NEWS

In Brief

KALA-AZAR

Three children diagnosed with potentially fatal disease in Kavala A two-and-a-half-year-old boy from Paggaio in Kavala is the third child in the region over the past few days to be diagnosed with the parasitic disease visceral leishmaniasis (also known as kala-azar) which is transmitted by sandflies preying on dogs and mice and can be fatal if untreated, the Athens News Agency reported yesterday. The boy is being treated in Kavala’s General Hospital, the ANA said. The disease is difficult to diagnose as its symptoms in humans – ranging from fever and substantial weight loss to lesions across the body – are similar to those of many common diseases. BOY DROWNS Hotel manager arrested for operating pool without license A hotel manager from Nikiti in Halkidiki was arrested after a three-year-old German boy drowned in the hotel’s swimming pool after wandering off from his parents, police said yesterday. The hotel manager, identified only as A.M., has been charged with operating the pool without a license. Meanwhile, Tom Leon Holz’s parents, who had been eating at the hotel restaurant when their son drowned, are charged with neglecting to supervise a minor. AMERICAN VISITORS Greece is 10th choice destination Greece has become the 10th most popular destination for Americans this year – an improvement from the 14th spot it held last year and the year before, the Development Ministry said yesterday, citing the results of a study made public in the Wall Street Journal last week. Greece is favored before Switzerland but after Spain by Americans, whose first choice is Australia, followed by Britain, Italy and France, according to the study. Bride critical A 23-year-old bride who was struck by a falling tree branch while posing for photographs after her wedding near Drama in northern Greece on Saturday is still in a critical condition, the director of Thessaloniki’s Papageorgiou Hospital said yesterday. Church raided Unidentified robbers who broke into the central Athens Aghios Constantinos Church near Omonia Square in the early hours of yesterday made off with valuable religious icons, Bibles and various other items. The robbers, who climbed up scaffolding erected outside the building – which is currently undergoing renovation works – also plundered two cash boxes. Pawnshop robbery Two masked, armed robbers made off with 60,000 euros worth of jewelry and 4,000 euros in cash following a raid on a pawnshop in central Thessaloniki just after 2 p.m. yesterday. No one was injured during the raid on the shop, which is located a few meters away from the northern city’s police headquarters. Prostitutes protest A group of prostitutes staged a demonstration outside the Interior Ministry in central Athens yesterday, demanding changes to legislation governing the operation of brothels in the capital. Protesters had threatened not to disperse until they were allowed to meet with ministry officials. It was still unclear late yesterday whether any such meeting took place. Migrants detained Coast guards yesterday detained a total of 39 illegal immigrants on islands in the Aegean, the Merchant Marine Ministry said. Officers on Chios rounded up a group of 15 Afghan migrants who had reached the island in three inflatable rubber dinghies, while a patrol boat from Patmos located 23 migrants – of various nationalities – as well as their suspected Turkish smuggler in a wooden fishing boat off the nearby islet of Agathonisi. Ferry protest The departure of a passenger ferry due to leave the port of Lavrion for the island of Lemnos at 9 p.m. today may be disrupted following threats yesterday by members of the Panhellenic Seamen’s Union to stop it from leaving. Unionists are complaining that the owners of the ferry are violating rules governing the composition of crews.