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Cyprus News Agency: News in English (PM), 98-12-02

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

From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>


  • [01] President - Parliamentary parties
  • [02] Stylianides - Cem
  • [03] Chief Negotiators - EU - Cyprus

  • 1820:CYPPRESS:01

    [01] President - Parliamentary parties

    Nicosia, Dec 2 (CNA) -- Parliamentary party leaders and representatives were briefed today by President Glafcos Clerides on his recent talks in Athens with the Greek Premier, which focused on the Cyprus problem and the issue of Russian anti-aircraft missiles, purchased by the government.

    Speaking after a meeting which lasted almost two hours, ruling right- wing Democratic Rally (DISI) leader, Nicos Anastasiades stressed his party's firm support for the National Council decision concerning Russian anti-aircraft missiles S300.

    The National Council is the top advisory body to the President on the Cyprus problem. Parliamentary parties DISI, AKEL, DIKO, EDEK and United Democrats as well as non-parliamentary party New Horizons are Council members.

    Anastasiades stressed the Cyprus Republic's right to defence, pointing out that there can be no concessions unless certain preconditions are fulfilled.

    He said there are different views on the issues, which will be examined at the next Council meeting.

    On his part Demetris Christofias, Secretary General of left-wing leading opposition party AKEL, said there are new facts, pointing out that if there were nothing new, there would be no need for the meeting in Athens.

    He refrained from disclosing these new facts, and called for greater consideration of the issue.

    Replying to questions, Christofias also said that "the decision to bring in the missiles was taken by the President. The National Council decided only on the postponement (of their arrival)," he added.

    President of centre-right Democratic Party (DIKO) party, Spyros Kyprianou, said he did not wish to make any comments because he felt he did not know "the complete truth" about what was discussed at the Athens meeting.

    "I wish to be briefed more thoroughly and it is my responsibility to see to it," Kyprianou added.

    Socialist EDEK leader, Vassos Lyssarides, said there was no reason to change the National Council decision regarding the arrival of the missiles, as the conditions set by the Council for revoking its decision have not been met.

    The National Council said the S300 would not arrive if there was progress towards demilitarisation or bi-communal talks aiming at a Cyprus settlement.

    Lyssarides also stressed that Cyprus' policies should not be dictated by Turkish threats of a hot incident, adding that the defence pact agreed between Cyprus and Greece applies and Greece is ready to assume responsibility if needed.

    United Democrats Deputy President, Michalis Papapetrou, said the S300 missile system issue should be reconsidered since a postponement in the arrival of the missiles does not seem to resolve the problem.

    He also pointed out that the concerns expressed by Athens should be seriously taken into consideration.

    Papapetrou said his party would wait for President Clerides' suggestions at the next National Council meeting.

    Meanwhile New Horizons' party expressed in a press conference disappointment that they were not invited to today's meeting, since they also participate in the National Council.

    CNA MCH/MM/1998

    [02] Stylianides - Cem

    Nicosia, Dec 2 (CNA) -- Government Spokesman, Christos Stylianides, stressed today that Cyprus will not have its defence policy dictated by anybody.

    Commenting on a statement by Turkish Foreign Minister Ismail Cem, Stylianides said "we do not have masters dictating to us the way we should deal with issues concerning our defence".

    Cem said earlier this week Turkey objected to a possible deployment of the Russian S300 defensive system, which Cyprus has ordered, on the Greek island of Crete, stating in the most provocative manner:

    "Our position is clear. We cannot accept that these missiles be installed on our territory in the Aegean Sea area."

    The Turkish Foreign Minister warned that "if they (Cyprus and Greece) make such a mistake, there will be serious repercussions".

    Replying to questions, the spokesman said the Cyprus government welcomes any initiatives within the framework of the UN Secretary-General's good offices aiming at reducing armaments with a view to achieving the demilitarisation of the island.

    Stylianides pointed out that the government participates in shuttle talks undertaken by UN resident representative, Ann Hercus, which are within this framework.

    CNA EC/MCH/MM/1998

    [03] Chief Negotiators - EU - Cyprus

    Nicosia, Dec 2 (CNA) -- Chief negotiators of the six candidate countries for accession to the European Union, which started substantive negotiations with the Union, will hold their next meeting in March 1999 in Cyprus, responding to an invitation by Cyprus' Chief negotiator, George Vassiliou.

    The six (Slovenia, Poland, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary and Cyprus) held a two-day meeting in Budapest and exchanged views on a number of issues including the environment, social and labour policies.

    Under the initiative of Vassiliou they also discussed the energy problem, free movement of capital and the right to purchase land.

    The Chief negotiators decided to enhance their cooperation and organise meetings of experts for further examination of issues of common interest such as border control, energy and free movement of capital.

    On Saturday December 5 Vassiliou will travel to Bucharest to participate in a conference of Ministers responsible for European affairs of the 11 candidate countries for accession to the EU.

    At the meeting, the candidates will discuss their experience in accession talks so far as well as issues raised at the Luxembourg EU summit last December.

    Vassiliou will be one of the key-note speakers.

    CNA MCH/MM/1998
    Cyprus News Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article
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