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Cyprus Mail: Press Review in English, 98-01-23

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From: The Cyprus Mail at <>

Friday, January 23, 1998

Initiative after the elections

THE presidential elections -- including an announcement by 12 former government ministers that they will vote for Glafcos Clerides, the on-going strife in Diko and statements by party leaders on the Cyprus problem were the main stories in yesterday's newspapers.

Phileleftheros and Agon both lead on the new initiative on the Cyprus problem expected to manifest itself after the presidential elections and the thorny issue of bringing the Turkish-Cypriots into the Cyprus-EU accession talks.

Phileleftheros says that policies to be pursued after the elections were back in the limelight following President Clerides' separate meetings with political party leaders. The paper notes that leaders disagreed about the anticipated initiative and what should be done, but agreed on the need for collective agreements. But Phileleftheros says there appeared to be little room to promote such agreements, at least for the time being.

Agon says that a "gigantic" initiative is expected on the Cyprus problem in March, with two diplomats -- Britain's Sir David Hannay and United States' Richard Holbrook working on formulas to bring the Turkish-Cypriots into the EU accession talks. The paper says President Clerides told political party leaders on Wednesday that the two diplomats were expected to visit Nicosia, Athens and Ankara after the elections and present proposals on the Cyprus issue.

Simerini leads on Clerides' speech to an election gathering at the Hilton Hotel in which he said he was confident voters would re-elect him to power in order to continue his policies on the Cyprus issue. Clerides said voters would not listen to party instructions but will decide on their own as to who should be entrusted with the national issue. In a related story Simerini carries a statement issued by 12 former ministers (six served under Archbishop Makarios, two under Spyros Kyprianou and four under Clerides) saying the incumbent president must be given a chance to complete his work.

Alithia also carries the statement by the 12 former ministers on the front page. In its lead story it accuses George Iacovou of avoiding taking a clear stand on key issues such as the Ghali Set of Ideas, the S-300 missiles, the joint defence dogma with Greece and the participation of Turkish-Cypriots in the accession talks.

Machi's main story is the statement in support of Clerides issued by the 12 former ministers. In another front-page story on the elections the paper quotes Diko vice president Dinos Michaelides urging the party president Spyros Kyprianou to back Alexis Galanos -- the former Diko vice president who is running for president.

Haravghi leads on a statement by Diko deputy Nicos Moushouttas voicing support for the candidacy of George Iacovou. Moushouttas was speaking during an election meeting in support of Iacovou organised at the Diko branch of Kaimakli in Nicosia.

© Copyright Cyprus Mail 1998

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