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Cyprus Mail: News Articles in English, 01-10-20

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

From: The Cyprus Mail at <>

Saturday, October 20, 2001


  • [01] Government to test cancer hot spots
  • [02] New international climate 'will benefit Cyprus'
  • [03] Christodoulou: no more cash for gypsies
  • [04] New rows shake efforts for municipal coalition
  • [05] Papasavvas case to go before Parliament

  • [01] Government to test cancer hot spots

    THE GOVERNMENT is to conduct a study over the next two years into the increase in cancer cases in specific six areas across the island.

    The five villages to be investigated are Aradippou, Polemidhia, Lakatamia, Ayios Dhometios, Vrysoulles, as well as Argakas.

    On Thursday, the House Health Committee discussed concerns over the increase in cancer in those areas and put forward a proposal for a study to be conducted. The Health Ministry expects the research to get under way before December.

    DISY Deputy Sotiris Sampson told the Committee that Vrysoulles residents had become anxious at the increase of cancer cases in the area. The Ayios Georgios refugee settlement in Vrysoulles has recently seen 30 cases of cancer, 17 of them recorded over the past three years, with six deaths.

    Sampson said residents suspected electro-magnetic fields generated by radars at the Ayios Nicolaos British Base - the largest of its kind in the Middle East - were to blame.

    The British have agreed to run tests to measure electro-magnetic emissions from the radar.

    KISOS Deputy George Varnavas told the Health Committee that asbestos sheeting used for refugee housing could also be to blame.

    Another possible cause could be the waste dump in the neighbouring area, which should have been moved at the beginning of this year.

    But pathologist Adamos Adamou told the Committee no increase been noted in cancer statistics other than the expected four per cent matching nationwide figures.

    Adamou recommended that before a study was conducted, statistics should be gathered as to what types of cancer had been recorded in the area.

    Examinations of the cases involving cancer and leukaemia from the areas will be done overseas.

    Copyright Cyprus Mail 2001

    [02] New international climate 'will benefit Cyprus'

    By Elias Hazou

    IN THE long run, Cyprus will benefit from the shaping world order following the recent terrorist attacks, Foreign Minister Yiannakis Cassoulides said yesterday.

    Cassoulides made the statements yesterday shortly before departing for Ghent, Belgium, where a summit of European Union leaders will be discussing the worldwide battle against terrorism. Originally, the summit was called to discuss economic issues.

    As a result of the focus on terrorism, the Cyprus problem would initially be downgraded in the agenda of world affairs, the Foreign Minister conceded. But he was quick to add that, in the long run, "the shaping world order will mean that a solution to the Cyprus problem becomes a priority more than ever."

    According to Cassoulides, already there have been some encouraging signs from the EU, where there is an ongoing debate on whether to speed up enlargement. As an example, he cited statements made recently by EU enlargement commissioner Guenter Verheugen, who said a proposal would soon be submitted for a second wave of enlargement in January 2004 involving ten more countries.

    Cassoulides said this clearly suggested EU enlargement would be speeded up, adding this could only be to Cyprus' benefit.

    Meanwhile Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash yesterday levelled strongly worded accusations and criticism against the EU, claiming the bloc was biased in favour of the Greek Cypriots.

    In what seemed like a warning, Denktash said that the EU was "fanning the flames" by making the Republic of Cyprus a frontrunner for accession. He went on to question the motives and veracity of reports by EU committees regarding the political situation on the island.

    Addressing a gathering in the north, Denktash said that the EU had in effect already made up its mind on allowing "Greek Cyprus" to join its ranks, fearing a veto from Greece on Turkey's candidacy. The Turkish Cypriot leader went a step further, claiming the EU was shunning the Turkish Cypriots and Turkey because of their Muslim religion.

    Copyright Cyprus Mail 2001

    [03] Christodoulou: no more cash for gypsies

    By Rita Kyriakides

    INTERIOR Minister Christodoulos Christodoulou yesterday announced that no more welfare would be given to Turkish Cypriot gypsies crossing over from the occupied areas.

    "The government will be establishing a shelter for the gypsies, but they must start getting used to the idea that there will be no more welfare money," he said.

    Christodoulou earlier this week accused gypsies of coming over just to claim their 500 welfare payment then going back to the north to spend it.

    Christodoulou refused to reveal the location of the shelter after attempts to set up such a facility earlier this year were scuppered by residents' protests. Christodoulou added welfare and housing for the gypsies had cost the government tens of thousands of pounds so far.

    The announcement was made following the arrival of 27 more Turkish Cypriot gypsies crossing over from the occupied areas during the early hours of yesterday morning.

    The group followed 41 gypsies who crossed over on Monday morning and another 25 who crossed over on Tuesday.

    The group, made up of nine men, seven women and 11 children, walked from the occupied area of Morfou to Makrasyka and crossed over at the Dhekelia British Base at 6am.

    A spokeswoman for the latest batch, Aishe Topekoglou, told police they were "hungry and unhappy and had no food or houses or money".

    "Our life is hell. I have a heart problem but there are no facilities to go to for treatment like there is in the south," she said.

    The group asked to be taken to Limassol or Paphos to join relatives.

    On Monday, Christodoulou said that out of the 1,000 Turkish Cypriot gypsies living in the north, 340 had travelled south and 120 had drifted back.

    Copyright Cyprus Mail 2001

    [04] New rows shake efforts for municipal coalition

    By Melina Demetriou

    AKEL and DIKO yesterday confirmed rumours that they had proposed to KISOS to back the party's veteran Takis Hadjidemetriou as candidate for Nicosia Mayor, but the socialist party countered such a proposal had never been made.

    The three opposition parties are still struggling to form a coalition to fight the December 16 municipal elections.

    Left wing AKEL and centrist DIKO yesterday confirmed reports that they had officially proposed to back Hadjidemetriou as candidate for the Nicosia post if the party agreed not to maintain all five mayoral posts that it currently holds.

    DIKO's acting chairman Nicos Cleanthous as well as AKEL parliamentary spokesman Andreas Christou yesterday said that KISOS could still take up the offer.

    "I usually don't make this kind of public revelation but I must say that this proposal has been made but has not been accepted by KISOS because of several reasons that I respect. But I am categorical that this offer was made officially," Christou insisted.

    "After the development, we made another offer to KISOS. But still, if they change their minds and decide to take the first one, it still stands," he stressed.

    But KISOS acting chairman Marinos Sizopoulos reacted angrily to the statements made by Cleanthous and Christou yesterday, arguing that such a proposal had never been made.

    "There was never an official proposal. I challenge them to make this offer now. I think that discussing further will lead the coalition into worse trouble," Sizopoulos said.

    KISOS vice-president Koullis Mavronicolas said that the three opposition parties had "exchanged views on the sharing of posts and the name of Hadjidemetriou was mentioned."

    But Mavronicolas claimed that there was never an "official proposal."

    He said that KISOS' Central Committee was to decide its final stance on any proposals or suggestions made by other parties at its meeting next Wednesday.

    A senior member of KISOS told the Cyprus Mail yesterday that, "the proposal has been made to us but the party leadership did not even consider it because they have been fighting Hadjidemetriou for years."

    The opposition plan is to share out a total of 23 mayoral posts.

    Ruling DISY has already made its move, backing Michalis Zambelas as candidate for Nicosia Mayor.

    A source has told the Cyprus Mail that party interests might put the emerging coalition in jeopardy: "If the parties don't work things out, imagine how many candidates there could be."

    If Hadjidemetriou does not stand as candidate for Nicosia Mayor, Zambelas will almost certainly win, he said.

    Meanwhile, the capital's Mayor Lellos Demetriades confirmed yesterday that he did not wish to seek election as mayor again. However, he said, he would like to be President of a federal Cyprus.

    "I think I could have something to offer from that position, which would be a co-ordinating position," he said.

    Demetriades said he had not decided yet which candidate he would support to fill his shoes in the municipal elections.

    "I understand that there are no candidates yet. And those candidates will be born by caesarean section," he said.

    The outgoing mayor said he would write a book after his retirement.

    Copyright Cyprus Mail 2001

    [05] Papasavvas case to go before Parliament

    By Jennie Matthew

    THE ONGOING saga between Attorney-general Alecos Markides and senior state attorney Akis Papasavvas will be discussed at the House Plenum in two weeks' time.

    AKEL deputy Giorgos Lillikas made the announcement yesterday in an effort to put a cap on the flood of bitter accusations between the two men in recent days.

    Markides wrote a 17-page letter to the Civil Service Committee this week, asking it to force Papasavvas into early retirement for what the Attorney- general said were years of unprofessional conduct and slandering the government, himself and President Glafcos Clerides.

    The Committee can force any civil servant over the age of 55 to take early retirement.

    Papasavvas turned 55 last summer.

    Papasavvas' lawyer Andreas Angelides yesterday accused Markides of testing the outer limits of the law and called for a disciplinary council to determine whether his client had overstepped the mark.

    But Lillikas said a public debate in the House would silence later dissidence on either side and review the validity of both Papasavvas' behaviour and Markides' efforts to force him out of the civil service.

    The Attorney-general told the Cyprus Mail that the House was not the appropriate forum for a discussion on the situation, but that he was not afraid to talk to Parliament.

    "I will go because I'm not afraid to discuss it, but the Attorney-general is not subject to the House. It will be a matter of good will," Markides said.

    Papasavvas has been state attorney for 25 years. His relationship with Markides has been stormy since the Attorney-general took office in 1998, as it was with his two predecessors.

    Angelides yesterday alluded to sinister forces in why it took Markides so long to react to his client's alleged crimes.

    "That was my limit. I should have acted earlier on, but that does not mean that I can't act now," hit back the Attorney-general.

    AKEL yesterday pointed out that Papasavvas' heavy criticisms of George Vassiliou when he was president had gone unnoticed.

    It said Papasavvas should refrain from such strong language, but also objected to the manner in which Markides is trying to sideline him.

    Copyright Cyprus Mail 2001

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