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Cyprus News Agency: News in English (AM), 97-10-25

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

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


CONTENTS

  • [01] Greek and Turkish Cypriots to meet at UN event
  • [02] Legal experts express opinion on Cyprus' EU bid
  • [03] Clerides to raise Cyprus issue at Commonwealth summit
  • [04] Turkish Cypriot emigration continues
  • [05] President Clerides met British Premier

  • 1110:CYPPRESS:01

    [01] Greek and Turkish Cypriots to meet at UN event

    Nicosia, Oct 25 (CNA) -- Greek and Turkish Cypriots will today have an opportunity to meet during a bicommunal Open House organised by the United Nations Peace Keeping Force in Cyprus (UNFICYP) on the occasion of UN day.

    The event, taking place at the UN-controlled Ledra Palace Hotel in Nicosia, will include music and dance groups from both communities while UNFICYP contingents will play their national music and offer food and refreshments.

    According to UNFICYP, it wants to give families the opportunity to get a first hand experience of its activities in Cyprus and to meet and reach out to the other community in a true spirit of the UN organization.

    The UN is actively promoting contact between the two communities, which have been estranged since the 1974 Turkish invasion and occupation of 37 percent of Cyprus' territory, as part of its mandate "to return to normal conditions".

    There are as many as 30 meetings per week in which educators, lawyers, doctors, journalists and other professionals participate.

    CNA KN/MA/1997
    ENDS, CYPRUS NEWS AGENCY
    1305:CYPPRESS:02

    [02] Legal experts express opinion on Cyprus' EU bid

    Nicosia, Oct 25 (CNA) -- According to a legal opinion prepared by three prominent international jurists and professors of international law, Cyprus is fully eligible to became a European Union (EU) member.

    It also dismisses Turkish claims that the 1960 Treaty of Guarantee, by which the Republic of Cyprus was established, and that the country's constitution prevents it from joining the EU.

    Cyprus' Permanent Representative to the UN, Nicos Agathocleous, has sent a letter to the UN Secretary-General on the issue enclosing the legal opinion, prepared in September.

    The letter and its annex referring to the eligibility of the Republic to become an EU member circulated Friday as a General Assembly and Security Council document.

    It was sent in response to Turkish claims and letters sent to the UN Secretary-General earlier this year that Cyprus cannot join the EU unless Turkey is also a member.

    Turkey, which illegally occupies 37 per cent of the island's territory since 1974, together with Greece and Britain were the guarantors of Cyprus' independence.

    The legal opinion was prepared by James Crawford, professor of International Law at Cambridge University, his colleague at Vienna University, Gerhard Hafner, and professor of International Law at Paris-X University, Alain Pellet.

    The professors and members of the Committee of International Law, substantiate the view that "there is no basis that Cyprus is prevented by the Treaty of Guarantee or by any provision of the Constitution of 1960, from becoming a member of the EU".

    In their opinion the legal experts stress that the government of Cyprus is regarded as the government of the Republic with normal competence and authority.

    They also interpret articles of both the Treaty and the Constitution and outline the international community's attitude on Cyprus' application for membership.

    The EU Commission has found Cyprus eligible to become a full member of this group and said it would start membership talks with Cyprus next Spring.

    Cyprus signed an association agreement with the European Community in 1972 and a customs union agreement in 1987. It applied for full membership of the European Union in July 1990.

    CNA MA/GP/1997
    ENDS, CYPRUS NEWS AGENCY
    1310:CYPPRESS:03

    [03] Clerides to raise Cyprus issue at Commonwealth summit

    By Maria Chrysanthou

    Edinburgh, Oct 25 (CNA) -- Cyprus President Glafcos Clerides will brief today heads of states attending the Commonwealth summit on the latest developments in the Cyprus issue.

    According to Foreign Minister Ioannis Kasoulides, in his short address to the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM), President Clerides will refer to Turkish intransigence during the two rounds of Cyprus peace talks held this summer.

    The Turkish side refused to negotiate, during the UN-sponsored talks held July (in the US) and August (in Switzerland), unless the European Union withholds accession talks with Cyprus, scheduled for next Spring.

    Kasoulides said the Cyprus President will be invited by British Prime Minister, Tony Blair, to brief delegates.

    President Clerides is also expected to refer to an American proposal to the two sides to discuss security issues, which also reached a deadlock after the first meeting between the leaders of the island's two communities, last month in Nicosia.

    During the meeting Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash refused to discuss all security issues of concern to both sides, including President Clerides' proposal for demilitarisation.

    The President of the Republic will also brief Commonwealth leaders on the humanitarian issue of missing persons as well as Cyprus' EU course.

    Later today President Clerides is scheduled to meet Malaysian Premier Mahathir Mohammad.

    On his part, Kasoulides will meet with his counterparts from Britain, Robin Cook, Seychelles, Jeremie Bonnelame, and South Africa, Alfred Nzo. CNA MCH/KN/MA/GP/1997

    ENDS, CYPRUS NEWS AGENCY
    1415:CYPPRESS:04

    [04] Turkish Cypriot emigration continues

    Nicosia, Oct 25 (CNA) -- Unbearable living conditions created in the Turkish-occupied areas of Cyprus and the continued influx of settlers from Turkey in addition to thousands of Turkish troops, force native Turkish Cypriots to emigrate.

    This week it was reported there had been strong reactions in the Turkish Cypriot community as a result of the illegal regime's proposal to transfer 200.000 settlers from mainland Turkey, especially from the Black Sea, to the occupied areas.

    The aim is to change the demographic character of this Greek-dominated East Mediterranean island.

    Political analysts in Nicosia believe the Turkish Cypriots eventually realise that Turkey used its 1974 invasion and occupation of 37 percent of the island's territory as a pretext to serve its own interests rather to protect them.

    According to Turkish Cypriot reports, the teachers' union (KTOS) in the occupied areas, the number of Turkish Cypriots who emigrated after the 1974 invasion reached 70.000, while only 7.000 emigrated from Cyprus between the years 1963, when intercommunal clashes broke out, and 1974.

    "We became a minority in our own country," KTOS General Secretary Cemal Ozurim was quoted as saying, blaming the policy of the illegal regime, which politically, economically and militarily depends on Turkey.

    According to the official Republic of Cyprus statistics, the Turkish Cypriots were 120.000 before 1974, representing 18 percent of the island's population.

    According to reports from the occupied part the main reason leading Turkish Cypriot youths to emigrate is the rising unemployment, the continuous rise in their cost of living and problems created by the Turkish colonist settlers brought in from eastern Turkey.

    The Turkish Cypriot press reported that about 80.000 colonist settlers have been transplanted in the occupied areas in addition to 35.000 Turkish troops.

    The Turkish newspapers reported last Thursday that the occupation regime planned to construct soon some 3.000 houses in the occupied areas to accommodate more settlers, using the pretext that Turkish Cypriots living abroad would like to return.

    Political analysts referred to criticism by Turkish Cypriot politicians to Denktash's policy that it forces people to emigrate.

    This was obvious, they added, by repeated European Union officials' efforts to explain to the Turkish Cypriot community of its benefits from Cyprus' future entry into the EU, something Denktash and Turkey oppose unless Turkey becomes a Union member.

    CNA AP/GP/1997
    ENDS, CYPRUS NEWS AGENCY
    1545:CYPPRESS:05

    [05] President Clerides met British Premier

    By Maria Chrysanthou

    Edinburgh, Oct 25 (CNA) -- President Glafcos Clerides met here today with British Premier Tony Blair, on the sidelines of the Commonwealth Heads of Government meeting.

    During the 15 minute meeting the two men discussed recent developments in the Cyprus problem and the Republic's European Union (EU) accession course.

    Foreign Minister, Ioannis Kasoulides, told reports the meeting took place after a request by Blair.

    "Tony Blair's government displays a special interest in efforts for a Cyprus settlement, as Britain will take over the rotating EU Presidency on January 1," Kasoulides added.

    Cyprus has applied for EU membership and accession talks are expected to begin early next year.

    Kasoulides also expressed satisfaction with the level of cooperation between the governments of Cyprus and Britain.

    Meanwhile, the Foreign Minister met today with his counterparts from South Africa, the Seychelles, Namibia and Cameroon. He also met his Canadian counterpart Friday evening.

    "I am impressed with the degree of solidarity and understanding I see from our traditional friends, which has not changed despite the fact that the Cyprus issue is on the international agenda for 23 years," Kasoulides said.

    Cyprus has been divided since Turkey invaded the island in 1974 and occupied 37 percent of its territory. UN efforts to solve the problem, including direct talks between the two sides this summer, have so far failed.

    The Foreign Minister was scheduled to meet his British counterpart, Robin Cook, later today but the meeting was postponed for tomorrow.

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