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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 09-03-26

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From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>




    The Turkish occupation is responsible for the destruction of Cyprus` cultural heritage, President of the Republic Demetris Christofias has said, noting that Turkey must contribute to the solution of the Cyprus problem.

    Speaking at the Larnaca Airport before his departure for an official visit to the Holy See, where he will meet with Pope Benedict XVI, President Christofias said that he would discuss, inter alia, the issue of the destruction of the cultural heritage of Cyprus.

    He said that, Maronites and Latins living in the isladn are citizens of the Republic of Cyprus and they, noting that Maronites live here for 1.200 years, while the Maronite Church in Cyprus is under the jurisdiction of the Holy See and the Maronite Archbishop, is confirmed by His Holiness the Pope.

    President Christofias stressed that both he personally and the leadership of the Church of Cyprus have great interest in developing relations and dialogue between the Autocephalous Greek-Orthodox Church of Cyprus and the Holy See.

    Furthermore, he pointed out that under the initiative of the Community of Sant Egidio, we had recently an interreligious, intercultural meeting, which focused on the common struggle for peace in the world.

    It is therefore an important issue and because our cultural heritage is in danger and being destroyed, we must explain the reasons why this is happening, he said.

    He noted that the reason for the destruction of our cultural heritage lies in Turkish occupation, adding that it is a necessity for Turkey to give its assent so as to solve the Cyprus problem.

    In this way, he continued, there will be a real restoration of our cultural heritage, which belongs to all of the people of Cyprus, even though some react to this».


    President of the Republic Demetris Christofias begins on Thursday his official visit to the Holy See where he will meet with Pope Benedict XVI.

    Speaking at the Larnaca Airport upon his departure, President Christofias said, I will have the pleasure and honor to meet with the Pope, the Secretary of State of the Vatican and other officials of the Vatican state.

    Christofias will, also, meet with the leadership of Community of Sant Egidio as well as the Mayor of Rome, with whom he will exchange some gifts.

    The Republic of Cyprus will decorate some of the Vaticans leaders and Sant Egidio officials, he added.

    President Christofias will hold a meeting with the Vice President of the European Parliament, as well.


    Turkey must fulfill its obligations stemming from EU conclusions and observes a constructive stance in the Cyprus solution process to continue its EU bid, Cyprus Minister of Foreign Affairs Marcos Kyprianou said on Thursday.

    Replying to questions, during a press conference regarding his departure for the Holly See, where he will escort the President of the Republic Demetris Christofias, as well as his participation in the EU informal meeting of the EU Ministers of Foreign Affairs (Gynmich), Kyprianou said that Cyprus` position on Turkeys accession is clear.

    He said that Cyprus supports the accession of Turkey in the EU with no discounts and provided Turkey will fulfill all its obligations towards the EU including those that concern Cyprus.

    ``At the same time we believe that Turkey must start fulfilling its obligations outlined in the EU Commission report, in the European Council conclusions and in EU`s declaration of September 21 2005, so it would be able to continue its EU process,`` Kyprianou said, adding that a constructive stance in the Cyprus solution process is included in these obligations.


    Mobile phone services in Cyprus are among the cheapest offered in EU member states, according to the annual report of the European Commission, which records a strong growth both in mobile telephony and broadband internet.

    Mobile telephony in Cyprus continued to grow fast in 2008. Mobile penetration was at 126% in October 2008, up 7 percentage points on 2007 and above the EU average of 119%.

    Monthly mobile phone bills went up slightly in 2008, but remain as low as 8.72 euros/month from 8.45 euros/month in 2007. For the same period, the average EU27 cost was 19.49 euros/month.

    Broadband internet grew significantly in Cyprus in 2008 and was used by 18.2% of the population in January 2009, compared to 13.81% a year before, but was still below the EU average of 22.9%.

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