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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 10-12-15

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From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>




    President Demetris Christofias has stressed that he will continue the struggle to remove all obstacles resulting from Turkeys occupation of Cyprus northern part, which affect many sectors the Ministry handles.

    Inaugurating the exhibition 50 years of Works and Communications, the President said that the Ministry, like all our people, suffers the consequences of the Turkish occupation. The full development of the road network is being obstructed, commercial shipping and civil aviation are being restricted by the Turkish embargoes, the air traffic control services are being hindered in their work by the interferences of the illegal centre in Turkish occupied Tymbou, the electronic communications suffer a relentless war of frequencies from the occupied areas, the antiquities and the rest of our cultural heritage are being destroyed and looted.

    We struggle, day and night, in order to remove all these obstacles, in order to rid ourselves from the continuing consequences of the invasion, within the framework of a functional and viable solution of a bi-zonal, bi-communal federation. A solution that will reunite our homeland and the people of Cyprus, Greek Cypriots, Turkish Cypriots, Maronites, Armenians and Latins, a solution that will end the occupation and will respect human rights and international law. A solution founded on principles, the President stressed.

    The Ministry of Communications and Works, he noted, has been one of the most important Ministries of the Republic of Cyprus due to the extent and significance of its responsibilities.

    Over the years, the responsibilities of the Ministry were broadened and today there are in total nine Departments and four basic Sectors, that of Works, Communications and Transport, Electronic Communications and Antiquities, he noted.

    Their responsibilities include, inter alia, securing fast, comfortable and safe transport for the citizens, improving road safety standards and the quality of services, turning Cyprus into an international maritime centre, upgrading the Civil Aviation Services, establishing Cyprus as a regional telecommunications hub and upgrading postal services.

    Under the difficult economic conditions we are facing today, these sectors constitute basic pillars of exercising budgetary policy, via the boosting of development, the attraction of new investments and the transformation of Cyprus into a supply of services hub, the President added.

    Today, he concluded, there is no better way to honour the fiftieth anniversary of the Republic of Cyprus and the Ministry, than by reiterating the promise to continue struggling for a solution of the Cyprus problem, for continuous development, progress, social justice and consolidation of the economy, for a powerful Republic of Cyprus of the present and the future.

    Turkey, whose troops occupy Cyprus northern areas since they invaded in 1974, does not recognise the Republic of Cyprus, an EU member. In April 1987 it imposed restrictions on Cypriot flagged vessels and in May 1997 Ankara issued new orders to extend the restrictions to include ships under a foreign flag which had any relation with the Republic of Cyprus

    These restrictions disrupt shipping and air traffic, in addition to causing huge financial and other problems. Annual losses for Cyprus economy because of the restrictions amounted to 138,5 million euro in 2008, accounting for 1,3 % of the GDP (Gross Domestic Product).

    The shipping industry records annual losses amounting to 100 m. euro.

    It is noted that 16% of the EU registered ships cannot dock at Turkish ports.

    The Cyprus shipping register presents nearly 12% of the European registry and one quarter of the worlds ship management is represented by Cyprus.

    Several official EU documents outline Turkeys legal obligation to lift its embargo on Cypriot and EU shipping but so far Ankara has refused to meet its EU commitments.


    Government Spokesman Stephanos Stephanou has described as balanced a UN resolution on the renewal of the mandate of UNFICYP. Speaking to the press, Stephanou welcomed the resolution, stressing that UNFICYPs presence in Cyprus is imperative due to the continuing Turkish occupation of the islands northern part. The resolution, issued on the basis of normal UN practice with regard to efforts for a political settlement, is balanced and it repeats many references included in past resolutions, he noted.

    Stephanou said that the resolution reaffirms that under the current circumstances, UNFICYPs presence in Cyprus is necessary, that the Cypriots have the primary responsibility to find a solution to the Cyprus problem and that the principle role of the UN is to support the two sides to reach a comprehensive and viable solution.

    It also reaffirms that the solution of the problem should be based on a bi-zonal, bi-communal federation with political equality as described in the relevant resolutions of the UN Security Council, Stephanou pointed out and added that the resolution reaffirms all the relevant UN resolutions on Cyprus, and especially resolution 1251, which stipulates that the solution of the Cyprus issue should provide for one state with a single sovereignty, a single citizenship and a single international personality, with its independence and territorial integrity secured.


    President Demetris Christofias has said that progress has been achieved in the issue of economy during talks with the Turkish Cypriot leader Dervis Eroglu to solve the Cyprus problem.

    Speaking to the press after meeting Eroglu, President Christofias said the Greek Cypriot side had submitted its positions and proposals pertaining to the key issues of governance and power sharing.

    We expect a response from the Turkish Cypriot side, he added in his short statement. The issue of governance and power sharing will be further discussed during the next meeting with Eroglu.

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