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Cyprus News Agency: News in English (PM), 97-09-30

Cyprus News Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Cyprus News Agency at <http://www.cyna.org.cy>


CONTENTS

  • [01] Government ready to give information on 215 missing persons
  • [02] Clerides stresses urgent need for solution
  • [03] President Clerides to meet Kofi Annan
  • [04] Two sides confirm readiness to exchange information on missing
  • [05] Political parties on Independence anniversary

  • 1620:CYPPRESS:01

    [01] Government ready to give information on 215 missing persons

    Nicosia, Sep 30 (CNA) -- The Greek Cypriot side is ready to hand over information regarding 200 Turkish Cypriots and 15 Greek Cypriots missing in Cyprus.

    It also expects the Turkish Cypriot side to provide information on at least twice as many if not more Greek Cypriots missing since the 1974 Turkish invasion of Cyprus.

    "Our side is prepared today to hand the UN information about 200 Turkish Cypriots as well as 15 Greek Cypriots buried in the occupied areas, " the Government Spokesman said today.

    Manolis Christofides said the government is ready to comply with an agreement reached between the leaders of the two communities in July.

    "The information is handed over in a responsible manner and we expect the other side to respond in the same way, so we can put an end to this tragic problem," the Spokesman added.

    1619 Greek Cypriots were listed as missing after the Turkish invasion, whereas 500 Turkish Cypriot are believed to be missing since intercommunal clashes began in the early 1960s.

    Christofides clarified that the information gathered from witness reports and statements will have to be substantiated with scientific evidence on every person's identity.

    Meanwhile, the Humanitarian Affairs Commissioner said he expects information on at least 400 Greek Cypriot missing to be handed in by the Turkish Cypriot side.

    "They must give us information on at least twice the number of cases we will be handing them," Takis Christopoulos said.

    He added that the Turkish Cypriot side must provide information regarding Greek Cypriot missing buried in the occupied areas.

    On Monday Christopoulos handed President Glafcos Clerides all information gathered and expressed willingness to pass it on to the UN in Cyprus.

    The President and Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash had reached an agreement over two meeting in Nicosia, "to provide each other immediately and simultaneously all information already at their disposal on the location of graves."

    This information was to be exchanged by the end of September.

    CNA MA/MCH/1997
    ENDS, CYPRUS NEWS AGENCY
    1915:CYPPRESS:02

    [02] Clerides stresses urgent need for solution

    Nicosia, Sep 30 (CNA) -- The urgent need for a fair, viable and workable settlement of the Cyprus problem was stressed today by President Glafcos Clerides in his message on the occasion of Cyprus' Independence Day (1 October 1960).

    "The prolongation of the problem is a threat to the region and at the same time makes it more difficult to find a solution. Such a situation is to the detriment of the two communities", President Clerides warned.

    Noting that the Turkish policy on Cyprus has not changed since its invasion of the island in 1974, he also pointed out to the failure of direct talks in Troutbeck (July 1997) and Montreux (August 1997) to reach any results.

    "However they (the talks) proved positive for the Greek Cypriot side", the President added.

    He referred to a non-paper, with improved positions as regards the basic aspects of the Cyprus problem, submitted by the Special Adviser to the UN Secretary-General on the Cyprus problem, Diego Cordovez, as one of the positive outcomes.

    He also considered as positive that: "The international community has made it even more clear to the Turkish side that the start of the Cyprus- European Union accession talks are not affected by Turkish blackmail."

    Pointing out to the difficulties concerning accession to the EU, he stressed he was "optimistic about the final outcome".

    He also reaffirmed government readiness to accept representatives of Turkish Cypriot private sector organisations as members of the Cypriot delegation in accession negotiations.

    "At the same time we are prepared to discuss the modalities of Turkish Cypriot participation, as long as it does not entail direct or indirect recognition of the so-called Turkish Cypriot state", he added.

    President Clerides said he considered as a positive "the fact that the UN Security Council holds the Turkish side responsible for the failure of the talks and commends the stand of the Greek Cypriot side."

    He referred to the meetings in Nicosia with Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash on humanitarian and security issues, noting that at the suggestion of the UN they have started without preconditions or an agenda.

    "My assessment is that we have entered a long period of political activity behind the scenes and for the first time the international community will be involved deeply and intensely in the Cyprus problem with view of finding a solution", he said.

    On the issue of the Russian defensive system purchased by the Cyprus government, President Clerides stated categorically the S-300 surface-to- air missiles would not come to Cyprus only if satisfactory progress towards a solution was achieved or agreement on demilitarisation of the island was reached.

    CNA MCH/GP/1997
    ENDS, CYPRUS NEWS AGENCY
    1945:CYPPRESS:03

    [03] President Clerides to meet Kofi Annan

    Nicosia, Sep 30 (CNA) -- President Glafcos Clerides will address the UN General Assembly next week and have meetings with UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan.

    He will depart Thursday for Zurich and on Monday, 6October he will meet in New York with the UN Chief and the General Assembly President.

    Later the same day, President Clerides will address the General Assembly and he will then meet with US Presidential Emissary for Cyprus, Richard Holbrooke.

    He will also have dinner with the five permanent members of the UN Security Council.

    On Tuesday, President Clerides will have a working breakfast with Holbrooke and he will later depart for Washington to inaugurate an art exhibition by the pupils of the Emba Primary School.

    On the same night, he will have dinner with Greeks of the diaspora in the framework of the 13th Annual Hellenic Leadership Conference.

    On Wednesday, the President will have a working breakfast with journalists and will later on depart for Strasbourg, for the 2nd Summit of Head of States and Government of the 40-Nation Council of Europe.

    On Saturday, he will address the fifth session of the Summit and he will later depart for London to attend a meeting and a dinner hosted by Greeks of the diaspora to celebrate the 75th anniversary of the establishment of the Archbishopric of Great Britain.

    On Monday, President Clerides will depart for Athens, where, on Tuesday, he will meet with Greek Prime Minister, Constantinos Simitis.

    He will return to Cyprus on Tuesday, 14 October.

    CNA RG/MCH/1997
    ENDS, CYPRUS NEWS AGENCY
    1955:CYPPRESS:04

    [04] Two sides confirm readiness to exchange information on missing

    Nicosia, Sep 30 (CNA) -- The two sides in Cyprus today confirmed they have identified locations where remains of persons listed as missing are buried and are prepared to exchange this information.

    UN resident representative said after meeting the President this afternoon that the two sides have also designated their representatives who will meet to exchange information.

    Gustave Feissel met today with both President Glafcos Clerides and Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash.

    "They each confirmed that they had done their work to identify locations where the remains of missing persons are and that this information will be exchanged in the coming days or within the week," Feissel said.

    He said they also confirmed that they have designated their respective persons, Takis Christopoulos and Rustem Tatar, who will exchange this information.

    The UN envoy added that "probably when Christopoulos and Tatar get together they will exchange information and of course then they will continue from there to work out the arrangements for returning the remains"

    Feissel expressed satisfaction that the two sides kept to an agreement reached after two meeting in Nicosia in July.

    "I'm satisfied. They have done what they agreed to do," the UN representative said.

    He added that "even though it (the agreement) doesn't solve the problem it was a very positive step, with good will from both sides."

    Feissel said he expects an exchange of information on a "significant" number of missing persons.

    "Not for all the cases of the missing persons, but I would expect it to be an important number, which is a good step forward," he added.

    Earlier today the Commissioner for Humanitarian Affairs, Takis Christopoulos, said the Greek Cypriot side is prepared to give information on 200 Turkish Cypriots and 15 Greek Cypriots.

    The agreement between President Clerides and Denktash was reached July 31 and stipulates they will provide each other immediately and simultaneously with information already at their disposal on the location of graves.

    The had also agreed to designate a person who by the end of September will exchange the information.

    Referring to a security dialogue, which got underway on Friday with a meeting of the two leaders, Feissel reiterated the UN aim is to come up with a common position on certain issues.

    "We're still trying to see how we can move this thing forward. It's an important issue, it's been around for a long time and it's not fair to think things can happen in one or two days" Feissel said.

    He added the goal of his separate meetings with the two leaders is "to try to come up with a common position that is shared by the two and if all goes well in that direction the idea was to meet again."

    "One should not expect that when they have a common view it would cover the whole spectrum of issues related to security," the UN envoy said.

    "We're not going to solve the issues now but we can take an important and very useful first step in that direction which will not only facilitate further work on security but will also improve the overall atmosphere and facilitate other things."

    Feissel described a common position as a first, important and encouraging step.

    "It could convey a very good and encouraging message to the two communities in Cyprus and indeed to the region and the international community at large. This is a very important and could snowball into something good as time goes by."

    CNA MA/MCH/1997
    ENDS, CYPRUS NEWS AGENCY
    2040:CYPPRESS:05

    [05] Political parties on Independence anniversary

    Nicosia, Sep 30 (CNA) -- Political parties today stressed the importance of safeguarding the integrity of the Republic of Cyprus and called on Turkish Cypriots to work with Greek Cypriots for a solution to the Cyprus problem.

    Parties issued statements on the occasion of the 37th anniversary of the establishment of the Republic of Cyprus, celebrated October 1, in which they also note the Cyprus issue is going through a determining phase.

    Ruling right wing party, DISI, sent Turkish Cypriots a message of friendship and cooperation, adding that all citizens can safeguard their rights and live under conditions of security and peace in the Cyprus Republic.

    Left wing party, AKEL, says Cyprus' independence was achieved by both Greek and Turkish Cypriots and should therefore be safeguarded.

    Centre-right party, DIKO, calls on the international community to take its responsibility in efforts to settle the Cyprus issue.

    Socialist party, EDEK, calls on Turkish Cypriots to join Greek Cypriots in the common struggle for a united, free, independent and common home.

    The United Democrats say that everyone should safeguard and strengthen Cyprus' status as an independent state and oppose voices supporting the establishment of two separate entities on the island.

    The New Horizons party calls for a solution to the Cyprus problem that will respect the human rights of all citizens of the Republic.

    CNA MA/MCH/1997
    ENDS, CYPRUS NEWS AGENCY
    CNA END
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