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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 10-07-18

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From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>




    Government Spokesman Stephanos Stephanou has said that the proposals announced Thursday by President of the Republic of Cyprus Demetris Christofias on Famagusta and the international conference on Cyprus, give a strong motive to the EU to be more engaged and to demand Turkey`s cooperation for the implementation of those proposals.

    President Christofias has again announced a new package of proposals which is in the interests of the international community, the EU and Turkey, he said.

    Describing the proposals as balanced, he said they are to the benefit of all sides.

    For this reason, Turkey can have a motive to cooperate for the implementation of those proposals and thus give a strong impetus to its EU accession course and to the achievement of a solution in Cyprus, he pointed out.

    He said that Nicosia wishes for a more active EU involvement in Cyprus, noting that Turkeys EU accession can work as a catalyst so that Ankara cooperates in efforts to reach a solution in Cyprus.

    Stephanou recalled that the December 2009 EU Council had noted that Turkey had not yet fulfilled its obligations towards Cyprus, despite Turkish statements for a solution soon.

    Cyprus, he said, continues its intensive efforts to achieve a solution and undertakes initiatives.

    Asked whether there will be a new procedure similar to the one in Buergenstock, Switzerland, in 2004, Stephanou said that it has been stated that if we don`t accept Turkeys proposal we will have a new Buergenstock.``

    ``I would like to stress that Turkey has made one proposal, reiterated recently by its Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu, which is actually a new Buergenstock, he added.

    Saying that the Republic of Cyprus has rejected this proposal, he noted that Nicosia has proposed something to which the UN Secretary General refers to in his latest report on his good offices in Cyprus.

    If and when he deems that an international conference can take place for the resolution of the international aspects of the Cyprus problem, this must be done, he went on to say.

    He explained that the Cypriot President is in favour of an international conference, organised by the UN with the participation of the five permanent UN Security Council members, the EU, the guarantor powers, the Republic of Cyprus and the two communities of Cyprus, in order to solve the international aspects of the Cyprus issue.

    The Spokesman said that Cyprus continues its efforts for the resolution of the internal aspects of the Cyprus problem, noting that the solution, as we have agreed with the UN Secretary General, must be mutually acceptable, the two leaders must agree and the agreed solution will then be subject to approval by the two communities in two separate referenda.

    Asked about the EU proposed direct trade regulation of the EU countries with the Turkish Cypriot community, Stephanou stressed that the regulation is not based on a correct legal or political basis.

    He recalled that the conclusions of the April 2006 EU Foreign Ministers Council note that measures must be taken so that Turkish Cypriots can benefit from Cyprus EU accession with a view to reunify Cyprus.

    The direct trade regulation, he stressed, does not work in favour of the reunification of Cyprus.

    The proposed direct trade regulation serves the division of the island, he pointed out.

    He noted that the Presidents proposal is based on UN Security Council resolution 550 of 1984 which since then remains unimplemented due to Turkeys refusal to respect it.

    Stephanou added that this proposal can give Turkish Cypriots the possibility to enhance their relations with the EU and give the Union a motive to act to the benefit of the Turkish Cypriot community.

    On Thursday, the Cypriot President announced three proposals on the Cyprus issue. The first suggests the linking of the discussion of three of the chapters of the Cyprus problem, those dealing with property, territory and immigration, for easing the resolution of the thorny chapter of properties and for expediting the dialogue.

    The second proposal urges Turkey to apply UN Security Council resolution 550, which calls for the transfer of the fenced off area of Varosha, in Famagusta, to the administration of the United Nations. Part of this proposal is the opening of the port of Famagusta under EU auspices to benefit the Turkish Cypriots.

    The third proposal is to convene an international conference when within range of an agreement on the internal aspects of the Cyprus problem.

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


    Minister of the Interior Neoclis Sylikiotis has said that the EU must have a common asylum system policy that can address any abuse of the system in the member states and called for more burden sharing among the EU countries.

    In statements on his return from Brussels, where he attended the EU Informal Council of Interior Ministers, Sylikiotis said that Cyprus supports the efforts of the Belgian EU Presidency regarding the drafting of a common asylum system.

    Our goal must be to have, by the end of 2012, a common asylum system, he said, adding that EU member states, which are on the outermost borders of the Union, are confronted with mass immigration flows, especially Cyprus and Greece.

    He underlined that what we demand is a common asylum system and burden sharing.

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