Athens mayor on situation in capital

Athens Mayor George Kaminis sounded the alert over the risk of many districts in Athens becoming "inaccessible", stressing that "there is not even a minute to lose" since "the capital's crisis has emergency characteristics." At the same time he stressed the need for short-term measures, such as the turning of closed hotels into student hostels and providing incentives for young couples and businesses.

Briefing the Parliamentary Environment Committee on the plans and priorities of the Athens municipality, Kaminis spoke of a deep feeling of insecurity among citizens that must be remedied immediately, as well as a picture of abandonment in regions that must be revived before the phenomenon takes on nightmarish dimensions.

However, he appeared reservedly optimistic regarding the project of the double reshaping of Votanikos and Alexandras avenue, noting that "at this moment everything is up in the air" and revealed that together with all the members of the municipal council they will be visiting the region of Votanikos to be able to form an overall pictrure, while adding that "we shall be called on to take a difficult decision because there is no investment plan."

In parallel, the Athens mayor stressed that "there is no question of major projects taking place without the participation of private initiative" and added that "I am not demonising private initiative. I place great importance on the municipality's development course, with rules of transparency and explicit."

He also placed emphasis on the issue of transparency, revealing that as of Tuesday the municipality of Athens is entering the Transparency programme.

Kaminis also expressed support for the finding of a legislative solution for demonstrations so that the streets of Athens will not be closed and the already burdened economic state of the commercial stores that are also dealt a blow by illicit trade will not worsen in this way. He also called on all the political forces to assume their responsibilities and vote a law on political gatherings, stressing that he was never in favour of "couch democracy" but everything must take place with a sense of measure and with respect for constitutional legality.

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