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Cyprus News Agency: News in English (PM), 97-12-14

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

From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>


  • [01] President Clerides returns from Luxembourg

  • 1640:CYPPRESS:01

    [01] President Clerides returns from Luxembourg

    Larnaca, Dec 14 (CNA) -- President Glafcos Clerides returned this afternoon from Luxembourg, expressing full satisfaction with an EU decision to start membership talks with Cyprus next spring.

    The Cypriot President attended a meeting Saturday with the EU leaders, European Commission members and leaders of the associated countries.

    Speaking to the media on his return, President Clerides said the decision taken for EU enlargement at the two-day Luxembourg summit was of "historical significance" for both the EU and Cyprus.

    He said it is important for the EU as it will enlarge the group. At the same time, it is of "paramount importance, for Cyprus as it opens the door for joining the EU."

    President Clerides said the EU decision would benefit the people of Cyprus as a whole, especially the future generations in terms of progress, welfare, but mostly for future security.

    He pointed out the decision had sent a message to Turkey that to join the EU it "should constructively contribute in finding a Cyprus solution, within the UN framework and in accordance with Security Council resolutions" on Cyprus.

    He made special reference to the paragraph of the European Council's communique with regard to the respect by a candidate country of other countries' sovereignty and borders, among others.

    Replying to questions, the President said the Greek Cypriot side would expect to see Turkey's reactions and act accordingly.

    "Undoubtedly, Turkey will have a problem, as it's not just the EU that criticised it, but the Islamic Conference also. Therefore it should take seriously into consideration whether it is to its interest to continue its policy" on Cyprus.

    The Cypriot President cited recent statements by Turkish officials saying they would establish closer economic relations with the occupied part of Cyprus rather to proceed to annex it.

    He expressed the conviction that if Turkey went ahead to gradually integrate the occupied areas "no country will accept this, neither Europe, nor the US, or any other country."

    President Clerides said world leaders share the view that Cyprus' accession course to the EU would be a "catalyst" for a solution to the protracted Cyprus problem.

    Concluding, President Clerides noted that if Turkey wanted to become an EU member "it should certainly have to contribute towards a Cyprus solution, " expressing the belief that Turkey would not like to "remain isolated."

    The European Council decided Saturday a specific pre-accession strategy for Cyprus, noting that the accession process will be launched on March 30, 1998.

    The EU decided to "launch an accession process comprising the ten Central and Eastern European applicant states and Cyprus."

    Regarding Turkey, it has confirmed its "eligibility for accession to the EU".

    However, it recalls that "strengthening Turkey's links with the EU also depends on its pursuit of the political reforms on which it has embarked... and support for negotiations under the aegis of the UN on a political settlement in Cyprus, on the basis of the relevant UN Security Council resolutions."

    Cyprus has been divided since 1974, in violation of repeated UN resolutions calling for their withdrawal.

    CNA AP/GP/1997

    Cyprus News Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article
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    cna2html v1.04c run on Sunday, 14 December 1997 - 21:47:07 UTC