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18 August, 2001
The Council of State (CoS), Greece's highest administrative court, on Friday turned down a petition tabled by the Greek Archaeological Society and three ecology organizations to place on hold a governmental decision approving the environmental study for the construction site of the Athens 2004 Olympic Games rowing center.
The petition requested that a joint decision of the environment town planning and public works ministry, the culture ministry, the transport ministry and the agriculture ministry allowing the construction at a site near the ancient battlefield where the Athenians defeated the forces of the Persian empire in the 5th century AD.
The Archaeological society and the ecology organizations claimed in their petition that the graves discovered near the site, during the construction of the fence for the rowing center, was of great archaeological value.
The committee of the CoS ruled that there were no antiquities in the immediate area of the construction for the rowing center and the construction has already progressed markedly - per statement of the culture ministry and the Athens 2004 Olympic Games Organizing Committee.
The committee of the CoS also based its ruling on the fact that the area of the rowing center was not declared as a possible site of archaeological significance, while the ancient grave site was of limited significance and will be preserved as part of the architectural design of the rowing center.
Source: Athens News Agency