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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 09-09-29

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From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>




    The deep feelings of friendship of the people of Cyprus, irrespective of their ideological beliefs, towards the people of Cuba and the struggle they are undertaking for survival, was expressed by President of the Republic of Cyprus Demetris Christofias to Cuban President General Raul Castro.

    The statement was conveyed during official talks the two leaders held on Monday at the Revolution Palace in Havana.

    Speaking on the sidelines of the opening of the Embassy of Cyprus in Cuba, President Christofias described the official talks he held with his Cuban counterpart as excellent, noting that Raul Castro has a wealth of experiences as far as the Cuban revolution, his relations with the late Archbishop Makarios, Fidel Castrol, Cuban Cyprus relations and the common struggles of the two countries in the Non-Aligned Movement are concerned.

    The President said he was very content with the positions that President Castro expressed, stressing that he also conveyed the deep feelings of friendship of the people of Cyprus, irrespective of their political or ideological beliefs, to the people of Cuba, in their struggle for survival.

    Because it has proven that it is a fight to struggle, when for so many years, a neighbouring country isolates you, the President remarked.

    He also announced economic aid to Cuba, totaling 100 thousand Euro which will be used in reconstruction following last years typhoons that hit the country.

    President Christofias also announced that First Lady Elsi will deposit 15 thousand Euro in a Cuban charity organization.

    The Cypriot President remarked that the most important element of his visit is the signing of so many agreements and memorandums of understanding between Cuba and Cyprus.

    He said the various ministries would offer the possibilities to many business people to begin implementing the agreements signed.


    Cyprus embassy in Havana, Cuba, was officially opened on Monday.

    The embassy was inaugurated in the presence of Cyprus President Demetris Chrisofias, currently in Cuba for a three-day official visit, Vice President of the Cuban Council of State Esteban Lazo Hernandez and other EU member-states Ambassadors resident in Havana.

    President Christofias said he is glad because during his term in office Cyprus opens an embassy in a very friendly country bonded with ties of friendship and solidarity since the establishment of the Republic of Cyprus, adding that the presence of the embassy will deepen the close relations between the two countries.

    ``I must admit that we have delayed the opening of an embassy in Cuba for various reasons, financial and other, due to the (1974) Turkish invasion and occupation of Cyprus,`` Christofias said, adding despite the fact that Cyprus is one of the last EU member-states to open an embassy in Cuba, Cyprus was and remain one of Cuba`s first friendly countries.


    Efthymios Mitropoulos, Secretary-General of the International Maritime Organization appeared confident on Monday that despite the current global economic downturn there will always be a demand for shipping.

    In an address to the ``Maritime Cyprus 2009`` conference, entitled ``Challenges facing shipping and IMO,`` Mitropoulos said that reduced demand in shipping was a ``natural`` consequence of the ``worst financial crisis ever recorded,`` adding however that ``no matter how global markets may contract, expand or otherwise metamorphose there will always be a demand for ships and shipping to be the delivery mechanism of global trade.``

    ``I have every confidence that the industry we serve will continue to respond to that demand effectively and efficiently, provided that it is not impeded by protectionist measures,`` he said.

    Mitropoulos emphasized however that financial difficulties should not lead to a lowering of standards in shipping through cutting corners on skimping on key items such as maintenance, repair and training.


    The global financial crisis will be the focal point of the discussions among the Finance Ministers from the Commonwealth countries who will meet in the southern coastal town of Limassol, between 30 September to 2 October 2009.

    According to a press release issued by the Commonwealth Secretariat, at the Commonwealth Finance Ministers Meeting (CFMM), Ministers will review country experiences, seek to distil good practices, explore mutual support, and identify how the Commonwealth Secretariat can best assist.

    The economic impact of the crisis and policy responses, the impact of the crisis on attainment of the Millennium Development Goals, the implications of the crisis for financial sector regulation and the reform of the International Financial Institutions are some of the issues on the agenda of the CFMM.

    The Commonwealth is a voluntary association of 53 countries with a population of two billion citizens of all faiths and ethnicities.

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