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Children’s Rights in Greece

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)     On the occasion of the celebration of Universal Children’s Day (November 20) to commemorate the adoption of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, the National Children’s Rights Observatory of the Secretariat General for Youth and the Children’s Rights Ombudsman in Greece are jointly organising the conference “Children’s Rights in Greece of 21st century.” The conference will be held in Athens on November 22 – 23, 2008, as part of the campaign for the protection and reinforcement of children’s rights and for the promotion of the UN Convention. Secretariat General of Information: About Greece-Youth

Greek Film Festival: A London First

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)   londonfflogoThe first London Greek film festival was organized from November 13 to 16. The event promotes Greek films abroad and aims at becoming a meeting point for producers, directors and writers who are either of Greek origin or promote national themes, use the Greek language, or whose works are produced in the country itself.  In addition to the in-house screenings and special events, the organisers of the festival have also launched an online festival, a portfolio of films that will be available for viewing online for months.  The festival was supported by, among others, the Greek Film Centre, the London Hellenic Centre, the City of Westminster, and the Secretariat General of Information.  Visit the 49th Thessaloniki International Film Festival: tiff.filmfestival.gr; Secretariat General of Information: About Greece- Cinema  

The Movie “Mama Mia” in Poland

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)   The movie “Mamma Mia!” on screens in Poland from August 29. The movie “Mamma Mia!” achieved the biggest opening ever for a movie musical in the United States  last month month. At $27.6 million, ‘Mamma Mia!’ beat out ‘Hairspray’ which opened with $27.5 million a few years ago. To create the enchanting – yet imaginary – island of Kalokairi, film shootings took place on the islands Skopelos, Skiathos and on Damouchari beach in Pelion area during August and September 2007. Most of the filming was done in Skopelos, were locations included Kastani beach, Agios Ioannis, Amaranto and Nisi Glisteri. Greece has always had a long and spectacular love affair with the international film making community. The need for new images in the film industry has led to a boom in optical effects and the quest for visually pristine locations. Greece has this visual wealth of natural landscapes to offer in regions like Macedonia, Epirus, Peloponnese, and of course the islands in the Aegean, the Sporades islands and the Ionian seas. Since 1974, the Greek Film Centre supports the production and promotion of Greek films and fosters the participation of Greek producers in foreign productions. in this context, the Hellenic Film Commission Office (www.hfco.gr) provides every possible service for filming in Greece. Skopelos Island: Skopelos Mamma Mia Blog Secretariat General of Information: World Media on Greece – Lifestyle 

World Media for Greece: In the Lap of the Gods

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)  A year after the Greek fires halted her performance of Beckett, Fiona Shaw makes an emotional return to Epidaurus. In the first part of this article she talks about her experience in Epidaurus last August, when her performance was cancelled due to the official mourning because of the fires. In the second part, she shares the feelings brought about by the site of the ancient theatre and the performance of Beckett’s “Happy Days” to 6,000 attentive people. The Guardian: In the lap of the gods; Secretariat General of Information: World Media on Greece – Culture and Education

Greek Director won Best Documentary Award

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)     Greek director Anneta Papathanassiou won the Best Documentary Award at the 2008 Roma Fiction Fest on July 12 in Rome, in the competitive section, for her documentary “Qadir, Enas Afghanos Odysseas” (Qadir, an Afghani Odysseus/Ulysses). The awarded documentary is a co-production with the Hellenic Broadcasting Corporation (ERT), with the support of the, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the production company Orizontas Greek Film Centre and Al-Jazeera.  Express.gr: Greek director wins Best Documentary award at Roma Fiction Fest; Secretariat General of Information: World Media on Greece – Culture and Education

Media and Communications Students’ Conference in Greece

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)   The Secretariat General of Communication – Secretariat General of Information is hosting the “6th Media and Communications Students’ Conference” on its premises on May 15-16, an event jointly organised with the Media and Communication Departments of the University of Athens, Panteion University and the Aristotelian University of Thessaloniki. Graduating students of media and communication studies will take part in thetwo-day event, while topics to be discussed include: Greece’s international image, crisis communication management, social responsibility and media reliability. Minister of State and Government Spokesman Theodoros Roussopoulos will simulate a media briefing exercise with students’ participation.

Conference in Athens: Media and Sports

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA) The Hellenic Audiovisual Institute (IOM) held a conference on “Media and Sports: new rules of the game” on May 7,  at the Press Centre of the Secretariat General of Communication – Secretariat General of Information. The aim of the conference was to address the new digital environment evolved around sports media as well as trigger debate and raise public awareness on the topic of sports media rights. In his inaugural speech, Minister of State and government spokesman Theodoros Roussopoulos noted that as regards Greece, a country that prides itself being the homeland of sports, the economic and technical implications of the sports industry in the media should never obscure the essence and principles of sports. Noble emulation may sound old-fashioned, however, Greece is bound to make these values prevail over any possible speculation, the Minister added.

Foolproof Anti-cancer Diet in Greece

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)  In order to avoid cancer, one must live like a monk. That is the inescapable conclusion from research into one of the world’s most renowned monastic communities. The austere regime of the 1,500 monks on Mount Athos, in northern Greece, begins with an hour’s pre-dawn prayers and is designed to protect their souls. Their low-stress existence and simple diet (no meat, occasional fish, home-grown vegetables and fruit) may, however, also protect them from more worldly troubles.   Continue reading

Greece: Energy Matters

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)    Development Minister Christos Folias in an interview with Reuters April 16 said, that Greece has agreed to join Russian-backed South Stream gas pipeline which will take Siberian gas to southern Europe through Greece. The pipeline is a joint project by Gazprom and Italian ENI. Serbia, Bulgaria and Hungary recently joint the South Stream project. Countering views seen this project as a competitor to the long-stalled Nabucco pipeline, the Minister said: “I don’t want to see them as athletes competing against each other. I would say they are complementing each other and are offering Europe multiple energy providers, which is good.”   Continue reading

Greek Media Takeovers

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)   Greece’s second-biggest provider of web services Forthnet gained Naspers‘s Greek and Cypriot pay-TV unit NetMed NV, known for its subscriber satellite service Nova, for €490 million. Naspers is a multinational media company located in South Africa, with significant operations in Greece through NetMed. Forthnet S.A., was established in October 1995 by the Foundation for Technology and Research and Minoan Lines S.A. The company was listed on the main market of the Athens Stock Exchange in the year 2000. It was the first company to introduce the Internet in Greece and currently has a large portfolio of Internet services. Through this acquisition, Forthnet will be able to offer high-speed Internet, TV and phone services with nationwide coverage, while it turns into a considerable media company. Bloomberg: Naspers Plans Internet Purchases as Ad Growth Slows; Secretariat General of Information: About Greece, Telecommunications

Public Diplomacy in Greece

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)  Former U.S. Foreign Service officer for twenty years, John Brady Kiesling presented his book “Diplomacy Lessons: Realism for an Unloved Superpower,” during a presentation organised by the International Communication Policy Forum (ICP-Forum-in Greek) at the Press Centre of the Secretariat General of Communication – Secretariat General of Information, on April 18. John Brady Kiesling resigned publicly in February 2003 to protest the damage done to U.S. interests and alliances by Bush Administration foreign policy, particularly the war with Iraq. The ICP-Forum was established in 2007 upon initiative by the Hellenic Union of Press Attaches (ENAT), in order to enhance the dialogue regarding matters such as public diplomacy and Greece’s image abroad.  ICP-Forum: Public Diplomacy-United States of America 

Death of Leading Scholar of Greek Archaeology

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA) Professor Nicolas Coldstream, who has died aged 80, was a leading scholar of Greek archaeology, specialised in the Early Iron Age in Greece, Crete and Cyprus and on the impact of Greek civilisation on the Mediterranean world. His magnum opus, Greek Geometric Pottery (1968), a work of description, classification, chronology, and attribution of geometric pottery styles from the entire Greek world, became the ultimate reference work for anyone studying the Geometric period. He served as a member, and chairman from 1987 to 1991, of the managing committee of the British School at Athens. He died on March 21, shortly before it was due to hold a celebration to mark the publication of a second edition of Greek Geometric Pottery. Continue reading

New seminars in Crete offer immersion into Mediterranean Diet Studies

(SECRETARIAT GENERAL OF INFORMATION) Crete’s Culinary Sanctuaries (www.cookingincrete.com), an internationally acclaimed educational program, has teamed up with Field to Plate, a prominent US food education and events company, to organize dynamic seminars in Crete entitled: “The Mediterranean Diet: Refreshing Your Understanding. Translating it to the Plate”. This accredited program is designed for members of the healthcare, agriculture and foodservice industries to sink their teeth into the Mediterranean Diet, on site. Attendees meet producers of Crete’s renowned healthy cuisine on their farms, in their villages and kitchens. Read more…

 See also: Interview with Nikki Rose, Founder and Director of Crete’s Culinary Sanctuaries at National Geographic’s Geotourism Challenge

Greek Best Selling Author

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA) Greek American writer and radio contributor David Sedaris will encounter his Greek public at a meeting to be held today at the Hellenic American Union in collaboration with Melani Publications. Sedaris, 51, was born in New York to a Greek father and an American mother and currently lives in Paris. His books have sold 2.5 million copies since 2004 and some of them have been listed as best sellers by the “New York Times,” while he has also been nominated for a Grammy Award. Some of his books such as “Dress your family in corduroy and denim,” “Me talk pretty one day” and “Naked” have been also published in Greek by Melani Publications.  Secretariat General of Information: Global Greeks-Writers

In Athens the Euro Mediterranean Cooperation

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA) The Hellenic Parliament, through its speaker Dimitris Sioufas, is presiding over the 4th Plenary Session of the Euro Mediterranean Parliamentary Assembly, currently taking place in Athens. 37 country members from across the world, including European Union’s all 27 countries, are invited to attend the hearings.  The institution aims at promoting Euro-Mediterranean cooperation and will be addressed by European Commission’s president Jose Manuel Barroso, European Parliament’s President Hans Gert Pöttering, Prime Minister Kostas Karamanlis, EU’s Commissioner on Environment Stavros Dimas, as well as speakers of other national parliaments. Continue reading

Deutsche Telekom Back acquired 20% of Hellenic Telecommunications Organisation (OTE) shares

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)    On March 17, Deutsche Telekom – Europe’s biggest telephone company – acquired 20% of Hellenic Telecommunications Organisation (OTE) shares from Marfin Investment Group (MIG) for €2.5 billion. The acquisition rendered the German giant the biggest stakeholder in the Hellenic Telecommunications Organisation, after the Greek state, with 28%. Four days later, Minister of Finance Alogoskoufis announced the government’s intention to sell up to 8% of the Greek state’s 28% share to the German buyer in the context of its decision to secure the German provider as a strategic partner. Greece has long sought a strategic investor for OTE, in order to secure a form of shared management without ceding management control, but has not yet settled on the form it may take. Reuters.com: Greece willing to share management of OTE with DT; Secretariat General of Information: About Brand Greece-Telecommunications  

World Media on Greece

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)  In her article “Zagoria – a place that time forgot,” Roberta Avery writes about the village of Monodendri, in Zagoria. One of the attractions is the Vikos-Aoos National Park -126 square kilometres, and according to the Guinness Book of Records, at 1,300 metres deep, is the world’s deepest gorge in proportion to its width. Secretariat General of Information: World Media on Greece – Food, Wine and Travel 

Exploring Greece

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)  Natacha Du Pont De Bie (“Super Mani,” The Guardian”, 8.3.2008) discovers Mani, a blissfully uncluttered and pristine corner of Greece: “Olive groves opaque with pollen, meadows carpeted with wild flowers, melting snow water gushing down mountain-sides before sinking into underground streams to reform as icy tendrils that curl about one’s feet on early morning swims from empty beaches. This is springtime in the Mani, the far-flung central peninsula of the Peloponnese…”  Secretariat General of Information: World Media on Greece – Food, Wine and Travel

Greece: The true experience

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)  Greece’s participation in this year’s International Tourism Exhibition in Berlin (ITB) was awarded with the “2008 Best Exhibitor Award in the “Europe” category among a total of 11,000 single and group booths of the world’s biggest travel trade fair, on March 8th. The prize was awarded for the booth’s outstanding elegance, service rending and quality excellence. Greece’s pavilion was inaugurated by Tourism Minister Aris Spiliotopoulos and bore the title Greece: The true experience.” ITB is a successful institution attracting more than 108,000 trade visitors and enjoying worldwide media recognition. Continue reading

Invest in Greece: A Leading SE Country

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)  Greece’s high growth rates along with its economic role and presence in the broader Southeastern Europe region are two of the country’s main comparative advantages that render it an attractive destination for foreign investment, Finance Minister George Alogoskoufis said yesterday. Addressing an event for the relaunching of the Hellenic Center for Investment (ELKE) as the Invest in Greece Agency (www.investingreece.gov.gr), the minister noted that Greece has consistently achieved annual growth rates of around 4% in recent years and is well placed to withstand the upheavals in the global economic system, having significantly reduced its fiscal deficits. He predicted that Southeastern Europe will constitute the economic “miracle” of the next 15 years, due to high growth rates and investment opportunities. Alogoskoufis said new incentives had helped Greece attract more than €8.5 billion in foreign investment in the last two years. Continue reading