NEWS

In Brief

SPIRITUAL CLAIMS

Vartholomaios hints Greek Church is undermining his authority Ecumenical Patriarch Vartholomaios, on the last day of a five-day visit to the Aegean island of Lemnos yesterday, hinted that his patriarchate was being undermined by the Church of Greece which is claiming certain Greek dioceses he says fall under his spiritual authority. He said his patriarchate was suffering «not only due to the others, the foreign (churches)… but by those who should support and show solidarity with those who are alone.» The patriarch also briefly visited the neighboring island of Aghios Efstratios and christened the daughter of Aegean Minister Nikos Sifounakis on Lemnos, before departing for Istanbul. CRETAN KILLING Man charged over double shooting A 26-year-old Cretan man faced murder charges yesterday after a shooting incident which resulted in the hospitalization of his second cousin with serious injuries and the death of the latter’s Ukrainian girlfriend. Michail Athitakis claims to have a strong alibi for Friday night when an unidentified individual fired 13 times at Iosif Athitakis, 38, and Ina Tarantai, 39, as they approached their home in Hania’s Nea Hora district on a motorcycle. But the 38-year-old victim told police he had recognized his cousin as the perpetrator of the crime. Athitakis is to testify before a magistrate tomorrow. Iosif Athitakis’s father, Ioannis, shot and killed his nephew Panayiotis, Michail’s brother, in March. Brothers overdose Workers at the Aghia Olga hospital in Nea Ionia yesterday morning discovered the bodies of two brothers, aged 42 and 43, who had overdosed on heroin in a small wood next to the hospital. Yiannis and Giorgos Kasperides had been taking heroin since they were 15 and 16, according to the men’s mother, who told police that an Albanian drug dealer known as Roberto had supplied the brothers with uncut heroin. Strong winds The National Meteorological Service yesterday warned of strong winds of 7 on the Beaufort scale in the southwest and southeast Aegean, reaching gale force (8 on the Beaufort scale) in parts. Illegal excavations The Cypriot government is in constant contact with UNESCO in connection with illegal excavations by Turkish-led teams in an attempt to prevent the illicit trade in antiquities and the destruction of historically significant finds, Cypriot Communications Minister Kikis Kazamias said yesterday. Lightning fire A fire on the northern island of Thassos, which started after a bolt of lightning struck a patch of forestland in the Aghios Georgios area, was quickly extinguished by firefighters. The blaze burned just over one tenth of a hectare of land. Fire death A 75-year-old woman died in her third-floor apartment in the Athenian suburb of Neo Psychico after fainting from the fumes of a fire which had started in her bedroom. It is unclear exactly how Kyriaki Rougoula died. The blaze had not caused extensive damage to her home by the time it was extinguished by firemen. Chrysochoidis meetings PASOK’s general secretary, Michalis Chrysochoidis, participated in meetings with regional and prefectural officials from Thrace and eastern Macedonia in the northern town of Komotini on Friday night. Among the topics of debate was the new electoral law.