NEWS

In Brief

VATOPEDI PROBE

Prosecutor says she needs help in land-swap investigation The only prosecutor left investigating the Vatopedi property exchange has asked for help in conducting the probe. It emerged yesterday that Efstathia Spyropoulou, whose appointment last month was one of the reasons that led to the resignation of the two prosecutors who had been investigating the controversial land deal, wrote to her superior Kyriakos Karoutsos to ask for another prosecutor to be assigned. Public coffers were allegedly left 100,000 euros short when land belonging to the state was undervalued during the exchange with the Vatopedi Monastery on Mount Athos. ATHENS BLASTS Devices damage cars and store Unidentified arsonists caused damage to several cars parked outside Hellenic Navy offices in central Athens and a mobile-phone store in a northern suburb early yesterday. The blasts, both provoked by homemade gas canister bombs, destroyed five parked cars outside the Navy offices on Klafthmonos Square and damaged the entrance to a store in Aghia Paraskevi. No one was injured. Cyprus talks Cyprus President Dimitris Christofias yesterday told reporters that the latest round of peace talks will not be rushed. «I know that some people are in a hurry but this process needs patience and nerves of steel and I think I have both,» Christofias said after talks with Turkish-Cypriot leader Mehmet Ali Talat. The talks, which focused on power-sharing in a future bizonal federation, were the sixth since the peace initiative was launched on September 3. Help for poor Athens Mayor Nikitas Kaklamanis revealed a set of measures yesterday aimed at helping more than 500,000 poor families in the city, which included freezing municipal fees for sanitation and street lighting. Kaklamanis also offered free clothing and household goods as part of the program. Furthermore, he announced the setting up of a «social pharmacy» that would allow the uninsured, homeless, single-parent families and other social groups to obtain drugs at cut-rate prices. College finances The Piraeus Technical College said yesterday that it is in such dire financial straits that it cannot pay its utility bills. The director of the college, Lazaros Vryzidis, said that the institution will be unable to accommodate some 1,200 students who want to transfer to Piraeus. Lecturers plan to hold several protests on top of a nationwide teachers’ strike on November 6. Felled A man was killed yesterday when a tree that he was chopping down collapsed on top of him, authorities said. The incident occurred in the area of Malako in Trikala prefecture, central Greece. The man, who was not named, was discovered by his family and taken to the hospital in Trikala where he was pronounced dead. Youths released Nine youths detained in Thessaloniki early on Sunday after suspected anarchists went on the rampage, hurling Molotov cocktail bombs at police and injuring eight officers, were released yesterday. Police could not find any evidence to link the youths to the troubles and let them go.