This Week

Monday Special welcoming ceremony for the national soccer team at the Panathenaic Stadium at 8.30 p.m., organized by the Culture Ministry and the Athens Municipality. ECOFIN meeting in Brussels discusses Commission’s call for excessive deficit procedures against Greece. National Economy Minister Giorgos Alogoskoufis will attend. Olympic security drill, code-named «Poseidon’s Trident,» begins in Piraeus. It will involve the police, coast guard, military, fire brigade and National First Aid Center (EKAB). Olympic Torch relay visits Kiev. Justice Minister Anastassis Papaligouras meets with representatives of the Union of Judges and Prosecutors to discuss their institutional and financial demands. US Embassy in Athens and the Athens and Thessaloniki consulates will be closed today, in observance of July 4, Independence Day. Victoria station reopens for Kifissia-bound passengers, but renovation works will continue. All unions involved in the production and distribution of newspapers stage a 24-hour strike to press for a new collective wage agreement. Media workers will hold a rally outside the Athens Journalists’ Union (ESIEA) building at 20 Academias St at 7 p.m. Tuesday The Dutch Embassy kicks off the Netherlands’ EU presidency with an event that includes a debate on EU issues with a group of Greek and Dutch politicians and journalists. Finance Minister Giorgos Alogoskoufis, PASOK MP Theodoros Pangalos and Independent MP Manos Andrianopoulos will take part. The event is co-sponsored by the Hellenic Foundation for European and Foreign Policy (ELIAMEP). At 7 p.m., Zappeion Hall. Tel. 210.725.4920. French Foreign Minister Michel Barnier visits Athens and is expected to meet with PM Costas Karamanlis, Foreign Minister Petros Molyviatis and Athens 2004 Organizing Committee President Gianna Angelopoulos-Daskalaki. Council of State convenes to consider a draft presidential degree foreseeing the granting of permanent status to contract workers in the public sector. Olympic Torch relay visits Istanbul. Transport Minister Michalis Liapis visits the ETHEL bus depot at 11 a.m. for ceremony inducting new buses to the fleet. Kokkalis Foundation holds Athens Forum 2004, featuring a lecture on «EU Enlargement and the Challenge of Democracy in the European Union» by the president of the European University Institute, Florence, Professor Yves Meny. At the Hellenic American Union, 22 Massalias St, Kolonaki, at 7.30 p.m. Tel. 210.667.2427. Wednesday Olympic Torch relay visits Sofia. Thursday Olympic Torch relay visits Nicosia. Friday Olympic Flame returns to Greece for national torch relay, leading to Games’ opening ceremonies on August 13. Sunday New Democracy party’s prefectural unions to elect delegates to the party’s national congress on July 23-25.