving people in terrorism in an arbitrary way.
Of the stocks trading today, 76 recorded gains and 232 had losses, while the value of 76 stocks remained unchanged.
Fifty-year-old Nikolaos Papanastasiou, is originally from Serres, northern Greece and he was the first one who used the code-name "Nikitas". He is being questioned by the police and according to information, he denies all charges against him.
The aid was sent after a decision by the Ministry of Health with the active participation of Greek Psychiatric Hospitals and includes medicines, food and clothing items.
The overall budget of the 3year aid program is at 734.000 Euro.
In a letter to the MPA General Director, the CNN representatives mentioned that the error in CNN.com (http://www.cnn/WORLD/europe/sites.html) was restored through a coordinated effort by ChooseGreece (www.choosegreece.info) and CNN's official representat ive in Greece.
Papanastasiou is regarded to be the 17N member who used first the code-name "Nikitas" and has played an important role in the course of the terrorist group. He is originally from the village of Houmniko near Nigrita in Serres, northern Greece and was the
owner of a pottery shop in Athens. He is the father of a 3yearold son.
Pavlos Serifis referred to him during his testimony in the early morning hours today.
According to information, Christodoulos Xiros had also referred to "Nikitas" in his testimony. He had testified that "Nikitas" participated in the assassination of US officer Robert Judd (1984), in the assassination of Athens newspaper "Apogevmatini" pub lisher, Nikos Momferatos and his driver, Giorgos Roussetis (1985) and in the robbery of the National Bank of Greece branch at Petralona, in Athens (1984). Police officer Christos Matis was killed during that robbery.
Based on the new legislation on organized crime, he is accused of a number of felonies. Specifically, he is accused of murder, attempted murder and armed robbery with murder. He requested and received more time until Sunday to prepare his testimony.
Meanwhile, authorities do not make any comments on the information according to which, a police operation was launched in Mitilini, in the northeastern Aegean island of Lesvos last night, aimed at the arrest of Dimitris Koufodinas or another 17N member u nder the code-name "Aris".
[B] INTERNATIONAL NEWS