NEWS

Greece, France seek to check globalization

French Prime Minister Lionel Jospin and his host, Costas Simitis, yesterday discussed the threat of recession that Europe appears to be facing, the negative effects of globalization, the problems that will arise with the adoption of the euro on January 1, the future of Europe and bilateral relations. At a joint news conference before the two men continued their talks over lunch at Piraeus’s Mikrolimano, Simitis said that they would raise the issue of globalization and the problems which this poses and the need to control the consequences at next weekend’s meeting of prime ministers in Stockholm within the framework of the movement for progressive government. I will present… at the summit this need to deal with the effects, to see what mechanisms and what procedures we could promote to control developments, so that there would not be impunity and there would not be exploitation, Simitis said concerning globalization. The adoption of the single European currency is a major psychological and social change, Simitis said, adding that the two had agreed there should be better coordination of the economic policies of eurozone members. The European Central Bank alone is not enough, Simitis said. Jospin said that the two had also discussed two files concerning economic and industrial issues which are important to France. He clarified later that this included efforts to get the Greek armed forces to buy French tanks. As for the Balkans, Simitis noted that the two men agreed that for the situation in the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia to be normalized, an international force should remain there after NATO’s scheduled pullout in late October, to help surpass the friction, the conflict, to avoid new clashes. Jospin agreed, adding that of course, the nature of the mandate is raised. It would be better if we had a mandate from the United Nations so that this presence could continue in an adapted way. Meanwhile, Foreign Ministry spokesman Panayiotis Beglitis said yesterday that Alex Rondos, the ministry’s director of the International Developmental Cooperation Department and Balkan desk chief Alexandros Mallias began a visit to Moscow yesterday to discuss the Balkans. For us, Russia can play a very positive role in Balkan developments, with the aim of achieving stability and peace in the region, Beglitis said. Yugoslav medal for Christodoulos