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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 12-01-08

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

From: The Cyprus News Agency at <http://www.cyna.org.cy>


CONTENTS

  • [01] UNSG sends letters to community leaders
  • [02] Talks continue Monday as UNSG addresses leaders
  • [03] Defence Minister to pay official visit to Israel
  • [04] London European Liberals meeting ``important``, Minister says

  • [01] UNSG sends letters to community leaders

    The government has confirmed reports that the UN Secretary General has sent letters to the leaders of the two communities in Cyprus.

    I can confirm that UNSG Ban Ki-moon has sent letters to President Demetris Christofias and the Turkish Cypriot leader Dervis Eroglu, Government Spokesman Stephanos Stephanou said, replying to press questions.

    The letters were sent ahead of a meeting later this month with the two leaders in Greentree, New York, in an effort to make headway towards a negotiated settlement in Cyprus to reunite the country, divided since the 1974 Turkish invasion.

    There is a letter from the SG. We have not received it yet but as soon as we do, I will comment on its contents and the President will reply accordingly to the SG, Stephanou said.

    Asked why the President had not received it by late Saturday, he said the UN had explained that there was a difference of a few hours in the delivery of the letters.

    What is important is that we shall receive the letter, he added.

    President Christofias and Eroglu are set to have talks with the SG on 23-24 January in New York. This will be their third meeting with Ban, who has warned that the Cyprus talks cannot go the way they are being conducted at present.

    After more than three years of talks with the Turkish Cypriot community, President Christofias has expressed disappointment with the course of the negotiations, saying that little progress has been achieved and explaining that this is due to backtracking by Eroglu who has deviated from the agreed basis of a bizonal bicommunal federation.

    [02] Talks continue Monday as UNSG addresses leaders

    UN-led peace talks for a political settlement in Cyprus continue Monday between the leaders of the islands two communities, as the UN Secretary General prepares the ground for his meeting with the leaders in New York later this month.

    President of the Republic Demetris Christofias and Turkish Cypriot leader Dervis Eroglu will meet Monday morning, ahead of their second meeting at Greentree in New York with Ban Ki-moon.

    The meeting takes place after a dinner the two leaders hosted for the UN team at the village of Pyla on Thursday, which borders the northern Turkish occupied areas of Cyprus and is inhabited by Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots.

    In statements after the leaders meeting on Wednesday, the UNSGs Special Adviser on Cyprus, Alexander Downer, said the leaders had focused their discussion on Greentree 2, the progress thats been made since Greentree 1 and the expectations the United Nations has for Greentree 2 and the work that needs to be done between now and Green Tree 2 and at the end of Greentree 2.

    The two leaders had another meeting in Greentree, with the Secretary General at the end of October. They are set to meet again on January 22-24.

    President Christofias expressed the readiness of the Greek Cypriot side to proceed ``on condition that one side will not wish to impose its will on the other.``.

    [03] Defence Minister to pay official visit to Israel

    The upgrading and expansion of defence cooperation between Cyprus and Israel aims at safeguarding peace and stability in the region, always in accordance to international law, Defence Minister Demetris Eliades said.

    Eliades is paying on Sunday an official visit to Israel, following an invitation by the Israeli Deputy Prime Minister and Defence Minister Ehud Barak.

    In statements, the Minister noted that he will have talks with his Israeli counterpart on issues of mutual competence and added that the two sides will also sign a series of agreements, namely a defence cooperation agreement and an agreement on the protection and exchange of classified information.

    Moreover, Eliades said that he will meet with the Prime Minister of Israel Benjamin Netanyahu, Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman and Patriarch Theophilos III of Jerusalem.

    [04] London European Liberals meeting ``important``, Minister says

    Mondays meeting in London of European Liberals is important for Europe, Minister of Commerce, Industry and Tourism and President of the Cyprus United Democrats party, Praxoula Antoniadou, has said.

    Antoniadou will take part in a meeting of Liberal allies from around Europe to promote Britains agenda of re-engagement with the European Union, after the UK vetoed an EU treaty in December.

    ``This is a substantive and important discussion on the future of the European economy,`` Antoniadou told CNA, adding the British Liberal Democrats are in favour of a European fiscal discipline only with regard to the solidarity among EU member-states and growth.

    On the sidelines of the meeting, she expects to have the opportunity to brief her interlocutors on recent developments in Cyprus with regard to energy matters.


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