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Cyprus PIO: News Update in English, 97-09-26

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

Friday, 26/09/97


CONTENTS

  • [01] Security talks start today
  • [02] Permanent members of Security Council reaffirm that status quo in Cyprus is unacceptable
  • [03] EU cannot understand why Turkey should prevent Cyprus accession
  • [04] Non-Aligned express regret and disappointment at Turkish positions
  • [05] Kasoulides: Security Council should able to implement decisions in decisive manner
  • [06] Russia repeats the missile system is purely defensive
  • [07] Foreign Minister continues his contacts in New York
  • [08] Greek Foreign Minister discusses Cyprus problem with UN Chief
  • [09] "Maritime Cyprus 1997" to attract over 1000 participants


[01] Security talks start today

President Glafcos Clerides and Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash meet this afternoon to launch their talks on security issues.

The meeting, which has an open agenda and no preconditions, will take place at the residence of the UN envoy in Cyprus Gustave Feissel.

Government Spokesman Manolis Christofides said yesterday that President Clerides has determined his future strategy on the Cyprus issue and on talks on security matters. The President was pleased to have heard the positions of all the party leaders on all aspects of the Cyprus question during the last three meetings of the National Council and he is taking into account the views of the political leadership, Mr Christofides said.

[02] Permanent members of Security Council reaffirm that status quo in Cyprus is unacceptable

The Ministers for Foreign Affairs of the five permanent members of the UN Security Council reaffirmed yesterday that the status quo in Cyprus is unacceptable and called upon the leaders of the two communities in Cyprus to commit themselves fully to the process of the UN-led negotiations with the aim of securing a settlement.

The five Foreign Ministers (of China, France, Russia, UK and USA) issued a statement yesterday, following a working lunch they had with UN Secretary- General Kofi Annan in New York.

The paragraph on Cyprus is as follows:

"The Ministers reaffirmed that the status quo in Cyprus is unacceptable and urged both parties to make determined effort to achieve a comprehensive political settlement in accordance with the Security Council resolutions. They welcomed the launching by the Secretary-General of a sustained process of direct negotiations between the leaders of the two Cypriot communities with the aim of securing such a settlement and called upon them to commit themselves fully to this process of negotiations, to cooperate actively and constructively with the Secretary-General and his Special Adviser on Cyprus to that end and stressed that full support of all concerned is necessary for this process to produce results. They took note of the intention of the European Union to start negotiations on the adhesion of Cyprus to the EU and hoped that this would facilitate the search for a comprehensive political settlement".

[03] EU cannot understand why Turkey should prevent Cyprus accession

The President of the EU Council of Ministers, Luxembourg Foreign Minister Jacques Poos said yesterday that the EU does not understand "why Turkey which is itself a candidate to join EU and to which stresses its desire again and again, should prevent Cyprus to join this same organisation".

Mr Poos, who was replying to a question on Cyprus during a press conference in New York yesterday, said nothing prevented Cyprus from joining an international organisation like the European Union. The EU respected the sovereignty of its member States he said, adding that the EU did not understand why Turkey, also a candidate to join the Union, would prevent Cyprus from doing the same. The European Union wanted the whole island to be a member. That would especially benefit the poorer northern part of the island, Mr Poos pointed out.

[04] Non-Aligned express regret and disappointment at Turkish positions

The Foreign Ministers of the Non-Aligned countries who met yesterday in New York during the 52nd Session of the UN General Assembly, expressed their grave concern at the latest threats of the use of force against Cyprus and attempts to integrate the occupied areas with Turkey.

In their final communique the Foreign Ministers reaffirmed all previous positions and declarations of the Non-Aligned Movement on Cyprus and said that the present status quo, established through the use of force and sustained by military strength, is unacceptable.

They also expressed their deep regret and disappointment of the positions taken by the Turkish side at the recent UN talks and commended President Clerides in his efforts to achieve successful results.

In their communique the Non-Aligned Foreign Ministers called "for the intensification of efforts towards finding a just and viable solution to the Cyprus problem based on the implementation of all UN resolutions on Cyprus and NAM's decisions in accordance with the principles and positions of the UN Charter and the rules of international law".

To that end, they stressed the need that the Security Council should take resolute action and the necessary measures including steps for the demilitarization of Cyprus as proposed by the President of Cyprus.

[05] Kasoulides: Security Council should be able to implement decisions in decisive manner

In his address to the Non-Aligned Foreign Ministers Meeting in New York yesterday, Cyprus Foreign Minister Ioannis Kasoulides stressed that if the UN is to become relevant to our present day world, it needs to be reformed, modernised and strengthened.

Concerning reform of the Security Council, Mr Kasoulides said that we must adhere to our criteria such as the increase in the membership of the Organisation, the transparency in its working methods, the principle of equitable geographic distribution and the restriction in the scope and applicability of the veto.

"We hope that at the end of the day we shall have a Security Council that reflects the realities of today and not those of the 1940s and that it will enjoy the overwhelming support of the membership", Mr Kasoulides added.

The new Security Council should be able to discharge its responsibilities under the Charter for the maintenance of international peace and security, promptly and with particular attention to the compliance of member states, he said. In this way it will be able to implement its decisions in a decisive manner, he stressed.

The Cyprus question, Minister Kasoulides added, is a classic case of numerous Security Council resolutions yet to be implemented and blatantly ignored by Turkey.

"As a result of the non-implementation of the relevant United Nations resolutions, not only does the Cyprus problem remain unsolved for twenty- three years, but moreover, we now face new Turkish threats of annexing the occupied part of Cyprus. Full implementation of Security Council resolutions is the only effective way to restore peace in the whole world, including Cyprus", he said.

[06] Foreign Minister continues his contacts in New York

Foreign Minister Ioannis Kasoulides continued yesterday his contacts in New York on the fringes of the 52nd Session of the UN General Assembly.

He had separate meetings with the Foreign Ministers of Ireland, Finland, Argentina, Iran and Norway whom he briefed on the latest developments in the Cyprus issue.

[07] Russia repeats the missile system is purely defensive

Russia has reiterated that the S-300 missile system bought by the Cyprus government, is a purely defensive weapon system, which does not pose any threat whatsoever to Cyprus' neighbours.

A Russian Foreign Ministry Spokesman issued a statement yesterday saying that Russia has been forced to emphasise this point yet again in view of the fact that Ankara has embarked on a noisy campaign against the despatch to Cyprus of the missiles, which includes threats

of a military strike. He said that the Turkish press has reached the point of making absurd claims that these anti-aircraft missiles can even carry nuclear, biological and chemical warheads.

The statement repeated that the solution of the Cyprus problem, which provides for the total demilitarisation of the island, could in itself preclude the existence on the island of any weapons whatsoever.

In addition it stresses that the supply of armaments to Cyprus is a result and not the cause of the lack of a solution on the island and the dangers to peace resulting therefrom.

"It is well-known that the UN has outlined the necessary framework and measures for a solution to the Cyprus problem, and Turkey, as the party directly involved in the issue, is in a position to contribute considerably to its achievement", the Spokesman concluded.

[08] Greek Foreign Minister discusses Cyprus problem with UN Chief

Greek Foreign Minister Theodoros Pangalos had a meeting in New York yesterday with UN Secretary General Kofi Annan in the presence of his Special Adviser Diego Cordovez and other UN officials during which the Cyprus issue was discussed.

Mr Pangalos said they talked about all aspects of the problem and the UN Chief briefed him on the prospects of the UN initiative towards a solution.

The Greek Foreign Minister said he was very impressed with Mr Annan's intent in this effort as well as by the ideas of Mr Cordovez in the search for a solution and for the resumption of the talks. "This is very constructive", he said.

Mr Pangalos added that they also talked about the security dialogue which the UN Chief supports. Greece believes that this dialogue should be extended not only to technical matters but to the wider issue of the demilitarisation and security of the island, he said.

[09] "Maritime Cyprus 1997" to attract over 1000 participants

"Maritime Cyprus 1997", an international conference on merchant shipping, is taking place in Nicosia between 6-8 October. Over one thousand shipowners, shipbrokers, underwriters, bankers, lawyers and other professionals linked to shipping are expected to participate in this major event which will focus on "A new era in shipping".

Addressing yesterday a news conference to announce the staging of the bi- annual "Maritime Cyprus", the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Communications and Works Vassos Pyrgos, said Cyprus is constantly improving its shipping registry and strengthening its department of shipping.

Many international authorities, including William O'Neil, the Secretary General of the International Maritime Organisation, will address the conference and join in discussions, Pyrgos said.

The meeting will focus on new principles and targets that must be adopted by the international shipping industry to cope with the human factor in the prevention of accidents.

In this respect Pyrgos said Cyprus is constantly upgrading its shipping infrastructure to improve safety standards of the vessels in its registry.

Cyprus is currently the fifth largest merchant shipping power, with a registry of 2.787 ships. Pyrgos said this has transformed Cyprus into a hub of shipping-related activities, with numerous shipowning and management firms based on the island.


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


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