In Brief


Mild tremors strike island of Karpathos and Peloponnese A strong earthquake, measuring 5.7 on the Richter scale, struck Argos, in the Peloponnese, just before 5 a.m. yesterday, and was felt in many parts of Athens. There were no injuries or damage reported after the quake. A second tremor, measuring 4.6 on the Richter scale, occurred off Karpathos, in the southern Aegean, shortly after 10 a.m. The second quake’s epicenter was located beneath the seabed off the island’s eastern coast. THESSALONIKI TRASH Work begins to clean up some 20,000 tons left on streets Municipal workers started gathering mounds of trash off the streets of Thessaloniki early yesterday as temperatures started to soar. Some 20,000 tons of garbage is to be dumped at the Tagarades landfill which is saturated but will operate until the end of July as a temporary measure. Local authorities decided to reopen the old dump yesterday as a trial period gets under way for a new landfill in the district of Mavrorachi which has faced violent opposition by residents. It is expected to take two days to clean up the trash-strewn streets of Thessaloniki. ZONING PLAN Call for withdrawal of bill A group of deputies from ruling New Democracy, as well as opposition parties PASOK and the Coalition for the Radical Left (SYRIZA), yesterday called for a land zoning plan to be withdrawn from Parliament’s plenary session, which is due to debate the bill. The group, which includes former Deputy Culture Minister Petros Tatoulis, wants Public Works Minister Giorgos Souflias to withdraw the bill so it can be re-evaluated by experts. Heat warning The Public Works and Environment Ministry issued a warning to Athenians yesterday after the level of air pollution in the city soared. The hot weather caused ground-level ozone to exceed limits, prompting the ministry to ask residents to use public transport rather than their own cars. It also extended a plea to factories that emit pollutants to stop operating between 11 a.m. and sunset. Dirty water The Panhellenic Center of Ecological Research (PAKOE) said yesterday that a study it conducted on behalf of the Municipality of Kifissia found that high levels of bacteria were found in the drinking water supplied to the upmarket suburb of Politeia. PAKOE said that Politeia gets its water from a private well and that, for six of the eight samples, the level of bacteria was above permissible levels. Student protest A group of students at the National Technical University of Athens (NTUA) staged a sit-in protest at several lecture theaters to voice their opposition to the government’s tertiary education reforms. The protest passed peacefully. The NTUA’s rector, Constantinos Moutzouris, told Kathimerini that the senate would meet next week to decide when to hold elections for the heads of several departments. The vote was disrupted by yesterday’s protest. Dodgy chickpeas The Hellenic Food Authority (EFET) yesterday called for the withdrawal of chickpeas manufactured by the firm 3Alpha after tests on a batch sent to the supermarket chain AB Vassilopoulos discovered traces of the banned pesticide Lindane. Some 48 tons of the chickpeas are believed to have been imported. Consumers are advised to avoid the product in question. Court disruptions Rolling three-hour strikes by court workers will disrupt proceedings at the capital’s courthouses through Friday. Workers are protesting being given additional cases to process without any extra staff to help them do the job. Coach tug of war Panathinaikos insisted yesterday that former Chelsea coach Henk ten Cate has signed a contract with the Greek Super League club to take over as their coach, despite rumors to the contrary. A club spokesman told yesterday that there was no truth in UK media reports that the Dutchman was on the short list for the vacant position at English premiership club Blackburn Rovers. «We realize that many teams would like to have Henk ten Cate as their coach but, as we announced on our website, he is going to be the Panathinaikos coach for the next two years,» he told the website.