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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 10-09-05

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From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>




    The Greek Cypriot side is anticipating the Turkish Cypriot side to table its negotiating positions that will help in efforts to solve the Cyprus issue, stated Labour and Social Insurance Minister Sotiroula Charalambous.

    Speaking at the funeral of reservist Lefteris Avraam from Livadia village of Larnaca, killed during the 1974 Turkish invasion, whose remains have been located in a mass grave and identified with the DNA method Charalambous assured that the government will continue to support the work of the Committee on Missing Persons (CMP) in Cyprus and to ease the exhumation procedure.

    She said the government has been dedicated for 36 years now for a peaceful solution to the Cyprus issue. We are working for a functional and viable settlement on the basis of the international and European law principles, UN relevant resolutions and the High Level Agreements of 1977 and 1979, she added.

    Referring to the ongoing talks between the leaders of the two communities on the island, Charalambous said that the Greek Cypriot side has tabled balanced positions which lead to a viable and functional settlement. She further said President of the Republic Demetris Christofias has proposed the linking of discussions on property to territory and immigration, citizenship, aliens and asylum, the implementation of Security Council resolution 550 which provides for the return of the fenced off area of Varosha - under Turkish occupation since 1974 - to the UN, the opening of the citys port for trade for the Turkish Cypriots, under EU supervision and the convening of an international conference on Cyprus, once the Greek Cypriot and the Turkish Cypriot side are within reach of an agreement on the internal aspects of the Cyprus problem. These proposals provide the ability for a new impetus in the negotiating procedure, she added.

    Charalambous said although time is not working in our favour, we are not ready to accept any solution. The course of the procedure solely depends on the other side. We are expecting the Turkish Cypriot side to table negotiating positions which will help in efforts to achieve a solution.

    Insistence, she added, on intransigent, divisive positions are far from being a constructive contribution to a solution, a term which the Turkish Cypriot side likes to use.

    Cyprus has been divided since 1974, when Turkish troops invaded and occupied 37% of its territory. Peace talks are currently underway between President Christofias and the leader of the Turkish Cypriot community Dervis Eroglu, under UN auspices.

    The CMP is engaged in a project to locate, unearth and identify remains of people - Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots - recorded as missing since the 1974 Turkish invasion and the intercommunal fighting in the early 1960s.


    The UN expect further ideas to be exchanged by the two leaders during the coming all-day discussions on property, UN spokesman Rolando Gomez told CNA.

    Gomez was invited to comment on media reports suggesting that UN Secretary-General Special Adviser on the Cyprus problem, Alexander Downer has reportedly told to associates that next Friday, when the two all-day discussions on property conclude, he would be in position to know whether an agreed solution to the Cyprus problem is possible or not.

    Refraining from commenting on the reports, Gomez recalled Downer`s statement made after a meeting with the President of the Republic last Wednesday that `if the leaders break the back` of the property issue then this would go very well for the future of the peace talks.``

    ``The leaders have been making good progress on the issue and as previously announced we expect that they will exchange further ideas on how to solve this difficult issue``.

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