In Brief

Transport talks

Minister begins discussions with unions but stoppages continue Unions representing transport workers began a series of meetings with Transport Minister Dimitris Reppas yesterday in a bid to settle their differences over the government’s imminent reforms. The first union to hold talks with Reppas was that representing bus drivers. The other unions will follow this week. The labor groups plan to go ahead with the work stoppages they have already announced, so there will be no buses or trolley buses between 11 a.m. and 3.30 p.m. tomorrow or Thursday. Employees on the Kifissia-Piraeus electric railway (ISAP) will walk off the job tomorrow between noon and 4 p.m. Metro and tram workers have so far decided to refrain from action. Thursday rally Contract workers to walk off job Civil servants and workers on short-term contracts in the public and private sector will stage a work stoppage between 8.30 a.m. and 12.30 p.m. on Thursday, the ADEDY and GSEE unions said yesterday. There will be a rally outside the Supreme Court, where judges will be discussing the rights of contract workers. ADEDY, the civil servant’s union, said it has also planned a protest in front of the entrance to Athens University at 6 p.m. today to protest the reforms to the public transport network. A 24-hour strike is due to be held on Thursday. Pet menace A 17-year-old schoolboy from Trikala, central Greece, has been arrested after uploading videos of pets being abused on his page on the social networking site Facebook. Police had received numerous complaints from Facebook users and animal rights groups about the videos, which allegedly showed the teenager torturing various pets. Officers asked the site to provide details of the teenager’s whereabouts, which led to police visiting his home on Sunday to arrest him. Church hirings The Church of Greece said yesterday that it had decided to temper its request for the hiring of new priests to remain within the spirit of the cutbacks that the government and the Greek people have to make as a result of the economic crisis. Following a meeting of the Holy Synod, it was decided that the Church would only seek to hire 300 priests. According to its spokesman, Bishop Dorotheos of Syros, the church has some 800 spaces to fill. Civil aviation The Federation of Civil Aviation Authority Unions (OSYPA) has announced a 24-hour strike for tomorrow to coincide with the tabling in Parliament of a bill that will lead to several changes in the civil aviation sector. OSYPA does not include air-traffic controllers, so flights in and out of Greece should not be disrupted. Dead whale Authorities on Crete said that a dead whale, measuring 8 meters in length, washed up on Livadia beach in Kissamos yesterday. Experts believe that the mammal died after becoming entangled in fishermen’s nets. Another whale was found dead in the same area in 2007 after being struck by a boat’s propeller. Child porn Two men and one woman have been arrested in Thessaloniki on suspicion of trading in child pornography, police said yesterday. Officers said they seized computers with numerous indecent images of children stored on them.