Heavy showers to follow searing heat in parts of Greece from today The Civil Defense Authority yesterday placed local officials on alert in anticipation of heavy rain and storms this afternoon, mainly in the country’s north. In its weather forecast yesterday, the National Meteorological Service (EMY) forecast that the showers would hit Epirus, the northern Ionian Sea and Macedonia and Thrace. The rest of the mainland and northern Aegean would also experience storms tomorrow, EMY said. The current high temperature will drop substantially from Sunday, the meteorologists added. EVROS MEETING Karamanlis and Erdogan to use gas pipeline works as a chance for talks Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis and his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan will meet tomorrow in the Evros region in northeastern Greece to inaugurate works on a pipeline which will carry natural gas from the Caspian Sea to Europe. The two leaders will use the opportunity to discuss bilateral relations, which have been strained recently, and Turkey’s EU prospects. FALIRAKI TOURIST TROUBLE Briton sentenced for biting officer A Rhodes court sentenced a 20-year-old British man to six months in jail yesterday after finding him guilty of bodily harm for biting a local policeman in the chest. The unnamed tourist had been behaving rowdily in bar in the Faliraki tourist resort and the officer was called in to arrest him. The Briton admitted to being drunk at the time, court sources said. Arresting mail An employee of the Greek Postal Service (ELTA) was arrested in Athens yesterday on suspicion of forging 25 postal checks, worth 6,000 euros each and naming herself as the payee, police said. Officers were tipped off when the woman tried to cash one of the checks at a post office. ND lead The government has a 2.4 percent lead over the main opposition, PASOK, according to an opinion poll by Metron Analysis which was published yesterday. New Democracy attracted the support of 36.1 percent of those questioned and PASOK 33.7 percent. Some 70 percent of respondents said that unemployment and the state of the economy were the two greatest problems facing Greece. UN presidency Greece, currently a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council, took up the month-long presidency of the group yesterday. The problems faced by a number of African countries, the peace process in the Middle East and UN peace missions to Lebanon and Georgia are the issues likely to dominate the Council’s agenda during July. Bomb blast A building in the Athens suburb of Nea Philadelphia suffered minor damage early yesterday after a small homemade explosive device went off at around 3.15 a.m. The bomb, which consisted of three gas canisters, was placed outside a government office which organizes housing for earthquake victims. Fatal fall A 54-year-old builder fell to his death from the first floor of a building site near Patras yesterday, authorities said. Kristo Lambo, a northern Epirote, was rushed to hospital but pronounced dead on arrival. Vacation worries The Development Ministry yesterday asked the National Council for Radio and Television (ESR) to make TV viewers aware of the costly calls involved when phoning 090 numbers shown in promotions and advertising exclusive deals on vacations. Gypsy evictions? Left Coalition Synaspismos MP Thanassis Leventis yesterday alleged in Parliament that Patras Municipality had evicted hundreds of Gypsies from their settlements in the area to prettify its image before taking over as the Cultural Capital of Europe next year. Phone theft A 20-year-old man was arrested yesterday for stealing mobile phones after he threatened his underage victims with a screwdriver, police said. The man, along with a partner, had stolen mobile phones from 17 youths in 20 days, mostly in the southeastern suburbs of Palaio Faliron, Aghios Dimitrios and Glyfada. Police are searching for his partner.