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Cyprus News Agency: News in English (AM), 97-10-15

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

From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>


  • [01] US reacts to Turkish airspace violations
  • [02] Cyprus to host CEMAT conference
  • [03] Turk arrested in Germany with Cyprus Church treasure
  • [04] Sweden urges parties help Cyprus solution
  • [05] Cyprus Stock Exchange

  • 0910:CYPPRESS:01

    [01] US reacts to Turkish airspace violations

    Washington, Oct 15 (CNA) -- All sides in Cyprus should not detract from efforts to promote negotiations, the US State Department Spokesman said, commenting on recent Turkish violations of Cyprus and Greek airspace.

    James Rubin said "fewer military activities are better than more military activities."

    He pointed out that "the US is working hard and closely with Greece, Turkey and both communities in Cyprus to promote a negotiating process that can lead to a constructive resolution of the Cyprus problem."

    Rubin added "the US have long urged all parties to the Cyprus problem to avoid steps that complicate or detract from efforts to promote dialogue and negotiation."

    Referring to the silent agreement for a ban of military flights over Cyprus, Rubin said the US was very supportive when Greece, Turkey and Cyprus decided against military overflights.

    "Clearly overflights have now resumed", he said and urged "all sides to appreciate the benefits of reinstituting a complete and open-ended moratorium on flights over Cyprus by Greek and Turkish military aircraft at the earliest possible time."

    The US "urge all sides to show restraint for the remainder of the exercises by the Greek side and the upcoming Turkish exercises", Rubin said.

    He refused to put the blame on any one side, pointing out that this was not "the right place to communicate that".

    CNA DA/MCH/GP/1997

    [02] Cyprus to host CEMAT conference

    Nicosia, Oct 15 (CNA) -- The 11th European Conference of Ministers Responsible for Regional Planning (CEMAT) is to be held in the southern port-town of Limassol during the next two days.

    The theme of the Conference, in which all Council of Europe member- states will participate, is "Sustainable regional/spatial planning in Europe and the protection of water resources".

    Council of Europe Deputy Secretary-General, Hans Christian Kruger, and Minister of the Interior of the Republic of Cyprus, Dinos Michaelides will open the Conference tomorrow.

    Swiss President, Arnold Koller, has come to the island to attend the Conference.

    A total of 120 delegates from 42 countries will participate in the Conference, which is expected to work out the European strategy in regional planning for the first decades of the 21st century.

    CNA GG/GP/1997

    [03] Turk arrested in Germany with Cyprus Church treasure

    Nicosia, Oct 15 (CNA) -- A Germany-based Turkish national was arrested yesterday by German Police for allegedly possessing a multi-million dollar stash of Byzantine art works stolen from churches in the Turkish-occupied areas of Cyprus.

    Bavarian authorities told a news conference Tuesday that a tip-off from Cyprus Police had led them to track down a hoard of religious icons, including ornate frescoes and mosaics in two Munich apartments.

    An initial estimate raised the price of the 14th century art works to 34 million US dollars.

    It is believed they were plundered from the Greek Orthodox Monastery of Antifonitis, in Kyrenia, and the Panayia Kanakaria Church, in the Karpass peninsula, right after the 1974 Turkish invasion and occupation of the island's northern third.

    The Church of Cyprus had fought a long and hard legal battle in the past few years to successfully regain stolen mosaics from Panayia tis Kanakarias, in Lithrangomi.

    The German Police said that a 60-year-old Turkish archeaologist and art dealer, Hikmet Aydin, had been arrested on charges of trading in stolen artifacts.

    Aydin was suspected of having carried out an international trade in religious booty for years.

    Police said some of the stolen items have been carried for years on UNESCO's list of world culture items.

    The German authorities said the icons are to be returned to the Greek Orthodox Church in Cyprus at the end of the Turk's trial.

    They said after search in the suspect's two houses in Munich 14 cases and packages containing the pillaged works were found, hidden in a cellar and attic.

    The suspect faces up to 15 years in prison if he were convicted of dealing in stolen art treasures. Aydin had been arrested a few years ago on charges of tax evasion.

    Later today, Cyprus' Attorney-General, Alecos Markides, will give a press conference on the issue.

    CNA AP/GP/1997

    [04] Sweden urges parties help Cyprus solution

    Nicosia, Oct 15 (CNA) -- Sweden today called upon all sides in Cyprus to refrain from actions hampering efforts for a solution, but at the same time considered Turkey's role in recent peace negotiations as non-constructive.

    This was pointed out Wednesday by Swedish Foreign Minister, Lena Hjelm- Wallen, after her meetings with President Glafcos Clerides and House of Representatives President, Spyros Kyprianou.

    Stressing the need for a solution to the Cyprus problem, which she described as important to both the people of Cyprus and to Europe, Hjelm- Wallen said:

    "We have heard about overflights and military actions. That is something we are worried about. It can hamper the whole process (peace talks for a comprehensive settlement)."

    She called upon all sides, both the Greek and Turkish Cypriot communities on the island, as well as Greece and Turkey to "refrain from military actions and work in a constructive way towards a solution" of the protracted Cyprus problem.

    The Swedish Minister also suggested that, towards this end, Greece and Turkey should perhaps consider once again a moratorium of flights of their warplanes over Cyprus.

    Asked to comment on Cyprus' prospects to become a European Union (EU) member before a political solution was reached, Hjelm-Wallen said:

    "We want to see Cyprus in the EU but there must be a solution. The two should be parallel."

    She added, however, she was not happy with Ankara's threats of annexing the northern Turkish-occupied part of the island if the EU proceeded with the accession of Cyprus to the Union.

    The Turkish Cypriots should be convinced of the benefits they will gain from the island's accession to the EU she said, pointing out that more work should be done in that direction.

    She described as "not constructive" Turkey's role in the summer UN-led talks between President Clerides and Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash in New York and Montreux.

    "That was easy to see," she said and added: "We were not happy with that and we said that."

    Asked about Sweden's role in efforts towards a Cyprus settlement, the Swedish Foreign Minister said: "It is mainly the role we play within the EU, " noting that her country is also now a member of the UN Security Council.

    She pointed out that some 25.000 Swedish soldiers and officials have served in the UN Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus.

    "I think it is the parties, it is the two communities, Greece and Turkey that have the responsibility (for a solution), she added.

    "We cannot give them a solution it is their responsibility," she noted.

    Asked to comment on the peace process in the Middle East, Hjelm-Wallen expressed pessimism, noting that "there is a deadlock and this has to be changed."

    "It is easy to see that the blame is with the Israeli government," she said making special reference to the continuing expansion of Jewish settlements and to the pressures put on the Palestinian side.

    CNA MCH/AP/1997

    [05] Cyprus Stock Exchange

    Nicosia, Oct 15 (CNA) -- The Cyprus Stock Exchange (CSE) All Share Index closed at today's stock exchange meeting as follows:
    CSE All Share Index                    76.88 (+0.60)
    Highest: 82.46 (2/1/97)
    Lowest : 73.90 (30/1/97)
    Sectural Indices
    Banks                                  87.87 (+0.60)
    Approved Investment Companies          63.51 (+0.68)
    Insurance Companies                    58.13 (+0.97)
    Industrial Companies                   73.07 (+0.36)
    Tourist Industries                     64.90 (+1.01)
    Commercial Companies                   45.42 (+0.96)
    Other Companies                        58.39 (-0.19)
    Trading Volume                         CYP 571734.554
    * The difference in brackets represents the percentage increase (+) or decrease (-) of the index from the previous stock exchange meeting.
    CNA MM/1997


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