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Cyprus Mail: News Articles in English, 02-01-23

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

From: The Cyprus Mail at <http://www.cyprus-mail.com/>


Wednesday, January 23, 2002

CONTENTS

  • [01] Spokesman denies Turkish press speculation on talks
  • [02] Help me find my long lost dad
  • [03] Europe welcomes 'window of opportunity'
  • [04] Egyptian minister: my visit has nothing to with oil
  • [05] Gun raid suspects remanded in custody
  • [06] Heart valve operation is first for Cyprus
  • [07] Mother still accompanying child into class, four months after start of school
  • [08] Quake rattles Paphos
  • [09] Shares rebound for small rise

  • [01] Spokesman denies Turkish press speculation on talks

    By Jean Christou

    THE GOVERNMENT yesterday categorically denied reports in the English- language Turkish Daily News (TDN) that the leaders of the two sides had decided to put aside their separate demands and build a new Cyprus on the basis of the pre-1960 status of the two communities.

    TDN said that during a dinner between President Glafcos Clerides and Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash on December 29, at the President's Nicosia home, the two leaders reached an understanding "to put aside their titles, flags, states" and move on to build a new state.

    However, Government Spokesman Michalis Papapetrou said yesterday there had been no such agreement and that as was well known the Greek Cypriot side was pursuing its goal of a bizonal, bicommunal federation.

    He also denied that the issues of flags and titles had been discussed at the dinner on December 29. "All of this is a figment of imagination," Papapetrou said.

    "The only thing discussed at that dinner was the missing persons as a humanitarian issue and there was no discussion of the Cyprus problem," the spokesman added.

    TDN said it was quoting sources close to the talks process, which got underway on January 16.

    The two leaders have agreed to meet three times a week on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays in an attempt to reach a settlement. The first meeting took place on Monday in the United Nations Protected Area (UNPA) at Nicosia Airport under a strict news blackout.

    TDN said, however, that, despite the gag, both leaders had made it clear that the first task would be to reach an understanding on power sharing and constitutional aspects of the Cyprus problem.

    Quoting a top Greek Cypriot government source, TDN said Clerides and Denktash would "focus on the status of the new state that will be founded after a solution and on specific constitutional and power-sharing issues".

    "That was the first time that a Greek Cypriot official was declaring that the aim of the talks was to set up a 'new state' on Cyprus," TDN said.

    Turkish Cypriot press yesterday quoted Denktash at the end of Monday's meeting as saying it was too early to give any details. Before the meeting, the Turkish Cypriot leader said the two men would be discussing the "authorities that would be given to the central administration".

    "However, these are not definite principles," he was quoted as saying. "The important thing is to discuss every issue with good will and to assess the issues on which we can agree or disagree. This is my approach and I hope Clerides thinks the same."

    Copyright Cyprus Mail 2002

    [02] Help me find my long lost dad

    By Jennie Matthew

    A WELSH woman is appealing for information about her long lost Cypriot father, whom she has never seen.

    Now aged 34 and married with three daughters, Susan Hill, née Baldwick, has for the last two years been looking for her father Michalis Lambrou, who is probably in his 50s.

    He was training as a nurse at the Long Grove Hospital in Epsom Surrey when he met Susan's mother Alice in 1966-67. She was working at the hospital as a domestic.

    The 20 or 21-year-old man arrived in England with his sister and possibly some Turkish Cypriot friends to complete his studies.

    Alice was slightly older at 29, already had a son and was recovering from a brutal divorce. She fell in love with the Cypriot student.

    The two used to play bingo together in the town, but when she got pregnant, Michalis was less than impressed and the relationship turned sour.

    So Alice left her job, packed her bags and returned to her parents in Wales, where she gave birth to their daughter Susan on November 19, 1967.

    After the birth, Alice told 'Michael' (she used the English derivative of his Greek name) that he had a daughter. She never tried to contact him again.

    She remarried six years later in 1973 and Susan was brought up with her older half-brother and two younger half-sisters in Wales.

    Michalis returned to Cyprus in 1974.

    Susan said her mother described her father as short, around 5'5" with balding hair already at 21. He told her he'd been born in Famagusta and Susan has worked out he must have been born in 1945-46.

    Although she had a close loving relationship with her step-father, Susan's desperate to connect with her natural father and learn at least something of her Greek heritage.

    She'd love him to know that he has three beautiful granddaughters, Melanie 16, Samantha 14 and Nicola 3.

    Her stepfather has now died, but Susan said he had approved of her search.

    "He was a lovely man and my dad in every sense of the word, but he was happy for me to search. He didn't take it as anything against him.

    "It started off as pure curiosity. Everyone wants to know their history and where they've come from. For years, I've wondered about him and what he looked like. The one thing I would really love in this world is to find him, see him and have a little bit of a relationship with him," said Susan.

    Unfortunately, Long Grove Hospital has closed, making it impossible for her to plough through staff and student records from the 1960s.

    Her mother doesn't want to have anything to do with her daughter's quest to find her father and can't remember any more details - such as the name of Michalis' sister, whom she says Susan resembles.

    Through a message on London Greek Radio, Susan got in touch with a woman called Veda, a friend of her father's from his Long Grove days.

    Now living in the United States, Veda told Susan that she'd bumped into Michalis two years ago in Larnaca, while she was on holiday.

    He told her he was married with children and gave her the impression he was living in Larnaca.

    Aware that her quest might cause a ripple in the Lambrou family, Susan doesn't want to cause any difficulties.

    "The last thing I want to do is cause any trouble. I just feel I have a right to know my father, if I have any half-brothers and sisters, grandparents - and of course my father has three grandchildren," she said.

    She's taken a part-time job at a local school, working with children at lunchtime in order to save up for a trip to Cyprus.

    "I'll knock on every door if I have to, I'm very determined," she added.

    There's a chance that Michalis might still be working as a nurse, possibly with mentally handicapped or psychiatric patients.

    Anyone who has any information that may help Susan track down her father should please email her at susanhill33@hotmail.com or telephone her in Wales on +44 1443 815466.

    Copyright Cyprus Mail 2002

    [03] Europe welcomes 'window of opportunity'

    By Rita Kyriakides

    CYPRUS' accession to the EU may provide a window of opportunity to settle one of Europe's most sensitive and difficult disputes, the Council of Europe believes.

    Its Parliamentary Assembly yesterday welcomed the start of face-to-face talks between President Glafcos Clerides and Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash, calling it "an opportunity to achieve a breakthrough after almost three decades of stalemate".

    "To do so, we need a clear commitment to a peaceful solution by both sides, but above all, we need a historic reconciliation between the two communities," said Andras Barsony who presented a report on Cyprus to the Council of Europe.

    The Assembly believes a political agreement between the two sides is possible before the island's EU accession.

    In a resolution the Assembly urged a solution that would allow Cypriots from both sides to benefit from the island's EU membership, urged both sides to refrain from using negative rhetoric, to ascertain the fate of the missing and to seek to remove restrictions on the freedom of movement.

    Copyright Cyprus Mail 2002

    [04] Egyptian minister: my visit has nothing to with oil

    By Jennie Matthew

    EGYPTIAN Assistant Minister of Foreign Affairs Dr Mohamed Shaaban said yesterday his two-day official visit had nothing to do with mutual oil exploration in the Mediterranean.

    Speaking to the Cyprus Mail he said the reason for his trip had been strictly political, in order to sign an official Protocol to facilitate routine talks between Nicosia and Cairo.

    "As I said at the airport, I'm a diplomat not a businessman. I came for these political consultations. It is not for me. There are experts working on that; they met once in Nicosia, they may meet soon in Cairo," he said.

    Asked to comment about rumours that his visit was connected to a planned Egyptian-Cypriot commercial venture to exploit Mediterranean oil, he said: "As you said, it is on everyone's lips. It is lip service only."

    He said the primary focus of his visit had been to hold the first round of political consultations between the two foreign ministries and to sign a protocol regulating the time, venue and topics of future consultations.

    Talks will take place annually, alternating between Nicosia and Cairo, and deal with mutual political, economic, trade, tourism, international and regional matters.

    "This is not innovation as far as Egypt and Cyprus are concerned. I am the assistant minister for European Affairs. I cover 49 countries in Europe. We have 25 such protocols," said Shaaban.

    That the signing of the protocol comes on the eve of a possible oil venture "is merely coincidence," he stressed.

    On a different tack, Shaaban said there were prospects for co-operation over tourism, "once the dust [of September 11] has settled".

    Cruises are no longer offered as part of package holidays to Cyprus and Egypt, given the astronomical increase in insurance premiums.

    Copyright Cyprus Mail 2002

    [05] Gun raid suspects remanded in custody

    NICOSIA District Court yesterday remanded three men in custody for eight days in connection with Saturday morning's raid on an army post in Evrychou.

    Police on Monday arrested National Guardsman Antonis Nicolaou, aged 19, and Evgenios Zachariou, 21, both from Parekklisia in Limassol, as well as Panicos Papanicolaou, 23, from Zygi. They also recovered all the arms and munitions stolen from the army post, which was raided by three hooded men on the night of Friday to Saturday.

    Police said investigations revealed that both Nicolaou and Zachariou, a reservist, had served at the post, explaining how they knew the layout so well.

    Police yesterday revealed the three men used pepper spray against the soldier who tried to stop them. They also apparently told the soldiers on duty that the post was surrounded by mines, which would only be deactivated after an hour and a half.

    The men stole three G3 automatic weapons, one HK11 light machine gun, one MG3 machine gun, and a Russian-made RPG anti-tank rocket launcher, along with six missiles.

    They also took 1,445 7.62mm rounds and 1,000 machine gun rounds.

    All the weapons were recovered by police.

    Copyright Cyprus Mail 2002

    [06] Heart valve operation is first for Cyprus

    By Alexia Saoulli

    THE NICOSIA General Hospital and its cardiac surgeon Gabriel Kaoutzanis have made local medical history with a first ever procedure on the island.

    The first valvuloplasty for aortic insufficiency, and an aortaplasty for an ascending aorta aneurysm were carried out on a 77-year-old woman in December last year.

    Speaking to the Cyprus Mail yesterday, Kaoutzanis explained how he had headed a team of medical experts in what was a first ever heart procedure in Cyprus.

    The patient was suffering from a heart condition that consisted of an enlarged aortic valve that needed to be narrowed by the use of specialised stitching. This condition he said, was caused by rheumatic fever complications or due to heart degeneration.

    The procedure was successful, and the results could last for a good 20 years, he said.

    Kaoutzanis said that in recent years there had been an increasing tendency within international medical circles to repair heart valve conditions, rather than replacing them with mechanical or biological valves.

    "The reason for this," he said, "is because biological or mechanical valves are more complicated in the long run". He explained that artificial mechanisms promoted thrombosis or embolisms, and that patients needed to take anti-coagulation (anti-clotting) drugs for life.

    "Patients have to take these pills for life," he stressed, "because otherwise the organism will react to the foreign body and fight it, resulting in thrombosis".

    The fact that the pills must be taken for the rest of someone's natural life is not the only setback, he said. Women who are still fertile are also not advised to have a biological or mechanical valve. This is because it is contra-indicative in pregnancy or breast feeding, therefore a 25-year-old would have to be sure she would never want children before having the procedure.

    Children are also at a disadvantage with an artificial valve, because "at a young age they are not disciplined enough to remember to take the anti- coagulation pill every day".

    Also mechanical valves have a ticking noise, which can be discomforting for patients, said Kaoutzanis.

    "The advantage of valvuloplasties or aortaplasties is that patients do not have to take anti-coagulation medication, and do not have the complications of mechanical or biological valves, such as embolisms or thrombosis," he said.

    However, only one third of patients suffering from this form of heart condition are eligible for valve repair, rather than replacement. This is because the valves are normally damaged to such an extent that repair is no longer an option, he said.

    Nevertheless the doctor assured the Cyprus Mail that mechanical and biological valves were equally successful, and that the success rate was 95- 98 per cent.

    Cyprus carries out around 80 valve operations annually.

    Copyright Cyprus Mail 2002

    [07] Mother still accompanying child into class, four months after start of school

    EDUCATION Ministry officials are trying to wean an anxious mother from keeping her daughter company at school, four months after the child first started attending classes.

    The Education Ministry normally allows parents to accompany their children when they start school until they are satisfied that they have settled into the new environment.

    Few ever stay on beyond a month or two, the Ministry says.

    However, one mother has found it difficult to let go of her daughter and has been attending classes in primary school right until now.

    The Ministry has now called for a committee of teachers, psychologists, parents and inspectors, to decide what measures to take regarding the matter.

    Last week, the committee gave the mother a schedule, which will slowly decrease the hours she spends in her daughter's classes.

    Gregory Hoblaros, who is in charge of primary education at the Education Ministry, said the Ministry did not want to take any action that would harm the young girl.

    "It is not good for her to be with her mother continuously," he said.

    Hoblaros also said the Ministry was reluctant to force the mother to stay out of the school and that they were sure she would realise it would be for the good of her daughter.

    Copyright Cyprus Mail 2002

    [08] Quake rattles Paphos

    PEOPLE in Paphos were yesterday shaken by tremors from an earthquake measuring 5.8 on the Richter scale, which rocked the island during the early hours of the morning.

    Residents living on upper floors of buildings felt the tremors at 6.55am yesterday, but there were no reports of damage or injuries.

    According to seismologists at the Agriculture, Natural Resources and Environment Ministry, the epicentre of the earthquake was 350 kilometres from the western coast of Paphos at a depth of 25 kilometres.

    Tremors from another earthquake, measuring 5.9 on the Richter scale, reached the island at 5am yesterday morning.

    According to Greek seismologists, the epicentre was between the Greek eastern Aegean islands of Kos and Astypalea at a depth of 75 kilometres.

    The tremors were felt in southern Greece and as far away as Cyprus and Egypt, particularly by residents in high-rise buildings.

    Greek authorities said that there were no immediate reports of injuries or damage.

    Copyright Cyprus Mail 2002

    [09] Shares rebound for small rise

    SHARE prices rebounded slightly yesterday, gaining 0.17 per cent, but the all-share index remained low at 127.1 points. The blue chips FTSE/CySE index added 0.92 per cent to 515.6, but volume still remained under the £2 million mark at £1.7 million.

    Gains and losses on the 12 sub sectors were mixed. The hotels sector sustained the heaviest losses at 1.39 per cent, while the technology sector was the biggest gainer, adding 1.34 per cent.

    Although the day's trading was turbulent, the index managed to stay afloat for the duration, only briefly dropping towards Monday's year low of 126 points around mid session. However, promising subsequent gains also headed south in the last half an hour.

    Banks failed to make it into the most-active list, the sector ending only 0.6 per cent up. Both Bank of Cyprus and Laiki added two cents to £1.89 and £1.55 respectively.

    Some 42 stocks recorded gains compared to 43 decliners and 63 titles that closed unchanged.

    Copyright Cyprus Mail 2002


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