NEWS

In Brief

KOKKALIS, BOURBOULIA

Prosecutor echoes calls for top-level investigations Greece’s top appeals court prosecutor yesterday echoed calls by Supreme Court prosecutor Evangelos Kroustallakis for a meeting of the country’s appeals court judges to appoint examining judges to head two high-profile investigations regarding telecoms and gambling tycoon Socrates Kokkalis and former examining magistrate Constantina Bourboulia. In his report, Petros Verios said the cases «are extremely serious and require further investigation, mainly concerning transactions through [the suspects] foreign bank accounts.» Kokkalis has been charged with espionage on behalf of the former East German secret police, embezzlement, money laundering and fraud, while Bourboulia is under scrutiny for alleged breach of duty and for failing to report her relationship with a lawyer representing firms whose affairs she was investigating. The council of appeals court judges will discuss the two cases on June 26. LANDFILL REOPENS Ano Liosia dump operational again after fire on Sunday Athens’s only garbage dump, at Ano Liosia, was back in operation yesterday afternoon following its two-day closure after a fire broke out on the site early on Sunday. Arson was suspected. Last week, Parliament passed a new law designating sites for half a dozen new landfills and waste transfer stations that are to replace the saturated landfill at Ano Liosia. A CHRISTIAN EU? Minister backs Church on constitution Education Minister Petros Efthimiou yesterday appeared to back Archbishop Christodoulos’s sharp criticism of the omission of any reference to God or to Europe’s Christian heritage in its draft constitution, which is to be presented at the EU summit in Halkidiki on Friday. «It is not just the archbishop who makes an issue of a reference to Christianity. The pope, the Anglican Church have asked for it. It is a constant in the history of Europe, as is the fact that Europe sprang from classical Greece. It is a case of historical fact,» Efthimiou said. Bourse debate The PASOK majority in Parliament last night appeared set to reject a call by the New Democracy party for a parliamentary inquiry into the 1999 boom and bust on the Athens Stock Exchange. A vote was to be taken in the early hours of this morning. «Only those who have something to hide will want to hide it,» ND leader Costas Karamanlis said. National Economy Minister Nikos Christodoulakis said a Capital Markets Commission report had found no «systematic indications of violations» by PASOK cadres Stefanos Manikas and Michalis Neonakis, who have been accused of such by publisher Giorgos Kouris. The report found Neonakis had a turnover of 21 billion drachmas (60 million euros) on the bourse in 1998-2000. Strangling A 43-year-old German man was yesterday charged with strangling his 40-year-old wife to death in a Larissa hotel room last Thursday morning. Rudolf Weiss told police he had strangled his wife Alwina during a drunken fight and did not realize she was dead until the next day. Hotel workers found the woman’s body in a wardrobe on Sunday and informed police who caught up with Weiss in Athens. Weiss had been frequently seen begging on the streets of Larissa with his 18-month-old daughter, posing as a Serb refugee, police said. The girl has temporarily been taken in by a Greek foster family. Attempted matricide A 30-year-old Kozani man who tried to kill his mother by tying a metal chain around her neck and pushing her off the balcony of their second-story apartment is in custody, police in the northern town said yesterday. The 60-year-old woman is being treated for serious injuries in a Kozani hospital. Pact protest A rally in protest against the European Union’s acceptance of a US extradition and mutual assistance pact begins at 12 noon today in central Syntagma Square, organizer Amnesty International said yesterday. UN offices The United Nations’ offices in Greece and another eight countries are to close by the end of year and will be replaced by a European regional office in Brussels, according to the UN’s Paris office.