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Cyprus PIO: News Update in English, 03-04-10

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/>

  • [01]Thursday, 10 April 2003 President Papadopoulos' statement on signing of EU Accession Treaty
  • [02] European Parliament gives assent to EU enlargement and Cyprus' accession

    [01] President Papadopoulos' statement on signing of EU Accession Treaty

    The President of the Republic of Cyprus, Mr Tassos Papadopoulos, made the following statement yesterday at a meeting of the Council of Ministers: "The signing of the Accession Treaty constitutes a great and historic moment which seals indelibly Cyprus/ future course. It constitutes at the same time the crowning achievement of a titanic effort by the Cyprus society and it is the landmark of its acceptance by a family to which it belongs geographically, historically, culturally, economically and politically. This historic achievement acquires even greater significance if seen in the light of the special conditions of Cyprus, the tragedy of the invasion and the continued Turkish occupation of part of our country and its grave consequences. Cyprus not only withstood the cataclysmic consequences of occupation, but today, despite the tremendous difficulties and obstacles posed in her way, has managed, through hard work, perseverance and patience, to attain the target of accession and now aspires to create the conditions that will overturn the facts of occupation and act as a catalyst for the achievement of a peaceful, lasting, viable, functional and just solution of the Cyprus problem for the benefit of all Cypriots and of peace, security and stability in the Eastern Mediterranean. For the achievement of this historic result, the help and support of the Greek Government, the political leadership and the Greek people was of decisive importance. Cyprus owes a debt of gratitude to all the other member-states of the European Union, the Commission and the European Parliament. From now on Cyprus has the possibility to offer to all its citizens, including the Turkish Cypriots, not only conditions of peace, greater security and respect of the rights of all, but also its vision, aspirations and immense prospects which our accession to the European Union opens up. Cyprus' accession negotiations were carried out in a positive and constructive environment. Cyprus has been, at all times, ahead of all candidate countries, with the best performance and has repeatedly received praise and congratulations from European Union officials for the exemplary way in which she conducted the negotiations. All these years, the harmonisation work has proceeded at a quite satisfactory tempo and the Cypriot society made all the necessary sacrifices so as to be ready for its integration into the European family. The state machinery, in close and harmonious cooperation with the House of Representatives and organised social groups, enlisted itself in the service of completing this ambitious task."

    [02] European Parliament gives assent to EU enlargement and Cyprus' accession

    The European Parliament (EP) gave its assent yesterday to Cyprus' accession to the European Union by an overwhelming majority at its country-by-country vote, in the plenary session in Strasburg. Cyprus, along with the other nine acceding countries also approved by the Parliament, will sign the Accession Treaty in Athens on 16 April. The Treaty will then have to be ratified by the national parliaments to become effective. Specifically, 562 MEPs cast their vote on a report by the rapporteur on Cyprus, Mr Jacques Poos, with 507 votes in favour, 29 against and 26 abstentions. In approving Mr Poos' report, the EP "gives its assent to the application by the Republic of Cyprus to become a member of the European Union" and "instructs its President to forward its position to the Council and Commission, and the governments and parliaments of the Member States and of the Republic of Cyprus". In his report, the rapporteur on Cyprus urged his colleagues at the Parliament to approve the island's bid for EU membership as of 1 May 2004. He expressed his regret that the UN Secretary-General's peace efforts were unsuccessful, noting that Mr Annan "attributes the failure of the meeting at The Hague on 10 March 2003 to the fact that Mr Denktash reportedly raised fundamental objections to the peace plan and did not agree to put it to a referendum". He added that the Annan plan was still on the table, and that the EU was ready at any point to welcome a reunited island "on the condition that the rules under which it will be governed will be with conformity with international law and our principles". He further said that the peace process was brought to an impasse due to the Turkish side's insistence on the existence of two separate states instead of one federal state on the island. "Mr Denktash and his entourage bear out a heavy responsibility in this impasse and the frustration and anger of a large part of Turkish Cypriot civil society and the opposition parties who are continuing to demonstrate in large numbers in favour of the Annan plan and the European Union", Mr Poos added. The rapporteur stressed that according to international law, "the government of the Republic of Cyprus is the only legitimate government of Cyprus", citing the UN Security Council Resolution 541 (1983) that declared the proclamation of the 'Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus' to be legally invalid and called on all member states not to recognise any Cypriot state other than the Republic of Cyprus. Mr Poos stressed that with the signing of the Accession Treaty, "Cyprus from a legal viewpoint will become a member of the EU. In fact, however, the jurisdiction of the EU and community acquis will only be applied in the southern part of the island for as long as the occupation by Turkey continues". He further pointed out that the Accession Treaty contained a "rehabilitation clause" enabling the European Council to negotiate, after a proposal by the Commission, for the necessary arrangements "to ensure that the community acquis was implemented in the north once obstacles to unification have been removed". The European Parliament also approved, by 458 votes in favour, 68 against and 41 abstentions, a report by MEP Mr Elmar Broek on the outcome of the enlargement negotiations with the ten acceding countries. In addition, the Enlargement Commissioner Mr Gunter Verheugen, in his address before the EP plenary session, urged MEPs to vote for enlargement, as a positive vote would enable the Accession Treaty signature to take place in Athens, on 16 April, as planned. Mr Verheugen made special reference to Cyprus, saying that his only regret was that an agreement enabling the entry of a united island into the EU had not been achieved. He did, however, pledge his support for any further peace talks under the aegis of the UN.

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


    Cyprus Press and Information Office: News Updates in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article
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