In Brief


Brush blaze in Halkidiki put out before much damage is caused A brush fire broke out yesterday morning in Halkidiki, northern Greece, just kilometers from where a blaze ravaged almost 5,000 hectares of forestland last summer. The fire, which began at around 11 a.m., was brought under control quickly. The fire service said that the blaze was caused by a resident who set alight some dead branches on his land but then failed to control the flames. Two water-dropping airplanes were used to put out the fire. Local authorities said that they have prepared thoroughly this year to avoid a repeat of last year’s disaster. YOGURT WITHDRAWAL Watchdog calls for jars to be removed after glass found in one Italian and Greek health authorities ordered yesterday the withdrawal of some 40,000 jars of Italian yogurt in which fragments of glass were found. Italy’s Consorzio Cooperativo Latterie Friulane advised health authorities in both countries after a consumer in northeastern Italy reported finding shards in one of the glass jars containing the Bio Natura Plus and Bio Biotos yogurts, the company said. Greece’s food inspection watchdog, EFET said some 17,700 packages had been imported and warned consumers not to eat the yogurt. The Italian company said the measure was just a precaution. AMBUSH CLUES Ski mask, notebook being analyzed Officers investigating the disarming of the Supreme Courts president’s guard last week are analyzing a black ski mask and the policeman’s notebook, which were found underneath a parked car in Palaio Faliron, southern Athens. Police hope that the two objects may have fingerprints or DNA evidence that might lead authorities to the two suspects who robbed Romylos Kedikoglou’s guard of his semiautomatic gun and service revolver outside the judge’s home in the coastal suburb of Glyfada. Officers are also analyzing footage from two CCTV cameras in the area. Bad meat Piraeus prefectural officials yesterday confiscated 337 tons of frozen chicken deemed to be unfit for human consumption. The chicken, which was found packed into more than 22,000 boxes in Rendi, southwestern Athens, had been slaughtered between January and October 2006 when the bird flu crisis had led to a sharp drop in the consumption of poultry. The chicken, a couple of samples of which tested positive for salmonella, had expiry dates ranging between May and December 2007, officials said. Students appeal A group of students of the Hellenic Open University (HOU) have lodged a collective appeal against the charging of fees by the university, it was revealed yesterday. The students, who reportedly spent a total of 8,400 euros on courses at the HOU, maintain that the practice of charging fees violates a constitutional amendment according to which higher education should be free. The suit was lodged by student Tassos Lialios who refused to pay the required fees for his course in Greek civilization. The HOU’s degree program fees are 700 euros and postgraduate study fees 850 euros. Worker killed A construction worker was killed at a building site in Kallithea, southern Athens, yesterday, authorities said. The accident took place around midday when the worker was crushed to death by building equipment. No further details were available. Bomb explodes A homemade explosive device went off outside of the offices of the General Secretariat for Youth in Kato Patissia, central Athens, late on Monday causing minor damage, police said yesterday. No one was hurt in the incident. Cypriot discontent The decision to open crossing points on Cyprus in 2003 did little to facilitate closer contacts between Greek and Turkish Cypriots, a UN-commissioned poll released yesterday showed. The poll suggested that for Greek Cypriots, crossing the checkpoints «is like a sacred pilgrimage in which you don’t engage or enjoy,» whereas for Turkish Cypriots «it’s something they do for pleasure,» according to analyst Alexandros Lordos. (Reuters)

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