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Macedonian Press Agency: News in English, 00-10-19
From: The Macedonian Press Agency at http://www.mpa.gr and http://www.hri.org/MPA.
 PAPANDREOU WILL BE IN THE UNITED STATES ON SATURDAYAthens, 19 October 2000 (18:48 UTC+2)
Greek foreign minister Giorgos Papandreou will depart for the United States on Saturday. He will have meetings with members of the Greek-American lobby as well as with representatives of the two candidates for the US presidency aimed at promoting the Greek positions.
Mr. Papandreou will also brief them on Greece's readiness to guarantee the safety of the athletes and the visitors in the 2004 Olympic Games denying foreign press publications on the contrary.
 REVOLUTIONARY METHOD FOR THE TREATMENT OF TYPE B ACUTE DISSECTING ANEURISMThessaloniki, 19 October 2000 (18:34 UTC+2)
The first operation in Greece for the treatment of type B acute dissecting aneurism using a revolutionary method was performed at the Inter-Balkan Medical Center in Thessaloniki yesterday. The patient is in excellent state and tomorrow he will be released.
The operation was performed on a 46yearold man by the heart surgery team headed by professor Panagiotis Spanos with the cooperation of blood vessel surgeon Konstantinos Papazoglou.
Mr. Spanos pointed out that general anesthesia is not used in the new method and the likelihood of complications is minimal, while the patient has to stay in hospital only for one or two days. Mr. Spanos added that this method opens the door for new ways of successful treatment of one of the most difficult and with big mortality rate heart diseases. This method is performed in most medical centers in Europe and the United States for the past 5 years and as a result of its significant advantages is expected to spread quickly.
 MULTIPLE SCLEROSIS TREATMENT IN THESSALONIKI THROUGH TRANSPLANT OPERATIONThessaloniki, 19 October 2000 (17:28 UTC+2)
A tested method of blood producing cells transplant that has been used massively since 1980 for the treatment of leukemia and other serious illnesses, has been proven to be effective in the heavy cases of multiple sclerosis as well.
The use of the specific method for the treatment of multiple sclerosis is an innovation by the Papanikolaou Hospital Haematology Clinic and 34 people have been cured since 1995.
Papanikolaou Hospital Haematology Clinic director Achileas Anagnostopoulos stated to MPA that the method used is not painful and the patient has to stay in hospital for about a month. The blood producing cells transplant operation for the treatment of multiple sclerosis that was performed for the first time by Papanikolaou Hospital Haematology Clinic became an example for similar clinics abroad. Already, the American Health Institute has offered the funds for such operations to take place in the United States, while the same method is expected to be used in Canada as well.
 THE EU ENLARGEMENT COMMISSIONER MET WITH SIMITIS AND PAPANDREOUAthens, 19 October 2000 (16:37 UTC+2)
Coincidence of views, concerning the need for the materialization of the Helsinki decisions on the EU-Turkey relations, was established in the meetings EU commissioner Gunter Ferhoigen, responsible for enlargement issues, had in Athens today with prime minister Kostas Simitis and foreign minister Giorgos Papandreou.
In the meetings, that were held in an especially positive climate, they discussed the enlargement process in view of the drawing up of a partnership relation text for Turkey which will take its final form on November 8.
The EU commissioner underlined the importance of the implementation of the Helsinki conclusions and stated that this will lead to the improvement of the Greek-Turkish relations. He also expressed the view that the promotion of democratization in the neighboring country will create a momentum that will have a positive effect on the solution of political problems. Referring to the Cyprus problem, he stressed that there is close cooperation and agreement between the United Nations and the European Union.
From his side, foreign minister Giorgos Papandreou pointed out that Greece wants Turkey to become a European and democratic country. He said that the Helsinki decisions show a way characterized by clear obligations and specific assistance by the European Union.
 GAINS OF 2.41% IN THE ATHENS STOCK EXCHANGEAthens, 19 October 2000 (15:57 UTC+2)
Gains of 2.41% were recorded in the Athens Stock Exchange today and the general index was at 3.715,01 points. However, the volume of transactions was small at 63 billion drachmas.
Of the stocks trading today, 276 recorded gains, 81 had losses and 21 remained unchanged.
The fact that there were gains in today's session took analysts by surprise as most of them were expecting new losses today after yesterday's storm in the international money markets.
 A GREEK BANK IS THE FAVORITE FOR THE BUYOUT OF BANCA COMERCIALA ROMANAThessaloniki, 19 October 2000 (15:28 UTC+2)
A Greek bank, possibly the National Bank of Greece, is the favorite for the buyout of Banca Comerciala Romana (BCR) which is under privatization. The speeding up of the BCR privatization process was exploited by the Romanian government after the recent collapse of the negotiations for the buyout of Banca Agricola.
The BCR controls 25% of the Romanian market and has about 2 million customers, while it ranks 558th in the Top 1.000 list of the largest banks in the world issued in 1999 by the British magazine "The Banker". The bank is 89 places higher compared to the 1998 list.
The under privatization bank has a network of 258 branches and representation offices worldwide which makes it an attractive target. It should be noted that the National Bank of Greece is among BCR's 800 correspondent banks.
 ECUMENICAL PATRIARCH VARTHOLOMEOS INAUGURATED THE PATRIARCHATE'S OFFICE IN ATHENSAthens, 19 October 2000 (15:08 UTC+2)
Ecumenical Patriarch Vartholomeos inaugurated the Ecumenical Patriarchate's office in Athens today in the presence of Archbishop Christodoulos of Athens and All of Greece and both of them pointed out that this office will contribute to the strengthening of relations between the Ecumenical Patriarchate and the Church of Greece.
Earlier, the head of Orthodoxy had met with Coalition of the Left leader Nikos Konstantopoulos, while in the afternoon he will meet with foreign minister Giorgos Papandreou and later in the evening he is scheduled to speak in an event organized by the University of Athens.
 EARTHQUAKE MEASURING 4.9 ON THE RICHTER SCALERhodes, 19 October 2000 (14:57 UTC+2)
An earthquake measuring 4.9 on the Richter scale shook the south-eastern Aegean island of Rhodes at 2am today. The earthquake's epicenter was located 30 kilometers east of the island.
There were no reports of damages and seismologists place the tremor within the framework of the normal seismic activity.
 PM DISMISSES SENIOR OLYMPICS COMMITTEE OFFICIALAthens, 19 October 2000 (14:57 UTC+2)
A senior Athens 2004 Olympic Games Organizing Committee official was dismissed from his post by Prime Minister Costas Simitis yesterday, over allegations he made against a state minister.
According to a press release, Kostas Liaskas' "appointment was recalled because his public statements were not befitting his responsibilities in such a high position". Messrs. Simitis and Liaskas had met earlier in the afternoon.
The President of the Athens 2004 Olympic Games Organizing Committee (ATHOC) Yianna Angelopoulou-Daskalaki also released a statement stating that "ATHOC Executive Director Kostas Liaskas, without notifying me, made personal remarks in an unacceptable manner concerning Environment Town Planning and Public Works Minister Costas Laliotis".
 FIRST INTER-BORDER COMMERCIAL CENTER FOUNDThessaloniki, 19 October 2000 (14:56 UTC+2)
The Minister of Macedonia-Thrace George Pachalides will inaugurate the first Greek inter-border commercial center, located in Promachonas, on October 23.
The center, a 3.5-billion-drachma project, will be ready in the summer 2001 and will embark on its operation in the fall.
The project aims at boosting Greek exports to neighboring Balkan countries and at creating a common and direct market that will feature lower prices.
 THE EXERCISE "NIKIFOROS" CONTINUES IN CYPRUSNicosia, 19 October 2000 (16:28 UTC+2)
The main part of the National Guard exercise "Nikiforos 2000" continues very successfully in the region of Nicosia in Cyprus and according to Cypriot ministry of defense spokesman, Andreas Giorkas the Greek Air Force jets are expected to fly in the Cyprus skies today.
Meanwhile, the members of the Cypriot defense parliamentary committee are expected to visit the area where the exercise is taking place tomorrow, while Cypriot minister of defense Sokratis Hasikos watched a nightly exercise yesterday held in a mountainous area during which live ammunition was used.
 MARIA KALLAS PERSONAL BELONGINGS AT AUCTIONLondon, 19 October 2000 (15:08 UTC+2)
A selection of about 400 personal items belonging to one of the greatest opera divas Maria Kallas will be proffered at a Paris auction this year.
The items are said to include parts of her wardrobe, as well as a portrait that is expected to yield an astronomical bid.
The auctioned goods now belong to selector Ilario Tamasia, who had purchased them from Ms. Kallas' former husband Giovani Meneghini.