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

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From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>




    President of the Republic Demetris Christofias said on Wednesday that Cyprus, as the rest of the world, is waiting to see if new US President Barack Obama will keep his promises, contrary to Turkish hopes, noting that his election has created great expectations.

    Speaking in Limassol, President Christofias said Obama`s election ``has created great expectations in the people of America for a more human approach,`` as well as expectations across the planet ``for the return to the line of international law, respect of the UN constitutional charter, the cause of peace globally.``

    President Christofias said Obama`s pre-election statements and those of Vice President Joe Biden on the Cyprus problem were positive, noting that the United States` new policy would become apparent in due course.

    He pointed out that Biden has been maintaining ``a very positive stance on the Cyprus problem`` and expressed hope that the pre-election promises of the new US administration would be implemented, contrary to Turkish hopes.

    ``I sincerely wish Mr. Obama and Mr. Biden a very creative term to the benefit of the American people first of all and to the benefit of humanity and peace, and of course for the cause of Cyprus,`` he said, adding that a Cyprus settlement should be based on the principles of international law and the respect of the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the Republic of Cyprus.

    President Christofias said ``we are not asking for great things but a just approach to Cyprus.``

    Cyprus has been divided since 1974, when Turkey invaded and occupied its northern third.


    President of the House of Representatives Marios Garoyian said on Wednesday that Turkey holds the key to the solution of the Cyprus problem but ``unfortunately disregards every principle of international law due to the tolerance`` of powerful countries. Briefing Armenian Minister of Justice Gevorg Danielyan on the Cyprus problem, Garoyian said ``we know from past experiences that silence and tolerance lead to the repetition of the crime.``

    He noted that the Greek Cypriot side is determined to reach a solution providing for a bizonal bicommunal federation, based on UN resolutions and EU principles and values, despite the negative stance of the Turkish side. Garoyian referred to the historical bonds between Cyprus and Armenia, and expressed appreciation for the support Armenia has been providing to the struggle of the people of Cyprus for the reunification of the island. He furthermore reaffirmed the solidarity of Cyprus with the Armenian people.

    Danielyan referred to the excellent relationship between the two countries and noted that his visit to Cyprus was yet another step towards strengthening bilateral cooperation. He added that Cyprus` experience, as an EU member is proving very useful for Armenia, and said his country was looking forward to Garoyian`s forthcoming official visit. Garoyian said he was also looking forward to visiting Armenia next week, with a view to strengthen bilateral relations in all sectors. Cyprus, which joined the EU in 2004, has been divided since 1974, when Turkey invaded and occupied its northern third.


    Cyprus as a genuine European and Mediterranean country is committed to the further developing and deepening of the relations of the EU and Mediterranean countries as a matter of priority, Cyprus Minister of Foreign Affairs has said. Speaking to the working dinner, during the Ministerial conference of the member countries of the Barcelona Process: Union for the Mediterranean, held in Marseille, Kyrpianou said that Cyprus is ready to engage constructively in the structures and the administration of the under creation Permanent Secretariat of the Union for the Mediterranean.

    He highlighted however that the effectiveness and flexibility of the Secretariat should be safeguarded without any exclusions from its composition for those partners willing to contribute to its mission. Kyprianou reiterated that Cyprus supported from the onset the French President`s initiatives, which lead to the Barcelona Process: Union for the Mediterranean. As a genuine European and Mediterranean country, Cyprus is committed to and sets in its priorities the target of further development and deepening in all levels of the relations between the EU and its Mediterranean partners, he added.

    The two-day conference decided that the Foreign Ministers will suggest to the next Summit that the Barcelona Process: Union for the Mediterranean should be renamed as ``Union for the Mediterranean``. The Ministers conference decided that the General Secretary of the Union will permanently come from the Mediterranean countries and the creation of five spots of Deputy General Secretary. The conference also decided that the Arab League will be given observer status and shall participate in all meetings at all levels of the Barcelona Process: Union for the Mediterranean.


    EU Enlargement Commissioner Olli Rehn stated today that the EU Commission`s position that Turkey is obliged to implement the additional Protocol of the Ankara Agreement expanding its customs Union to cover the Republic of Cyprus is clear. An official press release issued here today notes that Rehn`s position came as a response to a question of Cyprus House Foreign Affairs Committee President Averof Neofytou, during a discussion in the framework of a joint meeting of the European Parliament`s Foreign Affairs Committee with the presidents of Foreign Affairs and Defence Committees of National Parliaments.

    Rehn further noted that Europe supports and encourages the leaders of the two communities in Cyprus to continue negotiations with a view to achieving a comprehensive settlement to the Cyprus problem, calling at the same time Turkey to assist the efforts for a Cyprus settlement. He refrained from clarifying whether failure to implement the protocol, would result to the termination of Turkey`s EU bid.

    In his opening address, Rehn said that 2009 is a decisive year for the reunification of Cyprus, expressing hope that steps forward would be made. He stressed that Europe is ready to accept a solution of the Cyprus problem based on a bi-communal, bi-zonal federation, which will respect the founding values of the EU and will participate in the EU with one voice and will assume its obligations as an EU member - state. Cyprus, an EU member-state since 2004, has been divided since 1974 when Turkey invaded and occupied 37 per cent of its territory.

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