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Cyprus PIO: News Update in English, 02-05-15

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, 15 May 2002


CONTENTS

  • [01] UN Secretary General arrives in Cyprus to urge for "decisive progress" in the period ahead
  • [02] Britain's Foreign Secretary warmly welcomes Kofi Annan's visit to Cyprus
  • [03] Cyprus deplores the tragic events in the Russian province of Dagestan
  • [04] Australian government calls for justice and peace on Cyprus
  • [05] EU to provide Euro 47 million for cross-border co-operation between Greece and Cyprus


[01] UN Secretary General arrives in Cyprus to urge for "decisive progress" in the period ahead

The UN Secretary General Mr Kofi Annan arrived in Cyprus yesterday afternoon for a working visit in the framework of his Good Offices Mission, entrusted to him by the Security Council.

On his arrival at Larnaca Airport Mr Annan made the following statement to the press:

"Let me tell you how happy I am to set foot on Cyprus, and to convey my best wishes to all Cypriots.

The direct talks between His Excellency Mr. Clerides, the Greek Cypriot leader, and His Excellency Mr. Denktash, the Turkish Cypriot leader, have been ongoing for almost four months, at my invitation. Mr. Alvaro de Soto, my Special Adviser, is there to assist them, in the exercise of my mission of good offices.

The start of these talks raised hopes greatly, not only in Cyprus, but also in the region and beyond. The two leaders, without any prompting from outside, set their sights on June to achieve their goal. This target date, endorsed by the Security Council, is wholly appropriate if the chance, which is now open, is to be seized.

I follow the process closely. The Security Council, despite its large agenda, has turned its attention to Cyprus every month since February. I am concerned at the slow progress, as are members of the Security Council. Decisive progress is needed in the coming period.

I have come to the island to highlight the great responsibility the two leaders have undertaken, and to urge them to forge ahead with a shared sense of urgency and a willingness to compromise in earnest. I want also to discuss with them how they can move forward more effectively so as to resolve the main issues by the end of June.

This is an historic opportunity, and I am convinced that these two particular leaders, uniquely steeped in the history of this island, can rise to the occasion.

Let me say it once again how happy I am to be here. I will be speaking to you once again on my departure".

[02] Britain's Foreign Secretary warmly welcomes Kofi Annan's visit to Cyprus

The British Foreign Secretary Mr Jack Straw yesterday warmly welcomed UN Secretary General Kofi Annan's visit to Cyprus.

"Kofi Annan's visit is a timely contribution to the process launched by the two leaders in Cyprus. Britain strongly supports the talks' process. The Cyprus Problem has gone on too long. It is time we saw decisive steps towards a settlement."

[03] Cyprus deplores the tragic events in the Russian province of Dagestan

The Foreign Ministry has issued a statement yesterday deploring the tragic events of May 9 2002 in the Russian province of Dagestan, which resulted in the death and injury of many innocent people.

The statement reads as follows:

"The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Cyprus is appalled by the cowardly terrorist attack against Russian civilians on Victory Day in the Russian Province of Dagestan, which cost many innocent lives and severely injured many more.

The Republic of Cyprus unreservedly condemns terrorist and other acts intending to take life, and is against any form of violence conducted for the purpose of achieving political goals.

Both President Clerides and Foreign Minister Kasoulides have expressed their profound sorrow and condolences to the families of the victims through their Russian counterparts."

[04] Australian government calls for justice and peace on Cyprus

The Attorney General, the Hon. Michael Atkinson MP, this week conveyed a message from the Premier Hon. Mike Rann MP to the Ambassador of the Republic of Turkey, His Excellency Mr M Tansu Okandan during the Ambassador's first official visit to South Australia.

According to a news release issued on 10 May by Mr Atkinson's office, the Premier's message acknowledged the "shared history Turkey and Australia forged in blood on the battlefields of Gallipolis". It also reflected on the mature relationship between Turkey and Australia "characterised by friendship and respect".

The South Australian Labour Government called on the Ambassador to communicate a message to the Turkish Government, "to utilise all its influence to encourage the leader of the Turkish Cypriot community, Mr Rauf Denktash, to do everything within his power to ensure a peaceful, just and lasting settlement of the Cyprus problem in a manner consistent with United Nations' resolutions and international law", Mr Atkinson said.

Mr Atkinson also stated the Government further called on "all parties to work towards an accelerated resolution of the Cyprus problem, in a way that guarantees to all people the three basic freedoms of movement, settlement and property ownership, in addition to ensuring the right of all Cypriot refugees to return to their homes in safety and without discrimination".

"The Government is proud of the diversity and harmony of South Australia and the environment of multiculturalism in this State, and in this spirit would pursue justice for its citizens", he said.

Concluding, Mr Atkinson said that the Labour Government would not resile from the strong policy stance as often expressed by Mike Rann, in seeking justice for Cyprus and a peaceful end to the 29-year-old conflict.

[05] EU to provide Euro 47 million for cross-border co-operation between Greece and Cyprus

Mr Michel Barnier, EU Commissioner for Regional Policy, has announced the approval by the Commission of a program for cross-border co-operation between Greece and Cyprus to be financed by the Interreg III A Community Initiative.

The program provides Euro 47 million in financial support from the European Union, and focuses on increased cross-border co-operation and sustainable development of the regional economy. The European funding will attract a further Euro 15.7 million in investment from the public sector and Euro 8.5 million from the private sector, creating total resources of Euro 71.2 million.

Announcing the decision, Michel Barnier said: "This programme is an important tool for Greece and Cyprus in view of the accession of Cyprus to the European Union. It offers an opportunity to Cyprus to benefit, as for other candidate countries, from the experience of cross-border co-operation with a neighbouring region inside the Union".


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


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