NEWS

In Brief

FOREST PROTECTION

Police, fire service and military begin patrols to spot blazes Police, fire service and armed forces patrols are to start monitoring the country’s forests by air and land today on the lookout for fires, the Public Order Ministry said yesterday. Access to forestland may be prohibited to both motorists and pedestrians. Large tracts of forest are destroyed every summer by blazes, often started by arsonists. DATA RULING MPs’ bourse dealings not confidential The publication of the findings of a probe into MPs’ stock exchange transactions would not violate Greek privacy laws were deputies informed of the publication in advance, according to a ruling by the Hellenic Data Protection Authority made public yesterday. The ruling was a response to a question by Parliament Speaker Anna Psarouda-Benaki in relation to a probe for the period between 1998 and 2002. The probe findings can be published without the consent of the MPs in the name of public interest and transparency, the authority said. Supermarket bags Consumers should be obliged to pay for the plastic carrier bags given out at supermarket checkouts, the Association of Greek Supermarkets (SESME) told the Development Ministry yesterday. The appeal for new legislation imposing a charge for supermarket bags is aimed at relieving stores of the cost of millions of bags given out daily, SESME said. Drugs arrest Piraeus drug squad officers yesterday arrested a 40-year-old municipal employee believed to be one the biggest cannabis dealers in Attica. Police arrested Stefanos Grigoriadis, an ethnic Greek from Russia, after confiscating 90 kilos of cannabis from his Russian girlfriend’s Kallithea home. Grigoriadis had allegedly acquired the drugs about a month ago from Albanian national Altin Benakou, who is being sought for smuggling 200 kilos into the country. Police also arrested an Albanian couple who had allegedly intended to buy the 90-kilo haul. Flag flap The perpetrator behind the defacing of a Turkish flag, which was left in the room of Turkish officers who were visiting a Greek military academy in April has been found, the army general staff said late yesterday. The suspect’s identity was not revealed. The incident had been labeled as «regrettable» by the Greek army general staff, which formally apologized to irate Turkish officials. Rodin buy A copy of Rodin’s bronze «Walking Man» sculpture has been acquired by Athens’s National Gallery following a National Bank of Greece donation, the directors of the two institutions revealed yesterday. The piece – a man in mid-stride atop a column – is the second of eight copies that the Rodin Museum is permitted to produce according to French law. The price of the acquisition was not revealed but was said to be «reasonable.» Sex arrests Attica police yesterday arrested a 35-year-old man alleged to have repeatedly sexually abused his 9-year-old nephew – his sister’s son – since last September. Officers also arrested a 56-year-old man alleged to have raped a 15-year-old girl at gunpoint. Turkish visit Turkey’s army chief Yasar Buyukanit will visit Greece on June 22, Turkish officials said yesterday. Buyukanit’s visit has been planned as part of «trust-building measures» between Greece and Turkey. Euro protest Communist Party (KKE) protesters in Thessaloniki yesterday formed a human chain around the Foreign Ministry’s «Euro bus» – which has been touring the country to inform the public about the European Constitution, which KKE opposes. Rape charge Police on Kos yesterday arrested a 22-year-old British tourist after a 21-year-old German woman claimed he had raped her.