NEWS

In Brief

Buses and trolleys serving Athens and the capital’s metro will run according to extended timetables through Thursday to help commuters inconvenienced by a four-day taxi strike which started yesterday, transport organizations said. Buses will operate from 5 a.m. until 1 a.m. daily, and trolleys will run from 5 a.m. until 1.30 a.m. On the metro, the last trains from Syntagma to all final destinations will leave at 1 a.m. The last trains from Dafni to Sepolia, and vice versa, will depart at 12.49 a.m. And the last trains from Monastiraki to Ethniki Amyna, and vice versa, will depart at 12.55 a.m. PRICE FREEZE Grocers follow supermarkets’ lead, complain of profiteering The Panhellenic Union of Grocers said yesterday that it would follow supermarkets’ lead by freezing prices over the next four months, noting however that this was a tactic that the larger stores had used to rob the smaller grocers of their market share. Big supermarket chains have raised their prices by up to 16.6 percent since early March, grocers complained during their press conference. BORDER BLOCKAGE Strike keeps trucks stuck Large quantities of perishable foodstuffs are at risk of rotting at the Ormenio crossing on Greece’s border with Bulgaria due to an ongoing strike by state agronomists and veterinarians who usually check produce, such as fresh fruit and vegetables, before it crosses the border, the Athens News Agency reported yesterday. A total of 40 trucks are stuck at Ormenio, while around 200 trying to cross into Greece have been sent back. Salonica bomb A homemade bomb consisting of four canisters of butane gas doused with flammable liquid caused significant damage to the ground-floor offices of a Greek insurance firm in Thessaloniki’s Toumba district when it detonated just before 4 a. m. yesterday. The device had been placed at the entrance of the offices. Nobody claimed responsibility for the attack. Female traffic cops The first female traffic police officers to be assigned to motorcycle patrols in Athens started work yesterday. The four women are to undertake the same duties as their male counterparts, including identifying those violating road traffic regulations and managing traffic at road junctions. A total of 30 women are employed by the Athens traffic police. Tax collector An unidentified gunman fired five shots at the car of a tax collector in Nea Halikarnassos, on the coast of Crete’s Iraklion prefecture, early yesterday morning. Costas Pitarokoilis, whose car was parked outside his home when it was attacked, told police he had received threatening telephone calls in connection to a case he had been working on. Immigrants Coast guards arrested 24 Somalian illegal immigrants on the islet of Farmakonisi on Sunday morning, the Merchant Marine Ministry said yesterday.