NEWS

In Brief

KOSOVO VIOLENCE

Athens condemns fatal clashes between Serbs and Albanians The Foreign Ministry yesterday «unequivocally condemned» violent clashes between Serbs and Albanians in Mitrovica, northern Kosovo, which had caused at least six deaths by nightfall. Defense Ministry sources said the Greek peacekeepers in Mitrovica were safe and in good health. The soldiers are due to return to Greece next week following a decision to reduce peacekeeping troops in Kosovo. Reports said a large group of Albanians had attacked Greek soldiers guarding an Orthodox church in the area of Urosevac in southern Kosovo, and that one was lightly injured. CORPSES FOUND Three bodies thought to be those of migrants drowned in January sinking The corpses of two men and one woman, discovered off the rocky islet of Petalia near the port of Karystos on Evia on Tuesday, are most likely three of the nine migrants still unaccounted for following the sinking of a yacht in the area in January which caused at least five deaths by drowning, the Merchant Marine Ministry said yesterday. The corpses of the three unidentified individuals, which were in an advanced state of decomposition, were sent to a Karystos coroner for autopsies, the ministry said. BANK APPOINTMENTS New heads for NBG, Emporiki Panayiotis Arapoglou will be appointed as the new governor of the National Bank of Greece, the government said yesterday. Arapoglou is currently general manager of Citibank in London. Professor Giorgos Provopoulos is to be appointed president of Emporiki Bank. Salonica blast Arsonists planted three homemade gas canister bombs outside a car showroom in Thessaloniki in the early hours of yesterday morning, two of which detonated causing 7,000 euros worth of damage to two cars. There were no injuries. The blast was the 14th in the northern city since the beginning of the year. Serifis rebuffed A Piraeus court yesterday turned down an appeal by convicted November 17 terrorist Pavlos Serifis, who is serving a 10-year term, that his sentence should be commuted to house arrest due to poor health. Serifis is currently serving his term in the hospital of Korydallos Prison. Car premiums Ethniki General Insurance yesterday announced that its car premiums will be increasing by 6 percent from today. A number of other major insurers are expected to introduce similar hikes as of next month. Convict killed A 50-year-old inmate of Corfu jail, released on Tuesday on an eight-day furlough, was yesterday found dead in the Athenian district of Aghios Panteleimonas with six bullet wounds to his chest and stomach. Police are attributing the killing of Stylianos Mathas to a settling of accounts or to his suspected involvement in a drug deal. Mathas had been serving time for manslaughter and robbery among other crimes. A small quantity of drugs, believed to be heroin, was found upon him. Hash haul Police in Kastoria early yesterday morning seized 114 kilograms of hashish from a man who allegedly smuggled the drugs into Greece from Albania using donkeys. Border guards said another alleged smuggler had managed to elude arrest. Athens fire An 86-year-old woman escaped unscathed from a blaze which destroyed her fifth-floor apartment in the Athenian district of Ambelokipi yesterday morning after her carer pulled her out to safety. Dionysia Kefalinou did not want to leave her home when the blaze broke out after a lit candle fell onto the floor, but her female carer dragged her to safety, the fire brigade said. Murderer ‘unrepentant’ A Piraeus Misdemeanors Council yesterday rejected an appeal for conditional release by a physiotherapist who is serving two life sentences for the rape and murder of two women and the attempted rape of another 14 in 1983. The three judges on the council ruled that Spyros Beskos had not shown real remorse during his time in prison.