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Cyprus PIO: News Update in English, 97-10-17

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, 17/10/97


CONTENTS

  • [01] UN Chief concerned over increased tension in and around Cyprus
  • [02] Turkish provocations continue
  • [03] US urges for a complete moratorium on overflights of Cyprus
  • [04] Swedish FM says international society has special responsibility for the enclaved
  • [05] "CYSERV 97" Exhibition inaugurated by President Clerides
  • [06] Advisory body on tourism to be formed


[01] UN Chief concerned over increased tension in and around Cyprus

UN Secretary General Kofi Annan is concerned by reports of increased tension between Greek and Turkish forces in connection with military exercises in and around Cyprus and the Eastern Mediterranean, his Spokesman Fred Eckhard stated in New York yesterday.

"This follows increasingly belligerent rhetoric in recent weeks emanating from both communities in Cyprus, and from Greece and Turkey. Competition in military exercises increases tension on the island, is dangerous, and could provoke a confrontation", the UN Chief's Spokesman said.

Moreover, he added that the Secretary-General strongly urges all parties to act in accordance with recent Security Council resolutions, which specifically express grave concern at the continuing excessive levels of military forces and armaments in Cyprus, and the rate at which they are being expanded. He noted that these resolutions call upon all concerned to commit themselves to a reduction in defence spending and a reduction in the number of foreign troops on the island. They also call upon the parties to create a climate for reconciliation and genuine mutual confidence on both sides, and to avoid any actions which might increase tension, Mr Eckhard said in his statement.

[02] Turkish provocations continue

The Greek Minister of Defence Akis Tsohatzopoulos yesterday described Turkey as "an international trouble maker". Upon arrival in Crete, after a three day visit to Cyprus, he said that Turkey adopts "cold-war tactics" and called on the Turkish government to understand that such behaviour is contrary to its European aspirations.

Turkish military aircraft had buzzed the military transport plane carrying the Greek Minister of Defence and his entourage, including many journalists, on their way to and from Cyprus.

In Nicosia, Government Spokesman Manolis Christofides accused Ankara of having "a permanent policy of provocation", while President Clerides described the Turkish action as "improper", adding that "what Turkey does shows how correct my view is about having an anti-aircraft defence because we will never become a Turkish colony".

[03] US urges for a complete moratorium on overflights of Cyprus

US State Department Spokesman James Foley was not in a position to confirm yesterday's violations of Greek air space by Turkish military aircraft in which the plane carrying the Greek Minister of Defence was harassed. Replying to a relevant question, he said that the US "continue to engage Greece, Turkey and both communities on Cyprus to avoid actions that complicate or distract from efforts to promote a Cyprus settlement. In this context, we remain closely engaged with the parties to encourage steps such as an over-flight ban to create an atmosphere conducive to serious negotiations".

Moreover, referring to a statement by Mr Rubin earlier this week, Mr Foley said that the US hope that all sides would appreciate the benefits of reinstituting a complete and open-ended moratorium on over-flights of Cyprus by Greek and Turkish military aircraft at the earliest possible moment.

[04] Swedish FM says international society has special responsibility for the enclaved

Swedish Foreign Minister Lena Hjelm-Wallen said that the living conditions of the enclaved in the occupied part of Cyprus are very difficult.

The Swedish Minister, who concluded a three-day visit to Cyprus yesterday, visited the Karpass peninsula on Wednesday 15.10.97 where there about 500 Greek Cypriots enclaved living under Turkish occupation. She said that these people live a complicated life and stressed that "We, in the international society, have a special responsibility for the enclaved".

Moreover, the Swedish Minister, who had a second meeting with her Cypriot counterpart Ioannis Kasoulides yesterday, said that now she is even more convinced that a solution must be found and stressed that the parties involved can do it.

[05] "CYSERV 97" Exhibition inaugurated by President Clerides

The Third Services Exhibition "CYSERV" was inaugurated by President Glafcos Clerides yesterday in Nicosia.

The President said that the success of this exhibition is evident in the participation of so many firms providing services, including firms from Greece taking part for the first time.

The primary objective of this Exhibition, he said, is to project the wide range of professional services available in Cyprus and generally to promote the island as a regional centre for business activities.

President Clerides referred to the high quality and variety of these services adding that the natural and other advantages offered by Cyprus together with the highly skilled manpower are instrumental to the high quality of our service.

He noted that the services sector has become the most significant one in our economy contributing about 71% of the GDP in 1996. "This outstanding performance underlines our responsibilities to preserve our competitiveness with the continuous improvement of the level and kind of services. This is why, both the Government and the private sector have to intensify their efforts to expand the prospects of the export of services", he said.

CYSERV 97, which is organised by the Employers and Industrialists Federation with the assistance of the Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Tourism, includes exhibits from over 50 service industries and will remain open till 19.10.97.

[06] Advisory body on tourism to be formed

Government Spokesman Manolis Christofides announced that the Council of Ministers approved during its meeting yesterday the establishment of an advisory body on tourism to be chaired by President Clerides.

The role of the 45-member panel will be to advise the President on issues relating to the country's main foreign exchange earner.

The members of the advisory body will enjoy a three-year tenure and are expected to submit suggestions for the qualitative upgrading and strengthening of existing tourism services.


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


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