PM urges cabinet to make 'serious preparations' for Thessaloniki Fair (TIF)

Addressing a meeting of the cabinet on Tuesday, Prime Minister George Papandreou asked his ministers and government staff to make "serious preparations" for the Thessaloniki International Fair in September.
The prime minister also called for a faster and more decisive pace in the implementation of his government's work, especially after a Eurozone summit decision by which Greece "has made an important step in tackling its huge debt."
"We can use this opportunity for advancing reforms in a climate of greater certainty. After securing a protection shield, we can promote changes that consolidate security, good governance and justice and make Greece attractive to investments," Papandreou added.  
Papandreou said the government would take advantage of TIF to present its plans and the prospects created by the decisions of Eurozone leaders to support a second and more generous bailout package to Greece.
He also urged all sides to ensure that their appearance at TIF was "modest" and simple, keeping all movements to and from Thessaloniki to a bare minimum, including those of support staff.
Regarding his talks earlier in the day with UEFA President Michel Platini on the problems plaguing Greece's soccer championship, especially in the top divisions, Papandreou said that he discussed with the UEFA president Greece's "great effort to change things in the sports sector" adding that his government was determined to put order and consolidate transparency in the sports sector with the new legislation on "Tackling violence in stadiums, doping and fixed games".
The prime minister also termed the legislation on referendums that his governmet was promoting an act of "confidence to the citizens". 
Referring to last Friday's tragic events in Norway, Papandreou expressed his abhorrence towards violence and fondamentalism which, as he said, undermine democratic institutions.
He also reminded that Norway stood by the side of Greek democrats during the seven-year dictatorship.

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