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ANEL lawmaker hints at party exit from coalition government

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Independent Greeks party (ANEL), the junior coalition partner in PM Alexis Tsipras’ government, will vote to topple the government if a no-confidence motion is brought forward in parliament, Greek daily Ekathimerini quotes lawmaker Kostas Katsikis as saying in an interview with Parliament’s TV channel

“Panos Kammenos has said it. ‘We are leaving’. What does that mean? It means we are no longer the government coalition partner. There is no majority, we will not give a confidence vote,” the lawmaker is quoted as saying in interview with Parliament’s TV channel.

Speaking in an interview with Open TV on Wednesday night, Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras said he is likely to call a confidence vote if Kammenos decides to quit the coalition in protest of Prespa deal – an agreement struck with neighboring Macedonia to resolve a dispute over the country’s name.

In mid-2018 Greece and Macedonia signed a pact to rename the latter in an attempt to end the decades-old dispute that has prevented Macedonia from joining the European Union and NATO. But the deal has fueled a storm of protest on both sides of the border.



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Stones hurled at Sofia Central Synagogue

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An unidentified man hurled stones through the window of a synagogue in Bulgarian capital Sofia on Saturday afternoon, local Jews said.

Alexander Oscar, the president of the Shalom Organization of Jews in Bulgaria, wrote on his Facebook page that the man who hurled stones left the scene without intervention from passersby. The sanctuary sustained light damage from the attack and no one was hurt.

Their inaction was one of the most worrisome aspects of the incident, Oscar has said.

“The language of hatred in Bulgaria already manifests itself in physical incidents with direct attacks on Jewish communal property,” he added.

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Greece: Mitsotakis rejects Tsipras’ invitation to TV debate on Prespa accord

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Greece’s main opposition New Democracy party on Thursday turned down Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras’ invitation to a televised debate with New Democracy leaders Kyriakos Mitsotakis.

If the opposition leader agreed to a TV duel with the prime minister, the two were to debate the Prespa agreement Greece and Macedonia had signed to end perennial row over the latter’s name.

The announcement, released by the New Democracy press officer, says “international agreements are debated and ratified in Parliament, with participation of all parties and all MPs, who must assume a historic responsibility, particularly for an agreement as important as the one resolving the dispute with FYROM”.

The opposition party calls on Tsipras to explain to parliament why he intended to ratify the “damaging Prespes Agreement” and “hand over the so-called Macedonian ethnicity and language, a concession no Greek government has ever dared to consider”.

“If the prime minister was in a hurry for debate, he should call early elections and let the people have the final say.

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Slovenia: Thieves make off with EUR1million stolen from security vehicle

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Thieves reportedly stole one million euros from armored vehicle of Slovenian Security Agency in Celje. Local media said Slovenia security van robbery, which happened in late December, netted around 1 million euros and that police are still searching for perpetrators.

The Maribor-based newspaper Vecer, two security employees had left the vehicle unsupervised at the Agency’s yard. They didn’t wait for their colleagues to take up the shift and the shipment.

Thieves made off with around EUR 1 million cash.

It is assumed that the thieves had insider source that helped them in the heist as they knew where the vehicle key was stored.

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