In Brief


Dozens of youths run amok outside Polytechnic, damage 10 cars Dozens of rioters outside the National Technical University of Athens (NTUA) caused damage to 10 parked cars early yesterday morning, pelting the vehicles with sticks and stones, police said. Officers detained 20 of the youths, who had attended a punk music party at the NTUA, but later released them without charge. DIRTY MEAT Officials find rats in Athens warehouse Health inspectors from the Athens Prefecture seized 152 kilos of rotten meat from a warehouse near the central Varvakeios market and closed the place down Saturday night after discovering rats, cockroaches and spiders inside. Officials said they were responding to a television report highlighting the poor conditions at the warehouse, which also had moldy walls. The case has been handed over to prosecutors. Patras culture. Deputy Culture Minister Petros Tatoulis inaugurated an exhibition of Leonardo da Vinci’s drawings in Patras yesterday, launching a year of cultural events in the city which holds the title of European Cultural Capital for 2006. The da Vinci show has attracted some 600,000 visitors since it opened in Berlin in 2001. Nearly 158 million euros – of European Union and Greek funding – have been allocated to finance 54 restoration projects in Patras, Tatoulis said. Visa appeal. The European Commission on Saturday urged the USA, Canada and Australia to accelerate negotiations on waiving visas for all EU nationals. Currently, travelers from Greece as well as the 10 newest EU member states, apart from Slovenia, still have to apply for visas when they travel to the three countries, even for a short stay. «A transparent process or road map with clear benchmarks should be established that leads to a visa waiver for the citizens of all member states,» the Commission said in a statement. Fans attack. A group of volleyball fans rampaged in central Athens late Saturday, stabbing two passers-by and causing damage to a cafeteria and eight parked cars, authorities said. No arrests were reported. Police identified the youths involved as Panathinaikos fans. They were heading to a volleyball game in the central suburb of Pangrati when they stabbed the two men – a Russian national, 40, and a Greek man, 28 – who they believed to be supporters of rival Olympiakos. The Russian, whose name was not immediately released, was hospitalized but his condition is not critical. (AP) Massive pileup. Fifteen cars were involved in pileup on the Athens-Lamia national road on Saturday afternoon but nobody was injured, police said. The accident happened near Malakassa, north of Athens. Officers said the road surface was slippery because it had snowed earlier. Small tremor. A minor earthquake measuring 3.9 on the Richter scale shook the cities of Serres and Kilkis in northern Greece on Saturday but did not cause any injuries or damage. The epicenter of the quake was some 60 kilometers north of Thessaloniki, near Lake Kerkini. Deadly blaze. A 21-year-old Russian man died in a house fire in Kallithea, southern Athens, authorities said Saturday. Firefighters said the unnamed man’s sofa went up in flames Friday night, and he suffered severe burns on his upper body. It was unclear what caused the fire.

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