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Cyprus PIO: News Update in English, 97-11-10

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

Monday, 10/11/97


CONTENTS

  • [01] US envoys begin contects in Cyprus
  • [02] Kasoulides in Athens for consultations
  • [03] President Clinton's Report to Congress on the situation in Cyprus
  • [04] China and Cyprus sign cultural agreement
  • [05] "Statistics for tourism, migration and travel in 1996"


[01] US envoys begin contacts in Cyprus

Thomas Miller, US State Department co-ordinator, arrived in Cyprus on Sunday November 9, ahead of Ambassador Richard Holbrooke's arrival on Monday (10.11.97) evening. Presidential emissary Holbrooke is planning to have separate meetings with President Glafcos Clerides and Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash and a joint meeting in his presence on Tuesday.

Very little is known about the contents of Mr Holbrooke's talks here, but the US emissary will give a press conference before his departure.

Meanwhile State Department co-ordinator Tom Miller had talks with President Glafcos Clerides on Monday morning (10.11.97) after which he told journalists he will not comment on the contents of his meetings and he remarked: "The meetings are discussions, they are not negotiations in any formal sense. It is important to have discussions".

Replying to journalists questions Mr Miller said: "Our efforts have nothing to do with your presidential campaign the Cyprus problem is a very serious problem, I don't think that Mr Holbrooke and I are going to stop our efforts, stop our discussions during the next couple of months because of your elections".

[02] Kasoulides in Athens for consultations

Foreign Minister Ioannis Kasoulides paid a one-day visit to Athens on Saturday, November 8, where he held talks with Greek Foreign Minister Theodoros Pangalos. The sudden visit was decided immediately after it was announced in Washington that US special Presidential Emissary for Cyprus Ambassador Richard Holbrooke would pay his first visit to the island in this capacity on Monday and Tuesday, November 10-11.

The talks in Athens focused on co-ordinating efforts relating to the Cyprus question and accession to the European Union.

Foreign Minister Kasoulides said after his meeting with Mr Pangalos:

"We examined current issues, Monday's visit to Cyprus by US presidential emissary Richard Holbrooke and had a preliminary exchange of views".

He added that the Greek Foreign Minister briefed him on the content of the Greco-Turkish summit in Crete, earlier this week, and preparations in Europe in view of December's European Council in Luxembourg.

In statements on his return from Athens Foreign Minister Kasoulides said:

"I do not think Mr Holbrooke's visit should surprise anyone. If he had any second thoughts about the visit it is because he did not want to come here without first having detected some kind of disposition from the Turkish side to respond".

He also pointed out that "if he were to be faced with a brick wall, he would not be coming".

Asked if any changes may occur as a result of Ambassador Holbrooke's visit, Mr Kasoulides replied "we do not anticipate any significant change on the substance of the Cyprus question but we do not wish to preempt anything".

[03] President Clinton's Report to Congress on the situation in Cyprus

President Bill Clinton's bimonthly report to Congress on the situation on Cyprus for the period of June-July 1997 was released on Friday, 7.11.97.

The report lists what the President considers the main events during the period and the various contacts American officials have had regarding the Cyprus question.

It highlights the appointment on June 4 of Ambassador Richard Holbrooke as Special Presidential Emissary for Cyprus, the meeting of Secretary of State Madeleine Albright with Cypriot Foreign Minister Ioannis Kasoulides on June 6, the various meetings Ambassador to Nicosia Kenneth Brill has had with the two sides in Cyprus and goes on to mention the invitation for direct talks initiated by the UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan.

President Clinton's report to Congress also refers to separate meetings by senior US officials Cavanaugh and Kornblum with European Union officials in Brussels regarding the direct talks and the prospects for accession negotiations with Cyprus, and with the EU Troika Political Directors in Madrid on July 9.

Referring to the first round of UN-sponsored direct talks in Troutbeck, New York, on July 9-13 between Cyprus President Glafcos Clerides and Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash, the report noted special UN adviser Diego Cordovez's comments on the atmosphere having been very positive, but also Ambassador Brill's comment that the talks "were only a beginning and that it was important to continue the negotiating process so that the two sides could engage in more substantive discussions".

[04] China and Cyprus sign cultural agreement

Cyprus and China have signed the seventh programme of cultural co-operation which covers the period until 1999 and includes exchanges in the fields of arts, culture, the theatre, cinema, education, youth and the media.

Chinese Minister of Culture Liu Zhongde who was visiting the island said on Friday (7.11.97) also referred to the political problem and said that China, as a permanent member of the UN Security Council will make every effort to assist towards finding a solution to the Cyprus problem.

[05] Statistics for Tourism, Migration and Travel in 1996

The Department of Statistics and Research has published the annual report "Tourism, Migration and Travel Statistics" for 1996, which provides detailed data on the movement of travellers and the tourist flow.

In 1996 total arrivals reached 2.512.270 and departures totalled 2.509.473, each recording a decrease of 6,4% compared to 1995. Europe has as usual been the traditional tourist market for Cyprus. In 1996 European countries provided the island with more than 88% of the total tourist arrivals.

The United Kingdom remained the most important source of tourism with a share of 36,9% of the total, followed by Germany with 12,3%, the Nordic countries with 12,1%, Russia and the ex-Soviet Union countries with 6,7%, Switzerland with 4,5% and Greece with 3,8%.

The number of excursionists, visitors who die not stay overnight in the country, decreased by 9,7% and reached 138.526 in 1996.

In 1996 the number of Cypriots and foreign residents of Cyprus travelling abroad was estimated at 365.000 compared to 360.000 in 1995.

At the end of 1996 there were 4.343 tourist accommodation units registered by the Cyprus Tourism Organisation with a total capacity of 84.549 beds.


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


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