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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 07-09-30

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From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>




    President Tassos Papadopoulos has assured Greek Cypriot refugees, who unbeknown to them have built their houses on Turkish Cypriot land after the 1974 Turkish invasion, that there is no cause for concern.

    He also said that a forthcoming ruling by the European Court of Human Rights in a property case, involving a friendly settlement between a Greek Cypriot and a self-styled property commission in occupied Cyprus, does not necessarily mean that it will affect cases filed by other Greek Cypriots against Turkey, with regard to their property in Turkish occupied Cyprus.

    It would not be wise on our part to issue title deeds to Greek Cypriots, who have built a house on Turkish Cypriot land in the southern government controlled part of the country, at a time when this is exactly what the illegal regime in occupied Cyprus is doing in relation to Greek Cypriot properties, the President stressed.

    Replying to questions at Larnaca airport on his return from New York where he addressed the UN General Assembly, he explained that the government, wherever it was possible, either bought Turkish Cypriot owned land from the owners or has made other arrangements, in cases where Greek Cypriots have built on Turkish Cypriot owned land.

    There are many other cases, he explained, in which the cost of expropriation of land was too high.

    The House of Representatives, he added, has voted into law a bill providing for long term leasing of Turkish Cypriot property to secure the rights of those Greek Cypriot refugees who have found themselves in such circumstances, having fled their homes in the wake of the 1974 Turkish invasion.

    On the case of Greek Cypriot Mike Tymbios who has come to an arrangement through the ``commission`` to exchange his property with Turkish Cypriot land, the President said he did not think the Court ruling would necessarily affect other property cases.

    The Court has been asked to issue a verdict on whether it accepts the exchange of property as a friendly settlement of a property claim, which was concluded through a self-styled property commission set up by the illegal regime in Turkish occupied Cyprus.

    The Court may simply accept the withdrawal of Tymbios application relating to his property or it may just rule on whether the compromise reached is in line with human rights. That, we do not know and courts of this calibre are not subject to external pressure, even though at times political considerations play a role, the President said.

    Tymbios had filed an application to the European Court claiming his property in occupied Cyprus but subsequently he notified the Court he would withdraw it, saying he had come to an arrangement with the so-called commission.

    In past cases, the Court has found Turkey guilty of violating the human rights of Greek Cypriots relating to the peaceful enjoyment of their property in occupied Cyprus. The Court also said that Turkey, by virtue of the presence of its troops, exercises effective control in the north of the country and is therefore responsible for what happens there.


    Turkeys stated policy on Cyprus is obstructing efforts to find a negotiated settlement, that would reunite the country, President Tassos Papadopoulos has said, adding that for the first time Ankara has introduced religion in the question of Cyprus. Speaking on his return from New York, where he addressed the UN General Assembly, he pointed out that while Turkey publicly states that it is one step ahead in efforts to settle the Cyprus problem, in fact its stated policy proves that it has taken these efforts years back, instead of bringing them closer to a solution.

    Papadopoulos referred to statements by the Turkish President that religion is one aspect of the question of Cyprus which should be addressed. Papadooulos pointed out this is the first time that Ankara is introducing such notions to the issue. We all know, the international community included, that religion is not one of the causes of Cyprus ill fate or an issue of dispute with the Turkish Cypriots. Remarks of this nature leave a bad impression among the international community, he added.

    The Greek Cypriot community, which makes up about 80 per cent of the local population, is Greek Orthodox and the Turkish Cypriots are Moslems. What Turkey is proposing two states, two religions, two governments in Cyprus is simply unacceptable and all political forces on the island agree on that, the President said, responding to questions.


    Joan Ryan, Britains special representative for Cyprus, arrives here Monday for contacts with the government of and the Turkish Cypriot community.

    The aim of the visit is to learn more about Cyprus at first hand and explain her role and the purpose of her appointment is primarily to work with the Cypriot communities in the UK and thereby help find a solution to the Cyprus problem, a British High Commission spokesman has told CNA ahead of the visit.

    During the visit, which will conclude on Thursday, she will talk to government officials as well as representatives of various organisations.

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