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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 09-10-14

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From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>




    It is urgent that Turkey fulfils its obligation of full non-discriminatory implementation of the Additional Protocol and makes progress towards normalisation of bilateral relations with the Republic of Cyprus, a European Commission report, entitled Enlargement Strategy and Main Challenges 2009-2010, says.

    The report, released on Wednesday in Brussels, sets out the progress made and the key challenges faced by candidate countries.

    Turkey, it says, has expressed support for the ongoing negotiations under UN auspices between the leaders of the Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot communities to reach a comprehensive settlement of the Cyprus problem.

    It is noted however that Turkey has not made any progress towards normalisation of bilateral relations with the Republic of Cyprus and moreover that Turkey has not fully implemented the Additional Protocol to the Association Agreement and has not removed all obstacles to the free movement of goods, including restrictions on direct transport links with Cyprus.

    It is also indicated that the EU will continue to follow up and review progress made on issues covered by the Declaration of 21 September 2005, in accordance with the Council Conclusions of 11 December 2006.

    On the ongoing negotiation process for a solution of the Cyprus problem, the report notes that the European Commission considers that the leaders of the Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot communities are entering a decisive phase of negotiations and expresses its support towards their efforts, also by providing technical advice on issues within EU competence.


    Minister of Foreign Affairs Markos Kyprianou has said that Cyprus is disappointed by the fact that the EU Progress Report on Turkey does not include recommendations for sanctions, as Ankara refuses to fulfill its obligations towards the Republic of Cyprus.

    ``We are disappointed by the fact that, given the findings of the Commission, one would expect that it would proceed with recommendations for some measures to be taken in December. We believe that this should have come as a natural progression, following the positions described in the Commission report,`` Kyprianou said speaking to the press prior to departure for Austria.

    Turkey, which seeks EU membership, occupies since 1974 Cyprus northern part and refuses to comply with numerous UN resolutions calling for the withdrawal of its troops from Cyprus. Ankara does not recognise the government of Cyprus and has so far refused to meet its EU obligations towards the Union and Cyprus, by normalising relations with Nicosia and opening its ports and airports to Cypriot flagged vessels and aircraft.

    Two reports released today by the Commission, the annual progress report and the EU document on enlargement strategy for 2009-2010, note, inter alia, Turkey`s refusal to extend its Customs Union to cover the Republic of Cyprus, but refrain from making any recommendations for sanctions against Turkey.


    The European Commission expects full and non-discriminatory implementation of the Ankara Protocol as well as the normalization of relations with Cyprus, EU Enlargement Commissioner Olli Rehn has stressed.

    Speaking about the EU`s annual report on Turkey`s accession course, Rehn pointed out that the EU would see this as a confidence-building measure that will contribute to solving the Cyprus problem. I appeal to both Turkey and the leaders of the two communities on the island that everybody should now engage in confidence-building measures, rather than starting any kind of a blame game, he said.

    Rehn added that it is an anachronism to find a city divided by a security barrier in Europe, and thats not how a member state of the EU should be. The EU must be united and peaceful, he said.


    There is hope for progress on the issue of the executive power, President of the Republic Demetris Christofias has said, pointing out that if the contrary were true, no talks would be taking place.

    Speaking at the Presidential Palace, after his meeting with Turkish Cypriot leader Mehmet Ali Talat in the context of the UN-led direct negotiations, the President said ``there is certainly hope for progress. Otherwise, we would not be talking when asked if there was any apparent progress on the issue of the executive.

    He was also asked whether there are compromise proposals on the negotiating table. ``We have tabled our own revised proposal which does not change the substance of our proposal. There was a reaction and we will analyse both our positions tomorrow`` Christofias said.

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