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Cyprus PIO: News Update in English, 98-07-21

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, 21/07/98


CONTENTS

  • [01] Sir David Hannay arrives in Cyprus
  • [02] Greece will stand by Cyprus in search for a peaceful solution
  • [03] Papandreou: The international community should actively work towards demilitarisation of Cyprus
  • [04] EU Commissioner satisfied with harmonisation process
  • [05] News in Brief


[01] Sir David Hannay arrives in Cyprus

"The challenge I think is to find some way of engaging negotiations which doesn't prejudice either side's view of their own position, that does not alter the international position in any way, but which does enable substantive talks about all the issues that really matter", the European Union's envoy and Britain's Special Representative for Cyprus stated yesterday.

Sir David Hannay arrived on the island yesterday to discuss ways of breaking the current deadlock in the Cyprus peace process, Cyprus' EU course and security matters.

Shortly after his arrival the EU envoy expressed disappointment at the Turkish Cypriot leader's refusal to see him: "Mr Denktash is not prepared to see me. He prefers isolation to dialogue which I think is a pity" he said, adding that no international problem has so far been solved by not talking about it.

Referring to Cyprus' EU course, Sir David reiterated the European Union's regret at the Turkish Cypriot side's rejection of a proposal to participate in the accession talks.

He called for a ban on overflights by military aircraft, which would greatly benefit everyone, noting that the presence of warplanes creates tension, which is a threat to peace and security in the region.

He expressed the view that an end to overflights "would be one modest step in the direction that President Clerides for example, was pointing to when he talked about the desirability of moving towards demilitarisation".

Meanwhile, British Shadow Foreign Secretary Michael Howard, issued a statement expressing the conservative Party's commitment to the peace process in Cyprus and support for Sir David Hannay's mission.

"We support the work by Sir David Hannay and the international community to resolve the situation. We hope that a bi-zonal, bi-communal arrangement can be achieved. Above all, we want an agreed settlement which will allow all Cypriots to live in peace and growing prosperity within an enlarged European Union".

[02] Greece will stand by Cyprus in search for a peaceful solution

"Greece and Cyprus will continue efforts for a peaceful solution", Greek Minister of Interior, Alecos Papadopoulos stated yesterday.

The Greek Minister who came to Cyprus to attend the anti-occupation events marking the 24th anniversary of the Turkish invasion, was received by President Glafcos Clerides, who briefed him on the latest developments of the Cyprus problem.

Mr Papadopoulos strongly criticised the illegal visit of Turkish Premier Mesut Yilmaz in the occupied areas to participate in the Turkish invasion "celebrations". He described it as "nothing else but another link to the endless chain of Turkish provocations".

Referring to the defence pact agreed between Greece and Cyprus, Mr Papadopoulos pointed out that Greece considers "self explanatory and undeniable for every independent country, the right to self defence".

Meanwhile the Head of a four member Greek Parliamentary Delegation, which also arrived in Cyprus for the events, underlined the importance of the defence doctrine between Cyprus and Greece: "The pact stipulates that Greece will come to Cyprus' aid in case of a new Turkish offensive against the island".

[03] Papandreou: The international community should actively work towards the demilitarisation of Cyprus

Deputy Greek Foreign Minister George Papandreou stated yesterday that the international community should divert its attention from the deployment of the S-300 missiles in Cyprus and should focus on President Clerides' proposal for the demilitarisation of the island.

Replying to questions at a press conference in Athens, Papandreou said that "we cannot accuse the Greek Cypriots of exercising their right to defence when on the other side of the island there is a continuously growing presence of military troops".

Mr Papandreou called on the international community and especially on the US which supplies Turkey with weaponry and war systems to contribute decisively to the implementation of the demilitarisation of Cyprus.

[04] EU Commissioner satisfied with harmonisation process

"Cyprus is in good standing economically and socially" EU Commissioner Padraig Flynn stated after a meeting with Foreign Minister Ioannis Kasoulides. He also expressed the hope that the outstanding political issues can also be resolved.

The European Union official expressed satisfaction at the country's economic position and underlined the importance of maintaining the existing economic stability.

On social matters Mr Flynn stated that he was pleased with the progress made in the social sector but there was still some legislative work to be done on issues related to health, safety, equal opportunities and social dialogue.

[05] News in Brief

Cyprus and Saudi Arabia signed an air transport agreement which will contribute both to the improvement of air transport and to the enhancement of economic and financial ties between the two countries.

The Permanent Representative of Cyprus to the UN Ambassador Sotos Zackheos denounced the new violations of Cyprus' national airspace and of the flight information region of Nicosia by Turkish military aircraft on 10 July 1998 in a letter addressed to the the UN Secretary General.

In a written reply to Shadow Foreign Secretary Mr. Michael Howard, the British Foreign Secretary of State, Mr Doug Henderson, reaffirmed his country's support of UN led peace efforts for a solution to the Cyprus problem .He stressed that "measures to reduce military tension have a role to play but the best way is by means of a comprehensive political settlement".


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


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