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Cyprus Mail: News Articles in English, 00-08-12

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

From: The Cyprus Mail at <>

Saturday, August 12, 2000


  • [01] ‘Archbishop is not the Pope’
  • [02] One boy’s traffic safety plea
  • [03] One in three cars on the move
  • [04] Clerides calls for proper talks next time
  • [05] Bomb targets Trahoni grocer
  • [06] Swedish tourists held over mobile phone raid
  • [07] Kyprianou spat turns into a row

  • [01] ‘Archbishop is not the Pope’

    By Melina Demetriou

    ARCHBISHOP Chrysostomos is not the Pope and should stop behaving in such an arrogant and arbitrary manner over the case of Limassol Bishop Athanassios, Archimandrite Andreas Constantinides, who has spearheaded the campaign against Athanassios, said yesterday.

    Constantinides said political and financial interests were behind Archbishop Chrysostomos’ assertions that Athanassios was innocent of homosexuality claims.

    The Holy Synod is investigating allegations by Greek hairdresser Christos Stangos that Athanassios had a gay relationship with him when they were both monks on Mount Athos in Greece.

    Constantinides first leveled the accusations against the Bishop in June, after Athanassios asked the Synod to investigate claims the Archimandrite had fathered two illegitimate children.

    But the Holy Synod has said the Bishop is innocent, suggesting Stangos’ testimony was not credible.

    The Archimandrite, however, stood by his witness, saying the committee was biased, as was Archbishop Chrysostomos.

    "The Archbishop is influenced by political and financial circles and he is speaking on behalf of them, not on behalf of His Holiness," Constantinides said.

    "I do not understand why people, both clerics and civilians are supporting Athanassios so much. Who is this man anyway?" Constantinides said.

    "These fanatic feelings make me worry that people of Cyprus will end up fundamentalists like the Muslims.

    "I heard some amazing things at the Synod committee’s meeting I cannot describe them right now. But I shall tell the Synod and the Archbishop what a big mistake they are making."

    An expert in canon law brought by the Synod from Greece, Panayiotis Christinakis, yesterday said Stangos’ testimony and letters were not enough to prove that Athanassios had sinned.

    "Stangos has no substantial evidence to back his story. Even if he was telling the truth, he would not have been suitable to testify before the Holy Synod because he would have been immoral himself," Christinakis said.

    © Copyright Cyprus Mail 2000

    Saturday, August 12, 2000

    [02] One boy’s traffic safety plea

    AN 11-YEAR-old boy from Latsia in Nicosia yesterday met the Minister of Transport and submitted his own proposal for improving traffic safety.

    Gregoris Loizou had written a letter to Minister Averoff Neophytou telling him that the way traffic lights were currently set up resulted in most drivers running red lights.

    Drivers can currently see the lights from across the junction, allowing them to crawl far beyond the line where they are meant to stop.

    Gregoris suggested that if this second set of lights was removed, and drivers had to rely on the lights at the line, they would be forced to stay back to be able to see them.

    This way, pedestrian crossings on traffic lights would not be overrun by cars obstructing people trying to cross the road.

    Speaking after the meeting, Neophytou congratulated Gregoris for his sensitivity to road safety.

    "It would be an omission not to congratulate the parents whose child is a prime example to all young people in a society which has a problem with traffic behaviour, and an even worse problem with road deaths," Neophytou said.

    Gregoris said he had decided to write to the minister because he saw cars obstructing pedestrians everyday, and that sooner or later there would be an accident.

    "We should not wait for an accident to happen," Gregoris said.

    He also told the minister that his school needed speed ramps immediately because cars often sped by and children could not safely cross the road.

    The minister promised him that in when his school reopened in September, it would have received a present and would have Gregoris to thank for it.

    Speed bumps are to be laid down in front of some 50 primary and secondary schools in an effort to force passing cars to put the breaks on, the ministry announced on Thursday.

    The long-term plan is to have such speed breaks installed outside every school.

    Gregoris’ school had not been in the 50 schools earmarked for the first batch of ramps.

    © Copyright Cyprus Mail

    Saturday, August 12, 2000

    [03] One in three cars on the move

    ONE IN three cars registered on the island are expected to on the move during the coming long holiday weekend, police said yesterday.

    They urged drivers to be extra careful and to follow traffic rules.

    Police said they had drafted a special plan that incorporates traffic departments in all districts, aiming at preventing accidents.

    Patrols will be dense, while special emphasis will be given to speed, dangerous overtaking, seat belts, crash helmets, and drink driving.

    Deputy Police Director Andreas Papas told the Cyprus Mail that police expected 100,000 cars to be on the roads in the next four days, including today.

    Papas said drivers should be very careful to avoid accidents since most would be traveling with their friends and family.

    He also urged pick-up and van owners not to overload their vehicles, something that could hinder control and block the vision of others coming from behind.

    "Drivers should take some time to check their cars and plan their trip carefully and avoid hurrying," Papas said.

    © Copyright Cyprus Mail

    Saturday, August 12, 2000

    [04] Clerides calls for proper talks next time

    By Athena Karsera

    PRESIDENT Glafcos Clerides has urged the UN to ensure that the next round of proximity talks is one of negotiation and not just a presentation of positions.

    Speaking from Paphos before setting sail for a two-week cruise to the Greek islands, Clerides said the Greek Cypriot side had informed the UN Secretary- General that, "September should be a month of negotiations and not just having each side outline its positions."

    "We have done this four times so far," he said, adding it was clearly time for the next step to be taken.

    The President is taking the cruise on his yacht, the Katy II, before going to New York for the resumption of talks in mid-September.

    Clerides is due to return from his cruise on August 25, spending the weekend on the coast before returning to Nicosia on August 28.

    He will be leaving for New York on September 3 to address the UN General Assembly Millennium Summit and for the resumption of talks on the Cyprus problem on September 12.

    Foreign Minister Yiannakis Cassoulides is due to travel to Athens on August 29 or 30 for a meeting with his Greek counterpart George Papandreou ahead of the resumption of talks.

    © Copyright Cyprus Mail

    Saturday, August 12, 2000

    [05] Bomb targets Trahoni grocer

    A BOMB explosion yesterday rocked the village of Trahoni in the Sovereign Base Area near Limassol.

    The 5.20am blast was caused by a homemade high-intensity explosive placed outside a grocery shop on Morphou Street.

    The shattered the front windows and damaged products inside the shop.

    The police bomb squad along with their SBA colleagues scanned the scene of the explosion for hours, looking for clues that could help them find the culprits.

    The grocery owner, Kyriacos Hadjikyriacou, said he had no differences with anyone.

    But police are understood to be linking the blast to the grocer’s legal action to claim large amounts of money owed to him by several of his customers.

    Police said they had a long list with names of people they would like to quiz.

    It was the second time the grocery was bombed in three years.

    The first time was in May 1997.

    © Copyright Cyprus Mail

    Saturday, August 12, 2000

    [06] Swedish tourists held over mobile phone raid

    A SWEDISH couple suspected of stealing nine mobile phones after smashing a Paralimni shop window with a concrete block were yesterday remanded in custody for six days.

    Peter Hagman, 22, and his 19-year-old girlfriend Jenan El Emam, were arrested when they allegedly tried to sell their loot to a pub owner in Protaras.

    The pub owner, who was aware of the theft, called police when Hagman approached him and tried to sell him a phone.

    Hagman told police he bought the phones from a stranger on the beach for £150 each.

    The court heard the phones were worth a total of £1,687 and were stolen at 6.30am on Thursday from the Germanos electronics shop at the centre of Paralimni.

    A motorcyclist stopped outside the shop, smashed the front window, grabbed the phones and took off, police said.

    Yesterday, police found three phones in Hagman’s possession, while four more were later found at his flat.

    The Swede said he had already sold one phone, for which police are now searching.

    His girlfriend denies any involvement in the case.

    Police told the court that they also found seven cartons of Marlboro cigarettes in the suspects’ possession, which they claimed they had bought from duty free shops.

    But the health ministry’s warning on the cartons proved that they were not duty free, and police suspect they were stolen.

    Duty free cigarettes have no government warning printed on the packs.

    The two said they were taking the cartons to their parents as gifts.

    The court heard that the shop had matched the serial numbers of the stolen phones with the numbers on those recovered.

    © Copyright Cyprus Mail

    Saturday, August 12, 2000

    By Martin Hellicar

    THE BOURSE enjoyed a stabilising day yesterday, with the all-share index rising by 2.21 per cent and the volume of transactions decidedly higher than Thursday’s year-low.

    A total of £15,030,076 changed hand during trading yesterday. On Thursday, the volume of transactions was a miserable £12,035,306. Fifteen million is still a far cry from the 80-odd million routinely changing hands when the market was on a massive high last year, but analysts still saw it as a step in the right direction. The low level of transactions is partly attributed to the August holiday lull.

    The all-share index closed at 381.52 points, 8.24 points higher than Thursday’s close.

    Dented investor confidence appears to be slowly recovering, observers suggested.

    "Investors appear more interested now, there are more people buying and things are beginning to look a bit better," one analyst said.

    The all-share index is still uncomfortably close to the year-low mark of 363.69 and light years away from the year high of 699.07.

    The market has lost more than 50 per cent of its value since January following a 688 per cent increase last year.

    Though the market remains below the 400-point support level, observers believe it is showing healthy signs of stabilising.

    The announcement on Thursday of a series of government measures to bolster the market appears to be having the desired effect on investor confidence. Finance Minister Takis Klerides announced that institutional investors would be prodded to support the market, the method of calculating the all- share index would be changed and moneys from the state social insurance fund would be sunk into the market.

    Market insiders said big institutional investors had made their presence felt on the trading floor yesterday.

    "We are now seeing the market stabilising, we are seeing a reaction to the measures announced yesterday," the analyst told the Cyprus Mail.

    "It will go up a bit more and then we will probably see some profit- taking which will drive it down again. The ups will be cancelled out by the downs and the market will stabilise."

    "It will reach a level around the 400-point mark and stay there," the analyst suggested.

    All sectors were up yesterday, with the trading companies doing best of all.

    Banks gained 0.77 per cent, investment companies 1.27 per cent, insurance companies 2.60 per cent, manufacturing companies were up some 3.01 per cent, tourism companies up by 4.03 per cent, trading companies up by an impressive 4.75 per cent and other companies gained 4.56 per cent.

    Over six million pounds worth of the transactions were concentrated in the other companies sector.

    Shares of Globalsoft jumped 17.5 cents yesterday. Bank of Cyprus and Laiki bank shares both had good days, gaining three and ten cents respectively to close at £6.76 and £9.64.

    Louis Cruise Line shares gained 4.5 cents to close at £0.83. Sharelink Financial Services managed gains of 11 cents to close at £1.92, while Severis and Athienitis Financial services rose by 15 cents to close at £1.85.

    © Copyright Cyprus Mail

    Saturday, August 12, 2000

    [07] Kyprianou spat turns into a row

    ‘I never went to Alexandria’

    By Martin Hellicar

    THE tiff between House President Spyros Kyprianou and his Greek counterpart, Apostolos Kaklamanis, threatened to turn into a full-blown diplomatic storm yesterday amid accusations of ‘twisting the truth’ and upset protocol.

    It started off with Kyprianou being incensed because he says he received no official response to his May 18 request to address the Greek Parliament on the Cyprus problem.

    For his part, Kaklamanis has expressed "surprise" at Kyprianou’s public outburst over the issue. The Greek parliament’s speaker insists he has discussed Kyprianou’s request with him both over the phone and face-to-face, when they met in Alexandria two months back. But Kyprianou maintains: "I never went to Alexandria."

    Kaklamanis has also accused Kyprianou of violating parliamentary protocol by airing his grievances in public.

    Yesterday, the spat took on new dimensions. Kyprianou issued a terse statement in which he charged Kaklamanis with twisting the truth, ducking the issue and "slighting" his Cypriot counterpart.

    Kyprianou insists the face-to-face meeting between him and Kaklamanis in Alexandria is nothing but a figment of the Greek House president’s imagination.

    It all began on Tuesday. Kyprianou called a press conference to complain that he had received no reply to a letter he sent Kaklamanis on May 18 asking for an audience with the Greek parliament. Kyprianou said he wanted to inform "the representatives of the Greek people" of his thoughts and concerns about the Cyprus problem.

    He handed reporters a copy of his letter and of a second letter, of complaint this time, that he said was winging its way to Kaklamanis’ Athens office.

    The following day Kaklamanis took Kyprianou to task, issuing a written statement in response to Kyprianou’s claims. The statement made no attempt to spare the former Cypriot president’s blushes.

    "Mr Kyprianou’s statement that he received no reply to his first letter and the release of both this and the next letter – before it had even reached its recipient – surprised me. Firstly, for reasons of parliamentary protocol, which must be clear to everyone, but also because it is well known that co-operation between the two parliaments and their presidents has always been excellent."

    The statement from Kaklamanis went on: "And secondly, and more importantly, because Mr Kyprianou knows that the absence of a written reply to his letter is down to the simple fact that its contents had been discussed both by phone and when we met two months ago."

    Kyprianou was not about to take this lying down: he duly issued a statement in reply to Kaklamanis yesterday. This said he was "surprised and saddened" by the statement from Kaklamanis. "Firstly, because he avoids positioning himself on the essence of my letter and secondly because it contains slights against me, as well as inaccuracies.

    "I am surprised that Mr Kaklamanis is surprised, because in addition to my letter of May 18, I repeatedly reminded him (of my request) but never got any response," Kyprianou stated.

    He took exception to Kaklamanis suggesting he had violated parliamentary protocol. And he tried to turn the tables on his Greek counterpart by saying his failure to reply to his (Kyprianou’s) letter was the only violation of protocol involved.

    "I do not understand what Mr Kaklamanis means with his reference to parliamentary protocol, maybe he means when a parliamentary president addresses a letter to a counterpart and does not get a reply?" Kyprianou stated.

    He denied outright the claims by Kaklamanis that the issue had been discussed on several occasions: "I am sorry to observe that we never had such an exchange of views and never met two months ago – I never went to Alexandria as Kaklamanis claimed."

    Kyprianou added that he was not out for a fight, but simply felt the Greek parliament needed to have the benefit of his views on Cyprus problem developments.

    "I state categorically that I am not after any confrontation with the president of the Greek House or with the Greek government. What I am after is a chance to have the honour to address the House of the Greeks, to express directly and boldly to the representatives of the Greek nation my fears, concerns, and opinions on the course of Cyprus’s national issue." His experience and ten years as president gave him the right to have his say on the Cyprus problem, Kyprianou added.

    Kyprianou is an outspoken critic of President Clerides’ Cyprus problem policy. The 68-year-old Diko leader is no stranger to political confrontations, and has often faced off with the Greek government over what he sees as Athens’ failure to do its duty by the Cyprus problem.

    © Copyright Cyprus Mail

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