In Brief


Experts advise government that pupils should return on Sept 11 A committee of experts that advises the government on issues related to the swine flu pandemic yesterday suggested that schools should open as planned on September 11 despite fears that children will spread the virus. The issue of whether the first day of school will be delayed has been under discussion for several weeks but this is the clearest indication yet that there will be no change to the timetable. The committee is due to meet next week to decide under what circumstances schools should be instructed to shut down. NAME TALKS Jolevski due to meet Nimetz After holding talks late on Tuesday with Greek Ambassador Adamantios Vassilakis, the United Nations mediator for the Macedonia name issue, Matthew Nimetz, is due to meet by the end of the week with the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia’s representative, Zoran Jolevski, in New York to discuss Skopje’s opinion of his most recent proposals aimed at resolving the dispute. Press reports in FYROM yesterday suggested that Skopje is not willing to accept Nimetz’s suggestion of «Republic of Northern Macedonia» but would consider «Northern Republic of Macedonia» or «Republic of (Northern) Macedonia.» Markopoulo rebuff One of the mining companies that is to be probed by the Supreme Court following a Development Ministry-led investigation at two quarries in Markopoulo, southeast of Athens, yesterday denied that it is ignoring court rulings by continuing activity in the area. The company, Anaplasi Markopoulou, which has succeeded Latomeia Markopoulou, issued a statement saying it stopped mining in 2005 and is using the site only to weigh the materials that it sells. McCain visit Arizona Senator and former US presidential candidate John McCain, who wrapped up a two-day visit to Rhodes yesterday, expressed a positive outlook for Greek-Turkish relations – strained by a recent spike in violations of Greek air space – following talks with Deputy Foreign Minister Yiannis Valinakis. McCain, who visited the island with senators Joe Lieberman and Susan Collins, said there had always been «issues» between Athens and Ankara but noted a steady improvement in ties that he said he believed would continue. Glyfada mugger Police in the coastal suburb of Glyfada yesterday detained a 21-year-old woman alleged to have injured a female pedestrian while trying to grab her bag. A search of the woman turned up a knife, believed to have been used in other muggings in the area. The woman is believed to have operated with a 29-year-old male accomplice whom police were seeking yesterday. Rape probe Three Romanian nationals were in police detention in the central town of Arta yesterday and a fourth was being sought in connection with the rape last March of a mentally handicapped girl, who subsequently died of her injuries, and the violent beating of her father. The girl, whose age was not determined, was raped in front of her father whom the perpetrators had tied up, police said. Two of the suspects were arrested in Arta, the third in Athens and the fourth is believed to have fled to Romania.