NEWS

In Brief

TEEN SUPPORT

Private school offers scholarship to girl allegedly raped by classmates The 16-year-old schoolgirl who was allegedly raped by classmates on Evia has been offered a place at a private high school in Athens on a three-year scholarship, sources said yesterday. The high school in Amarynthos has also rescinded the five-day suspension that it imposed on the girl and the four boys alleged to have attacked her. Meanwhile, more than 800 women voiced their support for the 16-year-old by signing a statement which was made public yesterday. A total of 819 Greek and foreign women put their name on the statement. DIABETES AWARENESS Health Ministry launches campaign to alert people to dangers of illness An initiative launched yesterday by the Health Ministry aims to raise awareness about diabetes as an increasing number of overweight children are affected by the disease, a press conference heard yesterday. The country’s hospitals are to be stocked with leaflets advising citizens about the health precautions they should take to avert the disease, believed to affect 1 million people in Greece, ahead of World Diabetes Day on Tuesday. BABY BOOM Artificial insemination on the rise Hundreds of foreign couples come to Greece to undergo artificial insemination, doctors from the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki said yesterday ahead of a conference on medical ethics. Some 7,000 couples are artificially inseminated each year in Greece but doctors said that many of them are from abroad because Greek law recognizes the process whereas other countries like France, Italy and Germany have yet to pass the relevant legislation. Dioxin alert Officials in Thessaloniki have discovered high levels of cancer-causing dioxins at an abattoir less than a kilometer from a garbage dump in Tagarades that was ravaged by fire in July. Deputy Prefect Yiannis Bikos said that a second sample was taken for testing yesterday and officials are deciding what action to take next. «We want to protect the producer and public health,» said Bikos. The company involved was not named. The Tagarades dump burned for more than a week. Jail break Three people were cleared yesterday of helping the convicted murderer Peter Sedom escape from Korydallos Prison in May 2002. Former prison warden Antonis Arvantinos, prison guard Panayiotis Chrysovergis and ex-convict Giorgos Papageorgiou said they had nothing to do with the escape. Sedom, a US national, escaped with the assistance of the prison psychologist Olga Atzamoglou. Neither has been seen since. Sedom was jailed for the murder of a 20-year-old student. Traffickers caught Port authority officials yesterday arrested two men on the Dodecanese island of Patmos on suspicion that they smuggled 79 migrants into Greece, the Merchant Marine Ministry said. The immigrants were found on the island of Agathonissi in the eastern Aegean on Tuesday. Meanwhile, coast guard officers yesterday picked up 10 illegal immigrants in a motor boat off the coast of the eastern Aegean island of Samos. The migrants said they had paid $1,000 (780 euros) each to buy the boat from two men in Turkey. Emergency landing A Thai airline flight from Bangkok to Athens was forced to make an emergency landing in Turkmenistan yesterday after engine problems. The plane, with 126 passengers – including 86 Greeks – on board, landed safely at Ashbagat airport where engineers repaired the problem and the plane continued its journey to Athens. School attacked Two Molotov cocktails were thrown early yesterday at a secondary school in Peristeri, western Athens, police said. The fire bombs exploded at the school’s entrance area, causing minor damage. There were no reports of injuries.