|Sunday, 23 February 2020|
Macedonian Press Agency: News in English, 03-06-22
From: The Macedonian Press Agency at http://www.mpa.gr and http://www.hri.org/MPA.
 ERDOGAN: I WILL ISOLATE THE MINORITIES REACTING TO GREECE-EUAthens, 22 June 2003 (16:24 UTC+2)
Prime Minister of Turkey Recep Tayyip Erdogan appeared determined to complete all the institutional changes required so that Turkey's path towards the European Union is open, and so that it can isolate all those in his country who stand in the way of developing Greek-Turkish relations.
In his interview to the Sunday Vima, in Ankara, shortly before departing for Thessaloniki where he would participate as an observer in the Summit, Tayyip Erdogan also stated that he was certain that all differences between Turkey and Greece would be resolved.
The Turkish Prime Minister, extending a friendly hand to Greece and Greeks, pointed out that bilateral cooperation and dialogue between the two countries would help resolve any differences, even those concerning the Aegean.
The Turkish Prime Minister also sent important messages to his opponents within Turkey, characteristically stressing that he is determined to ignore the minorities that do not want Turkey's accession to the EU, as well as those attempting to cause problems between Turkey and Greece.
I have the order of the great majority of the Turkish people, while they are small minorities, stressed the Turkish Prime Minister.
He also thanked the Greek government for the constructive position it held on the issue of Turkey's relations with the EU, and made insinuations against Turkey's military establishment: I cannot see why Greece would want to undermine Turkey's relations with Europe.
 R. HOLBROOKE: CYPRUS BAD COPY OF THE BERLIN WALLAthens, 22 June 2003 (16:24 UTC+2)
The situation in Cyprus was characterized as a bad copy of the Berlin Wall by the so-called wizard of diplomacy, US official and former negotiator, Richard Holbrooke.
In an interview to the Sunday Vima newspaper, Mr. Holbrooke also stressed that Turkish Cypriot Leader Rauf Denktash is openly undermining the interests of his compatriots.
At the same time, the US diplomat also placed the blame on Ankara's military leadership for the Turkish Cypriot Leader's intolerance.
He supported that the Denktash position has many common points with that of Yasser Arafat, in the issue of resolving the crisis in the Middle East: They both have a long tradition of representing their peoples, but they have also lost the most valuable, important opportunities on finding solutions.
Mr. Holbrooke was not against the idea of forcing Turkish Cypriots to select a new discussant, as they did in the case of Palestine, but stated that that was something up to the State Department, which he is no longer part of. He also expressed the belief that Turkey could pressure Rauf Denktash a lot more and appreciated that the only hope of there being any progress on the Cyprus issue was to fix the present situation with the movement limitations lifted, so that this bad copy of the Berlin Wall collapses once and for all.
 PAPANDREOU MEETS S. AFRICAN FOREIGN MINISTER TOMORROWAthens, 22 June 2003 (12:51 UTC+2)
Foreign Minister Giorgos Papandreou will meet with his South African counterpart Dr. Nkosazana D. Zuma tomorrow at 11:30 in Athens.
An hour later, Mrs. Zuma will sign the Distinguished Individual's Declaration for Olympic Truce, to be followed by statements to the media.
 ON STANDBY FOR MORE INCIDENTS TONIGHT - 29 FACING CHARGESsThessaloniki, 22 June 2003 (12:44 UTC+2)
The police forces that had arrived in Thessaloniki from other cities in view of the protests began departing in police busses today.
However, Thessaloniki forces are still on standby, while from 3pm onwards, police forces will be stationed at points around the AUTh, as there are fears of further confrontations with the anarchists inside the universities (approximately 500) tonight.
Meanwhile charges were set against 29 individuals who are being accused of participating in yesterday's incidents, while they will be taken to the DA today.
According to sources, a total of 110 people were taken in by the police, of whom one third were foreigners, mainly Germans, Austrians and Italians. There were 29 arrests, while everyone else was set free.
Meanwhile a protest rally is expected to be held outside the court by members of movements and organizations, when the 29 (of whom 9 are foreigners, including one woman) are tried.
 PLAN TO REMOVE BEGGARS FOR 2004Athens, 22 June 2003 (12:00 UTC+2)
A plan to remove all the beggars from the streets and neighborhoods of the five major Olympic cities, Athens, Thessaloniki, Volos, Patra, and Heracleon (Crete), during the 2004 Olympics, is being formed by the Ministry of Public Order.
The scenario, as was mentioned in a Sunday Eleftherotypia newspaper publication, foresees the arrest of all those making a profit on misery and taking advantage of minors. In cooperation with the Ministry of Health and Welfare, a search is already underway for facilities to host these unfortunate individuals.
We cannot pick up children off the streets, it is a job for the police, state Secretary General of the Ministry of Health Maria Beldekou. There are 200 children in child centers and another 521 in Child Welfare Centers. No one can force them to stay there, and that is why the end up back on the street.
The problem's root lies in the child trafficking circuits that force children to beg on the streets. Most of the managers arrested are able to buy their out their sentence, since this circuit has proven to be most lucrative.
 ERDOGAN VISITED THE TURKISH CONSULATE IN THESSALONIKIThesasloniki, 21 June 2003 (21:08 UTC+2)
Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan visited the house of Kemal Ataturk where the Turkish Consulate is housed in Thessaloniki. He left a little before 6pm without problems.
In his statements stressed that he came as an ambassador of peace and that he is happy with the fact that his visit coincides with the completion of the extremely successful Greek EU Presidency.
Responding to a question whether he wants to send a message to the Turkish military with this visit, he said that the military played a significant role in the modernization of Turkey since the first years of the founding of the Turkish republic. He said that Ataturk was the head of the military and the military did everything it could for the implementation of democratic reforms when the country made the transition to democracy. He added that now there is absolutely no problem with the functioning of democracy in Turkey.
Asked to comment if there is a special significance to the fact that he went from Chalkidiki to Thessaloniki on board a Greek army helicopter, he said that lately there is a very positive atmosphere in the Greek-Turkish relations. There is an enthusiasm for peace between the two governments and the people even though there are negative impressions from time to time.
Mr. Erdogan stated that his country proceeds with the adoption of a series of reforms and stated characteristically that a few days ago a law was passed on the 6th harmonization package with the EU and another law on the 7th package is expected to be passed on August 1. He said that these reforms are not made just because Turkey wants to become an EU member but because it wants to improve the living standards of the Turkish people.
He said that in the meeting with Greek Prime Minister Kostas Simitis they did not discuss the Aegean issue, which will be discussed by committees of technocrats.