NEWS

In Brief

HUMANITARIAN AID

Greece to send 250,000 euros to Jordan to treat injured Iraqis Greece is to send 250,000 euros to its embassy in Amman to help the Jordanian authorities provide humanitarian aid to injured Iraqis, Deputy Foreign Minister Andreas Loverdos said yesterday. Greece is cooperating with Jordan as the continuing instability in Iraq means the direct delivery of food and medicine to Baghdad is impossible, he added. FARMING FRAUD? Greece ‘misspent’ 3.4 mln euros destined for land regeneration A total of 3.4 million euros was «either wrongly spent or illegitimately acquired» by Greek farmers during the implementation of a European Union program aimed at regenerating farmland that had been over-cultivated, according to the results of a report by the EU’s Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF) made public yesterday. OLAF’s report found that certain expanses of Greek farmland had been included in the program without meeting requirements and that farmland that had been legitimately included in the program had been improperly cultivated. BEATING SENTENCE US officer, 19, gets 10 years A Cretan court yesterday gave a 10-year jail sentence to a 19-year-old US policeman for beating and robbing a Hania woman in February 2002. The court, which took the defendant’s young age into account, also ordered that 30,000 euros in compensation be paid to Mina Kallo. The Athens News Agency identified the American as Stephen Reith. He maintained he had not beaten Kallo but only stolen her bag. He can appeal but must remain at Souda Bay under restrictive terms. Medicine on credit Pharmacists from Athens and Piraeus yesterday said they would dispense medicines on credit to state-insured patients as usual until June after receiving written assurances from the government that new legislation assuring the pharmacists’ timely repayment will have been introduced by then. Pharmacists stopped supplying medicine on credit at the beginning of this month in protest at the government’s non-payment of debts to pharmacies across the country. The government has promised full repayment by May. Power sharing Environment and Public Works Minister Vasso Papandreou and Prefect for Athens and Piraeus Fofi Yennimata yesterday agreed in principle to share the responsibilities for achieving effective waste disposal, reducing congestion on roads, and creating more parks «to improve citizens’ quality of life.» Papandreou remarked that local government has yet to fulfill its responsibilities regarding the creation of new waste disposal sites. Migrants found Guards at the border with Turkey yesterday detained 22 illegal immigrants they found hiding in the luggage compartment of a tour bus and arrested its 44-year-old Greek driver. The 11 Pakistanis, eight Iraqis, two Iranians and one Palestinian snuck onto the bus after crossing the border by foot, officials said yesterday. They were found during a roadblock inspection. Bus driver Yiannis Karoutas had agreed to take the immigrants to Athens for 3,000 euros each, police said. Patriarch to Baku Ecumenical Patriarch Vartholomaios is due to arrive at the Azerbaijani capital of Baku next Wednesday for a three-day visit during which he will meet with the country’s top government officials and Muslim leaders for talks on religious tolerance. Helping swallows Citizens of Athens, Thessaloniki and other major cities are invited to create clay swallows’ nests this weekend as part of the Ornithological Society’s annual initiative to help the migrating birds who are often unable to find appropriate materials to build their nests. Athenians can attend workshops between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. in the National Gardens tomorrow. Similar workshops are being run at the same times today in Thessaloniki, Kavala and Preveza. Kallithea station Kifissia-bound trains on the Piraeus-Kifissia electric railway (ISAP) route will not be stopping at Kallithea from Tuesday when work begins on rebuilding the station, ISAP said yesterday.