NEWS

In Brief

Cyprus appeal

Greek FM calls on Ankara to pull out troops from island Foreign Minister Dimitris Droutsas yesterday appealed to Turkey to withdraw thousands of its troops from the Turkish-occupied north of Cyprus during his first visit to the divided island in his new role. Describing the Cyprus problem as «Greece’s top foreign policy priority,» Droutsas called on Turkey «to make the necessary moves that turn words into deeds.» «The Cyprus problem is one of invasion and occupation. This we have not forgotten,» Droutsas told reporters after talks with Cyprus President Dimitris Christofias. The minister said Turkey had an obligation to «respond constructively» to proposals by Christofias, such as the return of the port of Famagusta to the Greek Cypriots. United Nations-mediated talks between Christofias and hardline Turkish-Cypriot leader Dervis Eroglu have not made much progress. PHONE TAPPING Case could be reopened Supreme Court deputy prosecutor Fotis Makris yesterday recommended that a new investigation be opened into a wiretapping operation that targeted top government officials during the Athens 2004 Olympics. The original probe, launched after the bugging was discovered in 2006, was shelved in January 2008. The Communications Privacy Protection Authority (ADAE) said earlier this year that the investigation had failed to obtain vital information and question key witnesses about the scheme to eavesdrop on conversations, including those of then Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis as well as more than 100 others. Stealing power Police in Sparta, in the Peloponnese, yesterday detained two members of a Roma community settlement close to the city on charges of stealing electricity from local power pylons. An inspection by police indicated that four families in the community had been illegally tapping into the local electricity supply to power appliances in the settlement. Another two suspects were being sought. Smugglers caught Police in northern Greece yesterday detained an Austrian national in the village of Ladochori, in Thesprotia prefecture, after finding four Afghan immigrants, including one minor, in his vehicle. Officers ran a search on the car’s registration plates which turned out to have been stolen from Athens on August 19. Meanwhile, in the northwestern port of Igoumenitsa, police detained two Greeks who had been en route to Arta with an undocumented migrant in their car. The ethnic origin of the migrant was unclear. Dodgy hotelier The owner of a hotel in the Cretan prefecture of Iraklio was yesterday detained by police after a search on his premises turned up a submachine gun, ammunition and several detonator fuses. Police got involved after guests at the hotel complained about the installation of surveillance cameras that they felt violated their privacy. It was unclear exactly where the cameras had been installed.