NEWS

In Brief

HOSPITAL WALKOUT

Doctors, nurses and ambulance staff to strike from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. today Staff at state hospitals and clinics as well as ambulance workers will stage a six-hour work stoppage from 9 a.m. today, disrupting services. Protesters are calling for an increase in state funding for their sector, the recruitment of more staff and the classification of their work as hazardous. Striking workers will protest during a rally at Korai Square in central Athens before marching to the Economy and Finance Ministry. A similar rally is due to take place in Thessaloniki. CURBING TRAFFICKING Greece making progress but must do more to boost rights, MEPs say Greece is making steps toward combating human trafficking but needs to do more to ensure equality of rights, according to an eight-member panel representing the European Parliament Committee on Women’s Rights and Gender Equality, which held talks with representatives of the Greek government in Athens yesterday. The MEPs said that they have proposed the establishment of a Europe-wide telephone number to provide assistance to trafficking victims. ONASSIS WRANGLE Has Athina lost bid to control charity? A legal attempt by shipping heiress Athina Onassis for control of the Greek charity founded by her grandfather has failed after she did not follow it up, the head of the Onassis Foundation said yesterday. According to a lawsuit filed last September in a Liechtenstein court, where the charity is incorporated, Athina Onassis claimed an automatic right to lead the charity as a descendant of Aristotle Onassis. The foundation says there is no such family right enshrined in the original Onassis will, and that the lawsuit lapsed in November when Onassis failed to follow certain legal procedures required under Liechtenstein law. (Reuters) Illegal immigrants Authorities yesterday detained 56 illegal immigrants hiding in a truck in Athens after a road chase in Menidi, a northern Athenian suburb. Police said the chase ensued after the driver of the truck failed to stop for an inspection. Authorities caught up with the vehicle but the driver escaped, abandoning the immigrants. Hospital blaze Staff at the Giorgos Gennimatas hospital in Thessaloniki helped extinguish a fire that broke out early yesterday on the ground floor of the building before it spread to patients’ rooms. No one was hurt in the incident. Sixteen firefighters with seven fire trucks also fought the blaze, which caused minor damage. Driver hurt A 48-year-old man was seriously injured yesterday when the truck he was driving crashed into a train at a crossing in Komotini, northeastern Greece. None of the passengers on board the train, traveling from Thessaloniki to Istanbul, were hurt. The driver, Angelos Zagorianos, suffered multiple fractures and was hospitalized at the Sismanogleio hospital in Komotini. Trains were operating as normal on the route. Atlanta flight Delta Airlines yesterday inaugurated its Athens-Atlanta route that will depart from the Greek capital every day at 12.50 p.m. Something fishy Hygiene inspectors from the Athens Prefecture referred a fishmonger to the prosecutor yesterday after confiscating 243 kilos of seafood from his store in Votanikos, near the city center. The seafood – including shrimp, squid and various fish – was either found to be unfit for human consumption or not displaying the correct information on its packaging, authorities said. Bank raid Two armed robbers raided a branch of Eurobank in Menidi, northern Athens, shortly after 10 a.m. yesterday, police said. The robbers fled on a motorcycle with 19,000 euros. Fire protection A new system for detecting and monitoring forest fires in Halkidiki, northern Greece, will be tested on June 6 during a full-scale exercise, the fire service said yesterday. The system has been installed in the Sithonia forest and involves 10 CCTV cameras and a helicopter equipped with an infrared sensor which can detect changes in heat levels.