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Cyprus PIO: News Update in English, 98-07-07

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

Tuesday, 07/07/98


CONTENTS

  • [01] UN Security Council calls for direct talks
  • [02] Defence Minister to visit Russia
  • [03] New UN envoy in Cyprus an outsider with fresh eyes and a streak of practicality


[01] UN Security Council calls for direct talks

The United Nations Security Council yesterday called for the resumption, as soon as possible, of the face to face talks between the two leaders in Cyprus.

The statement was made in New York yesterday by Security Council President, Russian Ambassador to the UN, Sergei Lavrov after the Security Council was briefed by the UN Secretary-General's Special Advisor for Cyprus, Diego Cordovez on the contacts he had in Cyprus last week with President Clerides and Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash.

Mr Lavrov told reporters that Cordovez basically was in Cyprus on a two phase mission.

"Having with him two resolutions of the Security Council on the good offices mission and on the extension of UNFICYP, he wanted to touch base with both leaders in order to see whether they are ready to resume the direct talks", he said.

Mr Lavrov added that Mr Cordovez had discussed some substance of what these talks might concentrate on, and the tow sides had agreed to have a second phase on his current effort sometime later, towards the end of the summer.

"He is hoping that there might be some movement by that time", he said.

[02] Defence Minister to visit Russia

Defence minister Yiannakis Omirou leaves for Moscow today on a four-day official visit, followed immediately afterwards by President Clerides.

Mr Omirou told a press conference yesterday that in Moscow he would hold talks with his Russian counterpart Igor Sergeyev on issues of mutual interest in the light of an existing agreement for military and technical co-operation between the two countries, dating to 1996.

He also said there was a possibility Greece's Defence Minister Akis Tsochatzopoulos would visit Cyprus on July 20 but no official confirmation had been received yet.

[03] New UN envoy in Cyprus an outsider with fresh eyes and a streak of practicality

The UN Secretary-General's new Special Representative in Cyprus, Dame Ann Hercus, has said UN Secretary-General, Kofi Annan had appointed her as an outsider "who will come with particularly fresh eyes and a streak of practicality."

She told the press yesterday on the first day of assuming her duties yesterday that she is here to "listen to the two leaders, to offer a new UN perspective" and to do her best to help the Greek and Turkish Cypriot sides reach a settlement.

Dame Ann Hercus, who replaces Gustave Feissel as top UN envoy on the island, said that as an outsider she came to Cyprus "with no baggage, no particular ties or alliances with this part of the world that would make an even- handed approach difficult."

As a New Zealander, she said, she will bring to the job a "very practical streak, creativity and integrity."

Replying to questions about bringing in a different kind of approach to the peace effort, she said: "I would be really disappointed if you did not find me full of fresh ideas".

Dame Ann said she was honoured by the appointment and has been a "devoted reader" on Cyprus since she was offered the job in March.

She said that the UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan had reaffirmed to her his determination to pursue intensified efforts to bring about a comprehensive settlement to the Cyprus problem. Being part of this effort, she said, was "a real challenge" for her.

Earlier Dame Ann paid a courtesy call on President Clerides. She will meet with Turkish Cypriot leader, Rauf Denktash, today.


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


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