October 24, 2005

OPPOSITION: Although Prime Minister Constantine Karamanlis has called the Turkish government’s decision to honor the Greek flag (vandalized during recent attacks on the Greek minority in Istanbul and Izmir) as progress in the normalization of relations between Greece and Turkey, the opposition parties have hastened to characterize the move as insufficient moral satisfaction on the part of the Turks. The serious upheaval in Greek-Turkish relations due to the anti-Greek demonstrations in Istanbul and Izmir are seen by the Liberal Democratic Union, the National Progressive Union of Cyprus, and the Democratic and United Democratic Left parties as a unique opportunity for Greece to radically alter its foreign policy. (…) Only the Progressives Party, led by Mr Spyros Markezinis, and the Liberals, led by Mr George Papandreou, expressed reservations pending the final outcome of the government’s actions. EL ALAMEIN: Greece will not be represented at the next annual remembrance service in El Alamein, Egypt, for those who fell in the historic battle of 1942 because of its ongoing dispute with Britain over Cyprus. About 120 Greek officers and their men died at El Alamein.