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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 10-07-20

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From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>




    The humanitarian issue of missing persons in Cyprus, Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots, was discussed at a broad meeting on Tuesday at the Presidential Palace, chaired by President of the Republic Demetris Christofias.

    Speaking after the meeting, Chairman of the Parliamentary Committee on Refugees Aristophanis Georgiou expressed satisfaction over the interest President Christofias was showing in issues concerning persons, listed as missing since the 1974 Turkish invasion of Cyprus and the early 1960s when intercommunal fighting broke out.

    Georgiou added that all aspects of the matter were discussed, including the promotion of the issue of missing persons in Cyprus, Europe and internationally, the speeding up of procedures concerning exhumations of remains, and Turkey`s obligation to allow the investigation of the fate of each missing person and to provide information concerning their disappearance.

    Asked if the issue of missing persons would be discussed during the next meetings between President Christofias and Turkish Cypriot leader Dervis Eroglu, in the context of the ongoing peace talks, Georgiou said the President would be raising the matter with Eroglu.

    Chairman of the Panhellenic Committee of Parents and Relatives of Undeclared Prisoners and Missing Persons from the Turkish invasion of Cyprus Constantinos Anemas said the issue was on the wrong track and that the identification of remains was proof of the fate of a person but not the determination of that person`s fate.

    Anemas pointed out that the Turkish side must prove that it has changed stance on the issue of missing persons and noted that information provided by the Turkish side concerning location of graves was problematic.

    Chairman of the Committee of Relatives of Missing Persons and Undeclared Prisoners Nicos Theodosiou said there was agreement on views and concerns expressed at the meeting, noting that the concerns had to do with the fact that there was no substantive investigation of the various cases and the right of relatives to the truth.

    He also expressed concern over the slow pace of exhumations and the identification of remains.

    On behalf of the Committee of Relatives of Missing Greek Cypriots from the 1963-1964 period, Charis Symeonides said the Committee expressed regret that the remains of not a single Greek Cypriot missing since then had been exhumed, whereas the remains of at least half of the missing Turkish Cypriots had been exhumed.

    He added that there was specific information about where the rest of the remains of Turkish Cypriots were buried and exhumations could be carried out in a few days, and pointed out that those exhumations were the result of information provided by the Greek Cypriot side, which the Turkish Cypriot side did not appear to appreciate.

    Chairman of the United Kingdom Committee of Missing Persons Neoclis Neocleous said there is a will to establish the fate of missing persons. Neocleous also pointed out the need to intensify the campaign concerning the issue of missing persons.


    Minister of Foreign Affairs Marcos Kyprianou said on Tuesday that it appears that, although Turkish Cypriot leader Dervis Eroglu was obliged to continue talks for a solution of the Cyprus problem, he has not abandoned his unacceptable positions, which are detrimental to the talks.

    Speaking at Larnaca Airport on his return from Athens, Kyprianou noted that Eroglu`s remarks on ``two states and two peoples`` in Cyprus were not constructive or helpful in a time when efforts were underway to reunify the island.

    Kyprianou pointed out that these messages must be conveyed to Cyprus` European partners and the international community, adding that ``this is exactly what we are doing.``

    ``It is ironical, hypocritical, one could say, when the Turkish side, Turkey and the Turkish Cypriots trumpet that they want and are desperate for a solution of the Cyprus problem the soonest possible, and promote such positions, which are not in line with that which has been agreed or with the position of the international community,`` he said.


    The number of road accidents dropped in Cyprus in 2009 by 28% compared to 2001, according to figures released on Tuesday by the European Commission, which said that accidents on a European level dropped by 36%.

    The Commission announced a new road safety plan with seven strategic aims to cut fatalities by 50% over the next ten years, and it will be cooperating closely with the member states to implement the plan.

    Over the next 10 years, new rules will come into force requiring more vehicles to be equipped with automatic warning systems, including for speeding or leaving a lane and EU funding will only go to road-building projects that comply with EU road safety laws.

    Furthermore, the EU will work with national authorities to devise a common education and training strategy for road users, and more effort will be made to make motorcyclists safer.

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