|Wednesday, 18 October 2017|
Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 10-04-21
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From: The Cyprus News Agency at <http://www.cyna.org.cy>
 PRESIDENT - AMBASSADORSPresident of the Republic of Cyprus Demetris Christofias met on Wednesday with the ambassadors to Cyprus of the five permanent members of the UN Security Council, whom he assured of his commitment to continue negotiations for a solution of the island`s political problem, and reiterated his positions concerning an international conference.
Government Spokesman Stephanos Stephanou said after the meeting at the Presidential Palace that the ambassadors shared the positions of the President and support his views regarding an international conference on the Cyprus problem.
On behalf of the ambassadors, US Ambassador to Cyprus Frank Urbancic said they congratulated the President on his decision to move forward from the point where the talks left off and confirmed that this was the right approach.
In his remarks, Stephanou said ``the President of the Republic met today with the ambassadors of the five permanent members of the Security Council to brief them on his positions and views concerning the Cyprus problem, in the light of the change in the leadership of the Turkish Cypriot community.``
``The President of the Republic reiterated and reaffirmed his wish and commitment to continue the negotiations to reach a solution of the Cyprus problem. He once again reaffirmed his commitment and dedication to the basis of negotiations for a bizonal bicommunal federation solution, with political equality, as described in relevant UN resolutions, for a single state with a single sovereignty, a single citizenship and a single international identity,`` Stephanou said.
He added that ``the ambassadors of the five permanent members fully shared the positions of the President of the Republic and welcomed the fact that the President of the Republic remains committed both to the continuation of the negotiations, from where we left off and on the same basis that was agreed on between the two communities, before the beginning of the talks.``
``Reference was also made to the issue of the international conference. The President of the Republic reiterated the position he had expressed during his press conference, pointed out again that the Cyprus problem, according to UN resolutions as well, is an issue of which the internal aspects should be agreed on, resolved by the two communities, in the context of the bicommunal dialogue,`` he said.
He added that ``an international conference can take place in time, when they will move on to the external aspects of the Cyprus problem and the discussion of issues concerning the international aspects of the Cyprus problem, in the context of the UN, in the presence of the five permanent members of the Security Council, the EU, the guarantor powers, and of course the Republic of Cyprus.``
Asked who raised the issue, Stephanou said that ``unavoidably, because it is an issue that is being discussed over the past period, the President reiterated the position he has publicly said before, and in this issue we received full understanding, and the five permanent members fully understand and support this position.``
Urbancic said he was ``very pleased to say, on behalf of the five, that the President has invited us here and gave us a very thorough briefing on his views of next steps and how the process will go forward and we, as the five, confirmed to the President our firm belief that the process should go forward.``
``We congratulated him on his decision to move forward from the point where the talks left off and we confirmed to him that we thought that was the right approach and that the talks should resume on the basis of the agreements that the two leaders reached in 2008 and of course the relevant UN Security Council resolutions,`` he added.
 CYPRUS - QATAR - AGREEMENTSCyprus and Qatar signed two agreements and four memoranda of understanding on Wednesday, covering sectors such as air services and the creation of a joint venture for a project opposite Hilton Hotel in Nicosia, including a five-star hotel, a shopping mall, offices and apartments.
The agreements and memoranda were signed at the Presidential Palace in Nicosia during official talks between delegations of Cyprus and Qatar, headed by President of the Republic of Cyprus Demetris Christofias and Emir of Qatar Sheikh Hamad Bin Khalifa Al Thani.
In statements to the press, President Christofias said bilateral relations and ways to enhance them were discussed during the talks, and that the joint investment with Qatari Diar was of great importance, noting that it indicated the high level of relations and the rapid development of cooperation between the two countries.
President Christofias added that he briefed the Emir on the latest developments in the Cyprus problem and efforts to reach a settlement, and thanked him for his understanding. ``Qatar maintains close relations with Turkey and I have thus expressed the wish to the Emir of Qatar that these relations be utilised in order to convince Turkey that it would be to everyone`s benefit to reach a just, viable and functional solution of the Cyprus problem,`` he added.
The Emir of Qatar said bilateral relations were built on sound foundations and noted that he was pleased with the agreements signed, adding that his trip to Cyprus would promote relations between the two countries. He expressed support to efforts for a Cyprus settlement, based on UN resolutions, to the benefit of both communities in Cyprus.
The Emir expressed certainty that Turkey was in favour of a Cyprus settlement and would contribute to a just, viable and functional solution.
 TURKEY - ECHR - MISSINGPresident of the Committee of Relatives of Undeclared Prisoners and Missing Persons, Nicos Theodosiou, has said that Turkey still refuses to comply with a ruling of the European Court of Human Rights, which calls on Ankara to help investigations into the fate of Greek Cypriots, who as a result of the Turkish invasion in 1974, were reported missing.
Speaking at a press conference on the occasion of the 26th Marathon of Love for Missing Persons, 19 - 25 April, Theodosiou said that the issue of missing persons does not only include the exhumation of remains and their identification with the DNA method.
Exhumation and identification are only part of the investigating process, he went on to say. He explained that twice, in 2009 and 2001, the plenary session of the European Court of Human Rights has ordered Turkey to give information about the fate of each and every missing person. Turkey has not cooperated on any level, no single case has been investigated, he added.
Speaking at the press conference, Archbishop Chrysostomos II said that the humanitarian issue of missing persons is of great importance for the Church of Cyprus and is among its priorities. We must insist until the end because those who have died demand vindication. Their families and children also demand this, he said.
 TOURISTS - CYPRUS - ASHPresident of the Cyprus Tourism Organisation (CTO) Alekos Orountiotis has said that the number of tourists, who did not manage to arrive in Cyprus due to the volcanic ash cloud, has reached 20,000.
In statements after a broad meeting held Wednesday at the CTO Headquarters in Nicosia, Orountiotis said that a large percentage of those tourists have agreed with holiday tour operators to visit Cyprus at a later stage. But the remaining number of tourists will not come to Cyprus, he added, but did not elaborate further on actual numbers.
The meeting, attended by representatives of the Cyprus Hotel Association, the Association of Cyprus Tourist Enterprises, the Association of Cypriot Travel Agents, Cyprus Airways, Eurocypria and Hermes Airports, discussed the impact of the air chaos on tourism.
Asked about the additional cost for the tourists, who could not travel to their home countries and stayed extra nights in Cyprus, Orountiotis said that it would be covered to a great extent by the travel agents.
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