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

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

From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>




    UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon believes that the negotiating process between the leaders of the Greek Cypriot and the Turkish Cypriot communities has been encouraging and that negotiations will be much better than in the past.

    Asked if he intends to take some measures to help the negotiating process, the SG said he would not talk about skepticism.

    Unnecessarily skeptic may not be desirable for the ongoing process. The international community should always encourage this very fragile negotiation process, he added.

    Ban noted that his special envoy Alexander Downer arrived yesterday in Cyprus and would engage in dialogue with the leaders of both parties.

    The negotiation process has been, I think, encouraging. Both leaders have demonstrated very strong political will to resolve this long standing- four decade-issue t through dialogue and a mutually acceptable formula. This is encouraging, he said.

    The UN SG said that he had met on many occasions with both leaders Cyprus President Demetris Christofias and Mehmet AliTalat.

    I was assured and impressed by the two leaders very strong commitment to resolve this issue. They told me that they have been long time friends with each other so I think that greater dialogue and negotiations will be much better than before, he concluded.

    Christofias and Talat have been engaged in talks since early September with a view to finding a mutually agreed solution that will reunite Cyprus, which has been divided since the 1974 Turkish invasion.


    The final give and take in the ongoing direct talks on the question of Cyprus will take place once discussion on all aspects of the problem is concluded, President Demetris Christofias has said. Speaking after his seventh meeting with the leader of the Turkish Cypriot community Mehmet Ali Talat, he explained that in a difficult negotiating process there is convergence of views but also differences.

    Consequently, it is no coincidence that we have authorized our aides to meet again on Friday to discuss issues on which final convergence can be reached, he told the press on his return to the Presidential palace. The two aides to the community leaders, George Iacovou and Ozdil Nami, meet regularly to assist the work of the leaders in their effort to find a negotiated settlement, that will reunite Cyprus, which has been divided since the 1974 Turkish invasion.

    Asked about the outcome of Tuesday`s meeting with Talat, the President said there is always convergence and disagreement but refrained from any further comment. If we had the same positions right from the start, the problem would have been solved before we began, he pointed out. Christofias said that there must be convergence on the philosophy of the kind of state we want, on how unified, firm and functional this state will be and this is a topic we shall be discussing until the end.

    Replying to questions, he explained that concluding discussion on one aspect of the Cyprus problem does not necessarily mean agreement on everything before another topic is discussed. When we talk about conclusion of a discussion on governance, we must not expect that we shall agree on everything and then we shall move on to the chapter on property, he noted. At some stage, he went on to add, the two leaders will agree on the points of convergence, the common views and positions, where points of agreement and disagreement. All these will be put aside. Once we conclude the discussions on all the aspects of the Cyprus issue, then we shall go back to see what give and take we can achieve, where and how, he said. President Christofias stressed that this is the technique of the negotiation, as we have proposed it and there was no objection to this.


    Cyprus has commemorated the dead of the two World Wars, including some 600 Cypriots killed during the Second World War out of the 30,000 who served in the British regiment. Addressing a somber event, organised here by the Cyprus Veterans Association World War II to mark International Day of Remembrance, President Demetris Christofias said that the Day of Remembrance emphasises that peace, freedom and democracy are values that have been conquered with struggles and that for their protection a continuous struggle is needed against those policies that instigate wars and promote injustice.

    The President referred to the outbreak of the two world wars, which cost the lives of millions, after which the UN was founded to preserve peace and cooperation among the nations. Unfortunately, he pointed out, the period of euphoria following the antifascist victory did not last long and the cold war broke out and lasted for 50 years, during which many countries had fallen victim of military invasions and occupation.

    Our country was also a victim of invasion and occupation. The people of Cyprus massively responded positively to the antifascist call at the time of World War II and defended the freedom of many countries, in the hope it would gain its own freedom afterwards, he said. In order to gain its freedom, he continued, our people had to struggle hard, since the promises given during the Great War unfortunately were not kept in the post-war era.


    The Republic of Cyprus and the State of Qatar signed here seven bilateral agreements to enhance cooperation between the two countries.

    The bilateral agreements were signed after talks at the Presidential Palace between President of the Republic of Cyprus Demetris Christofias and Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs of Qatar Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim bin Jabr al Thani and delegations from the two countries. Sheikh al Thani and his entourage were received earlier Tuesday by President Christofias and members of the Cabinet.

    Speaking after the official talks and the signing of the agreements, President Christofias described as very significant the seven agreements achieved in various sectors. He said Sheikh al Thanis visit constitutes a cornerstone in relations between the two countries.

    During our talks, we have agreed to develop rapidly, the economic, tourist and political relations between the Republic of Cyprus and the Qatar Emirate, the President remarked. President Christofias accepted an invitation by the Prime Minister of Qatar to visit Qatar. Regarding the Cyprus issue, President Christofias thanked the PM for his readiness and great understanding exhibited in the analysis he made on the Cyprus issue.

    President Christofias said Qatar maintains very friendly and close relations with Turkey and for this reason I have asked the Prime Minister to make use of these relations to ensure that Turkey understands that the successful outcome of the current difficult efforts for a just, viable and functional solution of the Cyprus problem will be to its benefit as far as its accession to the EU is concerned.

    The Cypriot President repeated Cyprus full support in the struggle of Arab countries and especially the Palestinian people for justification based on UN resolutions and the agreements that have been achieved in creating an independent Palestine state.

    Sheikh al-Thani, speaking through an interpreter, thanked the President for the warm reception noting that todays discussions were merely the start of a course to develop relations between the two countries, noting that his country has great aspirations to enhance these relations.

    Today, we have managed to set a small foundation in building these relations, in enhancing relations between the two countries and I have conveyed an invitation from the Emir of Qatar to the President of the Republic to visit our country and we hope that he will soon, the Prime Minister said. On the Cyprus problem, Sheikh al-Thani said it is a fact that his country maintains very good relations with Turkey and hoped that the Cyprus problem will be solved soon.

    We hope that this issue is resolved through negotiations, through diplomatic dialogue and wish that peace and security prevail in the region for the benefit of all countries, he added.

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