NEWS

In Brief

JERUSALEM – Sabbath kept Israeli government from patriarch’s enthronemen In response to comments on the absence of Israeli state officials at the enthronement of Irenaios, the new Orthodox Patriarch of Jerusalem, last Saturday, the Israeli Embassy in Athens issued a statement yesterday saying that the ceremony was held in the knowledge that it would be impossible for Israeli officials to attend on the Sabbath of the Jewish faith. Explanations… were given at the highest level and complete understanding was expressed from the office of President Costis Stephanopoulos and the Greek Foreign Ministry, said the statement. Foreign Minister George Papandreou stayed an extra day to meet with his Israeli counterpart, Shimon Peres, and Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat. Schools Canteens to be inspected, police to protect pupils, property Regular inspections of school canteens have begun, to check on the suitability of products being sold. In addition, uniformed police are to be on traffic duty as children arrive at and leave school. Officers will also be patrolling at other times, particularly at night, to protect pupils from individuals such as drug dealers and flashers that hang around outside schools, and to protect school property. Explosion Burning garbage kills two Two people were killed and two others, including a child, seriously injured yesterday while burning bags of garbage that also contained explosive material, in a field outside Ano Petra, Arta, in western Greece. Ilias Maltezos, 46, and his sister-in-law Ismini Maltezou, 42, were killed, and 12-year-old Dionysis Maltezos and Katerina Maltezou, 32, were injured. The four had gone to the area with Maltezos’s brother Lambros in his truck and mistakenly included with the garbage a bag of explosives used by the latter, a contractor, in his work for the Public Power Company and for which he had a license. Heroin arrest. Customs officials at the Kipi border post with Turkey yesterday arrested a Spanish man, Ramon Lopez Patino, 34, who had 26 kilos of heroin concealed in the gas tank of his car. Patino said he had obtained the drugs in Istanbul and was to deliver them in Spain. Police believe he is part of a larger Spanish-Turkish drug smuggling network. Driver remanded. William Dempsey, a 36-year-old gymnast, was remanded for trial yesterday in connection with a collision Friday which killed another driver, Michalis Panagopoulos, and seriously injured Panagopoulos’s passenger, Maria Florou. Florou, who is said to be Dempsey’s ex-girlfriend, testified that Dempsey had been chasing Panagopoulos’s car after finding out he was with Florou, and had rammed the car with his Porsche several times. Dempsey denies the charges. Migrants. Authorities on the island of Chios yesterday found 23 Afghan illegal immigrants rowing to the island from Cesme on the Turkish coast in four inflatable dinghies which they subsequently destroyed. Faliron crime. Police were called yesterday to Poseidonos Avenue, Palaio Faliron, on Athens southern coast, to investigate an explosion. Shortly before 11 a.m., a man threw a hand grenade that exploded outside a car showroom owned by Emilios Kotsonis, 40. Police say the attack was the work of a protection racket and possibly linked to another grenade thrown at a cafe in Kallithea on Friday. Weapons arrest. German national Peter Hans Lang, 40, was sentenced by a Kavala court yesterday to 18 months’ imprisonment and fined 400,000 drachmas for being in possession of a Luger pistol and a semi-automatic rifle, as well as a quantity of ammunition. Lang was arrested on the island of Thasos on Sunday. Big Brother. Two appeals by lawyers for injunctions against ON Productions and the television channel Antenna against the broadcasting of the Greek version of Big Brother are to be heard on November 5, it was announced yesterday. Constantine Samartzis and his wife Foteini, the parents of two young children, and Giorgos Trantalidis, father of a 16-year-old girl, claim the reality show is an insult. Water works. Water supplies will be cut off between 9 a.m. and 8 p.m. today in the eastern Athens districts of Dafni, Aghios Dimitrios, Alimos, Hellenikon, Glyfada and Voula, during work to move the main supply pipeline to make way for the Ilioupoli metro station.