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Cyprus PIO: News Update in English, 96-11-15

Cyprus Press and Information Office: News Updates in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Republic of Cyprus Press and Information Office Server at <http://www.pio.gov.cy/>

News Update

15/11/96


CONTENTS

  • [01] Cypriot youth protests 13th anniversary of the pseudostate
  • [02] US delegation concentrates on security during Cyprus talks
  • [03] EU Ambassador on the economics of Cyprus' accession to the EU
  • [04] News in brief


[01] Cypriot youth protests 13th anniversary of the pseudostate

Following demonstrations earlier in the week, an all-night rally was staged in Nicosia last night by thousands of youths to condemn the thirteenth anniversary of the illegal unilateral declaration of independence (UDI) of the Turkish occupied area of Cyprus.

The youths carried lit torches and banners calling for an end to the occupation. They held sit-down protests and sang patriotic songs near the Ledra Palace area before the barbed wire and barricades that were speedily erected yesterday by the police.

Today's mass demonstration by university and high school students is expected to be the largest. President Clerides, in his message on the anniversary of the pseudostate's UDI, issued a stern warning to protesters to consult first with the authorities before taking any action in order to prevent possible bloody confrontation, as there was information that Turkish snipers could fire on the crowds.

Political parties and refugee associations in Cyprus have already issued statements condemning UDI and sending the message that Greek Cypriots are ready to work together with the Turkish Cypriots for a solution.

Students in all free towns in Cyprus as well as students abroad are also organising protest demonstrations today.

Meanwhile, the Turkish Cypriot press reported that former commanders of the terrorist organisation TMT and commanders who took part in the 1974 invasion will be coming from Turkey to attend celebrations in the occupied part of Cyprus.

[02] US delegation concentrates on security during Cyprus talks

Concrete steps on security issues appear to have been the main focus of talks by a high level United States delegation visiting Cyprus.

Carey Cavanaugh, Director of Southern European Affairs at the State Department and his team had meetings on Thursday (14.11.96) with Cyprus President Glafcos Clerides, Foreign Minister Alecos Michaelides and House President Spyros Kyprianou during which, he said, they "raised specific ideas about concrete measures that can be done in the near term".

He said although the signs of people wanting to move ahead are very clear, "I think it is equally clear that there are difficulties".

The American official avoided going into specifics and said: "I think that the solution and specifics of how it will work is something that still lies in the future. It is up to both communities to determine what would work for a durable settlement".

The concentration on security issues during the talks was confirmed by President Clerides. "We discussed at length issues affecting future security, after the settlement of the Cyprus problem", Clerides told reporters at Larnaca airport before his departure for Rome to attend the UN Food Summit.

The points discussed included the establishment of a multinational force and future guarantees, he added. He clarified that he raised the issue of future security as a priority.

The indirect military dialogue between the National Guard and the Turkish occupation force, as proposed by the UN peace-keeping force in Cyprus (UNFICYP), was also discussed, while the two men exchanged views aimed to create a "mild climate" in Cyprus.

President Clerides said, however, that the Cyprus-Greece joint defence pact will continue for as long as Turkish occupation troops remain on the island.

On his part, the Cypriot Foreign Minister expressed satisfaction, noting that the American involvement on Cyprus and the contacts held by the officials of the US administration have entered into specific issues.

Michaelides said that discussions with the US officials concentrated on two aspects, "the need to reduce tension and the substance of the Cyprus problem. The whole thing is moving and I expect that it will be accelerated as we move along".

The stress on security was also confirmed by Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash. "The US delegation asked us to speedily work toward demilitarisation on the island", he told reporters after his meeting with Cavanaugh.

Carey Cavanaugh was accompanied by Gwenyth Todd, Cyprus Desk Officer at the Office of International Security Affairs of the US Defence Department, John Schmidt, Director of European Affairs at the US National Security Council and Siria Lopez, Cyprus Desk Officer at the State Department Office of Southern European Affairs.

The team flew to Cyprus late on Wednesday from a one-day stop in Athens and will return to Washington on Friday (15.11.96) without visiting Ankara.

[03] EU Ambassador on the economics of Cyprus' accession to the EU

Cyprus' comparative prosperity means that it could be a net contributor to the European Union budget if it gains accession before there is a political settlement on the island. In other words Cyprus would pay into the EU more than it received. However, if the economically destitute Turkish-occupied north was incorporated into the equation, Cyprus would receive more than it paid, according to EU Ambassador to Cyprus Gilles Anouil.

Mr Anouil was addressing the annual general meeting of the Association of Cyprus Offshore Financial Services Companies.

He added that the Cyprus offshore sector could be an invaluable asset to the EU as well as to the economy of Cyprus, although the issue would have to be weighed between the importance of the sector to the Cyprus economy and the principles of fair competition prevailing within the EU.

He also reiterated that it would not be impossible for Cyprus to join the EU before a settlement and that the Turkish Cypriots "should not miss the train". He added that Cyprus' accession would not be affected if Malta withdraws its application.

[04] News in brief

- US Congressman Ron Klink, following a meeting with President Clerides yesterday, pledged that he will urge President Clinton to make every effort to solve the Cyprus problem.

-The Council of Ministers yesterday appointed the three member investigating committee into the alleged Cyprus Electricity Authority tender irregularities. They are Law Commissioner George Stavrinakis, Accountant General Leontios Savvides and former Nicosia District Officer George Charalambides.

-The 23rd congress of the Union of Middle Eastern and Mediterranean Paediatric Societies was staged for the first time in Cyprus. The aim of the congress was to bring together specialist doctors from the Middle East to discuss issues and problems related to paediatrics and the latest developments with an accent on local concerns.

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From the Republic of Cyprus Press and Information Office (PIO) Server at http://www.pio.gov.cy/


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