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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 09-09-16

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From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>




    President Demetris Christofias and Turkish Cypriot leader Mehmet Ali Talat will hold on Thursday their second meeting of the second round of UN-led direct negotiations, aiming to reach a solution of the Cyprus problem and reunite the country, divided since the Turkish invasion of 1974.

    The meeting is scheduled to start at 10 a.m. at the UN protected area of the now defunct Nicosia airport.

    During Thursday`s meeting, the leaders of the two communities will discuss the bridging proposals on the chapter of governance and particularly the election of the President and Vice-President of the United Republic, which they submitted at their last meeting on 10 September, as Special Adviser of UN Secretary-General Alexander Downer has said.

    President Christofias and Talat began direct talks in September last year with an aim to reach a negotiated settlement that would reunite the country under a federal roof. Cyprus has been divided since 1974, when Turkish troops invaded and occupied 37% of its territory.


    Cypriot Euro MPs have raised questions relating to the situation in Cyprus, and the continuing occupation of the Republics northern part by Turkey, referring in particular to the issue of missing persons, Ankaras embargo on Cypriot ships and aircraft and the withdrawal of the Turkish occupation troops.

    MEP Ioannis Kasoulides has called on the European Parliament to urge Turkey to cooperate with the UN Committee on Missing Persons by making available to the CMP its archives and accepting to open two recently designated locations in the Turkish occupied village of Lapithos, in the northern part of the island.

    The illegal presence of the Turkish military in Cyprus was raised by another Cypriot MEP Eleni Theocharous, who asked the current EU president, Sweden, whether it intends to exert pressure on Turkey to withdraw its occupation troops. The Swedish Presidency replied that the withdrawal of Turkish troops from Cyprus, thirty five years after the Turkish invasion, is part of the ongoing negotiations for a solution to the Cyprus problem.

    Cypriot MEP Antigoni Papadopoulou in a written question to the European Commission calls for an end in the embargo enforced by Turkey on Cypriot-flagged vessels and aircraft. Papadopoulou has asked the Commission to explain why it tolerates Turkey`s behaviour, a candidate country for accession to the European Union, since Turkeys embargo has serious consequences on the Cypriot economy.


    The leaders of the Greek Cypriot and the Turkish Cypriot communities are fully aware of the need to compromise, if they are to find a mutually acceptable solution to the Cyprus issue, UN Secretary Generals Special Advisor on Cyprus Alexander Downer believes, noting at the same time their commitment to work in this direction. In an interview with CNA, prior to his departure for a series of meetings in New York on the sidelines of the General Assembly, Downer said that Turkey must not only support the negotiating process but it must also understand that the two community leaders - President Demetris Christofias and Turkish Cypriot leader Mehmet Ali Talat - should have the flexibility to compromise.

    Downer described the current negotiating process as a shining light on the island, expressed the hope that the two leaders will be able to find those compromises needed for an agreement and stressed that imposing a solution on a peace process almost never works. The former Australian FM rejected any notion that the UN are considering arbitration, should the current process of negotiations fail, explained that there is no plan B as far as the UN is concerned and pointed out that the solution has to be home grown.

    Asked to assess the current state of affairs in the ongoing talks, a year after they began with a view to reunite Cyprus, he said over the year, the two leaders have very successfully negotiated their way through the first reading, noting that there was quite a significant measure of agreement. Of course there was some very important area of disagreement as well as important areas of agreement but they did make some good progress during the first reading. This, he added, has more or less met my expectations and I think it is fair to say that what happened in the first reading is what I had expected to happen.

    Noting that the leaders have begun the second reading, he described as encouraging the fact that they are both coming back to the second reading recognizing that they need to compromise in order to achieve an agreement. You cannot have an agreement without compromise by definition, if you have different positions. They need to work through a series of different ideas until they both find solution they are comfortable with, they can live with and they feel their communities can live with, he remarked. The UN official warned that there will be bumps along the way inevitably, as one cannot expect it otherwise.

    (The full text has been posted on the CNA website. You can access it by clicking on the link SPECIAL ISSUES - ANALYSES)


    The new Ambassador of the Republic of Cyprus to Greece Ioseph Ioseph has presented his credentials to the President of the Hellenic Republic Karolos Papoulias, during an official ceremony held at the Presidential Palace.

    An official press release notes that after the ceremony, Ioseph had a meeting with President Papoulias to whom he conveyed President Demetris Christofias` gratitude for the undivided support of Greece to the struggle of the Cypriot people for a just solution to the Cyprus issue. President Papoulias wished him every success in his work.

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