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Greek Report Greek Report
by Euro Reporter
2009-07-25 09:58:39
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President briefed on immigration agenda

The course of Greece's migration policy was the topic of discussion between President Karolos Papoulias and Interior Minister Prokopis Pavlopoulos this week.

papouliaspavlopoulos1Addressing the press, the minister mentioned that Greece "has played a decisive role in drafting the European Pact on Immigration and Asylum as well as in the evolution of Frontex –an agency monitoring EU’s external boarders-, which is now conducting operations in the Eastern Mediterranean all-year-round". The minister also stressed that Turkey's obligation to fulfil the terms of its bilateral agreement with Greece on illegal migration has now become an obligation of European-wide dimensions, paving the way for the signing of an EU-Turkey readmission agreement by the end of 2009.

According to YLE, Finland decided to help Greece’s and EU’s effort to control the Greek borders that are also EU’s external borders in Eastern Mediterranean, sending next October a Turku’s Coastguard Patrol Airplane. The Dornier plane will participate to Frontex patrols for three weeks, in Eastern Mediterranean area, together with Greek, Italian and German Air forces, in a common European effort to avoid the illegal entrance of immigrants from Turkey to EU territory.

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Athens dismisses latest quip for 'double-name' solution


doraseconf2Foreign Minister Dora Bakoyannis dismissed statements made by the prime minister of the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM), Nikola Gruevski that Skopje's ‘natural position’ is a "double-name formula" to overcome the thorny name issue."

This statement shows that Mr. Gruevski has not realised the message of the international community, which is clear and unanimous: for the sake of his country's and his people's Euro-Atlantic course, a mutually acceptable solution to this issue must be achieved; a composite name with a geographical qualifier, erga omnes," the FM underlined in a press release.

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Measures to reduce emissions

greencar1Measures to cut the carbon dioxide emissions produced by vehicles were on the agenda during an inner cabinet meeting yesterday, chaired by Prime Minister Kostas Karamanlis. Following the meeting, Town Planning, Public Works and Environment Minister George Souflias announced that higher "environmental taxes" will be levied on vehicles based on the amount of emissions produced by their engine.

Owners of so-called "green" vehicles will reportedly enjoy a reduction in license and road taxes, whereas owners of gas-guzzlers and older technology cars could see increases of between €50 to 150. The new rates will come into effect from 2010. Souflias announced a new programme (2009-12) to provide incentives for scrapping old cars in an effort to take off the road vehicles that pollute the environment. Also, he referred to changes for the current restricted zone in central Athens, according to which cars that pollute heavily would be excluded from entering it.

   
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