NEWS

In Brief

The northern prefecture of Evros is to invest 300,000 euros in the establishment of a new reception center for illegal immigrants in the border village of Fylakio, which will be able to accommodate 400 people, prefectural officials said yesterday. The center will be created in an old clothes factory which prefectural authorities bought from the Hellenic Bank for Industrial Development for 205,000 euros, according to Evros Prefect Nikos Zambounidis, who added that the center should be ready in March. MOBILE TRANSMITTERS Ombudsman’s report calls for reforms allowing assessment of health risks A special report prepared by the state ombudsman, and made public yesterday, proposes legislative and procedural changes to protect citizens against possible health risks posed by mobile telephony transmitters. Proposals included in the report, which was forwarded to Prime Minister Costas Simitis, include the systematic assessment of the health and environmental risks posed by such transmitters before licenses are granted, the setting of a minimum distance of authorized transmitters from schools, hospitals etc, and the revocation of licenses for transmitters violating town-planning laws. RIO-ANTIRIO FERRIES Another 24-hr strike from 7 a.m. today Workers employed on ferries serving the Rio-Antirio route are to continue their industrial action with a fresh 24-hour strike beginning at 7 a.m. today after yesterday’s meeting between unionists and Merchant Marine Ministry officials failed to yield a compromise. Protesters want higher salaries and pensions. The only other ferry crossing between mainland Greece and the northwestern Peloponnese is between the ports of Aghios Nikolaos and Aigion. Soccer violence A Supreme Court prosecutor yesterday distributed a circular to prosecutors in Athens, Piraeus and Thessaloniki stressing that soccer fans responsible for violence before and during matches should be arrested and charged accordingly. The move comes just a few days after soccer officials agreed to intensify punitive measures against soccer teams whose supporters misbehave during matches, following a string of violent incidents. Culture Minister Evangelos Venizelos subsequently admitted that the main problem in stopping soccer riots is that legislation against hooligans is rarely enforced. (Page 8) Aliakmon accident Anestis and Aphrodite Senias, who lost their two children – aged 3 and 8 – in a bus accident last February, have sued Thessaloniki’s bus service and the bus owners for 2 million euros. Thanassis and Stella Senias were killed when the intercity bus they were traveling in went off a bridge into the Aliakmon River in northern Greece. Their mother, who was also on the bus, still has mobility problems from her injuries. Other relatives of the 16 victims of the bus accident have lodged similar suits. Nafplion museum The Archaeological Museum of Nafplion is to close for refurbishment that is being funded by the European Union, the Culture Ministry said yesterday. A reopening date was not given. Students injured Three female students were slightly injured when they were struck by chunks of plaster blown off the roof of the Athens University department of chemistry on the junction of Harilaou Trikoupi and Navarinou streets in central Athens, as they were about to enter the building. The three students, two aged 18 and the third 20, were hospitalized with scratches on their heads and faces. Peres visit Former Israeli Prime Minister and Nobel Prize winner Shimon Peres is due to lay a wreath at the holocaust memorial in Thessaloniki on Sunday. Peres is tomorrow due to arrive in Athens, where he is to meet Foreign Minister George Papandreou and New Democracy leader Costas Karamanlis. Berlin flights The budget airline easyJet will start conducting a daily Athens-Berlin route from May next year when the German capital becomes the base for a total of 11 new routes, the company said yesterday.