NEWS

In Brief

NAME GAME

Greece calls for new FYROM government to cooperate in talks Deputy Foreign Minister Yiannis Valinakis said yesterday that he hoped «the new government of the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia will display the necessary spirit of cooperation so that a mutually acceptable solution [to the name issue] can be found.» Valinakis was speaking after FYROM’s prime minister in waiting, Nikola Gruevski, said that Greece’s neighbor would not negotiate over its constitutional name, the Republic of Macedonia. Gruevski said FYROM would consider using another name in dealings with Greece. «If the question is what Greece will call FYROM, the decisions of the UN Security Council and negotiations at the UN would not be necessary,» said Valinakis. BRITONS ARRESTED Four men detained on Cyprus after one local is killed, another injured Four British men were arrested in the Cypriot holiday resort of Protaras yesterday after a 17-year-old Cypriot was killed and another injured when their motorcycle hit a lamppost. According to police, the four Britons allegedly reacted to an earlier incident at a nightclub and officers are investigating whether they rammed into the motorcycle with their rental car. The unnamed suspects, the oldest of whom is 30, are due to appear in court today. SEASIDE FIRE Blaze destroys cafe, damages club A fire yesterday destroyed the Galea cafeteria in the beachside area of Voula, firefighters said. The blaze broke out at about 7.30 a.m. and quickly spread due to the flammable material in the building, authorities added. Forty firefighters using 12 fire trucks were involved in the operation. The adjoining La Palmie nightclub also suffered serious damage from the blaze. Illegal immigrants Two foreign nationals were arrested in a boat off Chios, close to the Turkish coast, accused of having transported 10 illegal immigrants into the country. The Merchant Marine Ministry said that that two men had just dropped off the illegal immigrants on the nearby islet of Oinousses when they were intercepted by the coast guard. Magic mushrooms Two 29-year-old men were arrested at the Athens International Airport yesterday when police found in their possession 42.5 grams of hallucinogenic mushrooms and small quantities of cannabis. The two suspects, both Greek nationals, were returning from a trip to the Netherlands. Serial arsonist A man who allegedly set fire to a total of 13 cars over petty differences with their owners has been arrested in Peristeri, western Athens, police said yesterday. The 41-year-old is suspected of setting fire to two cars in Peristeri this month by placing homemade incendiary devices inside the vehicles. The unnamed man was detained in January on suspicion of setting fire to 11 cars. Police said that all the arson attacks were carried out after he fell out with the owners of the vehicles, often over trivial matters. Austin power A special team of police officers who patrol the country’s borders to prevent drug smuggling yesterday praised the contribution made by their sniffer dog, Austin, in the arrest of four men who were attempting to bring hashish into Greece from Albania. Officers said that Austin helped them track down the four men on Mount Grammos. He sniffed out the suspects, all Albanian nationals, as they were carrying travel bags containing a total of 84 kilos of hashish. Halkida trains Trains between Piraeus and Halkida in Evia will resume normal operation on Monday, the Hellenic Railways Organization (OSE) said yesterday. The service had been disrupted recently due to engineering work on the line. Passengers can obtain more information from their local stations or by calling OSE on 1110. Cannabis crops Police on Crete arrested a local man yesterday in connection with a cannabis plantation on the island. Officers said that the 42-year-old man was growing 241 plants in Strovoles, near Hania. In a separate incident, another suspect was arrested after officers found a number of firearms and explosives in his possession. Officers said they made the arrest at a house in Perivolia, near Hania, after reports of shots being fired.