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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 09-09-30

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

From: The Cyprus News Agency at <http://www.cyna.org.cy>


CONTENTS

  • [01] CYPRUS PRESIDENT - INDEPENDENCE DAY - MESSAGE

  • [01] CYPRUS PRESIDENT - INDEPENDENCE DAY - MESSAGE

    President of the Republic of Cyprus Demetris Christofias said on Wednesday that the evaluation of Turkey`s EU accession course in December provides Turkey with the opportunity to prove that it really wishes a solution to the Cyprus problem, and warned that if Turkey continues to provoke the EU, by refusing to meet its obligations, it will not be able to continue its accession course unobstructed.

    He added that Cyprus` support to Turkey`s EU course was a strategic decision, in order to create the dynamics for a solution, noting that a solution should be based on principles and be the product of negotiations and agreement between the two communities.

    In a message to the people for the October 1 anniversary of the independence of Cyprus, President Christofias referred to the establishment of the Republic of Cyprus, which is ``a common success of Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots,`` and added that ``we owe honour and gratitude to those who fought and fell to liberate our homeland, to defend the independence, democracy and territorial integrity of our homeland all these years.``

    President Christofias referred to the ``Cyanean Rocks, adventures and tragedies`` of the newly established Republic of Cyprus, the high levels of growth and progress achieved by the people of Cyprus, and the events of 1974.

    He also referred to the efforts that led to the resumption of the dialogue for a Cyprus settlement, noting that the agreed basis is ``a bizonal, bicommunal federation with political equality, as defined in relevant UN resolutions, for a single state with a single sovereignty, a single citizenship and a single international identity.``

    ``We are pursuing a solution that will safeguard the human rights and fundamental freedoms of the whole of our people. It is our view that Cyprus, an EU member state, does not need guarantees and guardians with intervention rights,`` he added.

    President Christofias said that the first round of negotiations ``was concluded with some relative progress, which however is not enough.``

    ``Nevertheless, we continue the negotiations with the same determination. We knew from the beginning that the path of the negotiations would be neither easy nor strewn with rose petals. The path of the negotiations is difficult and uphill but we who are seeking a solution and reunification, permanent peace and security, the restoration and safeguarding of the human rights and fundamental freedoms of all Cypriots, it is a one-way street,`` he pointed out.

    He said that ``our effort is to achieve a solution the soonest possible, because the passing of time creates more problems,`` adding that ``we will not accept a solution that is not based on principles, and we will not accept a solution that is not the product of negotiations and agreement between the two communities.``

    President Christofias said that, ``with the policy we are implementing, we managed to convince the international community that the process for a settlement belongs to the Cypriots, that there will be neither arbitration nor deadlines.``

    ``Despite the problems in the negotiations, I continue to state that I am reservedly optimistic. With the continuation of the comprehensive strategy we are following, with calmness and insistence on the fundamental principles of the solution, which we have collectively discussed at the National Council, we can reached the long-awaited solution,`` he said.

    He pointed out that, ``in order for this to happen, it is a necessary prerequisite that Turkey changes its stance,`` adding that Turkey ``holds the key to the solution and must use it.``

    ``The time has come for Turkey to prove that it really wishes a solution. The evaluation of its EU accession course in December provides Turkey with this opportunity. By meeting the obligations it has undertaken towards the EU and its member states, and by constructively contributing to efforts for a solution, Turkey will above all help itself. We warn Turkey that if it continues to provoke the EU, by refusing to meet its obligations, it will not be able to continue its accession course unobstructed,`` he said.

    President Christofias noted that Cyprus` support to Turkey`s EU course was a strategic decision, in order to create the dynamics for a solution. ``Our support is not a blank checque. It is up to Turkey to cash it,`` he added.

    He also referred to the need for unity on the home front in order for the struggle of the people of Cyprus to be successful, and assured that ``establishing unity is a standing aim of our government.``

    President Christofias noted that the recent meeting of the National Council, top advisory body to the President of the Republic on the handling of the Cyprus problem, and the issuing of a joint statement with the contribution of all members of the body, was ``an important step to create unity on the home front.``

    Regarding other challenges faced by Cyprus, President Christofias said the vision of his government was to build a more just society, which will be able to meet the reasonable needs of the citizens.

    He also referred to the global financial crisis, which ``unavoidably adversely affects the economy of Cyprus as well,`` and expressed optimism that the problems would be overcome.

    ``I assure the citizens that the commitments contained in the programme of my government will be implemented. The financial crisis may delay the implementation of some of them, which is a natural development under the circumstances, but all promises will be kept,`` he said.

    President Christofias also sent a message of confidence and optimism to all, as well as a special message of friendship and cooperation to the Turkish Cypriots.

    Cyprus, which joined the EU in 2004, has been divided since 1974, when Turkey invaded and occupied its northern third.

    President Christofias and Turkish Cypriot leader Mehmet Ali Talat have been engaged in UN-led direct negotiations since September 2008, with an aim to reunite the island.


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