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ISSUE 151

Greece This Month – APRIL 2013 9

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Greece this month In this issue:  Stephen Fry in Gr eece  PM Samaras: Greec e shall recover  A digital museum for Plato  Greek studen ts w in competition in Oxfo rd

EMBASSSY OF GREECE Press & Communications Office 1A Holland Park, London W11 3TP Tel.: 020 77273071, Fax: 020 77278960 pressoffice@greekembassy.org.uk

GREECE: A safe and welcoming country for the British tourists, tweets Stephen Fry "British tourists love Greece and see the country as an ideal, safe holiday destination," British actor Stephen Fry said, during a visit to the Acropolis Museum. From the day he disclosed he would be visiting Greece, Stephen Fry had continuously been posting on his Twitter account about his trip, promoting this way the Greek tourism. Upon arriving in Athens, he kept informing his 5.7 million followers with comments and photographs of his activities, the beauties of the country and the places he visited. Among them the archaeological site of Delphi, Ancient Olympia and the Argosaronic Gulf islands. An ardent supporter for the return of the Parthenon sculptures, the

renowned actor was accompanied in the Acropolis Museum by Tourism Minister Olga Kefalogianni and the President of the Museum, Dimitris Pantermalis, who provided a guided tour of the Museum’s exhibits, the history and the culture of ancient Greece. While in Greece, Mr Fry re-posted his 2012 article, “Greece is the word,” and reiterated that the Parthenon Mar-bles, should be returned to their country.

the message that Greece is a safe and welcoming country. This is very important for our country at this critical period,” said the Tourism Minister, while Mr. Fry insisted that “Global civilization owes a lot to Greece and we must never forget that”.

“The messages coming from abroad for Greek tourism are optimistic this year. However, there is still much to be done and we must work hard to achieve our goals. Mr. Fry loves Greece and is a real friend of the country and its people. Through his Twitter account, he clearly sends out

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Greece this

month – APRIL 2013

Issue 151

PM Samaras: Greece shall recover Prime Minister Antonis Samaras, addressing the Economist's conference, sent a message of optimism that Greece shall recover and the signs of the exit from the crisis will be appearing soon. Samaras began his address with a reference to the Boston bombings, saying that "my mind turns to the saddening and inhuman events in Boston and I hope that such events will never be repeated".

fact that for a year, liquidity in the banking system has gone dry. We now have the preconditions to overcome all three causes. From early May the banks will be fully capitalised, the state is paying off its obligations, the economy will start to move and businesses will be able to absorb the ESPA (National Strategic Reference Framework) capital. The causes of recession are being reversed. We do not only have austerity but we also have measures that balance the

maintain social cohesion. Restructuring and recovery go and must go together," PM also underlined. Samaras spoke, however, of social reactions: "The adjustment is causing two kinds of reactions, those who are justifiably complaining because they cannot stand the downgrading of their living standard due to the crisis despite the fact they had made wise planning and we must back them, and on the other hand those who had become complaisant in a parasitical state and a

cutbacks and bring restarting economic activity".

state-fed economy. We shall clash with them because they do not want anything to change while everything must change. All who are reacting are not unjustified, some are suffering but also all who are protesting are not justified".

"We are viewing the future with greater certainty. We have not overcome the crisis, however the light is visible at the end of the tunnel. It is not only the quantitative indexes, but the qualitative ones as well, such as the competitiveness of the Greek economy. They say that the deepest darkness is shortly before dawn, it is beginning to dawn now, Greece's success shall be a message within Europe," the prime minister said. Samaras further said "a few months ago many predicted the ruin of the euro and took for granted Greece's exit. Today Greece is remaining and its state is becoming stabilised, while the euro appears more stable. It has not overcome some of its structural problems. A year ago Greece was considered the weak link, some were saying that it is the 'Iphigenia' of the eurozone, today Greece is achieving its targets, it is close to the first stage surplus, the programme is changing and its banking system is becoming stabilised, Greece is making reforms that it had not done for decades. And all these in conditions of crisis, with six years of recession and high unemployment. Today many are astonished". PM referred to the main causes of the recession and added that today they are being reversed: "The recession that brought the Greek economy to its knees had as a cause the austerity measures, the fact that the state since 2010 made a halt in payments and the

to

"We are not making any discount in the structural changes. We restored Greece's reliability that was essential, while we also began to change the policy that had been imposed on us as well. Last year we changed the external conditions by reducing the debt and the loaning interest rates. We achieved the greatest debt restructuring that has taken place in history and without default. This was also the result of European solidarity. We are now changing the internal adjustment with measures of relief that do not slacken the effort nor adulterate targets but help society withstand the shock of adjustment and

Concluding, PM underlined that "it is essential that we change the tax system because it has collapsed in an orgy of tax evasion, but after the haircut it would be a mistake for us to keep taxation at the same height. We must reduce VAT in food services," adding that in income tax we have already taken small steps for the low incomes, while the target remains for a unified 15 percent tax rate for all business activity."

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Greece this

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Greek Law Students Win International Moot Court Competition in Oxford

Issue 151

A Digital Museum for Plato In ancient times, Plato’s Academy was an exclusive school designed to cultivate the minds of aspiring politicians in Ancient Athens. In the course of two millennia, Plato’s teachings have formed the foundation of Western philosophy. What had been taught inside the walls of the Academy still reverberates, and the preservation of this heritage will be the objective of a new project.

Students from the Law School of Athens won the 1st prize in the 6th International Roman Law Moot Court Competition, which was held in Oxford on April 8 and 9. The Greek team consisting of Julia-Aikaterini Voulelis, MariaThomaida Epeoglou, Alexandros Papassotiriou and Maria-Thiresia Roussou prevailed in the semi-finals against the University of Cambridge. In the finals the Greek team surpassed the University of Oxford. JuliaAikaterini Voulelis also won the best orator award, while Alexandros Papassotiriou the third best orator award. The Greek team received three out of the six distinctions, which were awarded in a ceremony at All Souls College of Oxford. Assistant professor Athena Dimopoulou supervised the preparation of the students.

A Digital Museum with multimedia applications on the life and works of Plato will soon be installed in the Academy, the Educational Museum of the Academy of Plato that will feature interactive multimedia touch screens with bilingual material. The installation is part of an EU-funded project The Citizen and Society, featuring courses and learning-throughexperience applications for adults designed to address issues related to the public space, placing emphasis on the unique ties between city and citizen. The project is implemented by the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, the Onassis Cultural Center, the Foundation of the Hellenic World and the Foundation for Youth and Lifelong Learning and has already been approved by the Central Archaeological Council.

Doodle for Greece

Doodle 4 Google is an annual programme that invites students between 6 and 18 years old to use their artistic talents to think big and redesign the Google homepage logo for millions to see. This year’s topic for Greek students is "My Greece" and participants are invited to design a doodle based on what Greece means to them. The first stage has already been completed; 60 designs (15 for each of the 4 age groups) have already been selected by famous illustrators, writers and museum directors.

The public can vote online until May 7, and choose 1 doodle per age group while Google will chose one of the four finalists. The winner gets the chance to see his/her work on Google for 24 hours, and will be given a Chromebook for him/her and 30 for his/her school, a Wacom tablet, and a trip to Athens to attend the prize ceremony. So, make haste, go on line and vote: http://www.google.gr/doodle4google/vote.html

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GREECE this

month – APRIL 2013

Issue 151

London Greek Film Festival: Call for Submissions

Hellenic Film Academy Awards 2013

The 6th annual London Greek Film Festival, scheduled for October 7-17, 2013, calls for film and script submissions till May 17. The competition is open to films and screenplays from individuals and production companies of Greek origin (Greek Diaspora & Greek-Cypriots included) on any topic, or individuals and production companies from across the world, with a Greece-related subject. The 4th Hellenic Film Academy award ceremony took place at the Onassis Cultural Centre, on April 2, with Ektoras Lygizos and Menelaos Karamagiolis for Boy Eating the Bird's Food [VIDEO] and J.A.C.E. [VIDEO], respectively as this year’s big winners.

The film must fall into one of the following 6 categories: Fiction Feature, Shorts, Documentaries, Experimental, Video Art and Animation. The London Greek Film Festival is an annual event, now in its 6th edition, providing a welcoming space to artists, film-makers, producers, academics and art-film lovers for discussion, education and networking. Should you need more info please check: http://www.londongreekfilmfestival.com

Lygizos’ Boy Eating the Bird's Food bagged the awards for best film, best newcomer director and best actor. Karamagiolis’ J.A.C.E. won the awards for best supporting actor and actress, costumes design, make-up, stage design and best editing jointly with What If [VIDEO]. Thanos Anastopoulos’ The Daughter also won three awards, for best director, script and photography.

Veteran actress Zoe Laskari was presented with the Academy’s honorary life-achievements award, while Georges Corraface was given the Nova Award in honour of members of the Greek Diaspora excelling in the cinema industry. Meanwhile, the HFA decided to recommend the film Boy Eating the Bird's Food as the official Greek entry in the Foreign Language Film category for the Oscar Awards next year.

Adopt an Ancient Theatre! Forget pets and the like. It’s high time we get engaged into something nobler and greater, our cultural heritage: adopt an ancient theatre! The association Diazoma ("zone" of the ancient theatre in Greek) seeks to showcase the importance of theatres as monuments with a continuous presence in local and international cultural life. Yet, some of the most important examples of ancient architecture remain derelict; ordinary citizens have now the chance to do something to change this, through "diazoma money boxes".

All you need to do is choose the theatre of your liking - there are 15 such ancient venues awaiting your assistance- and deposit any amount of money you can spare; the proceeds will then be allocated for the study, excavation, and conservation of these theatres. So, wait no longer, log on and help! For more info please check: www.diazoma.gr

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GREECE this

month – APRIL 2013

Issue 151

Easter at Meteora The gigantic complex of over 800 dark rocks is not only one of the most awe-inspiring corners of the planet, but also a very important place for the Orthodox Church. Spirituality and the grandeur of nature converse with each other to give the thousands of visitors flocking from all over the world a lifetime experience. Most of the 30 monasteries, founded in the 14th century, are now deserted. Only six of them are still open and resonate with religious traditions and the deep godliness of old times. The monasteries

most impressive church heirlooms: Scripts, post Byzantine church (1798) is decorated with amazing fretwork. Its imposing Holy Altar has been turned into a modern museum with the icons, canonicals and fabrics embroidered with gold, fretwork, fine silverware pieces etc. Varlaam: According to history, it was first inhabited by monk Varlaam in the 14th century. The biggest part of the athonictype church that was built in 1542, is dedicated to Agious Pantes. The main body of the church has many murals painted by the Theban painter Fragko Katelano in 1542. At the end of the 16th and in the beginning of 17th centuries the most organized bibliographic laboratory of Meteora monasteries and a special gold thread embroidery workshop were functioning here. Agia Triada: It is located on a typical imposing and steep rock of Meteora. By the script of the potentate Simeon OuresiPaleologou appears that Agia Triada has been a fuctioning monastery since 1362. The church we see today was constructed around 1476 and it is a small cross-like doublecolumned church with a dome. Also very interesting is the Monastery Folklore Museum boasting a wide selection of old clothing, appliances, tools and other folklore items.

Megalo Meteoro: It is located on the highest and longest and it was established in 1340 by St Athanassios Meteoritis (13021380). Visit the tower (1520), now operating as a Folklore Museum with old appliances and tools, the ossuary, the church of Metamorfoseos tou Sotiros (Transfiguration of Jesus) whose sanctum was built in 1388 and main church and narthex in 1545, the Holy Altar (built in 1557 and at present Museum of Church Heirloom) and the cook-room of 1557, nowadays Folklore Museum with old copper, clay and wooden kitchen utensils. Agios Stefanos: St Antonios (first half of the 15th century) and St Filotheos (in the middle of 16th century) are both honoured as monastery founders. The small St Stefanos church is a single- aisled basilica, built in 1350. Today's St Charalampos

Roussanou: It was built in 1529 on the ruins of older constructions. The church of Metamorfosis tou Sotiros (Transfiguration of Jesus) was built around 1530 and is of athonic architecture. Its wall paintings covering the main body of the church and the narthex belong to the Cretan Art School. In spite of the church being dedicated to Metamorfosi tou Sotiros, the believers celebrate the memory of Agia Varvara (4th of December) with equal grandeur and devotion in a nearby chapel. Agios Nikolaos Panausas: The multilevel, graceful and imposing Holy Monastery of Agios Nikolaos Panausas is located near Kastraki Village, among the ruined monasteries of Prodromou, Agias Monis and Pantokratoros. The organized monastic way of living in this monastery was established during the first decades of the 14th century. The frescos are the oldest signed paintings created by Theofanis the Cretan and carry all the characteristic features of this great angiographer of the Cretan Art School.

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GREECE this

month – APRIL 2013

Issue 151

Thessaloniki to Host 2014 World Rowing Championships

The port city of Thessaloniki has been selected to organize and host the three-day 2014 World Coastal Rowing Championships in October 2014, touted as one of the most prestigious sporting events.Co-organizers will be the Greek Rowing Federation and the Municipality of Thessaloniki

Red Riding Storm!! Olympiacos Piraeus qualified for Euroleague’s final four and is up against last year’s runnerup CSKA Moscow at London’s O2 Arena on May 10. The Reds won Anadolu Efes Istanbul (8272) in their best-of-five quarterfinal playoff series, managing to turn the game around in the third quarter in a breathtaking game.

Thessaloniki was assigned the Championships during the FISA Extraordinary World Congress that was held February 14 - 15 in Copenhagen. Representatives of the City of Thessaloniki and the Hellenic Rowing Federation signed the relevant agreement at the FISA Congress. The rowing routes will run along the city’s coastline. The races will commence right in front of the City Hall and will return to the harbour in spiral routes. It is estimated that more than 400 athletes from around the world will participate in next year’s championships. Municipal officials signed the agreement and hope for an economic boost. The rowing coastal routes will take place at the central front of the city’s seacoast, which will enliven it not only with locals but visitors as well. According to estimates, more than 400 athletes from around the world will participate in next year’s championship, who along with their teams and escorts will bring many more visitors to the city of Thessaloniki that will be at the time the meeting point for all rowing enthusiasts. “It is an international organization that brings growth in rowing tourism and will attract a new group of tourists in the city of Thessaloniki. It will also create the conditions for the development of rowing for all in many areas of Greece, and will be an important opportunity to develop coastal rowing that requires calm water and is suitable for all seasons and it is recommended to everyone, even those who are not athletes, stated John Carras, President of Greek Rowing Federation.

Last year, Olympiacos won the 2012 Turkish Airlines Euroleague Championship by a thread (60-61) against CSKA Moscow and the 1997 Euroleague in Rome against F.C. Barcelona (75-58).This is its 4th Euroleague final four participation in the last five years. Let us hope that history will repeat itself!

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GREECE - April 2013  

"Greece this motnth" is a newsletter published by the Press & Communications Office of the Embassy of Greece in London, UK. It presents the...

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