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Cyprus News Agency: News in English (AM), 97-12-10

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

From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>


  • [01] Britain watches closely Turkish approach on Cyprus solution
  • [02] Solution and EU accession can secure human rights

  • 0920:CYPPRESS:01

    [01] Britain watches closely Turkish approach on Cyprus solution

    London, Dec 10 (CNA) -- Britain would like to see Turkey in the European Conference, but would keep a close eye on its approach to the UN efforts for a Cyprus settlement, it was officially announced here Tuesday.

    A statement issued by the British Prime Minister's office, after one- hour's talks Tony Blair had yesterday here with his Turkish counterpart Mesut Yilmaz, said their meeting was constructive.

    It also described bilateral relations between Britain and Turkey as "very good."

    "Britain supports an increasingly close relationship between Turkey and western institutions, especially with the European Union (EU)," the statement added.

    It also added that Blair and Yilmaz discussed the Luxembourg EU summit meeting, scheduled for December 12-13, and Turkey's place in the process of accession negotiations.

    "Britain made clear that Turkey's candidature will be judged on the same criteria as those of any other applicant country," the British Premier's office said.

    It also noted "we want to see Turkey in the European Conference and we will be following closely Turkey's approach to the UN efforts for a settlement in Cyprus."

    Ankara is demanding a place in a planned European Conference for members-in-waiting, but Greece has threatened to veto its participation.

    The Turkish Prime Minister refrained from making any statements after the meeting.

    However, speaking later to Turkish reporters Yilmaz said the issue for gradual integration of Turkish-occupied areas of Cyprus to Turkey was not raised during the meeting.

    Yilmaz added he had told Blair that Cyprus' accession to the EU concerns all three guarantor powers of Cyprus' independence, implying the Turkish claim that under the 1960 Treaty of Establishment, Cyprus cannot join any organisation in which Greece and Turkey are not members.

    The Turkish Premier left London last night for Luxembourg.

    The European Commission formally agreed July 15 to invite Cyprus for EU membership talks in the Union's first expansion into eastern Europe along with Poland, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Slovenia and Estonia.

    Turkey, smarting at not being included in the envisaged expansion, threatened to unite with the occupied north of Cyprus if the EU went ahead with entry talks with the Cyprus government.

    Turkish troops have been occupying 37 per cent of Cyprus territory since 1974, in violation of repeated UN resolutions calling for their withdrawal.

    CNA KT/AP/GP/1997

    [02] Solution and EU accession can secure human rights

    Nicosia, Dec 10 (CNA) -- Government Spokesman Manolis Christophides said that a Cyprus settlement and membership of the European Union would secure full respect of human rights of all Cypriots, whose rights Turkey violates.

    "Turkey, a ruthless invader, violates the human rights of Greek and Turkish Cypriots alike", Christophides said, noting that Turkey also violates the human rights of its own citizens as well.

    The Spokesman also said Cyprus looks forward to full EU membership and a just settlement of the Cyprus question, in accordance with UN resolutions.

    "Such a development will secure full respect of human rights of all Cypriot citizens", he added.

    Christophides said the Government was pleased that Turkey's European course has to meet certain conditions, including respect of human rights and cooperation towards a political settlement, without obstructing the Republic's European aspirations for accession.

    CNA MM/RG/1997
    Cyprus News Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article
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