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Cyprus PIO: News Update in English, 02-05-13
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From: The Republic of Cyprus Press and Information Office Server at <http://www.pio.gov.cy/>
Monday, 13 May 2002
 Cyprus Government decides to accept 13 Palestinians in its territoryThe Minister of Foreign Affaires Mr Ioannis Kasoulides stated in a press conference on Thursday evening (9 May 2002) that following continuous communications with the Spanish Foreign Minister and President of the General Affairs Council Mr Josep Pique, the General Secretary of the European Council Mr Javier Solana, the Greek Foreign Minister Mr George Papandreou, the European Union's Middle East peace envoy Mr Miguel Angel Moratinos, and with the contribution of the US administration, the government of Britain, Israel and the Palestinian Authority, the Cyprus Government decided to accept for a few days in its territory the 13 Palestinians whom the Israeli Government wished to arrest or deport.
Mr Kasoulides pointed out that Mr Pique had assured him that early next week the 13 Palestinians would be hosted, on a long-term basis, in countries of the European Union.
The Foreign Minister expressed satisfaction with his country's decision to offer a temporary solution, thus contributing to the end of suffering at the Church of Nativity. He also underlined that acting in such a way Cyprus, showed the specific role it wishes to play as a future EU member, with the expansion of Europe in the Eastern Mediterranean.
In another statement on Friday Mr Kasoulides said that Cyprus' contribution lies with the fact that it offers a contemporary solution and makes the imminent implementation of the agreement possible. Moreover, Cyprus highlights its geographical location and contributes to the end of the suffering at the Church of Nativity.
The President of the Palestinian Authority Mr Yasser Arafat, in a message to Mr Kasoulides, expressed his appreciation and thanks for Cyprus' decision as well as for the arrangements that have been made.
The US Government also expressed appreciation for the contribution of the Government of Cyprus to the effort to end the siege at the Church of Nativity, in Bethlehem. Replying to questions on the issue during his press briefing on 10th May, the US State Department Spokesman Mr Richard Boucher stated the following:
"We're grateful to the European Union and Cyprus for taking on the responsibility for solving the issues related to sending the 13 militants out of the region."
"We certainly appreciate Cyprus making it possible for these people to move out of the region itself, out of Bethlehem itself," he added.
In its own declaration, regarding the departure o Palestinian citizens from Palestinian territory, the Presidency of the European Union made the following reference to Cyprus:
"The Presidency thanks the Government of Cyprus for the valuable help rendered by provisionally accepting these persons in its territory while their future destination is decided in the coming days on the basis of the aforementioned agreements".
 Direct talks on Cyprus continueThe direct talks on the Cyprus problem continued on Thursday morning with another meeting between the President of the Republic Mr Glafcos Clerides and the Turkish Cypriot leader Mr Rauf Denktash, in the presence of the UN Secretary General's Special Adviser on Cyprus Mr Alvaro de Soto. Present at the talks were the members of each side's delegation.
The regular meetings between the President and Mr Denktash are taking place under the aegis of the United Nations in the framework of direct talks for finding a solution to the Cyprus problem.
 Statement by the Government SpokesmanFollowing the meeting of the Council of Ministers, under the Chairmanship of the President of the Republic Mr Glafcos Clerides on 10th May, the Government Spokesman Mr Michalis Papapetrou replied to the following press question:
Question: Yesterday, you had a discussion with Mr Denktash regarding your statements to "Sigma" television station.
Answer: The matter is very simple. In my statement two days ago, in reply to a question as to why, in my view, the United Nations Secretary General is coming to Cyprus, I said that, in my opinion, the United Nations and the Secretary General are anxious and worried by the fact that after three and a half months there has been no real progress at the talks, that time is running out and that the talks are one step away from being deadlocked. When we went to the meeting yesterday, Mr Denktash asked me whether I think the talks are deadlocked. I said "not yet, nearly'. He then asked me: "So, you are pessimistic and think we should stop working?" I replied: No, I continue to be optimistic, because I hope that even at the last moment you will change your positions and the road for a solution to the Cyprus problem will open". These are the facts. When Mr Denktash returned to the Turkish-occupied areas, he made statements and presented the issue as follows: "Papapetrou said that the talks have collapsed. When I asked him, he told me that he was optimistic. You be the judge of this". This changes completely the meaning and this is the whole story.
 Minister of Commerce on the issue of trading milk with the Turkish- occupied areasThe Minister of Commerce, Industry and Tourism Mr Nicos Rolandis said in a statement on 10th May that the issue of trading milk with the Turkish- occupied areas presents serious practical difficulties and that apart from public health considerations there are difficulties which relate to European specifications.
The Cyprus dairy industry, he noted, is harmonised with the European models, something that the Turkish-occupied areas have not done.
Mr Rolandis pointed out that if any products were produced from milk imported from the Turkish-occupied areas that did not comply with the European specifications regarding the number of germs it contained in it, they could not be exported to Europe.
Moreover, the Cyprus legislation, which is fully harmonised with the European Acquis Communautaire, does not allow the use of milk that does not comply with European specifications, he said.
Finally, Mr Rolandis stressed that since the officials of the Republic of Cyprus would not be able to exercise control over the circumstances under which the milk would be produced in the Turkish occupied areas, the trading of milk with the Turkish-occupied areas must be considered difficult.
From the Republic of Cyprus Press and Information Office (PIO) Server at http://www.pio.gov.cy/