NEWS

In Brief

SWINE FLU

Two more cases in Greece take total number to 23 A 22-year-old Greek woman returning home from the UK and a 24-year-old American woman visiting Athens from New York were diagnosed with swine flu yesterday, pushing the number of cases of H1N1 detected in Greece to 23. Of these 23 people found to have contracted the virus, 11 have received full treatment and have seen their symptoms disappear, according to health authorities. UNIVERSITY ENTRANCE Exam results due on Friday The Education Ministry revealed yesterday that the results of university entrance exams will be made public on Friday. The results will be posted on message boards at high schools around the country. Some 91,000 students are competing for just over 69,500 university places. Defense cuts Defense Minister Evangelos Meimarakis yesterday heralded a cut in defense spending and announced that the compulsory 12 months of military service in the army would be reduced to 9 months. Those who joined the forces in May will serve just 10 months and those who joined in February will serve 11 months, the minister said. Meanwhile, defense spending will be trimmed by 15 percent next year and 10 percent for the four years after that, he added. Graverobbers Two deaf stepbrothers aged 39 and 15 have been arrested on suspicion of desecrating the dead and stealing from Athens’s First Cemetery, it was revealed yesterday. Police said they believe that since last March the pair broke into the cemetery at least four times, destroying more than 60 graves and stealing some votive offerings. The two are also accused of digging up bodies in the Jewish section of the cemetery and throwing some of the deceased’s bones into garbage bins. Officers said the two suspects were caught red-handed in possession of two icons that they had stolen. All square The City of Athens said yesterday that it had passed a resolution to purchase or expropriate a building near Omonia Square in order to demolish it and create a new square as part of an effort to renovate the area. The building, which belongs to the Greek Seamen’s Pension Fund (NAT) is located at the intersection of Veranzerou, Menandrou and Xouthou streets. Libel charge A 22-year-old Cretan student has been detained on charges of libel and violation of laws protecting personal privacy after allegedly creating a profile of his former landlady on Facebook and uploading indecent photographs of her. According to police, the student created the page on the social networking site two months after moving out from the apartment of the landlady, who is a Navy officer. The motive of the student’s alleged action was unclear. Arson attack A homemade explosive device comprising six gas canisters caused significant damage to a branch of Eurobank in the central district of Petralona when it went off early yesterday morning. No injuries were reported.