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Cyprus Mail: News Articles in English, 98-01-03

Cyprus Mail: News Articles in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Cyprus Mail at <>

Saturday, January 3, 1998


  • [01] Turk Cypriot leaders rap Denktash
  • [02] Deal halts CA strike
  • [03] Kyp chief steps aside in wake of election row
  • [04] Military 'court' extends remand on Lilles
  • [05] Anger at revelations of 1967 British indifference
  • [06] Inflation falls in December
  • [07] November arrivals up on 1996
  • [08] Police hail success of road safety campaign
  • [09] Joker with a knife
  • [10] Three held for suspected arson
  • [11] Teenagers find 13th salary on the street
  • [12] Doyen of the enclaved buried in Kormakitis
  • [13] Wishing for money, success and death
  • [14] Omonia need to prove worth

  • [01] Turk Cypriot leaders rap Denktash

    By Jean Christou

    TWO PROMINENT Turkish Cypriot party leaders have blasted the Denktash regime for its decision to suspend bi-communal contacts.

    Republican Turkish Party leader Mehmet Ali Talat and Alpay Durduran, leader of the New Cyprus Party, told London Greek Radio the suspension of bicommunal contacts was a "violation of the rights of Turkish Cypriots".

    The contacts were cut by Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash in response to the European Union's recent decision to approve accession talks with the Cyprus government.

    "We criticised this approach (Denktash's) and we will try to do our best for bicommunal activities because we believe they help a lot towards reconciliation and lasting peace in Cyprus," Talat said.

    However, Talat added that any Turkish Cypriot participation in EU membership talks "should reflect the political equality of the island's two communities".

    He called on the leadership of both sides to come up with a suitable formula to make that possible.

    Talat said progress on the Cyprus problem was a prerequisite of EU entry because the Turkish Cypriot side would not accept participation in accession talks as an observer.

    He said any move to start EU accession talks with the government of Cyprus was an "unfair approach because it does not represent the Turkish Cypriot community."

    "If we try to achieve our goals by using the EU accession process, I think we will not be able to achieve anything and in the end both communities will be harmed," Talat said.

    Durduran said the problem with Turkish Cypriot participation in accession talks lay in the inability of the Turkish Cypriots to accept Cyprus's accession to the EU.

    "The problem is not finding a formula to participate but the decision to participate," he said.

    Both men criticised threats that the occupied north would be integrated with Turkey if accession talks went ahead in April.

    "We are against integration with Turkey and Turkey knows that," Talat said. "Integration is taking place every day without our consent and we do not like this."

    "We believe this will not help reconciliation between the two sides and we try to protect the interests of our community. We are struggling for reconciliation and the reunification of our island under a federation and equal rights of our communities," he said.

    [02] Deal halts CA strike

    By Jean Christou

    CYPRUS Airways (CA) cabin staff and management yesterday agreed in principle on rules for the permanent hiring of seasonal staff.

    After a marathon nine-hour meeting in Nicosia, it was agreed CA chairman Takis Kyriakides would go back to the board with a proposal that seasonal staff be made permanent after two years.

    The deadline for the board to give its approval is January 12, CA spokesman Tassos Angelis said.

    A joint statement after the meeting said the provision of a 1992 agreement would be introduced so that: "For the purpose of the determination of permanent needs, personnel employed on a full and continuous basis for a period of two years are considered to constitute a permanent need."

    This provision previously applied to other seasonal staff but not to cabin crew, who were recruited according to the needs of the company.

    Following the provisional agreement yesterday Cynika, the union representing cabin crew, called off its industrial action which marginally affected flights since it began on Thursday.

    An early flight on Thursday to Athens was delayed but other flights functioned as normal.

    Angelis said no flights yesterday were affected by the measures.

    [03] Kyp chief steps aside in wake of election row

    By Martin Hellicar

    DISCREDITED intelligence services (Kyp) chief Nicos Ioannou yesterday announced he would be abandoning his post till after the February presidentials.

    Ioannou's decision came in the wake of a barrage of criticism following his public expression of support for President Clerides' re-election bid.

    In a written statement, Ioannou protested his innocence and said he was standing aside only to avoid "misunderstandings".

    "I never urged anyone to vote for Clerides. I only expressed my personal best wishes to Mr Clerides," the statement read.

    "Despite this, and in order to avoid suggestions or implications of Kyp involvement in the elections, I will make use of my leave till after the elections," Ioannou said.

    Government spokesman Manolis Christofides said Clerides had welcomed Ioannou's decision and would, in any case, have asked him to abandon his post had the Kyp chief not left of his own accord. Christofides described Ioannou's controversial statements as "unnecessary".

    Clerides' election opponents lambasted Ioannou after he assured the President - during his visit to Kyp headquarters in Nicosia on Wednesday - that he would win the elections.

    Diko leader Spyros Kyprianou claimed Ioannou's statements proved Kyp were working behind the scenes to get Clerides back into office and called an emergency meeting of party leaders to discuss the issue for Monday. Ioannou's stance was also condemned by George Iacovou, the candidate backed by Diko and Akel, and by Edek.

    Iacovou yesterday expressed satisfaction at the Kyp chief's decision to stand down, but Akel leader Dimitris Christofias was unimpressed.

    "For Akel there still is and will continue to be an issue," the left-wing party chief said, adding that Clerides should have sacked Ioannou.

    Edek also called for Ioannou to go, saying his taking of leave was nothing but a publicity stunt. "By taking leave while keeping his position as Kyp chief, it is obvious Mr Ioannou will be more easily able to devote himself to the pre-election duties assigned to him, continuing to utilise Kyp to reinforce Clerides's candidacy," Edek said in a statement.

    Both Christofides and Justice Minister Nicos Koshis sought to give assurances the elections would be free of any interference by police or other public servants.

    They both called on citizens and parties to report any illegal attempts to influence voters.

    Christofides said Ioannou himself had recently distributed a circular to all Kyp staff warning them against involvement in the elections.

    Koshis said it was "unacceptable" for the heads of public bodies to be in any way involved in election campaigns. He said police involvement in election campaigning would "not be tolerated."

    [04] Military 'court' extends remand on Lilles

    GREEK national Spyros Lilles was remanded for a further four days by the Turkish Cypriot regime yesterday, the UN confirmed.

    According to the Turkish Cypriot news agency TAK, Lilles 24, appeared before a military 'court' which ruled the remand extension be approved to allow 'police' to complete their investigations.

    Lilles, a salesman from Larissa in northern Greece, but resident in Cyprus was, arrested by Turkish forces in the early hours of December 20 in the Ayios Pavlos area of Nicosia.

    The Turks claim Lilles had entered a first degree military zone.

    Reports suggested the salesman, who works for a company which distributes wines and spirits, was so drunk he didn't know what he was doing when he crossed to the occupied areas at 5.45am.

    Lilles' fiancée was allowed to cross to the north to visit him over the Christmas holiday period.

    Unficyp sources said there was little they could do to speed up the Turkish side's military procedures. The source also suggested the Turkish Cypriot side might be playing "hardball" since the jailing of a Turkish Cypriot for six years on spying charges last month.

    Unficyp is, however, hopeful that Lilles will be released on Tuesday

    [05] Anger at revelations of 1967 British indifference

    REVELATIONS that Harold Wilson's government in 1967 did not consider Britain had any obligation to defend Cyprus against a Turkish invasion drew an angry response from the government yesterday.

    According to Foreign Office archives released on January 1 under the 30- year disclosure rule, Britain's 1967 cabinet believed Britain was not bound to intervene to protect the Cyprus Republic from Turkish aggression because Britain and Cyprus had no military pact.

    "We consider that the (1960) treaty establishing Cyprus' independence obliges the guarantor powers (England, Greece and Turkey) to protect the Republic and its independence," Government Spokesman Manolis Christofides commented. He said the military bases Britain secured on the island as part of the 1960 treaty were established "with the idea that they would protect Cyprus too."

    "It is a logical assumption and reasonable hope that Cyprus would enjoy this protection," Christofides said.

    Other released Foreign Office documents refer to a secret meeting between Harold Wilson and King Constantine of Greece in November 1967. During the meeting, the two leaders apparently discussed a plan for Turkey to be allowed a military base in Dhekelia in return for Cyprus being united with Greece.

    "These documents show Turkey always had designs for a sovereign base and was ready to invade even as long ago as 1967," Christofides said. "It shows Turkey's plans always were for an invasion, they were just looking for an excuse, which the 1974 coup gave them," he added.

    Diko leader Spyros Kyprianou, Foreign Minister in the Makarios government of the time, said Archbishop Makarios had never accepted the idea of Turkey having a base on the island.

    [06] Inflation falls in December

    THE RATE of inflation dipped slightly in December with the Consumer Price Index showing a fall in the prices of fruit and vegetables.

    This brought the average rate of increase on the Index for the last 12 months (January to December 1997) to 3.6 per cent compared to 1996, according to figures released yesterday by the Department of Statistics.

    Although December saw a small fall in prices, the period for July-December 1997 saw an average rate of increase of 2.14 per cent on the preceding six months.

    Based on these figures, automatic adjustments to the Cost of Living Allowance, will from January 1 increase to 196.77 per cent on basic salaries for the next six months, compared to 190.55 per cent in the preceding period

    [07] November arrivals up on 1996

    NOVEMBER 1997 saw a rise of 18.8 per cent in the number of tourists visiting Cyprus compared to equivalent figures for the previous year.

    The total number of foreigners visiting the island in November was 173,826.

    The majority of the tourists were from Europe (81.8 per cent) and 68.4 per cent of them were from the EU. The United Kingdom sent the most tourists to Cyprus, with 35.9 per cent, followed by Greece (11 per cent) and Germany (10.8 per cent).

    23,810 Cypriots went abroad in November, down from 28,703 in October. Of these, 34.9 per cent went to Greece, 20.8 per cent to the UK and 5.4 per cent to Egypt.

    [08] Police hail success of road safety campaign

    POLICE have pronounced their Christmas and New Year road safety campaign a success, with only two fatalities recorded between December 24 and January 1.

    "We launched a huge campaign appealing to the public to be cautious. Happily, it seems to have borne fruit," police spokesman Stelios Neophytou said yesterday.

    Three people were killed during the same nine-day festive period last year. Police traditionally launch a road safety campaign for the season, wary of the potentially lethal effects drinking and late-night revelling can have on drivers.

    The police traffic section noted that though the number of accidents on New Year's eve and New Year's day were up compared to last year (45 compared to 29), the number of injuries were down (nine compared to 21).

    "We had a death on New Year's eve this year, which we didn't have last year, but overall the number of injuries was down," a traffic section officer said.

    On the morning of New Year's eve, father-of-three Stelios Nicolaou, 35, was killed when the car he and a friend were out hunting in crashed down a 180- foot cliff in the Akamas area.

    The other victim was 54-year-old Kyriacou Paraskeva, who was knocked down by a car on the evening of December 27 as she tried to cross the road in her village, Liopetri.

    [09] Joker with a knife

    A HOODED, knife-wielding robber changed his mind and told a kiosk owner he was "only joking" when another customer pulled-up at the kiosk, Limassol District Court heard yesterday.

    Unemployed 26-year-old Dimitris Dimitriou, from Akrounda village, approached the kiosk in Limassol town, run by 53-year-old Christodoulos Constantinou, at about 7.50pm on New Year's day, the court heard.

    His face concealed by a balaclava, he allegedly produced a knife

    and demanded Constantinou hand him the contents of the till. But another customer drove up and Dimitriou whipped off his hood, told the terrified kiosk owner it had all been just a prank, and sped off in an unmarked car, the court heard.

    Police said they tracked down the car in Limassol's Heroes square. Dimitriou was found in the car and admitted to holding up the kiosk, the court heard.

    Dimitriou was remanded for three days.

    [10] Three held for suspected arson

    THREE arson suspects were yesterday remanded in custody for five days by a Paphos district court.

    The three men, George Moustakas, 22, George Choriatis, 27, and Antonis Choriatis, 28, are being held in connection with a fire at a farm in Kelokedaras, near Paphos, on New Year's day.

    The property is owned by Kyriacos Savva.

    Police are also treating a fire at a pool hall in Yeri on New Year's morning as suspected arson.

    Fire fighters who tackled the blaze found traces of petrol on the premises owned by Georgia Angeli, who was not insured.

    The damage was estimated at around £10,000.

    [11] Teenagers find 13th salary on the street

    TWO TEENAGERS found over a thousand pounds lying on the street in Larnaca on Wednesday and handed the money over to the police.

    Irene Ellina and Elena Loizou discovered the money - a total of £1,140 in £20 notes - on Mystra Street at around 2pm on New Year's Eve. The money belonged to Dr Lambros Voukis of the Larnaca General Hospital who had reported the loss of his thirteenth salary to the police on the same day.

    [12] Doyen of the enclaved buried in Kormakitis

    THE OLDEST enclaved person on the island, Joseph Markis, yesterday made his final journey back to his occupied home village of Kormakitis, where he was buried.

    103-year-old Markis died of pneumonia on New Year's Day.

    He had been taken to Nicosia General hospital on Christmas Eve for treatment. His body was yesterday accompanied by back to Kormakitis by relatives for his funeral.

    [13] Wishing for money, success and death

    By Aline Davidian

    SHOPPERS in old Nicosia yesterday seemed either uncertain of or reluctant to divulge their resolutions for 1998.

    These were the results of a straw poll by the Cyprus Mail, which paced the streets of Laiki Yitonia yesterday to discover changes of heart and new leaves turned for the new year.

    Three people shook their heads and declined to reveal their resolutions.

    Vera Kyriakou, 22, from Petra Solea, smiled cryptically saying she "would rather not tell".

    The other two, wishing to remain anonymous, cited the fact that they were "a foreigner" and had "just left the doctor's office" to ward off the question.

    More forthcoming was Maria Savva, 27, from Strovlos who said she was aiming for "personal success".

    A 30 and 34-year-old, not wishing to identify themselves, gave more specific answers:

    "To win the lottery and pay off my debts," said the younger one cheerily, whilst the 34-year-old launched a vigorous attack on the whole idea of resolutions:

    "I don't believe in new year resolutions," she said with conviction, adding: "If you want to change something, why wait? I stopped smoking but didn't wait for the new year."

    Her directness was matched by the oldest respondent to the poll, standing in the doorway of his Ledra street shop:

    "I want to die and get some peace," said 92-year-old Tassos Evangelidou from Nicosia, adding he was "fed up with politicians".

    A more optimistic note was struck by Astero Kokkinidou, 53, from Aglandja, who admitted "we of a certain age have achieved our goals," but added "now we just wish our children a good life".

    [14] Omonia need to prove worth

    By George Christou

    OMONIA'S title credentials undergo their most serious test of the season tonight when they visit league leaders Anorthosis in the top of the table clash. Only a point separates the two sides.

    The league table's top four teams are involved in clashes against each other today. A few hours before the televised Antonis Papadopoulos tie, third-placed Apollonas travel to Achna where they meet fourth-placed Ethnikos.

    Omonia and Ethnikos have the two best league records in recent games. Both are unbeaten in their last nine games, having won eight of them. Ethnikos' record is the more impressive because their wins are against tougher opposition. These include away wins over Anorthosis and Aek and a home win over Apoel.

    Omonia, on the other hand, have still to win a clash against a big club. They have lost to Apollonas and Aek at the start of the season and were held to a draw by Apoel more recently. Their high-scoring, winning run was achieved against clubs in the lower half of the league table.

    The same could be said of Anorthosis, who took maximum points from their first nine games and then slumped to two points from the last three ties, all against strong opposition - they drew with Aek and Apollonas, while losing at home to Ethnikos.

    Of course Anorthosis are the defending champions and, after a very impressive run in Europe, have much less to prove than Omonia who are still not the force they used to be a few years ago. The Nicosia side have shown signs of improvement, but have a tendency to fade towards the end of the match.

    Anorthosis are a different proposition. Their pressing, physical game can unsettle most sides and Omonia will have to fight hard to get anything out of the game. The champions have the edge in midfield, a department in which Omonia are rather weak.

    Both sides are strong and well-organised defensively, while in attack the visitors have come to rely too heavily on the finishing of the league's German top scorer Rauffman. In contrast, Okkas, Michailovic and Krismarevic have been scoring consistently for Anorthosis.

    Anorthosis have won the corresponding tie in the previous two seasons and should be favourites to take the three points again tonight although a draw cannot be ruled out.

    If Omonia lose and Ethnikos beat Apollonas the unfancied Achna club will move to second place in the table and start to entertain thoughts of European football next season.

    Apollonas will be without two of their foreign players, Mladenovic and Michelic, who are suspended and face a daunting task in breaching the Ethnikos defence which has conceded just one goal at home this season.

    Ethnikos' success has been based on a solid defence which has conceded only five goals in the last nine games. Apollonas, who rely on their midfielders for goals in the absence of a proven scorer, will have to work very hard to create openings against the home side's well-drilled defence.

    Achna coach Vutsecovic, who has a full squad of players at his disposal, will most probably have Apollonas' key players, Spoliaric and Papavassiliou man-marked, as he had done with Aek's Brazilians a fortnight ago. Vutsecovic said his only fear was that his players would be under pressure because of their success.

    The season of cup holders Apoel seems to be in disarray once again. Keeper Petrides is suspended for two games after clashing with fans, while the side's top scorer, Kozniku and defender Costa, have been staying away from training.

    Today they are at home to Salamina, another side that has been struggling this season.

    Ael, who have won their last two games, will be hoping to make it three in a row when they meet bottom club, Ethnikos Ashia in Limassol. Ashia finished the year recording their first ever victory in the first division and could scrape a point.

    Ael will be without star player Marios Agathocleous, who signed for Greek club Athinaikos. Ael have threatened to report the player to FIFA, for signing without informing his club.

    In today's relegation clash, second from bottom Apop are at home to 11th- placed Anagennisis who have one point more. Apop who appointed a new coach, Nicos Argyroulis in place of Radmilo Ivanvcevic during the holidays, will be without the suspended Sophocleous and Tryphonos.

    On Sunday, Paralimni, slipping dangerously close to the relegation zone after losing their last five games, will be hoping to score their first home win of the season against 10th-placed Evagoras.

    Finally, relegation-threatened Alki meet Aek in the Larnaca derby.

    © Copyright Cyprus Mail 1998

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