NEWS

In Brief

DEADLY COLLISION

Motorist killed after train slams into his car in central Greece A 55-year-old man was killed yesterday when a train traveling from Palaiofarsala to Kalambaka in central Greece slammed into his car, authorities said. It was not immediately clear why Christos Dalabiras and his vehicle were on the track at the time of the incident. The car was pushed some 600 meters further down the tracks due to the impact. Dalabiras was killed instantly but none of the train passengers was injured. Since February, more than 12 people have been killed in similar collisions, prompting calls for greater safety at level crossings. BUCKLING UP Pregnant women will have to wear seat belts under new traffic rules Pregnant women and people under 1.50 meters tall will have to wear seat belts under the revised highway code being prepared by the Transport Ministry, sources said yesterday. Transport Minister Michalis Liapis said last week that taxi and truck drivers would no longer be exempt from the seat belt law. But the ministry intends to force other groups of drivers, so far exempt, to wear the belts. Studies show it is more dangerous for a pregnant woman not to wear a seat belt than to be buckled up, sources said. BARROSO VISIT EC president due in Athens Sunday European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso is to visit Athens this Sunday, following an invitation by Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis, it was announced yesterday. Barroso will make a speech on Sunday evening at the Pnyx, opposite the Acropolis, to celebrate the 25 years since Greece joined the EU. Royal Dane Denmark’s Queen Margarethe II met with President Karolos Papoulias in Athens yesterday at the start of a three-day visit. Margarethe, who is accompanied by her husband Prince Henrik, is also to meet with Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis. Booby prize The Development Ministry yesterday imposed a fine of 116,000 euros on an Athens company for misleading advertising. The ministry found that the firm, Blue Post, informed potential customers that they had won a prize in a draw but would have to buy something from the company’s catalog in order to claim the gift. The General Secretariat for the Consumer told people to be wary of advertising material and to call 1520 if they had anything to report. Cypriot archbishop The Holy Synod of the Orthodox Church of Cyprus decided yesterday to hold an election on September 24 to choose a successor for the increasingly frail Archbishop Chrysostomos. The 78-year-old, who succeeded Archbishop Makarios in 1977, has been suffering from poor health for the last few years. Holdup Two armed men held up a branch of Emporiki Bank in Thessaloniki around noon yesterday and made away with 60,000 euros, authorities said. Police have launched a manhunt for the two suspects. Food fines Piraeus prefectural authorities said yesterday that they had suspended the trading license of a food company in Piraeus for two months due to the poor condition of its facilities. Also prefectural authorities confiscated 188 kilos of meat from butchers in Piraeus that were unfit for consumption. In separate checks this month, the Hellenic Food Authority (EFET) seized 37,519 kilos of dairy products from a company in Iraklion, Crete, for breaching market regulations. Cannabis plants Police yesterday located 43 cannabis trees in a mountainous area outside of Rethymnon, Crete, and said they have launched a manhunt for the people believed to have cultivated the plants. Fast track Police in Pieria, northern Greece, said yesterday that they had arrested 19 migrants aboard a train traveling from Thessaloniki to Athens after discovering that they had entered Greece illegally.