NEWS

In Brief

DUST CLOUDS

Weathermen say Saharan sand will stay until the weekend The Saharan dust seen in most parts of Greece yesterday will linger over the country until the end of the week, meteorologists said yesterday. The dust is being carried on southwesterly winds and has been accompanied by unseasonably warm temperatures, which are expected to reach as high as 28 Celsius (82F) in some parts of the country this week. «The movement of dust from the Sahara is more usual in the spring, and even in summer sometimes,» said the head of the National Meteorological Service, Dimitris Ziakopoulos. «The increasingly common presence of dust in the fall is connected to climate change and we should expect this to happen more frequently in the future.» OFFICER RECOVERING Stun grenade injury healing A 25-year-old policeman who was seriously injured in the stomach when a stun grenade attached to his belt went off by accident while he was on duty in Athens on Saturday is no longer in danger, doctors said yesterday. The incident had occurred after minor skirmishes outside the Culture Ministry between riot police and youths who had been at a party at the National Technical University of Athens. Authorities believe the officer had taken the pin out of his stun grenade in preparation for throwing it but forgot to put it back when he returned the grenade to his belt. Trolley disruption Athens trolley buses will not operate between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. tomorrow as staff of the firm that operates the network (ILPAP) stage a work stoppage. While the walkout is under way, protesters are to hold a general assembly before staging a march to the Finance Ministry. Meanwhile staff of all modes of public transport in the capital are said to be planning a 24-hour strike in protest at the planned streamlining of debt-ridden public companies on Wednesday, December 8. Online harassment Officers of the police’s electronic crime unit yesterday detained a 52-year-old former convict alleged to have been sexually harassing a 15-year-old pupil on her profile page on the social-networking site Facebook. Officers traced the suspect after the girl described the alleged harassment to her mother, who reported it to the police. The man, who allegedly made lewd and suggestive comments to the girl on the site as well as threatening her, is a former convict who served a four-year jail term in Tripoli jail for sexually harassing a minor. Junction opens The junction of the national highway linking Corinth and the city of Megalopoli, in the Peloponnese, at Alfeios opened yesterday. Wind damage Municipal crews in Trikala, central Greece, were yesterday trying to repair the damage done to mountain roads and villages in the area by gale-force winds and heavy rain. Authorities said that a number of roads had been blocked by rockfalls and that there had been flooding in some villages. There were no reports of anyone being injured. Gas station raid An armed robber forced an employee at a gas station in Diavata, near Thessaloniki, to hand over some 1,500 euros in cash late on Sunday. Police said the robber drove off in a car.