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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 10-11-07

Cyprus News Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>




    The meeting of the UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon with Cyprus President Demetris Christofias and Turkish Cypriot leader Dervis Eroglu in New York on November 18 should not change the mandate of the UN Good Offices Mission on Cyprus, House President Marios Garoyian has said.

    Addressing a ceremony for the unveiling of a monument for the sacrifice of the EOKA 1955-1959 heroes Georgios Stylianou, Vasos Panayi and Georgios Anastasiou in Neo Horio, Paphos, Garoyian reaffirmed the Greek Cypriot side`s insistence on just, functional and viable solution to the Cyprus problem.

    ``A fair, functional and viable solution, based on the principles of the international law and the UN resolutions, as well as the values and the principles on which the European Union is founded on,`` he said.

    Garoyian referred to the ongoing UN-led talks for a Cyprus settlement noting that these ``have led nowhere.``

    He said that the progress achieved so far is negligible as it is limited to secondary aspects of the Cyprus problem.

    ``On core issues and issues of primary importance, a gap divides the positions of the two sides,`` he said, recalling that this is also the finding of the UN Secretary-General who called for a meeting with President Christofias and Eroglu in New York in a bid to give new momentum to the direct negotiations.

    He noted that the Greek Cypriot side has no fears concerning the meeting ``as long as it would constitute the continuation of the current process within the UN Secretary-General`s Good Offices Mission mandate given by the Security Council.``

    ``We therefore expect that Ban Ki-moon will move in this framework,`` he added.

    Noting that there has been ample speculation concerning the November 18 meeting, Garoyian said the Greek Cypriot side sends a clear message towards the international organisation that ``the New York meeting should under no circumstances constitute a springboard for an international conference, as an agreement on the internal aspects of the Cyprus problem is not within reach, but on the contrary a gap divides the positions of the two sides.``

    He pointed out that ``efforts leading to a direct or an indirect arbitration should be avoided,`` adding that ``we will not accept joint statements giving the impression of an interim agreement.``

    The House President also said that he expects the UNSG to realise that the responsibility for the stalemate and the impasse on the talks lies on the Turkish side.

    ``If the Turkish side does not abandon its intransigence and continues to pursue a confederal solution the direct negotiations will further degenerate,`` he said, noting that in this case the UN and the international community will record a another failure.

    Peace talks began in September 2008 between President Christofias and former Turkish Cypriot leader Mehmet Ali Talat. Talks continue now with Eroglu, who succeeded Talat in April this year.

    Cyprus has been divided since 1974, when Turkish troops invaded and occupied its northern third.


    President of the Republic of Cyprus Demetris Christofias and Turkish Cypriot leader Dervis Eroglu will meet again on Monday, November 8, to continue discussions on the issue of property, in the framework of UN-led direct negotiations for a solution to the Cyprus problem.

    The meeting is expected to take place at the official residence of the UNFICYP Chief of Mission in the United Nations Protected Area (UNPA) Lisa Buttenheim and is scheduled to begin at 15:00 local time (13:00 GMT).

    As Alexander Downer, Special Adviser of the UNSG on the Cyprus problem, stated after the last meeting on November 1, the leaders decided to establish a new committee to look into opening new checkpoints between the north and the south and had some discussion about that.

    On November 18, Christofias and Eroglu will meet the UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon in New York.


    The government plans concerning Eurocypria lie within European Union guidelines, Government Spokesman Stephanos Stephanou has said.

    Responding to criticism, Stephanou said that the problems facing the Cypriot air transport sector concerning Eurocypria, which is under liquidation, and Cyprus Airways did not show up suddenly.

    ``The government does not put the blame on the EU, the government actions and plans are within the framework of the EU guidelines,`` he said, adding that the government is called to face problems of the past.

    According to Stephanou ``for a long time some have been sweeping the problems under the carpet and some of those who are now shouting, such as the main opposition party Democratic Rally, are among those that created the problems.``

    He also assured that the government will implement a compensation plan for the Eurocypria employees very soon, adding that efforts are being made for a governmnent-funded early retirement plan concerning Cyprus Airways, to be approved by the Commission, so that the Cyprus Airways can go ahead and hire former Eurocypria employees.


    Qatar`s Nasser Al-Attiyah won the Cyprus Rally, the 12th and final round of 2010 IRC season, becoming the first Arab to win an IRC event.

    Al-Attiyah, defending Middle East Rally Champion, moved in front when rival and fellow Ford Fiesta S2000 driver Martin Prokop was slowed after his car suffered a broken driveshaft on stage 10. Despite the close attentions of Roger Feghali, at the wheel of a Skoda Fabia S2000, Al-Attiyah was able to hold on for his maiden IRC win following 236 kilometres of gruelling competition on the sun-baked stages through the Cypriot landscape.

    Al-Attiyah, a multiple Middle East champion, was always in contention on the Cyprus Rally and made the most of his experience of competing on the island to race into an early lead. However, the combination of two punctures and a 10-second time penalty for a reported jumped start on Friday let Prokop move into the lead on day ones penultimate stage.

    Prokop had to settle with third overall, although his capture of the final podium spot was briefly in doubt when he spun on the final Galataria stage.

    Czech Ford National Team team-mate Jaromir Tarabus finished fourth with Nicos Thomas the top Cypriot driver in fifth after overcoming gearchange and brake problems on Friday. Thomas drive in a Peugeot 207 S2000 was the result of the close collaboration between IRC promoter Eurosport Events and rally organiser Cyprus

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