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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 08-11-05

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From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>




    Presidents of Russia and France Dmitry Medvedev and Nicolas Sarkozy have congratulated Cyprus President Demetris Christofias on the occasion of the 48th anniversary of Cyprus independence day, on October 1.

    In his message to Christofias, Medvedev expressed confidence that there will be a further strengthening of these relations for the benefit of the two countries and peoples.

    Our countries are bound by firm ties of friendship and mutually beneficial cooperation, Medvedev noted, adding that he is convinced that our fruitful and constructive interaction will continue to be a secure basis for strengthening peace and security in the European continent and the Mediterranean region.

    In his message to Christofias, Sarkozy expressed the wish that there will be a just, comprehensive and lasting settlement of the Cyprus question that will reunite Cyprus.

    I wish that there will be a just, comprehensive and lasting settlement, in the framework of the new negotiating process that you have undertaken with determination, under the UN aegis, that will allow the unification of the island, he noted.

    Sarkozy reiterated the importance he attributes to the strengthening of ties between the Republic of Cyprus and France and to the deepening of their cooperation both at bilateral level and within the European family.

    President Christofias has been engaged in talks with the leader of the Turkish Cypriot community with a view to finding a negotiated settlement that will reunite the country, which has been divided since the 1974 Turkish invasion.


    Government Spokesman Stephanos Stephanou said that the rate of progress at the negotiating table for a Cyprus settlement had nothing to do with the regularity of meetings, noting that the decisive element was what each side said at the talks.

    Replying to questions, Stephanou explained that if the positions submitted at the talks between President of the Republic Demetris Christofias and Turkish Cypriot leader Mehmet Ali Talat are reasonable and focus on a bizonal bicommunal federation, then progress could be made.

    President Christofias and Talat will be meeting again on November 11, preceded by a meeting between the aides of the leaders of the two communities.

    Stephanou assured that the Greek Cypriot side was submitting ``very reasonable`` positions, which ``serve the aim of a bizonal, bicommunal federation.``

    He added that President Christofias would be visiting Moscow and Athens at the end of the month and that two meetings with Talat had been arranged in order to observe the agreement for a meeting a week.

    Stephanou pointed out that President Christofias was not only a negotiator but also President of an EU and UN member state, and had to meet his obligations.

    Replying to questions, Stephanou said the fact that the leaders of the two communities are still discussing governance, six meetings into the process, proves that ``the negotiations on the Cyprus problem will be difficult,`` adding that ``the solution of the Cyprus problem does not depend solely on the Greek Cypriot community`` but needs the cooperation of the Turkish Cypriot side.


    Anorthosis FC of Famagusta has secured an historic draw against Internationale Milan, in the Champions League Matchday 4.

    Playing in Nicosias GSP stadium, Anorthosis, which defeated Athens Panathinaikos FC with 3-1 in Champions League Group B Matchday 2 and draw against Werder Bremen in Germany in Matchday 1, has now five points and follows the Italian team in the group table.

    Athens Panathinaikos is in the third position of the Group with 4 points, after defeating yesterday with 3-0 Werder Bremen in Germany. The German team lies last with 2 points.


    Cypriot basketball team AEL beat Turkish team Banvit 100 - 93 at a game which took place in Turkey last night for the FIBA EuroChallenge qualifying round 2.

    The second game will take place next Tuesday in the Meldford Arena in the coastal town of Limassol, Cyprus

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