NEWS

Greece plays down Australian advisory

Australia is to issue new travel advisories today for Greece and Germany but its foreign affairs officials said yesterday the advice was not related to specific security issues or threats in either country. Greece also played down the significance of the advisories, issued less than a year before the Olympics are to be held in Athens. Foreign Minister George Papandreou said Australian officials had made it clear «we should not read anything particular or deeper into this advisory.» «Greece is a completely safe country,» he said, noting that Australia has already issued such advisories for 143 countries. «It is their constitutional obligation to tell their citizens traveling abroad what to look out for.» «This is not prompted by any change in the security environment in either country,» a spokesman for Australia’s Foreign Affairs and Trade Department told Reuters.