Strike today and tomorrow
Tax offices across the country will be closed today and tomorrow as clerks join a 48-hour strike called by their union. Workers are protesting the closure of a number of tax offices and other cost-cutting measures undertaken by the government as part of its austerity drive. A protest rally is scheduled to begin at Korai Square in central Athens at 10.30 a.m. today. Members of the public wishing to meet end-of-the-month payment deadlines will be granted an extension until Monday.
The birth rate in Greece, one of the lowest in the European Union, plunged even further in 2011 when the repercussions of the country’s debt crisis started to take hold, reaching 1.42 children per woman, from 1.5 in 2010, according to figures made public yesterday by European Employment and Social Affairs Commissioner Laszlo Andor. The sharpest drop in that period in the 27-member EU was in Denmark, where the birthrate dropped to 1.75 children from 1.87, Andor said in response to a question submitted by Greek Euro MP Giorgos Papanikolaou. The average birthrate in the EU is 1.57 children per woman.
An appeals court in Aigio in the Peloponnese yesterday handed life sentences for murder to the wife of a 51-year-old priest killed last September in the village of Zacharo and a 41-year-old man alleged to be her lover. The 41-year-old was found guilty of shooting Athanasios Avgeropoulos in an ambush found to have been set up by the 43-year-old wife.
The leader of Canada’s Green Party, Elizabeth May, was yesterday scheduled to visit the premises of a controversial mining project run by Hellas Gold, which is owned by the Vancouver-based Eldorado Gold Corporation, near the village of Skouries in Halkidiki, northern Greece.
Police yesterday published the photograph and personal details of a 42year-old man from Xiromero in Aetoloacarnania, alleged to have raped a minor and sexually molested at least two others. The suspect was arrested last week in Mesolongi and his identity released on the orders of a prosecutor. Police have asked anyone with information about the suspect to telephone 26310.55.711/12/13.
The head of the country’s main healthcare provider EOPYY, Eleftherios Papageorgopoulos, resigned yesterday and was replaced by Dimitris Kontos, formerly head of the Greek agricultural insurance organization (OGA). Xenophon Verginis, a former New Democracy deputy, is to take over as OGA head.