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Cyprus PIO: News Update in English, 03-11-18

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]Tuesday, 18 November 2003 Foreign Minister: Cyprus reference in Commission's report on Turkey had significant impact on Turkish stance
  • [02] UN Deputy Spokesperson says no change in Secretary-General's conclusions included in his report of 1 April 2003
  • [03] "The settlement of the Cyprus problem is a question of respect and implementation of international human rights norms"
  • [04] The Ministry of Foreign Affairs condemns the terrorist attacks in Istanbul

    [01] Foreign Minister: Cyprus reference in Commission's report on Turkey had significant impact on Turkish stance

    The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr Georgios Iacovou, has noted that the recent European Commission strategy report on Turkey, and in particular the reference that the absence of a Cyprus settlement could pose a serious obstacle to Ankara's EU aspirations, had a significant impact on Turkey and the Turkish Cypriot community, more than the relevant UN Security Council resolutions did. Speaking yesterday at the EU General Affairs and External Relations Council meeting in Brussels, Mr Iacovou said that "a change has been noticed, at least as regards the rhetoric used by Turkey and Mr Denktash when referring to the Annan Plan". "Mr Denktash has stopped repeating that the Annan plan is 'dead and buried', while Mr Gul is touring Europe declaring that he accepts the UN Secretary- General's Good Offices for a solution of the Cyprus problem, something we hadn't heard from Turkish officials for many months", he added. Mr Iacovou further said it was "a pity that Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan chose his recent illegal visit to the occupied areas of Cyprus to align himself with Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash and refer to a solution of the Cyprus issue on the basis of two separate states". Referring to the recent monitoring reports of the Commission on the ten acceding states, Mr Iacovou noted that they were objective, and pledged that the Cyprus Government would fulfil all its EU obligations. The Foreign Minister also commented on the reference to Cyprus included in the agenda of the forthcoming European Council and asked that it be modified in such a say so as to reflect the real situation of the Cyprus problem. Mr Iacovou specifically cited the Salonica European Council Presidency Conclusions as well as the recent Commission reports on Cyprus and Turkey, which called on all interested parties, and especially Ankara and the Turkish Cypriot leadership, to support the UN Secretary-General's efforts for a solution.

    Mr Iacovou's comments were supported by his counterparts from Spain, Ms Ana Palacio, Sweden, Ms Laila Freivalds and Greece, Mr George Papandreou. Mr Papandreou, in particular, asked for the same reference on Cyprus, as that of the Salonica Presidency Conclusions, to be included in the agenda of the forthcoming European Council.

    [02] UN Deputy Spokesperson says no change in Secretary-General's conclusions included in his report of 1 April 2003

    UN Deputy Spokesperson, Ms Marie Okabe, asked yesterday by the Cyprus News Agency (CNA) to say whether there was a change in the UN Secretary- General's position as to who was responsible for the stalemate of the Cyprus peace talks, noted, "The answer to that question is contained in the Secretary-General's report of the 1st April 2003, which outlines the views of the parties that have not substantially changed since then." In his report of 1 April 2003 to the Security Council, the Secretary-General had noted that, at The Hague, President Papadopoulos' was willing to commit to putting the Annan plan to a referendum, while Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash was not prepared to do the same since "he had fundamental objections to the plan on basic points". Replying to another question by CNA regarding the status of the UN Secretary-General's Good Offices Mission in Cyprus, Ms Okabe again referred to a previous report by Mr Kofi Annan to the Security Council on the UN peace-keeping mission in Cyprus, and in particular Paragraph 14 of that report, "in which the Secretary-General indicates that he regrets that the requirements set down in the April report have not yet been fulfilled". She then read out an excerpt from Paragraph 14 of the UN Chief's report as follows: "It remains my position that no purpose would be served by renewing my Mission of Good Offices unless there was a readiness on the part of both Cypriot parties, as well as Greece and Turkey, to finalise negotiations with UN assistance on the basis of the revised proposal that I presented to the parties and the guarantor powers on the 26th of February 2003 and put the resulting agreement to separate simultaneous referendums within a short time thereafter".

    [03] "The settlement of the Cyprus problem is a question of respect and implementation of international human rights norms"

    The Permanent Representative of the Republic to the United Nations, Ambassador Andreas D. Mavroyiannis, has noted that the resolution of the long-standing Cyprus problem was, in its essence, a question of respect and implementation of international human rights norms, and added that Cyprus relied heavily on the support of the international community "to translate their commitment into action and actively support the Secretary-General's mission toward that end". "However no effort will come to any good, if the Republic of Turkey is not willing to heed the call of the international community to withdraw its occupation troops from Cyprus, to end the continuous human rights violations and to give the people of Cyprus, Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots alike, the opportunity to live in conditions of peace and security in a reunited country, member of the European Union", Mr Mavroyiannis stressed, in his speech yesterday before the Third Committee at the 58th Session of the UN General Assembly on "Human rights questions, including alternative approaches for improving the effective enjoyment of human rights and fundamental freedoms". Mr Mavroyiannis further pointed out that the Republic of Cyprus, having suffered from grave violations of human rights as a result of the 1974 Turkish invasion and of the continuing occupation of one third of its territory, attached great significance to the protection of human rights and "works hard to incorporate a human rights aspect into all its structures and institutions in the territory under its control in order to ensure equal opportunities and promotion of the rights of all its citizens". Referring to the package of measures for Turkish Cypriots adopted by the Cyprus Government, he pointed out that "unfortunately, the occupation authorities not only prohibit Turkish Cypriots from enjoying these benefits, but also in many occasions suppress their freedom of speech and expression by threatening and intimidating those who dare to challenge Turkey's policy on Cyprus and support the idea of a reunited Cyprus, free of occupation troops and member of the European Union". Mr Mavroyiannis also referred to the human rights violations caused by the Turkish invasion as regards the missing persons, the refugees and the enclaved. On the issue of the enclaved, he noted that "the living conditions of these people continue to deteriorate while the occupying regime continues blatantly to refuse the implementation of the 1975 Vienna III Agreement", adding that "during the last three decades the Greek Cypriot population in the occupied areas has dwindled down from 20 thousand in 1975 to only four hundred". Cyprus' UN Representative also made reference to Turkey's policy of colonising the areas under its control, "in an attempt to alter the demographic character of the area", and stressed that "Turkey refuses to comply with the relevant decisions of international judicial bodies and to contribute constructively to the achievement of a settlement of the Cyprus problem on the basis of respect of human rights and of the relevant resolutions of the United Nations".

    [04] The Ministry of Foreign Affairs condemns the terrorist attacks in Istanbul

    The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Cyprus strongly condemns the terrorist attacks against two synagogues in Istanbul, which occurred on Saturday15th November 2003, and which resulted in the loss of a number of innocent lives, and the wounding of many civilians. On behalf of the Government and the people of Cyprus, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs expresses its sincere condolences to the families of the victims, the Government and the people of Turkey, and the Jewish community of Istanbul. Such despicable acts of hatred are a reminder to the international community that the fight against terrorism, and the dark forces of fanaticism and violence is a cause in which all must partake, and one that unites states and peoples across and beyond frontiers.

    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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