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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 10-12-09

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From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>




    President of the Republic Demetris Christofias assured on Thursday that any difficulties on the way towards a solution of the Cyprus problem would not lead the Greek Cypriot side to abandon the struggle to achieve this goal.

    Addressing the scientific symposium titled ``Republic of Cyprus: Past, present and future``, which was organised by the University of Cyprus, President Christofias referred to the policy that would lead to a solution and pointed out that, marked by the struggle for the termination of the Turkish occupation and the reunification of Cyprus and its people, the recent history of the island offers many important lessons concerning the policy for a solution.

    One of the main aspects of the policy, he said, was insistence on the basis of a solution, which is a bizonal bicommunal federation with political equality, as described by the UN, for a single state with a single sovereignty, a single citizenship and a single international identity.

    He said this was the basis the two communities in Cyprus had agreed on and the historical compromise of the Greek Cypriots.

    ``It is feasible within the new conditions. The questioning of the basis by the Turkish side must not lead to thoughts about abandoning it. This would be to the detriment of the Greek Cypriot side`s credibility and would give the opportunity to the Turkish side to dislodge itself from the agreement that has been adopted by many UN resolutions and is reaffirmed in the new resolution that is to be adopted, and to promote its position for the creation of two separate states in Cyprus,`` he said.

    President Christofias said that other resultants were the safeguarding of the human rights and fundamental freedoms of the people of Cyprus, and a solution through negotiations under UN auspices, based on UN resolutions and international and European law. He added that Turkey`s EU accession course should be utilised to exert pressure on Ankara to change its stance and cooperate for reunification, and pointed out that Turkey`s cooperation was imperative.

    President Christofias referred to the evaluation of all facts and conditions concerning the Cyprus problem, as well as the involved powers, and that unity on the home front was also necessary, as is the strengthening of ties between Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots through rapprochement and a joint struggle for reunification.

    ``These are fundamental components of the policy we are following in the Cyprus problem. It is our belief that these constants meet the needs of our anti-occupation struggle and they arise from an objective analysis of all the facts and conditions that have to do with the Cyprus problem,`` he said.

    In his address, President Christofias referred to the recent history of Cyprus, the struggle to rid the island of British colonial rule, the granting of independence and the establishment of the Republic of the Cyprus in 1960, and the coup d` etat and Turkish invasion of 1974.


    The Special Representative of the Secretary General in Cyprus Lisa Buttenheim expressed her satisfaction for the support the permanent members of the UN Security Council lent to the operation of UNFICYP.

    I know they are still discussing the resolution on UNFICYP but I heard from all Council members support for UNFICYP which I consider to be the important thing Buttenheim said.

    Asked to comment on the progress of negotiation talks, Buttenheim said the leaders agreed to meet once a week, while their representatives are meeting twice per week. She also referred to the impending meeting of the representatives on Friday.

    The UNSG Special Representative also spoke about the new ad hoc committee that has been set up on the opening of crossing points, adding that UNFICYP is facilitating the committees meeting. So I think its moving she said.


    NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen reiterated on Thursday, to the EU Ministers of Defence, his proposal for a solution to the dispute between Cyprus and Turkey, which hinders the enhancement of cooperation between NATO and the EU. Replying to questions, Rasmussen said ``the basic problem still exists`` and referred to ``the division of Cyprus and the dispute connected to that.``

    ``I consider that the NATO Summit in Lisbon took a clear step forward also as regards the NATO-EU relationship. In the new Strategic Concept we have provided the political framework for making further progress. But in order to make progress we need to take some concrete steps and in today`s meeting I have repeated my proposal as to how we could move forward``, he said.

    Rasmussen noted that he presented ``the package which on the one hand is a message to the EU to conclude an arrangement between Turkey and the European Defence Agency, and in that context also a security arrangement between Turkey and the EU, and on the other hand of course also a clear emphasis on the fact that cooperation between NATO and the EU must take place with all member states of the EU.``

    ``This is a balanced approach. I have reiterated that today and the High Representative Ashton and I will move forward on that basis,`` he concluded.


    The Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Tourism will soon launch the process for the selection of companies that will undertake the construction of the Energy Center at Vasiliko, Minister Antonis Paschalides said today.

    Speaking during the Cyprus Organisation for Storage and Management of Oil Stocks General Assembly, in Nicosia, Paschalides noted that the government and his Ministry are putting all their efforts in promoting this project.

    Paschalides said that the Energy Center is of high importance for Cyprus, as it will include the storage infrastructure for the countrys strategic oil reserves. He added that the terminal will be also used as a regional oil trading hub.

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