Friday, 27 January 2023

369 Posts in Greece

Athens
27
01
2023
The case, still under investigation by prosecutors, emerged in August when Nikos Androulakis, leader of the socialist PASOK party, Greece's third largest, said the country's intelligence service EYP tapped his conversations in 2021. The Greek government has denied any wrongdoing or knowingly wiretapping anyone. Parliament last month passed a bill reforming EYP and banning the sale of spyware after a leftist newspaper reported that more than 30 people, including ministers, had been under state surveillance via phone malware. Leftist firebrand Alexis Tsipras, prime minister from 2015 to 2019, said his successor was the mastermind behind mass surveillance of politicians, journalists and security officials. On Tuesday, Tsipras received the conclusions of a separate investigation conducted by the independent telecommunications privacy authority ADAE. "For the past six months, Greek society has been witness to disclosures of an inconceivable number of phone taps, the deepest deviation from rule of law that the country has seen in its modern history," Tsipras told parliament. "We have a historic duty to act," he said, before announcing that his party would submit to parliament a censure motion. Citing ADAE's conclusions, Tsipras said the government kept tabs on the energy minister and army chiefs. "What national security reason was there to place the guardians of our national security under surveillance?" Tsipras asked rhetorically. ADAE could not be reached for comment. The debate on the motion will start later on Wednesday and conclude with a vote on Friday afternoon. Mitsotakis' New Democracy party controls 156 deputies in the 300-seat parliament. Tsipras has not publicly made clear what alleged surveillance methods were used. Local media have suggested the Predator malware programme was used, though Greek authorities have denied purchasing or using such a system. The government has accused the leftist opposition of defamation. A parliamentary election will be held in Greece in the spring, Mitsotakis said this month. His party is leading in opinion polls. A European Parliament commission of inquiry, known as PEGA, has been investigating the alleged use of spyware by European governments for almost a year. PEGA has urged Greece to shed light on the case ahead of the elections.
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Athens
27
01
2023
The Commission is also referring Greece and another 5 EU member states to the Court of the European Union for not preventing damage to the environment by the introduction of invasive plants and animals. Specifically: - The Commission sent a warning letter to Greece and three more countries to ensure that all demands in the directive on fighting children's sexual abuse (2011/93/EU) be properly included in national legislation. -The Commission warned Greece, Belgium, Portugal, and Spain over not including in their national legislations the entirely of a directive on the reception of persons applying for international protection. The EU has begun infringement proceedings against the four countries. - Greece and another five EU member states (Bulgaria, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, and Portugal) will be referred to the Court of the European Union over practices allowing the invasion of foreign flora and fauna to their countries. Greece did not draft, apply or inform the Commission of an action plan to manage the key routes of import and spread of these. The EU had sent a warning letter to Greece in June 2021 and a reasoned opinion on February 2022. - The Commission sent Greece a reasoned opinion to include properly into its national legislation the EU legislation that penalizes hate speech and hate crimes. It had sent Greece a reasoned opinion in June 2021. - Finally, the European Commission called on Greece to observe EU regulations on public procurements in public utility services. It has initiated infringement proceedings against the country over national legislation that allows fast-track tenders on public contracts for desalination units of a specific capacity on Greek islands.
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Athens
27
01
2023
The three new routes will be added to the company's summer schedule, which this year is expected to start earlier, and will appear in the booking systems within days. AEGEAN connects Greece to Israel with regular weekly flights throughout the year from Athens and Thessaloniki, while during the summer season it will carry out regular and charter flights to and from nine popular destinations in Greece and Cyprus (Athens, Thessaloniki, Heraklion, Mykonos, Rhodes, Larnaca, Ioannina, Chania, Kalamata). At the same time, AEGEAN, in order to strengthen tourist traffic from this market to Greece, thus supporting the increased attractiveness of the Greek tourist product that has been systematically recorded in recent years, is increasing the offered seats by 50 pct compared with the previous year. AEGEAN has been operating scheduled and chartered flights to and from Israel since 2002, constantly increasing its activity, and has transported a total of 4 million passengers. For more information about the new routes visit www.aegeanair.com.
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27
01
2023
The investment by Tikun Europe, subsidiary of Israel-based Tikun Olam, was welcomed by Greek Development & Investments Minister Adonis Georgiadis, who called the inauguration a historic day, speaking at the event. He noted that Greek patients will benefit from these products, despite cannabis "having a difficult history due to its nature as a narcotic." Georgiadis added that this is "a product which we will be able to export throughout Europe, because this factory can carry out huge exports to all major European countries." In his speech, the minister publicly acknowledged that Nikos Karanikas -former strategic planning advisor to SYRIZA-Progressive Alliance leader Alexis Tsipras who attended the event - was the first in Greece to propose the bill for the legalization, production and marketing of medicinal cannabis. Also attending were Deputy Minister of Research & Technology Christos Dimas and Tikun Europe CEO Nikos Beis. According to Beis, the investment exceeded 40 million euros in a privately owned area of 6 hectares (60 stremmas), which includes an area of 21,000 sq.m. with state-of-the-art hybrid greenhouses, as well as a pharmaceutical unit of 3,0000 sq.m. The plant can produce finished medicinal cannabis products in various pharmaceutical forms, Beis added.
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Athens
26
01
2023
Specifically, so far a warning message has been sent by 112 to the residents of the regions of Kefalonia, Ithaca, Lefkada, Zakynthos, Aitoloakarnania, Achaia and Ilia, while, as Mr. Artophios said, it is expected to be issued as well second warning message from 112 to the residents of Corinthia, Argolis, Laconia, Messinia, Eastern Arcadia, Karditsa and Trikala. Later, a third warning message will follow from 112 to the regions of western Macedonia where heavy snowfall is expected. In Attica, as Mr. Artophios said, heavy rains and storms are expected tomorrow afternoon. "We recommend limiting movements to those that are absolutely necessary. Depending on the evolution of the phenomena and the information from the EMY, other messages will be sent from 112 if deemed necessary", he noted. At the same time, a new broad coordination meeting will be held tomorrow to re-evaluate the course of the bad weather. In addition, all Civil Protection forces have been put on maximum alert, while the Fire Services of the areas where the phenomena are expected to occur are in a state of increased readiness. "All Civil Protection forces have been put on maximum alertness and alertness to deal with any emergency. The fire services of the areas where the phenomena are expected to occur have been placed in a state of increased readiness and further escalation if required in order to immediately deal with any problems. We issue a strong recommendation to citizens to be particularly careful and to faithfully follow basic self-protection instructions," said Mr. Artophios and added: "Limit your movements to those absolutely necessary during severe weather events. Always remember to move to the highest parts of the house in case of flooding. Do not for any reason cross torrents, streams or roads that have been flooded on foot or by vehicle." Regarding the development of the bad weather, Mr. Artopioos said that it has been ongoing since last Thursday, January 19, affecting our country with successive waves. Stronger phenomena were manifested, as he pointed out, in P.E Pella on Monday, January 23, where the Operations Center of the P.S received 115 calls for water pumping in the wider area of Aridaia, while actions were taken in 36 cases. Yesterday, Tuesday, January 24th, an Emergency Bulletin of Dangerous Weather Phenomena was issued by the EMY which was updated today and as Mr. Artophios mentioned, heavy rains and storms accompanied by strong winds and snowfall are expected from this afternoon until Friday. "The phenomena will initially manifest in the west, central and south and will gradually expand towards the north-east of the country. For this reason, today at noon, a broad coordination meeting was held with the participation of the political leadership of the Ministry of Climate Crisis and Civil Protection, the physical leadership of the PS of all co-competent agencies, but also with a scientific team of meteorologists and hydrologists", he underlined. It is noted that the EMY will update the emergency bulletin of dangerous weather phenomena every 12 hours and it will be published on its official website, while there will be a newer update for any development. For more information and self-protection instructions from severe weather, citizens can visit the website (https://www.civilprotection.gr/el/entona-kairika-fainomena) of the Ministry of Climate Crisis and Civil Protection.
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Athens
26
01
2023
Labor and Social Affairs ministry, in an announcement on Wednesday, said that a decision to raise and support pensioners' income began in December 20, 2022 (with an extraordinary payment of 250 euros, the abolition of the special solidarity contribution, the fourth annual pension payment increase and an pension increase of 7.75%) will benefit 94.6% of pensioners (2,499,285). A total of 1.1 million pensioners will see double increase in pension payments, around 185,000 will see triple increase, while one in two pensioners will see one more pension in 2023.
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Athens
25
01
2023
Almost half of the 2022 attempts were made overland through the Western Balkans region, EU agency Frontex said, according to its “preliminary calculations.” Regardless of entry route, Syrians, Afghans and Tunisians together accounted for roughly 47% of the attempted border crossings. Men accounted for more than 80% of the attempts to get in, Frontex said. The agency calculates entry attempts rather than the number of people trying to get into Europe because it is often difficult to identify migrants, who routinely travel without passports, and some may try to enter multiple times. People arriving at Europe’s borders to apply for asylum have a reasonable chance of being allowed in, while those who come without a visa in search of jobs and better lives are mostly turned away. Well over 1 million people, most of them Syrians fleeing conflict, entered the EU in 2015, overwhelming reception facilities and sparking one of the 27-nation bloc’s biggest political crises. Member countries still argue over who should take responsibility for people arriving without authorization and whether their neighbors and partners should be obliged to help. Attempts to reform the bloc’s asylum system have made little progress. Frontex’s latest figures did not include almost 13 million Ukrainian refugees who were counted at the EU’s external borders between February and December. Special emergency measures were introduced to ease their entry and help find them accommodation, training and short-term jobs. The number of people making potentially perilous journeys across the Mediterranean Sea in poorly equipped and often overloaded boats and rubber dinghies continued to rise last year. Frontex said that well over 100,000 crossing attempts were recorded, around 50% more than in 2021.   Egyptians, Tunisians and Bangladeshis tried in the greatest number. The agency said that 2022 saw the most people in five years arrive from Libya, the main departure point in northern Africa. The number of people leaving Tunisia hit the highest level in recent history.       (Photo: Migrants with life jackets provided by volunteers of the Ocean Viking, a migrant search and rescue ship run by NGOs SOS Mediterranee and the International Federation of Red Cross (IFCR), still sail in a wooden boat as they are being rescued, Aug 27, in the Mediterranean sea. The back-to-back shipwrecks of migrant boats off Greece that left at least 22 people dead this week has once again put the spotlight on the dangers of the Mediterranean migration route to Europe. [AP])
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25
01
2023
The Panhellenic Seamen's Federation (PNO) is demanding the immediate negotiation and signing of new collective labor agreements for 2023, among other issues. More information will follow soon.
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Athens
24
01
2023
The ministry launched an invitation to the largest aerospace industries in the NATO alliance to express interest in the procedures by February 10th, 2023.
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Athens
24
01
2023
More specifically, in November 2022 travel receipts rose by 15.9% to 314.0 million, up from 271.0 million in November 2021, while travel payments also increased by 15.4% (November 2022: 134.0 million, November 2021: 116.2 million). The rise in travel receipts was due to a 44.7% increase in inbound traveller flows, as average expenditure per trip declined by 21.8%. Net travel receipts offset 4.7% of the goods deficit and contributed 55.4% in total net services receipts. In the January-November 2022 period, the balance of travel services showed a surplus of 15,624.7 million, up from a surplus of 9,316.7 million in the corresponding period of 2021. Travel receipts rose by 7,067.6 million, or 68.5%, to 17,384.2 million, while travel payments also increased by 759.6 million, or 76.0%, to 1,759.5 million. The rise in travel receipts stemmed from a 90.3% increase in inbound traveller flows, as average expenditure per trip declined by 12.0%. Net travel receipts offset 43.4% of the goods deficit and contributed 82.0% in total net services receipts. In November, travel receipts rose by 15.9% year-on-year. In more detail, receipts from residents of EU27 countries increased by 13.3% to 127.4 million, while receipts from outside the EU27 rose by 13.0%.
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Athens
23
01
2023
According to Athens International Airport sources, all checks to the aeroplane that was carrying out the flight Katovice - Athens were concluded at 19:20.  The Ryanair plane escorted by a pair of Greek fighters F-16 landed at Athens International Airport "Eleftherios Venizelos" and the evacuation process and the check of the passengers began immediately. A strong force of police, the Fire Brigade and a  special team of the Department of Explosive Devices Disposal  has rushed to the site.
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Athens
22
01
2023
Moreover, they said they are going on a nationwide job walkout from 12:00 noon until shift's end on Thursday, February 2. They also announced a mass protest gathering that will be held at the Energy & Environment Ministry at 10:00 am on the day. The three workers' unions involved in these mobilizations are: Panhellenic Federation of Associations of Higher Education Civil Servant Engineers (POEMDYDAS), POE-OTA (municipal workers), and Public Sector Technology Engineers (POMITEDI). The unions say these services are understaffed, while several financial and regulatory issues also remain unresolved.
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