NEWS

In Brief

POLICE CHIDED

Minister apologizes after plain-clothes officers caught in union meeting Public Order Minister Giorgos Voulgarakis yesterday issued an apology after two plain-clothes police officers were caught at a meeting of the Communist-affiliated union PAME in central Athens on Tuesday night. «The unauthorized presence of officers at (Tuesday’s) meeting… does under no circumstances follow a decision by the Greek police or the Public Order Ministry,» he said. ANARCHIST CLASHES Cars torched in central Athens, policeman injured in attack Anarchists torched four cars outside the National Technical University of Athens (NTUA) early yesterday and slightly injured a policeman in the clashes that followed. Police said that a small group of anarchists threw petrol bombs at the parked vehicles and then threw objects at riot police. The youths have occupied the building since Monday in protest against the death of an anarchist in Thessaloniki who, police say, had health problems. BUS FARES KTEL ticket prices could rise Bus fares will have to increase due to recent petrol price rises, Transport Minister Michalis Liapis said yesterday after representatives of the Intercity Road Transport Companies (KTEL) asked him for increases of between 7 and 8 percent. Liapis did not say whether he would agree to these rises. Meanwhile, a bill aimed at renewing KTEL’s fleet – at a cost of 20 million euros – has been submitted to Parliament. OA bill A draft bill aimed at relaunching debt-ridden state carrier Olympic Airlines was yesterday passed in Parliament. The bill foresees the revamped airline being owned by private investors. Yiossakis trial The prosecutor initially assigned to the case involving charges of antiquity theft against former priest Iakovos Yiossakis asked to be excused from the case after receiving death threats, it was revealed in court yesterday. Yiossakis and two others have been accused of stealing antiquities from a monastery in Kythera. The trial began on Tuesday and was adjourned yesterday until December 16 so that experts could assess the value of the items in question. Occupation ends A group of 40 people who took over the Theological School at Aristotle University in Thessaloniki left the premises late on Tuesday night, authorities said yesterday. The mob was described by the school’s dean as consisting of «fringe elements,» who vandalized the school’s classrooms and offices during the occupation. The group also attacked two students who tried to enter the building. The pair were expected to be released from hospital last night. Environmental checks Seven deputies from the European Parliament will begin a two-day visit to Greece today to check on the country’s progress in enforcing EU environmental regulations. The team is due to visit Attica’s landfill at Ano Liosia and the sewage plant on the islet of Psyttaleia. The state of both sites has led the European Commission to warn Greece about its environmental practices. ‘Buy Nothing Day.’ The Consumer Institute (INKA) yesterday called upon all consumers to boycott all stores and markets on the occasion of World Buy Nothing Day this coming Saturday in protest at high prices and profiteering. INKA appealed to consumers not to spend even 1 euro on goods or services to protest rising prices. Foundation death The honorary president of the Onassis Foundation, Stylianos A. Papadimitriou, died yesterday morning, the organization said.