NEWS

In Brief

AIR-SPACE VIOLATIONS

Turkish jets active in the Aegean for third time in under a week Six formations of Turkish fighter jets yesterday entered the Athens Flight Information Region six times and violated Greek national air space a total of 35 times near the islands of Lemnos, Lesvos, Samos and Kos, military sources said. The 12 Turkish jets were chased off by as many Greek aircraft and there were four simulated dogfights, the officials said. The transgressions by the Turkish F16s were the third in less than a week. INFLATION STEADY Consumer prices rose 2.7 percent in August despite Olympics-linked fears Consumer prices rose 2.7 percent last month compared to August 2003 – down from July’s 2.9 percent. There appears to belie fears that prices would rise sharply during the Olympics due to profiteering. The government foresees inflation of 3 percent this year. DOPING PROBE Sprinters’ coach to testify on Monday An Athens prosecutor investigating a doping scandal involving Greece’s two top sprinters yesterday postponed until Monday the deposition of Christos Tzekos, who had coached the two athletes. Tzekos will be questioned about illegal «food supplements» allegedly found in his possession as well as his alleged obstruction of a doping test the two athletes had been supposed to attend and a motorcycle accident the sprinters claim to have been involved in. Forest fires Firemen yesterday struggled to extinguish forest fires being fanned by strong winds in different parts of the mainland. A fire at Oropos, northern Attica, was extinguished after water-carrying aircraft managed to get close enough to the blaze when winds dropped. Another blaze at Loutra Elenis, near Corinth, is believed to have caused major damage. And firefighters were struggling to contain a large blaze in Arta yesterday evening. The risk of fire will be very high in the Dodecanese today, according to the General Secretariat for Civil Defense. Beslan children One thousand children from Beslan in southern Russia, where more than 350 people died following a terrorist attack last week, are to be invited for a holiday in Greece next spring, the National Bank of Greece said yesterday. The initiative is organized by the bank in cooperation with the Foreign Ministry and the General Secretariat for Greeks Abroad. Bonus hike Greece’s national soccer coach Otto Rehhagel is to receive a bonus the same size as that of the team players whom he led to victory at the Portugal Euro 2004 championship, the government said yesterday. Originally, he had been due to receive only half of the 173,000-euro sum being given to each player. Worker death A committee of officials from the Public Power Corporation’s (PPC) management and staff is to investigate what caused the death of a worker at a power plant in Meliti, Florina yesterday, PPC said. Georgios Athanassiadis, whose age was not revealed, died while handling a hydraulic press system, PPC said. Fatal pileup Three German tourists were killed and four other people injured in a collision on the coastal highway connecting the Cretan port of Iraklion with Aghios Nikolaos, the Athens News Agency reported yesterday. Christina Vardaxi, 37, Achim Mueller and Irmgard Mueller (whose ages were not made public) died after their jeep veered off course and hit a small truck in the opposite lane, the ANA said, adding that another three cars then crashed into the vehicles. Sudanese deportations The government has received no official complaint from Sudan regarding the detention and deportation of 24 Sudanese nationals last month, Foreign Ministry spokesman Giorgos Koumoutsakos said yesterday in response to a reporter’s question about whether Sudan would be taking Greece to the European Court over the affair. The deportation of the Sudanese nationals was «an administrative and not a judicial affair,» Koumoutsakos said. Tractor death Farmer Evangelos Goulios, 64, was crushed to death yesterday when his tractor overturned near Peristera, east of Thessaloniki.