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7th Thessaloniki International Book Fair

The National Book Centre of Greece (EKEBI) and the Ministry of Culture and Tourism in collaboration with HELEXPO and the Hellenic Federation of Publishers and Booksellers are organising the 7th Thessaloniki International Book Fair (TIBF) from April 22 to 25, with “Antiquity and Us” as this year’s theme.
TIBF is the leading cultural event for books in Greece which has managed over the years to become a focal point for the book world in Greece and the wider Balkan and Mediterranean region.
Thirty countries will be represented in this year’s fair which features more than 100 events: Greek and foreign authors as guest speakers, special features, seminars and workshops.
China will be the country of honour. Over 200 Chinese (publishers, authors, artists, government representatives) will be in Thessaloniki to present China’s immense book market but also a country with a rich tradition and history.
Greek News Agenda (30.5.2008) – Special Issue: Thessaloniki – City of Culture

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PM George Papandreou at the White House

» Meeting with Obama

Prime Minister George Papandreou met with US President Barack Obama in Washington yesterday.
After the meeting Papandreou said that the US is willing to work with the European Union to regulate the international financial system so speculators cannot target countries with troubled economies.
The premier said  that the issue of speculation will be discussed at the G20 summit in Canada, in June. The two leaders also discussed foreign policy issues such as the Cyprus issue, the integration of Western Balkans into Euro-Atlantic institutions, as well as Greece’s relations with Turkey.

» Visa Waiver

Furthermore, the US side announced that Greece will be included in the ‘visa waiver’ programme, thus enabling Greek citizens to travel to the US without a visa.
Papandreou termed the visa waiver “a vote of confidence” to Greece and noted that the Greek government is determined to respond to its obligations and cooperate closely at international level on the tackling of terrorism.

Kathimerini daily: US joins fight against speculators
The White House: Honouring Greek Independence Day (21.35mins)

» Papandreou’s Op-ed

In an op-ed published in the International Herald Tribune (IHT), Papandreou notes that the Greek case is not an outlier, but one more flare-up in a broken system of financial regulation and predatory behaviour.
“If global economic growth is to be sustainable, we need better coordination and greater solidarity between nations… We must now establish and enforce clear rules to contain the inordinate power of markets over our national economies and our common currency – not for Greece’s sake, but for Europe’s,” he stresses.
Prime Minister’s website: Meeting with President Barack Obama: Prime Minister’s statement ; Brookings Institution: Prime Minister’s speech & YouTube: PM’s speech at Brookings Institution  
New York Times & International Herald Tribune: Prime Minister’s article “Greece is not an island“; Hellenic Finance Ministry: Newsletter Updating Greek Fiscal Measures  
(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)

Greece – USA Relations

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)   Prime Minister Kostas Karamanlis and Foreign Minister Dora Bakoyannis had a meeting with US Deputy Secretary of State James Steinberg on May 15.  During a long meeting with Foreign Minister Dora Bakoyannis, the latter briefed Steinberg on a series of regional issues, including matters related to the Aegean, the Balkans, Greek-Turkish relations, Cyprus and the FYROM “name issue.”  On his part, Steinberg cited Greece’s pivotal role as a United States partner in Southeastern Europe and in international affairs, stressing Greece’s contribution in Afghanistan and in the efforts to deal with many global challenges, ranging from piracy to non proliferation of Weapons of Mass Destruction.  Finally, Steinberg was pleased to announce that the visa waiver programme is being reviewed, bringing the existing bilateral relations one step forward.  Ministry of Foreign Affairs: Greece-USA bilateral relations

Greek PM Meets US Lawmakers

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)   Prime Minister Kostas Karamanlis met on Wednesday (18.2) with US Senator Richard Durbin (D-IL) and Illinois State Treasurer Alexi Giannoulias who were in Athens as part of their tour to Turkey, Greece and Cyprus. Karamanlis welcomed the two US lawmakers, the first official US delegation to visit Greece following the inauguration of new US President Barack Obama, stressing that the US president’s commitment to closely cooperate with friends and allies on all major issues of mutual interest and concern is warmly welcomed. On their part, Senator Durbin and Illinois State Treasurer Giannoulias underlined the emphasis the Obama administration places on the US ties with Greece and Cyprus. The US lawmakers also met yesterday with Greek Parliament Speaker, Dimitris Sioufas, Foreign Minister Dora Bakoyannis and main opposition PASOK and Socialist International (SI) president George Papandreou.

The Greek Idea

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)   Maria Koundoura: The Greek Idea: The Formation of National and Transnational Identities, I. B. Tauris, 2007  How do those living in diaspora form their own national and transnational identity? The Greek Idea offers a new critical paradigm from which to explore these identities. Drawing upon postcolonial theory, Maria Koundoura addresses and analyzes the cultural material that produced Greece’s representation as both Europe’s origin and “other”.  The long association of Greece and English Literature began with English travellers’ “discovery” of Greece in the late-eighteenth century and the reinforcement of the myth which placed Greece as the location of Western culture. Koundoura maps what this representation signifies for Greeks, both national and diasporic. In doing so she touches on England, Greece, the United States, Australia and twentieth century diaspora cultures.  Reading Greece: A Comprehensive Guide & Hellenic Authors’ Society & National Book Centre; Modern Greek Studies Association, US 

Greek White Wines

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)    In his article for the Los Angeles Times (7.9.2008), Patrick Comiskey presents distinctive wines from Greece that are now for the first time widely available in the U.S. “For years, Greek wines were rarely seen here beyond the walls of Greek restaurants, but Greece has modernized its winemaking, improved its viticulture and devoted itself to the many indigenous varieties that have been cultivated for thousands of years. These varieties, made from ancient grape varieties, with lyrical names like Assyrtiko, Malagousia, Agiorghitiko and Xinomavro, are finally gaining recognition for being at once exotic and world class.”  Los Angeles Times: Greece is the word in white wines for summer; Secretariat General of Information: World Media on Greece – Food and Wine 

Poland Signals Doubts About Planned U.S. Missile-Defense Bases on Its Territory

New York Times / By JUDY DEMPSEY / Published: January 7, 2008

BERLIN — Signaling a tougher position in negotiations with the United States on a European antiballistic-missile shield system, Poland’s foreign minister says his country’s new government is not prepared to accept American plans to deploy missile-defense bases in Poland until all costs and risks are considered. Continue reading