NEWS

In Brief

MINE DEATHS

Two workers killed after a tunnel collapses in Amfissa Two miners died yesterday in a mine near Amfissa, about 15 kilometers west of Delphi, when the roof of a tunnel collapsed upon them. Fellow miners discovered the body of 34-year-old Efstathios Papas before the arrival of police and fire service workers who retrieved the body of Spyros Delios, 48, from the rubble of the collapsed shaft. No other injuries were reported as a result of the incident, whose cause was yesterday unclear. UNIVERSITY STRIKE Open-ended action means only final-year students will sit exams University and technical college professors yesterday agreed to embark upon open-ended strike action from Monday, rejecting a government offer to raise their salaries by 7 percent. The action will mean the cancellation of all September examinations except those to be sat by final-year students, unionists said. Professors, who started a five-day strike on Monday, are demanding a 20 percent increase over two years. EARTHQUAKE TRIAL Postponed due to sick defendant The trial of four pharmaceutical company officials and a civil engineer – charged with the «murder with possible malice aforethought» of eight employees crushed to death when the Faran plant partially collapsed during the September 1999 earthquake in Athens – opened yesterday only to be postponed until February 4 due to the ill health of the factory’s 86-year-old founder and chief executive, Dimitris Katsikas. Cyprus vote The Turkish-occupied north of Cyprus will hold parliamentary elections on December 14, Turkish-Cypriot officials said yesterday. Opposition groups have formed a joint front to oust Turkish-Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash. Railway disruptions Kifissia-bound trains on the Piraeus-Kifissia urban electric railway will not be stopping at Tavros station from tomorrow as works get under way to renovate the station platform. Passengers from Piraeus should travel to Petralona station and then get a Piraeus-bound train back to Tavros. Those wanting to travel toward Kifissia from Tavros should get a Piraeus-bound train to Kallithea and take a Kifissia-bound train from there. F1 track A presidential decree providing for the construction of a Formula 1 racetrack in Greece is nearly ready, Deputy Development Minister Dimitrios Georgakopoulos said yesterday. Legislation has already been passed for the classification of the racetrack as part of the country’s tourism infrastructure and for it to gain increased European Union subsidies, Georgakopoulos said. School buses One in five school buses inspected by teams of traffic police and prefectural authority officials in Piraeus over the last week was not properly equipped, prefectural officials revealed yesterday. Checks conducted on 113 buses on September 11, 12, 15 and 17 revealed 22 violations (such as the absence of fire extinguishers, first-aid boxes, etc.) while two drivers were found to have been working without a professional driving license. Penalties were issued for all the transgressions. Hospital doctors Doctors at hospitals in Athens and Piraeus are to stage a three-hour work stoppage, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., on Monday, September 29. They are demanding higher salaries, the recruitment of more doctors and nursing staff, and more state investment in the health sector. On the same day, unionists are to discuss possible future action during their general assembly at Athens’s Evangelismos hospital. Sneaky robber A 37-year-old woman, believed to have carried out more than 15 robberies over the last two years by drugging elderly people before stealing their belongings, was yesterday charged with theft and the illicit supply of drugs by a Piraeus prosecutor. Anna Alifrangi, who had resided at several Attica hotels, would accompany her prospective victims to their homes or to her hotel room where she would spike their drinks with sleeping pills before robbing them, according to police. Officers found 31,500 euros and more than 100 sleeping pills in her possession.