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Cyprus PIO: News Update in English, 01-06-07

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/>

Thursday, 7 June 2001


CONTENTS

  • [01] Identification of the remains of 36 missing persons
  • [02] European Commission to negotiate agreement with Cyprus for participation in EU programmes
  • [03] Greek Prime Minister refers to Cyprus' EU accession course
  • [04] European Parliament adopts resolution on EC - Cyprus Agreement


[01] Identification of the remains of 36 missing persons

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has announced that the identity of another 36 people, killed in the summer of 1974 when Turkish troops invaded Cyprus, has been determined through the DNA method. The remains were exhumed from two cemeteries in Nicosia in the summer of 1999, which brings the number of remains identified so far to 108.

Ten out of the 36 identified remains belong to persons listed as missing (four of these cases had been submitted to the Committee of Missing Persons for investigation and six were not) and 23 belong to military personnel killed in action during the Turkish invasion. There is one case of a civilian killed during the 1974 invasion and two cases of persons who have been injured during the military coup that preceded the Turkish invasion and died later at the Nicosia General Hospital.

The families of all 36 persons have been duly notified about the identification, and scientists who helped in the exhumation and identification process are giving the families clarifications about their findings.

The well-known team of Physicians for Human Rights and a team of scientists at the Cyprus Institute of Neurology and Genetics have undertaken the scientific work for the identification of the remains.

The Cyprus government has renewed it's appeal to the relatives of the missing persons who have not yet come forward, to give blood samples and any information that might be of use to the scientists to assist them in the identification process of the rest of the remains that have been exhumed or may be exhumed in the future. This will be particularly useful if the Turkish Cypriot side decides to implement the agreement made between President Clerides and Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash, which provides for the exchange of information on the location of mass graves, exhumation of remains and their return to the next of kin for proper burial.

The President and the government of the Republic have conveyed their most sincere condolences to the families of the deceased and assured them of their continuous support.

[02] European Commission to negotiate agreement with Cyprus for participation in EU programmes

The European Union's Council of Ministers gave a mandate to the Commission on 5 June to negotiate framework agreements with Cyprus, Malta and Turkey for their participation in EU programmes like the Research and Development Programme or education and vocational training Programmes.

According to a press release issued by the European Commission in Brussels, these countries are already participating or preparing to participate in a number of programmes. However, the proposed "framework agreements" will greatly accelerate the procedures needed to start participating other programmes. In addition, they will allow Cyprus, Malta and Turkey to participate in all programmes open to the candidate countries of Central and Eastern Europe, including those for which they were not previously eligible.

The European Union Commissioner for Enlargement Mr Gunter Verheugen, who proposed this approach, said the following: "Participation in EU programmes is an important part of the pre-accession strategy for Cyprus, Malta and Turkey, and for all the other candidate countries. The programmes provide a useful preparation for accession by familiarising the candidate countries and their citizens with the Union's policies and working methods. For that reason I welcome the decision the Council has taken today and I look forward to agreements being concluded with Cyprus, Malta and Turkey in the near future."

The framework agreements, which the Commission is asked to negotiate, will accelerate the procedures needed for participation in individual programmes. They will allow the terms and conditions for each specific programme, including the costs of participation, to be agreed bilaterally between the Commission and the relevant country, in close consultation with the Council. Funds from the EU's pre-accession financial assistance to Cyprus, Malta and Turkey are available to meet a proportion of the costs of participation.

[03] Greek Prime Minister refers to Cyprus' EU accession course

Greek Prime Minister Mr Costas Simitis held official talks in Athens on 5 June with the President of Slovenia Mr Milan Kucan, which focused on European Union expansion.

In a statement to the press after the talks, Mr Simitis expressed the hope that issues like the formulation of a common agricultural policy and the issue of free movement, which are under discussion, can be resolved so that negotiations between the European Union and several candidate-states including Slovenia and Cyprus will conclude by 2002.

The Greek Prime Minister also said he hoped that relative accession treaties would be signed during Greece's six-month EU presidency in the first half of 2003, something that would allow new EU members to participate in the 2004 Euro-elections.

[04] European Parliament adopts resolution on EC - Cyprus Agreement

The European Parliament has adopted a Resolution on 31 May 2001, on the proposal for a Council decision on the conclusion of the agreement between the European Community and the Republic of Cyprus concerning Cyprus' participation in the European Environment Agency and the European Environment Information and Observation Network.

The Resolution states the following:

The European Parliament,

.Having regard to the proposal for a Council decision (COM (2000) 879),

.Having regard to the draft agreement for Cyprus' participation in the European Environment Agency and the European Environment Information and Observation Network,

.Having regard to Articles 174 (2) and 300 (2), first subparagraph, first sentence of the EC Treaty,

.Having been consulted by the Council pursuant to Article 300 (3), first subparagraph of the EC Treaty (C5-0060/2001),

.Having regard to rule 67 and 97 (7) of its Rules of Procedure

.Having regard to the report of the Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Consumer Policy and the opinion of the Committee on Budgets (A5- 0170/2001),

1. Approves the conclusion of the agreement

2. Instructs the President to forward its position to the Council and the Commission, the Government and Parliaments of the Member States and of the Republic of Cyprus.


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


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