NEWS

In Brief

BIN LADEN – Cyprus denies presence of any family members of terror suspe Cypriot officials yesterday denied reports that a member of the family of Osama bin Laden, the prime suspect in Tuesday’s terrorist attacks that killed thousands of people in the United States, had been in Cyprus. Because mistaken information appeared in reports in Nicosia and Athens regarding the alleged presence of a member of the bin Laden family in Cyprus, it is denied categorically that any member of the bin Laden family is in the free part of Cyprus, the Ministry of Justice and Public Order said in a statement. From what can be ascertained, no member of the bin Laden family has visited. Central bank governor Avxentis Avxentiou said yesterday that a bin Laden brother had three offshore companies registered in Cyprus but had not visited the island. He did not identify the brother or the companies further. Some reports have said that bin Laden is one of 49 children. JERUSALEM High-level delegation at patriarch’s enthronement President Costis Stephanopoulos, Archbishop Christodoulos and Foreign Minister George Papandreou are to attend the enthronement of Irenaios as patriarch of the Orthodox Church in Jerusalem today. Papandreou is to meet with Foreign Minister Shimon Peres and Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat during his visit. TERROR ATTACKS Greek victim confirmed The authorities in New York have officially confirmed that Michael Theodoridis was among those killed in the terrorist attacks in New York this week. Theodoridis, 32, was an adviser to a large Boston firm and was traveling in the aircraft that brought down the World Trade Center’s Tower One. As of yesterday, 36 people of Greek origin are known to have escaped from the World Trade Center towers, but 20 were still unaccounted for. Meanwhile Archbishop Demetrios of America on Thursday visited the site where the two towers collapsed before holding a memorial service for all those lost. US Embassy. The US Embassy in Athens will be open for business as usual on Monday, September 17. A book of condolences will be available for signing in the main entrance until September 21 between 10 a.m. and noon and from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. Greek-Turkish cooperation. Details of the foundation of a Joint Hellenic-Turkish Standby Disaster Response Unit (JETSDRU) was the subject of talks between a Greek and a Turkish delegation headed by Professor Dimitris Papaniklaou, secretary general for civil defense, and Ambassador Ertugrul Apakan in Athens on September 11 and 12, followed on September 12 and 13 by a meeting of Greek and Turkish experts. The two delegations worked out the draft of a resolution for submission to the UN General Assembly and decided to hold two joint exercises, one in Greece and one in Turkey, within the next year. The joint initiative was taken after the major earthquakes that struck both countries in1999. Arsenal found. A routine road block at Kouklesi on the Ioannina-Athens highway resulted in the discovery of a cache of arms in a car driven by Giorgios Mitsios, 40, of Ioannina. Police looking for illegal immigrants instead found an automatic rifle, ammunition, a pistol, a military long-barreled rifle and a sword. Another sword and a 15-cm knife were later found in a search of Mitsios’s home. Education. Education Minister Petros Efthymiou returned yesterday from an official visit to France, where he discussed France’s interest in reviving Greek language learning, expanding joint studies programs and degree courses, joint supervision of doctoral theses and an increase in mobility between the two systems. Efthymiou’s visit coincided with the 5th International Congress in Greek Linguistics at the Sorbonne University. Copt patriarch.The pope and patriarch of the Coptic Church, Shenounda, III is on an official visit to the Ecumenical Patriarchate in Istanbul, returning a visit made to Ethiopia by Ecumenical Patriarch Vartholomaios in 1999. Shenounda was to officiate with Vartholomaios at a service marking the Feast of the Holy Cross yesterday. Train timetable.The Hellenic Railways Organization (OSE) has announced that work will begin today on the rail line between Thessaloniki and Eidomeni, in northern Greece. Passengers on trains 394-335 and 334-395 will be transferred to buses for that sector of the route.