NEWS

Minister to hold fresh talks with Keratea officials

Environment Minister Tina Birbili is due on Wednesday to meet officials from Keratea, the village southwest of Athens that has resisted efforts to build a waste management center there, after signaling that she may reconsider the plans if a viable alternative is found.

Birbili met with Costas Levantis, the mayor of Lavreotiki on Thursday and, according to sources, indicated she would be willing to examine his proposal for the facility to be incorporated within an existing light industrial park rather than next to the archaeological site at Ovriokastro.

Were Birbili to approve such a change, it would be a climbdown for the government, which has insisted over the last few months that it would not give in to pressure from the locals. Amid concerns that Birbili?s move might be construed as a snub to colleagues who backed the project, such as Interior Minister Yiannis Ragousis, Birbili?s aides insisted that any final plan would have to be approved by the Cabinet.