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Cyprus PIO: News Update in English, 01-11-12

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/>

Monday, 12 November 2001


CONTENTS

  • [01] President Clerides' address to the 56th Session of the UN General Assembly
  • [02] President Clerides' contacts in New York
  • [03] Foreign Minister's contacts in New York
  • [04] Reference by the Belgian Foreign Minister, Mr Louis Michel on Cyprus


[01] President Clerides' address to the 56th Session of the UN General Assembly

"We see as the future of our country, a reunited federal state, member of the European Union, with human and other rights of each and every citizen fully protected under the processes of democracy and rule of law, which we are proud to have achieved in the Republic of Cyprus," President Clerides has stated.

Addressing the 56th session of the UN General Assembly, President Clerides described his vision of seeing a state with a single citizenship, sovereignty and international personality, a demilitarised state enjoying the fruits of its labours in the wider European family, while at the same time playing its rightful role in our immediate region of the Eastern Mediterranean.

The solution of the Cyprus problem is long overdue, the President said and deplored the decision of Turkish Cypriot leader Mr Rauf Denktash to decline an invitation to talks by UN Secretary General Kofi Annan.

" I cannot conceal my deep disappointment, shared by the Security Council in its statement of 26 September, over the refusal of the Turkish side to continue with the proximity talks to help the efforts of the Secretary- General to find a comprehensive settlement. The refusal of the Turkish Cypriot leader Mr. Denktash with the support of Ankara to resume the talks, which he abandoned a year ago, despite the official invitation extended by the Secretary-General on 5 September, is particularly disturbing" he said.

The Turkish side, President Clerides said, has abandoned the concept of a bi-zonal, bi-communal federal Cyprus, which has been provided as the basis of the solution by the Security Council Resolutions. Moreover it has been calling on the international community to accept the so-called "realities" "which is the legalization of Turkey's occupation of 37% of Cypriot territory, in breach of international law, the forceful expulsion of Greek Cypriot refugees from the occupied area and the subsequent importation of 120,000 settlers from mainland Turkey in an effort to change the demographic character of Cyprus.

"As is well known the international community through a plethora of resolutions of the United Nations has repeatedly rejected this policy. Acceptance of these so called "realities" would create a very dangerous precedent in international affairs, striking at the very heart of the cherished principles of state sovereignty and territorial integrity," he added.

He called on Turkey to give up its threats to annex the Turkish occupied areas of Cyprus and to consider the advantages of a Cyprus solution.

"I recommend to the leadership of Turkey to abandon its threats for the annexation of the occupied part of Cyprus. I urge them to consider the obvious advantages of the solution of the Cyprus problem for the stability in our region, the consolidation of the Greco-Turkish rapprochement and thepromotion of Turkey's aspirations to join in the process of European integration", he said.

President Clerides also referred to the purely humanitarian problem of missing persons, and appealed again to the Government of Turkey to show the necessary political will in order to bring a final solution to this tragic humanitarian issue and abide by the 10th May 2001 judgment of the European Court of Human Rights.

Moreover he urged the Turkish Cypriot leader, Mr. Denktash, "to join him in sharing the vision of a Cyprus too small to be divided but huge for the common prosperity of all its inhabitants":

"I urge him to look to the future and not to the past, listen to the increasingly desperate voices of our Turkish Cypriot compatriots and stop placing obstacles, at each turn, to the good offices of the Secretary- General for a solution to the Cyprus problem. It is noteworthy that the economic prospects for a post-settlement Cyprus are truly impressive. And this growth will be even greater for our Turkish Cypriot compatriots, who are currently suffering due to the dire political and economic situation in the occupied areas. Tragically almost 50% have been forced to take the cruel road to emigration. The Turkish Cypriots will benefit considerably from the accession of our country to the European Union. I urge Mr. Denktash to realise that he and I are not getting any younger and that we owe it to the younger generations of Cypriots to do away with the walls of division."

Finally, President Clerides reiterated his readiness "to engage in the process of negotiations with the necessary political will and good faith for finding a fair and viable settlement based on the United Nations resolutions, meeting the legitimate interests of all Cypriots."

[02] President Clerides' contacts in New York

The President of the Republic Mr Glafcos Clerides had a series of meetings last week with US and other officials, in the framework of his visit to New York to address 56th UN General Assembly.

On Thursday afternoon President Clerides had a meeting with the US State Department Special Coordinator on Cyprus Mr Thomas Weston, which lasted more than an hour. Speaking after a meeting Mr Weston said he had a very positive and friendly discussion, which covered a wide range of issues including the common effort to find a comprehensive solution to the division of the island.

Asked if anything had happened since his recent visit to Cyprus, Turkey and Greece to make him hopeful that talks could resume, Mr Weston said the visit to the area by the UN Secretary General's Special Adviser on Cyprus Mr Alvaro de Soto and the fact that conversations continue and will continue in New York, give him "hope that we will be able to find a way forward."

After his talks with Mr Weston, President Clerides met with leading members of the Cyprus community in the United States, whom he briefed on the present phase of the Cyprus problem.

On Friday afternoon President Clerides had a 50-minute meeting with the UN Secretary General Mr Kofi Annan, which focused on the state of play of the Secretary General's good offices in Cyprus.

In a statement to the press at the end of the meeting, President Clerides said that the United Nations would continue their efforts to resume the peace talks on Cyprus, adding that he did not know whether Mr Annan would be renewing his invitation to the two sides.

Asked if the rejection by Mr Denktash of the UN Secretary General's invitation to talks was discussed, President Clerides said that the Secretary General felt disappointed with the stance of the Turkish Cypriot leader.

Earlier in the day, the President hosted a lunch for the Ambassadors of the five Permanent Members of the UN Security Council.

In a statement after the working lunch, the US Permanent Representative to the UN Ambassador John Negroponte said that the United States are supportive of efforts to reach a satisfactory solution to the Cyprus question but under the auspices of the UN and under the auspices of the relevant UN Security Council resolutions. However he refrained from commenting on a proposal by Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash for a face- to-face meeting with President Clerides.

Russia's Permanent Representative to the UN Ambassador Sergey Lavrov said that Russia supports the efforts of the Cyprus government to restore sovereignty on the whole territory of the Republic. Invited to comment on press reports that Russian President Vladimir Putin would visit Cyprus, he said that he was not aware of such a visit but he would not be surprised if it were to take place because Cyprus and Russia have friendly relations.

On Saturday President Clerides and Foreign Minister Ioannis Kasoulides attended a lunch hosted by the United Nations Secretary General Mr Kofi Annan for heads of state and governments.

In the afternoon President Clerides had separate meetings with the President of Slovenia Mr Milan Kucan and the Indian Prime Minister Mr Atal Behari Vajpayeee. Present at the meetings were Foreign Minister Ioannis Kasoulides, Cyprus' Permanent Representative to the United Nations Mr Sotos Zackheos and other officials.

Discussions with the Slovenian President focused on the two countries' European Union accession course as well as issues of bilateral interest.

With the Indian Premier President Clerides discussed bilateral relations and international developments. He also briefed Mr Vajpayeee on the latest developments in the Cyprus question. For his part the Indian Prime Minister reassured President Clerides of India's unwavering support for Cyprus and its cause.

[03] Foreign Minister's contacts in New York

Cypriot Foreign Minister, Ioannis Kasoulides met on 10 November 2001 in New York with the Foreign Minister of the Palestinian Authority, Mr Farouk Kadoumi, during which Mr Kasoulides discussed the Palestinian problem, the Cyprus problem and issues concerning the Islamic Conference.

Mr Kasoulides met also with the German Ambassador in Nicosia and the German representative on the Cyprus problem, Mr Peter Witting with whom he discussed the latest developments.

On 9 November 2001, the Foreign Minister met with members of the American Jewish Society and in the evening he had dinner which was offered by the Belgian Foreign Minister, with the occasion of the Belgian Presidency of the EU, to the Foreign Ministers of the EU member states and of the candidate states.

[04] Reference by the Belgian Foreign Minister, Mr Louis Michel on Cyprus

The Belgian Foreign Minister, Mr Louis Michel, in his capacity as President of the Council of the European Union, in his speech on 10 November 2001 to the UN General Assembly stated, inter alia, the following:

" The European Union considers the current situation in Cyprus as unacceptable. We are disappointed with the unjustifiable decision taken by the Turkish side to reject the Secretary General's invitation for talks. We continue to support the Secretary General/s efforts for the achievement of a concerted and permanent solution to the Cyprus problem based on the relevant resolutions of the Security Council".


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


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