NEWS

In Brief

University asylum should not be granted to students alleged to have committed offenses in student residences as those are used for neither teaching nor research, Supreme Court Prosecutor Evangelos Kroustallakis advised the Public Order Ministry yesterday. Kroustallakis was responding to a query regarding an instance of alleged drug-dealing in student residences within the broader campus of Athens’s National Technical University. University asylum grants students immunity from arrest unless academic authorities have called in the police. VEHICLE INSPECTIONS Greece’s first private center to open near Thessaloniki Greece’s first private Vehicle Inspection Center (KTEO) is to be based on the outskirts of Thessaloniki, Transport Minister Christos Verelis said yesterday. «Our aim is to establish private KTEOs across the country… to offer private car owners better service,» Verelis said after approving the establishment of a private KTEO in the municipality of Thermi. It was unclear when the center would become operational. Licenses for other private KTEOs in other parts of the country are due to be drafted in a few weeks, said Verelis, adding that the long-term aim was to stamp out corruption in vehicle inspections. MUSEUM THEFT Matisse pages disappear Dozens of pages from a book illustrated by French painter Henri Matisse have disappeared from the Teriade Museum on Lesvos, the museum’s management said yesterday. Unidentified thieves removed 30 pages from one of the «Great Books» – the product of collaboration between publisher Stratis Eleftheriades (known as Teriade) and leading 20th century artists – and replaced them with other Matisse pieces of lower value, according to museum officials who noticed the theft on Sunday afternoon. Police believe the theft occurred during museum hours as the glass showcase, in which the book is kept, did not appear to have been forced. Olympic meeting Athens 2004 Organizing Committee President Gianna Angelopoulos-Daskalaki is to visit Prime Minister Costas Simitis today – after a private meeting scheduled for yesterday was postponed. The meeting comes in the wake of a government decision to bring state investment in the Olympic Games under tighter scrutiny. (Page 8) Airspace violations A Turkish fighter jet yesterday harassed a Greek navy aircraft participating in the international anti-terrorism exercise Enduring Freedom, airforce sources said yesterday. The Greek P-3 Orion was flying southeast of Rhodes when the Turkish F-16 flew above it at a distance of around 500 feet (152 meters), the same sources said, adding that the Turkish jet was subsequently chased off by Greek fighter planes. Ferry fares Shipowners yesterday pressed for increases in passenger ferry fares of 5-9 percent in a letter to Merchant Marine Minister Giorgos Anomeritis. The Coastal Shipowners’ Union claims it must raise fares to meet extra costs incurred due to the increasing rise in oil prices, the large cost of repairs and last year’s 4.5 percent salary increase for sailors. Sources said Anomeritis referred shipowners to the Economy Ministry. Violating duties? Former prefect of Thessaloniki Costas Papadopoulos is to face trial charged with violating his duties in February 2000 while he was prefect, the Athens News Agency reported yesterday. Papadopoulos is alleged to have issued a license to the «Bam Boom» restaurant-bar in the northern city which did not meet basic health and safety standards, the ANA said. Condolence book A book of condolences for the seven victims of the Columbia space shuttle explosion on Saturday opened at the US Embassy yesterday and will be available for the public to sign from 1-3 p.m. today. Those wanting to sign should bring a passport or ID card with them. Ferries docked Ferries yesterday remained anchored in Piraeus after the port authorities banned departures due to potentially hazardous weather.