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Cyprus News Agency: News in English (AM), 97-12-21

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

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


CONTENTS

  • [01] Children visit occupied Monastery
  • [02] Most significant move on Cyprus after elections
  • [03] Turkey urged to rethink Cyprus stance

  • 1245:CYPPRESS:01

    [01] Children visit occupied Monastery

    Nicosia, Dec 21 (CNA) -- Some 100 children, accompanied by their parents, crossed into the northern Turkish occupied part of Cyprus for a visit to Saint Andreas Monastery, at the most eastern tip of the island.

    The Greek Cypriot children, most of whom under the age of 15, are suffering from cancer and their visit has been organised by the UN peace- keeping force in Cyprus.

    The group of about 200 people in total crossed the Ledra Palace check point, in the UN controlled buffer zone, early this morning to the three hour trip to the Monastery, a shrine for the sick and disabled.

    In November this year, more than 1,000 pilgrims attended mass at the Monastery, the largest number of Greek Cypriots who have visited this place of worship since Turkish troops invaded and occupied the island's northern part.

    According to eyewitnesses' accounts, the Monastery badly needs repairs to its structure.

    CNA MM/KN/1997
    ENDS, CYPRUS NEWS AGENCY
    1300:CYPPRESS:02

    [02] Most significant move on Cyprus after elections

    Nicosia, Dec 21 (CNA) -- President Glafcos Clerides said he expects to see the most important initiative for a settlement in Cyprus culminate after February's presidential elections.

    The President also called for "delicate and responsible" strategy, warning that any experimentation or any mistakes would result in irreparable damage in efforts for a just and lasting solution.

    Speaking in the village of Astromeritis, some 20 miles west of the capital Nicosia, the President said "Cyprus will enter a most decisive period for its future after the elections because the most important initiative in the history of the Cyprus question will culminate."

    At the same time, he added, "accession negotiations will start with the European Union", according to a decision earlier this month by EU leaders.

    "We need to handle the situation in a responsible and delicate manner, with wisdom and resolve, in order to achieve the result we want," he said.

    A Cyprus settlement must be just and viable, reunite the divided island, rid the country of the presence of Turkish occupation troops and settlers and safeguard permanent peace and security, the President added.

    CNA MM/KN/1997
    ENDS, CYPRUS NEWS AGENCY
    1325:CYPPRESS:03

    [03] Turkey urged to rethink Cyprus stance

    Nicosia, Dec 21 (CNA) -- Foreign Minister Ioannis Kasoulides has called on Turkey to reconsider its position on Cyprus and work towards a settlement of the protracted Cyprus question before the next enlargement of the European Union.

    Speaking on his return from a ministerial meeting of the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe, Kasoulides said Turkey's reaction to an EU decision to start accession negotiations with Cyprus, but not Turkey, emanates from the country's displeasure at the Union's move.

    Turkey has warned it would integrate Cyprus' occupied areas if the EU goes ahead with membership talks and would end the political dialogue with the EU.

    "It must be pointed out, and we do that to our European partners as well as the US, that Turkey has never displayed political will to settle the problem in Cyprus, to allow anyone to claim that the EU decision has led Turkey to adopt a negative position," the Minister said.

    The Union's stance, he added, is "not at all anti-Turkish, it is just and appropriate in that it offers something to Turkey and demands nothing more than what is required of other applicant countries."

    "I believe that if Europe firmly maintains this position on Cyprus, sooner or later, Turkey will understand the need to allow a Cyprus solution to be reached before the next EU enlargement," he pointed out.

    Replying to questions, Kasoulides said the international community will respond in a forceful manner if Turkey proceeds with plans to integrate Cyprus' occupied part.

    "I would like to believe that no such move will take place on the part of Turkey. If it does, we shall respond accordingly," he stressed.

    CNA MM/KN/1997
    ENDS, CYPRUS NEWS AGENCY
    CNA ENDS
    Cyprus News Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article
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