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Cyprus Mail: News Articles in English, 99-09-15

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

From: The Cyprus Mail at <http://www.cynews.com/>


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Wednesday, September 15, 1999

CONTENTS

  • [01] BoC's half-yearly profits up 45.6 per centBy Hamza HendawiTHE BANK of Cyprus yesterday announced a hefty 45.6 per cent increase in its half- yearly profits and forecast an equally impressive result for the whole of 1999, barring unforeseen developments.Addressing a news conference at the bank's Nicosia headquarters, the group's executive chairman, Solon Triantafyllides, said plans for the Bank of Cyprus to be listed on the Athens Stock Exchange were on track. An extraordinary meeting of shareholders was scheduled for October 13 to ratify a 12 per cent issue of the group's share capital in Greece, he said.Triantafyllides said pre-tax profits in the January 1-June 30, 1999 period was 31.43 million, up from 21.58 million in the same period last year. Operating profits amounted to 40.1 million, up 41.1 per cent on the first six months of 1998.The group's impressive showing was the result of what Triantafyllides called an improved business climate in Cyprus and continuing satisfactory results from operations in Greece and Britain. He also gave credit to the group's insurance arms, particularly EuroLife, and investment banking and stock brokerage subsidiary CISCO.He said it was difficult to predict with accuracy the group's results for the whole of 1999, "but it is expected to be even better than that of the first six months."Triantafyllides' announcement that 12 per cent of the group's share capital would be issued in Greece appeared to be an upward revision of the figure of 10 per cent given by the bank earlier this year. The revision followed meetings earlier this month between the Bank of Cyprus chairman and top officials from the Athens Stock Exchange."I cannot say precisely when (the Athens listing will take place). It does not depend solely on us. Our efforts aim for the bank to be on the Athens exchange at the beginning of 2000," he told yesterday's news conference.Greece's Alpha Finance, he said, were advising the bank on its Athens listing, while the National Bank of Greece and Alpha Credit Bank would underwrite the issue.Underlining the bank's interest to develop operations in Greece, Triantafyllides said that expanding there was the group's "main strategic goal." A plan was being considered to upgrade and develop operations in Greece, he said, and a large number of branches would be opened in the next two to three years. He gave no figures.Triantafyllides put the bank's share capital at 2.5 billion, a figure that is more than twice the bank's market capitalisation at the end of last June. The meteoric rise in the share capital reflects the more than 300 per cent gains made by the Cyprus Stock Exchange's all-share index so far in 1999, a surge in which the Bank of Cyprus titles played a key role since they account for nearly 40 per cent of the bourse's entire capitalisation.The bank's two-for-one share split, which came into effect last month to set the market on fire, has also contributed to the increased share capital of the bank, together with the introduction of 1999-2003 centenary warrants.Triantafyllides' announcement of the six-monthly results and the latest on the bank's course for an Athens listing came as the three-week closure of the Cyprus stock market neared its mid-way point."It is disappointing that the stock exchange had to close for three weeks, but it was necessary to prevent a worsening situation," he said. The Bank of Cyprus and other listed companies, he added, would work together to prevent a repeat of the closure, decreed by market authorities to allow brokerages time to clear a mountain of delayed transactions. The issue of the backlog has soured relations between the brokers and the market authorities and was beginning to threaten the bourse's stability."The Cyprus economy cannot not have an active stock market. We must guard this institution as we guard our eyesight."Triantafyllides owned up to the Bank of Cyprus Group' share of the blame for the backlog, saying CISCO had been unable fully to service its clients despite what he called the self-sacrifice and hard work of its staff.A reorganisation of CISCO, one of the island's largest brokerages, was planned to upgrade services to investors, he promised.
  • [02] Greece and Cyprus united on approach to talks
  • [03] Opposition wants private placement ban extended to parties
  • [04] CY links up in deal with Northwest Airlines
  • [05] Don't take me away, pleads Peter's PizzaBy Jean ChristouTHE GREEK Cypriot operator of an outlet in the United Nations Protected Area (UNPA) at Nicosia Airport is appealing to the UN to be allowed to stay on, even though his licence has been revoked.The owners of Peter's Pizza, which has been in operation since 1972 as a snack bar selling souvenirs, and since 1974 has been under UN control, have been informed that from the end of the month the premises must be returned to the UN."What we want to do is send a message to (Unficyp chief Dame Ann) Hercus to change her mind and allow us to continue our business," said Pantelis Christophides, one of four Greek Cypriots who runs Peter's Pizza."We have been here so many years giving service to the UN, and there is enough work to keep us busy."He said the shop was open from 8am to midnight and at weekends.On June 30, a letter from the UN said the licence granted to Peter's Pizza would be one of several that would be renewed only until September 30."Lady Hercus says they need the space," Christophides said. "But this is a private building and we have spent money on it. It's not fair."He said that at the end of the month the UN would take his UNPA pass and he would no longer be able to enter the airport.The shop owners pay 20 a month rental to the UN. "We asked Lady Hercus if she wanted more money," Christophides said.He added that their only hope was that when Dame Ann leaves the island at the end of September (she has resigned her position for personal reasons), her replacement might take a different view.But Unficyp spokesman Major Paul Kolken told the Cyprus Mailyesterday that the decision was final.He said a review had been carried out among those living in the UNPA, asking them which facilities they deemed necessary and which unnecessary."The people running the shops could tender and those with the best offer could stay," he said. "But not all are needed."Kolken said people in the UNPA tended to use pizza outlets from outside the airport area."They (the owners) can appeal, but it was not a decision taken overnight," he said.
  • [06] Interior Minister announces earthquake plan
  • [07] Clerides promises extra aid for Athens quake victims
  • [08] Problems beset new school year
  • [09] Zakaki plant will be running by next summer, minister says
  • [10] Journalist killed 'because he was gay'

  • [01] BoC's half-yearly profits up 45.6 per centBy Hamza HendawiTHE BANK of Cyprus yesterday announced a hefty 45.6 per cent increase in its half- yearly profits and forecast an equally impressive result for the whole of 1999, barring unforeseen developments.Addressing a news conference at the bank's Nicosia headquarters, the group's executive chairman, Solon Triantafyllides, said plans for the Bank of Cyprus to be listed on the Athens Stock Exchange were on track. An extraordinary meeting of shareholders was scheduled for October 13 to ratify a 12 per cent issue of the group's share capital in Greece, he said.Triantafyllides said pre-tax profits in the January 1-June 30, 1999 period was 31.43 million, up from 21.58 million in the same period last year. Operating profits amounted to 40.1 million, up 41.1 per cent on the first six months of 1998.The group's impressive showing was the result of what Triantafyllides called an improved business climate in Cyprus and continuing satisfactory results from operations in Greece and Britain. He also gave credit to the group's insurance arms, particularly EuroLife, and investment banking and stock brokerage subsidiary CISCO.He said it was difficult to predict with accuracy the group's results for the whole of 1999, "but it is expected to be even better than that of the first six months."Triantafyllides' announcement that 12 per cent of the group's share capital would be issued in Greece appeared to be an upward revision of the figure of 10 per cent given by the bank earlier this year. The revision followed meetings earlier this month between the Bank of Cyprus chairman and top officials from the Athens Stock Exchange."I cannot say precisely when (the Athens listing will take place). It does not depend solely on us. Our efforts aim for the bank to be on the Athens exchange at the beginning of 2000," he told yesterday's news conference.Greece's Alpha Finance, he said, were advising the bank on its Athens listing, while the National Bank of Greece and Alpha Credit Bank would underwrite the issue.Underlining the bank's interest to develop operations in Greece, Triantafyllides said that expanding there was the group's "main strategic goal." A plan was being considered to upgrade and develop operations in Greece, he said, and a large number of branches would be opened in the next two to three years. He gave no figures.Triantafyllides put the bank's share capital at 2.5 billion, a figure that is more than twice the bank's market capitalisation at the end of last June. The meteoric rise in the share capital reflects the more than 300 per cent gains made by the Cyprus Stock Exchange's all-share index so far in 1999, a surge in which the Bank of Cyprus titles played a key role since they account for nearly 40 per cent of the bourse's entire capitalisation.The bank's two-for-one share split, which came into effect last month to set the market on fire, has also contributed to the increased share capital of the bank, together with the introduction of 1999-2003 centenary warrants.Triantafyllides' announcement of the six-monthly results and the latest on the bank's course for an Athens listing came as the three-week closure of the Cyprus stock market neared its mid-way point."It is disappointing that the stock exchange had to close for three weeks, but it was necessary to prevent a worsening situation," he said. The Bank of Cyprus and other listed companies, he added, would work together to prevent a repeat of the closure, decreed by market authorities to allow brokerages time to clear a mountain of delayed transactions. The issue of the backlog has soured relations between the brokers and the market authorities and was beginning to threaten the bourse's stability."The Cyprus economy cannot not have an active stock market. We must guard this institution as we guard our eyesight."Triantafyllides owned up to the Bank of Cyprus Group' share of the blame for the backlog, saying CISCO had been unable fully to service its clients despite what he called the self-sacrifice and hard work of its staff.A reorganisation of CISCO, one of the island's largest brokerages, was planned to upgrade services to investors, he promised.

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    Wednesday, September 15, 1999

    [02] Greece and Cyprus united on approach to talks

    By Athena Karsera

    GREECE and Cyprus are as one on how they will approach a widely anticipated new round of talks to solve the Cyprus problem.

    Speaking after meeting Greek Prime Minister Costas Simitis in Athens yesterday, President Glafcos Clerides said UN Secretary General Kofi Annan would probably be sending out invitations to talks towards the end of October, but that the format of the invitation remained a mystery.

    Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash insists he will not attend talks unless he is recognised and addressed as a head of a state.

    Clerides yesterday told reporters, "We have reached unanimous conclusions about the way we should handle the issues," adding he was satisfied with his preparations "to facilitate the start of substantive negotiations in the framework of UN resolutions."

    Simitis said Turkey should comply with UN decisions if it wanted to become part of European society: "Progress on the Cyprus question is what will secure Turkey's European course."

    He said there was intense international interest in the Cyprus problem and that yesterday talks had confirmed the Greek Cypriot side was ready to enter negotiations in the framework of UN resolutions with good disposition and without preconditions.

    "We should not agree to tactics of deviation or postponement or tactics which tend to move any discussions to an unspecified time," Simitis said.

    The Greek Prime Minister said Cyprus' EU accession was a "strategic goal, a main objective, a national priority because we believe it will not only help Cyprus' development and ties with the EU and the international community, but also ways to deal effectively with the political problem on the island."

    Simitis said Greece would assist Cyprus in joining the EU and, noting that Cyprus fulfilled the criteria for entry, guarantee its success.

    He underlined Greece's commitment to the joint defence dogma, saying it was the main guideline in dealing with defence issues and that the people of Cyprus should "have a feeling of security that Greece always stands by Cyprus on all counts."

    Clerides added that defence matters were progressing "according to our plans."

    Also present at the talks in Athens yesterday were Foreign Minister Ioannis Cassoulides, his Greek counterpart George Papandreou, alternate Greek foreign minister Yiannos Kranidiotis, Defence Ministers Socrates Hasikos and Akis Tsohatzopoulos and the government spokesmen of both countries.

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    Wednesday, September 15, 1999

    [03] Opposition wants private placement ban extended to parties

    By Martin Hellicar

    THE PRESIDENT'S ban on ministers securing shares by private placements should have come earlier and should cover parties too, opposition politicians insisted yesterday.

    On Monday, President Clerides barred cabinet members from enjoying private placements after it was revealed that former Communications Minister Leontios Ierodiaconou had secured some 52,000 Louis Cruise Line shares in this manner. Questions were raised about the ex-minister's shares when the New Horizons party claimed he had, before his resignation, arranged for Louis to secure a licence for a charter flight firm. Ierodiaconou dismisses the charges.

    Clerides' ban was welcomed by all yesterday, but opposition parties also complained it was too little too late.

    Socialist Edek insisted the ban should cover parties and should have been imposed when it became clear, soon after the July Louis share issue, that governing Disy and opposition party Diko had bought thousands of shares by private placement.

    The two right-wing parties insist there is nothing irregular about their securing shares in this manner, and that it does not mean they owe Louis any favours.

    But their share deals continued to draw criticism yesterday.

    "The same reasons of political ethics that are true for ministers are true for parties, as parties can with their decisions favour or appear to favour companies in which they have financial interests," an Edek statement read.

    The fringe New Horizons party agreed with Edek, and called for the ban to be extended to civil servants.

    Clerides is seeking the advice of Attorney-general Alecos Markides on the legality of extending the ban to government employees.

    The issue was made urgent by the revelation on Monday that the director of the Communications Ministry, Vassos Pyrgos, had secured Louis shares by private placement. Pyrgos chairs the ministerial committee that granted Louis the licence to run a charter flight subsidiary. He insists he has done no wrong.

    Kikis Kazamias, deputy for main opposition party Akel, described Clerides's move as "positive" but not enough, and attacked Ierodiaconou's actions.

    "Though it is clear that there is nothing legally suspect about what the minister in question did, yet we see widespread public concern and displeasure at such actions," he said. "Imagine if the Finance Minister or Central Bank governor were found to have received privileged shares in a bank," he added. Diko deputy Nicos Pittokopitis went much further, claiming that many in government positions were making money through shady share deals.

    "The big scandal is not taking place with private placements in one company but secretly in salons and suites and under tables," the outspoken Paphos deputy said.

    He spoke of "people suddenly making it rich when they had been struggling to make ends meet." He said those benefitting from such underhand deals were public officials.

    Louis meanwhile issued a statement defending the manner in which it handed out private placements.

    There was nothing illegal about the way the placements were granted and the number of officials who received placements "could be counted on the fingers of two hands," Louis said.

    The company rejected the allegations that they had done share deals with officials to get a charter flights licence.

    "Providing shares for officials has nothing to do with other activities of the company or with favourable treatment by the state."

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    Wednesday, September 15, 1999

    [04] CY links up in deal with Northwest Airlines

    By Jean Christou

    CYPRUS Airways (CY) yesterday signed a code-sharing pact with the world's fourth biggest carrier, Northwest Airlines, aiming to link the US and the Middle East.

    The deal signed in Nicosia takes tiny CY one step nearer becoming a member of Wings, one of the four global airline alliances, which includes the Continental Group, Dutch airline KLM and Italy's Alitalia.

    The group also includes Kenya Airways, KLM UK and Eurowings, and together operates a combined fleet of more than 1,000 aircraft carrying 165 million passengers between some 600 destinations.

    The alliance is expected to be further strengthened by the announcement within weeks that KLM-Alitalia will become a joint venture operation by the end of the year.

    "This means Northwest will be able to work through three European hubs, Amsterdam, Rome and Milan," said KLM's Jos Kamp, Director of Strategy and Commercial Cooperation.

    The eight-year agreement between Northwest and CY will link Cyprus to US destinations while allowing the American airline access to CY's extensive routes into the Middle East.

    "This is not only an important day for Cyprus Airways but it is also an important one for Northwest Airlines as we now enter into this very extensive partnership with Cyprus Airways," said Douglas Birdsall, senior vice president of alliances at Northwest.

    "Despite being the fourth largest in the world, Northwest has heretofore not had a significant presence in the eastern Mediterranean. Our partnership with Cyprus Airways will provide us with more extensive travel opportunities to a major region in the world."

    Northwest has a fleet of 419 aircraft and operates more than 1,700 flights a day to 150 destinations, carrying some 50 million passengers and accruing revenues of $9 billion.

    Northwest is the first American carrier that has chosen to have its code used on services to Cyprus.

    CY has an extensive route network into the Middle East, despite its small fleet of 12 Airbuses. The fact that the fleet is also one of the youngest in the world was a determining factor for Northwest, Birdsall said.

    The second phase of the deal allows for the addition of the CY code to Northwest operated services on the North Atlantic, which means CY will be shown as operating services to and form the USA in cooperation with Northwest.

    "In the world of alliances no one partner can win unless all the partners can win," Birdsall said.

    The agreement also includes cooperation on promoting holiday packages in the US and Cyprus, a frequent flyer programme, common advertising and cargo handling.

    "This agreement is a milestone for Cyprus Airways and marks a new era for the company," said CY chairman Takis Kyriakides.

    "In a rapidly changing international aviation environment airline alliances have a key role to play to the survival and growth of companies. Cyprus Airways could not remain a mere bystander to these developments."

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    Wednesday, September 15, 1999

    [05] Don't take me away, pleads Peter's PizzaBy Jean ChristouTHE GREEK Cypriot operator of an outlet in the United Nations Protected Area (UNPA) at Nicosia Airport is appealing to the UN to be allowed to stay on, even though his licence has been revoked.The owners of Peter's Pizza, which has been in operation since 1972 as a snack bar selling souvenirs, and since 1974 has been under UN control, have been informed that from the end of the month the premises must be returned to the UN."What we want to do is send a message to (Unficyp chief Dame Ann) Hercus to change her mind and allow us to continue our business," said Pantelis Christophides, one of four Greek Cypriots who runs Peter's Pizza."We have been here so many years giving service to the UN, and there is enough work to keep us busy."He said the shop was open from 8am to midnight and at weekends.On June 30, a letter from the UN said the licence granted to Peter's Pizza would be one of several that would be renewed only until September 30."Lady Hercus says they need the space," Christophides said. "But this is a private building and we have spent money on it. It's not fair."He said that at the end of the month the UN would take his UNPA pass and he would no longer be able to enter the airport.The shop owners pay 20 a month rental to the UN. "We asked Lady Hercus if she wanted more money," Christophides said.He added that their only hope was that when Dame Ann leaves the island at the end of September (she has resigned her position for personal reasons), her replacement might take a different view.But Unficyp spokesman Major Paul Kolken told the Cyprus Mailyesterday that the decision was final.He said a review had been carried out among those living in the UNPA, asking them which facilities they deemed necessary and which unnecessary."The people running the shops could tender and those with the best offer could stay," he said. "But not all are needed."Kolken said people in the UNPA tended to use pizza outlets from outside the airport area."They (the owners) can appeal, but it was not a decision taken overnight," he said.

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    Wednesday, September 15, 1999

    [06] Interior Minister announces earthquake plan

    INTERIOR Minister Christodoulos Christodoulou yesterday announced immediate government measures to be taken in efforts to limit damage during a major earthquake in Cyprus.

    Speaking after a meeting attended by representatives from relevant bodies, Christodoulou said a nationwide plan would be drawn up by the Council of Ministers in the third week of October and that fully trained expert rescue teams would be created as soon as possible.

    He said 1 million had been set aside for the year 2000 alone to equip the rescue teams, while a further 700,000 remained earmarked from this year.

    Christodoulou said the earthquake plan would include a list of necessary changes in all areas to be carried out over the next three years.

    A specially-appointed Committee and experts would also be examining safety requirements for all buildings, while inspections would be carried out at the structures over the three years.

    He said all the island's schools had already been inspected by the government for their ability to survive an earthquake, while several private schools in Limassol had hired independent evaluators.

    He said 85 of the 1,000 schools inspected had shown the need for renovations and improvements and that these would shortly be carried out.

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    Wednesday, September 15, 1999

    [07] Clerides promises extra aid for Athens quake victims

    PRESIDENT Clerides, moved by what he saw on a tour of quake-hit Athens yesterday, has promised further financial and material aid for victims of the disaster.

    The government has already pledged $1 million towards relief and rebuilding efforts following the September 7 earthquake, which killed more than 120 people and left hundreds homeless.

    But Clerides yesterday vowed to push his cabinet to approve more aid for Athens. He ordered that more tents and blankets be sent from Cyprus immediately for the needs of quake victims. He also promised to have his officials look into the possibility of supplying pre-fabricated homes for the homeless Athenians to survive the winter months.

    The pledges came as the President took time out from his official contacts in Greece to visit the worst-hit areas of the Greek capital, meeting displaced persons and relief workers.

    Political parties, the Church, groups and individuals in Cyprus have been queuing up to send relief for the Athens quake victims. Four Cypriots were among the earthquake dead.

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    Wednesday, September 15, 1999

    [08] Problems beset new school year

    By George Psyllides

    THE SCHOOL year has got off to a bad start, with parents and teachers' associations complaining about the many problems that plague the education system.

    With children having gone back to school on Monday, the Secondary Education Teachers union Oelmek said yesterday one of the biggest problems in secondary education was that teachers had to teach in two or more schools at the same time.

    The problem arises from late appointments and transfers of teachers, the union says. Any movement of teachers should be planned in order to avoid staff shortages at the beginning of the school year, Soteris Charalambous, general secretary of the union said yesterday.

    But, sources at the Ministry of Education told the Cyprus Mailsome of these problems were unavoidable. The process of transfers and appointments begins in June, but due to objections from the teachers, the process is often prolonged.

    In addition, some teachers who do not make up their allotted teaching hours at one school have to do so in another.

    The problems are not restricted to the secondary sector, with primary schools suffering many problems of their own. Fluctuations in student numbers cause changes in class sizes, which in turn force teachers to move from school to school.

    "The situation is better this year," said Sofocles Charalambides, the director of primary education at the Education Ministry. "All sides concerned have a positive attitude about solving this problem," he said.

    But education problems do not end here. Charalambous of Oelmek said parents and teachers were complaining that increases in the number of students had created mammoth schools, and that students were not getting the necessary attention from teachers.

    Teachers argue the ideal number of pupils per class should be 25, but the ministry apparently believes it should be 30.

    And while class sizes might affect the quality of teaching, building work at many schools is posing a potential safety risk to children. In one elementary school in Limassol, it was reported yesterday that the shortage of space had one class to sit in the refurbished building of the old toilets.

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    Wednesday, September 15, 1999

    [09] Zakaki plant will be running by next summer, minister says

    By Martin Hellicar

    ZAKAKI will have a desalination plant by next summer, Agriculture Minister Costas Themistocleous vowed yesterday, despite strong local opposition to the development.

    The government still believes desalination is the solution to the island's chronic water shortage, and residents of the Limassol suburb will just have to accept it, was the gist of what the minister told a press conference yesterday.

    Zakaki residents do not want the plant in their "back yards" and have threatened to blockade roads to the proposed site for the plant.

    Themistocleous said the plant would be put out to tender in the next few days. He promised that the government's desalination programme would mean an end to water cuts for homes.

    "The aim of desalination is to produce, in total, 120,000 cubic metres of water a day. When we produce this 120,000 cubic metres of water a day the government will implement its promise to end all restrictions on water supply for the whole of Cyprus," the minister said.

    He said local opposition was not justified as an environmental impact study had given the Zakaki plant a clean bill of health.

    Themistocleous complained that local officials were only against the plant because they belonged to opposition parties.

    Apart from the Zakaki plant, the state wants to build another unit at Ayios Theodoros in the Larnaca area and has awarded an Israeli firm a contract to build a plant at Larnaca. An existing plant at Dhekelia produces 40,000 cubic metres of water daily.

    Shortly after Themistocleous' press conference, the green party held its own media briefing to lambast government desalination plans once again, describing state water policy as "criminal".

    "It aims to serve the interests of golf course businesses, desalination plant contractors and water bottlers," the environmentalists claimed.

    "The fanatical promotion of desalination plants, without there being any long-term measures for solving the water problem, is leading the country to destruction," they added.

    The party charged the government with ducking dialogue on the issue and "hiding" dam water supplies in an effort to convince the public of the need for desalination.

    Desalination is an energy-hungry, and therefore polluting, process. Environmentalists argue that water conservation, particularly in agriculture, would be a better long-term policy.

    Farmers Union Eke yesterday demanded that the government end strict water rationing for salad growers, a measure enforced to save limited water reserves.

    [10] Journalist killed 'because he was gay'

    By Jean Christou

    TWO YOUTHS arrested in connection with the murder of Turkish Cypriot journalist Sertac Gorguner have told a 'court' in the occupied areas they killed him because he was gay, papers in the north reported yesterday.

    Kibris, the newspaper that 35-year-old Gorguner was working for, said the two suspects arrested in connection with his death had been remanded for three days on Monday.

    The two youths, Mustafa Yildizgoban and Aziz Oshuy, aged 15 and 17, laughed in court and said they had killed the journalist "because of his sexual preferences", Kibrissaid.

    Gorguner, who was also the correspondent in the north for the French news agency, Agence France Presse (AFP), was found dead on Sunday just outside the occupied village of Ayia Irini some 40 kilometres west of Nicosia.

    According to Kibris, an autopsy found that Gorguner was strangled with his own belt, after which the killers crushed his skull.

    His body was found in woods some 10 kilometres from his car. The vehicle's windows were broken when the car was found. It appeared as if it had been crashed.

    Gorguner had been on his way home from work at Kibrisat around 10.30pm.

    The two suspects were arrested eight hours after the killing and have allegedly confessed to the murder.

    The apparently senseless killing has caused outrage in the north. Avrupanewspaper said it had received dozens of angry phone calls over the suspects' behaviour in court.

    Avrupa

    also said that Gorguner's mother, Sevil Alpay, said that last week some persons had visited her house and looked for her son, but left when they didn't find him.

    "I didn't know these persons, but on their way out they said 'we only came to warn him'," she told the newspaper.

    Gorguner was British educated as a chemical engineer.

    Mainland Turkish newspaper Sabah-- for whom he also worked -- said he had been working on a story related to the murder of Greek Cypriot enclaved man Stelios Charpas, 69, whose charred remains were found in his burned out car outside the village of Rizokarpasso two weeks ago. Charpas had been shot twice through the head, an autopsy revealed.

    © Copyright Cyprus Mail 1999

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