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Cyprus PIO: News Update in English, 99-04-14

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/>

Wednesday, 14 April 1999


CONTENTS

  • [01] Shuttle talks resume after Easter break
  • [02] US restricts Cyprus Byzantine art imports
  • [03] Cyprus' High Commissioner to Canada


[01] Shuttle talks resume after Easter break

Shuttle talks on the Cyprus problem resumed yesterday with a meeting between President Clerides and UN Secretary General's Special Representative in Cyprus Dame Ann Hercus.

The UN official is due to meet Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash later in the week.

"I have met this morning with Mr Clerides and there has been a small gap in the shuttle talks while I have taken some leave off-island, and we are now back to regular meetings," Dame Ann told journalists.

Government Spokesman Costas Serezis yesterday said the shuttle talks on the Cyprus problem are continuing because they are considered necessary.

[02] US restricts Cyprus Byzantine art imports

The United States yesterday imposed an emergency restriction on Byzantine ecclesiastical objects and ritual ethnological material from Cyprus, the American embassy announced.

According to a press release, the restriction will be imposed on any items that are not accompanied by an export permit issued by the Cyprus government.

Penn Kemble, Acting Director of the US information agency, took the decision following a recommendation from the US Cultural Property Advisory Committee.

The emergency import restriction is in response to a request from the government of Cyprus seeking protection of its cultural heritage under Article 9 of the 1979 UNESCO Convention, the US embassy statement said.

Noting that both the US and Cyprus are parties to the Convention, an international framework of co-operation among nations to reduce the illicit movement of cultural property across international borders, the statement says "Cyprus is the first country in the Mediterranean region to seek the help of the US in protecting its cultural property".

It points out that "materials produced during the Byzantine period illustrate the high degree of artistic achievement on Cyprus and include some of the finest pieces of Byzantine art ever produced", adding that certain monuments on the island are inscribed on the World Heritage List.

Turkey has been systematically plundering Cyprus' cultural heritage in the occupied areas since it invaded the island in 1974. Some 500 churches in the occupied areas have been destroyed, looted or used for other purposes, such as warehouses, stables or public lavatories, while most of their priceless relics have been sold on the international black market.

[03] Cyprus' High Commissioner to Canada

Cyprus' Ambassador to the United States, Mrs Erato Markoulli, on 13 April presented her credentials as the island's High Commissioner to Canada.

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


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