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Greek High School Students Protest Agreement with Macedonia

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Almost a thousand high school students protested on Sunday in Thessaloniki due to efforts by Athens to end the long-standing dispute with Macedonia. Participants brought Greek flags and shouted nationalist slogans against Macedonia and Albania, the Associated Press reported.

About ten high schools in the north of Greece have been closed for days due to their students’ protesting the government’s decision to normalize relations with Macedonia. With the agreement reached by the two countries, AP informs, Macedonia is to change its name to Northern Macedonia, while Greece is to put an end to its veto on Macedonia’s accession to the EU and NATO.

The Greek government said that the ultra-right Golden Dawn party was behind the protests.

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Croatia set to build nuclear waste landfill at its border with BiH

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Croatia has decided to start the construction of a nuclear waste landfill at Trgovska Gora, a site located at the border with Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH), although Croatia’s and Slovenia are yet to formally decide on a joint nuclear waste disposal site, most probably at Krsko nuke plant. The decision by Croatia and Slovenia is expected in September, the Zagreb-based daily Express says.

Over the past few years Slovenia has been planning to build storage facility for low and medium activity nuclear waste at Krsko nuke together with Croatia.

Croatia has been given a four-year deadline to wrap up the necessary preparations and complete construction of the storage facility, but the country failed to draw up an environmental impact study and it is not clear how the state plans to prepare for takeover of nuclear waste in such a short time, according to Express online daily.

Croatian news outlet notes that no consensus has been reached thus far with the local population and with BiH, which strongly opposes the project amid growing fears for people’s health and the effect it might have on the environment.

Nuclear power plant Krsko was built as a joint venture by Slovenia and Croatia which were at the time both part of Yugoslavia. Slovenia has shared  a nuclear power reactor with Croatia since 1981. Krsko nuclear power plant’s license has been extended to 2043.

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Skiathos island authorities charging up to EUR1.000 fine for taking rare beach pebbles

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Tourists could be fined up to 1.000 euros for taking pebbles as souvenirs from a Greek beach.

Lalaria Beach on the island of Skiathos, accessible only by boat, is extremely popular with holidaymakers, who have been known to fill their pockets with unique pebbles as free souvenirs.

But officials on the Greek island are worried that too many of the stones have been taken leading to a dramatic change in the landscape of the shoreline in the past 10 years.

And now the port authorities have introduced fines of between EUR400 and EUR1.000 for people who take pebbles without permission.

Signs have been placed around the Lalaria beach telling tourists: ‘Take pictures, not pebbles.’ Posters have also been given to boat operators and fishermen in the area so the message can be spread across Greece.

In cooperation with the port authorities, the Cultural Association of Skiathos launched a campaign entitled:  “Take a Picture, not a Pebble – Save Lalaria Beach!”

“The alteration of the landscape has been noticeable in the last ten years and is up to a certain degree irreversible,” the cultural association says on its website. The protection of the beach is necessary to maintain at least the present condition without further deterioration, the association said.

The beach in the north-east of Skiathos is accessible only by boat.

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Panagiotopoulos: Honoring Prespa accord will bring better future

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Greek Defense Minister Nikos Panagiotopoulos said on Wednesday the mutual respect for the Prespa Agreement without concessions would yield positive result and contribute to a better future.

Earlier in the day, Panagiotopoulos told the Economist Conference in Athens that he does not challenge the intent of the agreement. We are all aware of the concept of good faith, the purpose of the agreement is to strengthen the stability in the region and geopolitical foundations.

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