|Wednesday, 13 November 2019|
Cyprus Broadcasting Corporation: News in English, 01-06-18
From: The Cyprus Broadcasting Corporation at <http://www.cybc.com.cy/>
 HEADLINESThe President of the Republic returned from Sweden last night, and promptly convened the island's National Council this morning;
The Israeli Government denies a rift between the Jewish state's Prime- and Foreign Ministers;
Bulgarian voters show an overall preference for the country's ex-King;
Yet another historical and religious site in the occupied areas of the Republic is in the process of being desecrated;
Cyprus Development Bank employees come out on an indefinite strike:
Rhubarb afficionados state their case!
 cler eu assessPresident of the Republic Glafkos Clerides, who last night returned from Sweden's Gotheborg where he had attended the European Union summit meeting, firmly believes that Turkey will not be able to stall Cyprus' accession course through manoeuvres which she may possibly proceed to on the eves of the island's entry to the 15-nation bloc.
Elaborating on his statement, Cyprus' President said that one such possible manoeuvre could be the Turkish side returning to the negotiating table in exchange for a postponement of the island's accession date. He added however that Turkey can no longer convince the European Union of its supposedly honest intent, since this would be interpreted as an obvious delay tactic.
President Clerides further said that European leaders no longer attribute any weight to the Turkish threats re Cyprus' accession to the Union, and even doubt whether Turkey is in a position to comply to the terms and conditions concerning her own accession course.
In closing, the President of the Republic noted that the general feeling among the ranks of the EU is that Turkey will not proceed with a realisation of its threats.
 natconCyprus' National Council convened at 9:30 this morning in its first session following last month's House of Representatives elections and under its new composition.
Speaking to our station earlier today, Government Spokesman Michalis Papapetrou said the first item on the agenda concerns ways aimed at ensuring the Council's efficiency, operation and function given its current multipartite composition. Furthermore, President Clerides is expected to brief Council members on Gotheborg's EU summit, while also recapping the state of affairs as regards the island's EU accession course and the Cyprus Issue in general.
Under its new composition, the number of National Council members has almost doubled, given that in addition to the five parties represented prior to the House elections, the New Horizons, ADIK and the Ecologists-Environmentalists now also have a say in proceedings, while former Democratic Party Chairman and previous House President Spyros Kyprianou is also participating in his capacity as an ex-President of the Republic.
Apart from the polyphony expected to mark National Council meetings for the next five years, today's session also had to deal with a logistical problem concerning the lack of available seating. As a result, the meeting is being realised in the Grand Hall of the Presidential Palace as opposed to the Office of the President, where Council sessions had been held until today.
In a separate development, and prior to today's National Council session, the President of the Republic had a one-hour meeting with US Ambassador to Nicosia Donald Bandler, following which, however, no statements were made on either side.
 mideastThe Israeli government today dismissed talk of a rift between Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and Foreign Minister Shimon Peres.
According to a spokesman for the Israeli Cabinet, the two leaders met late last night after Sharon opposed a proposal for Peres to meet Palestinian President Yasser Arafat to discuss the next steps to turn a shaky US-brokered ceasefire into a lasting peace.
UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan had suggested Peres meet Arafat to try to shore up the ceasefire, but Sharon had rejected such a meeting at this time, saying that this could only take place once the violence has completely ended.
Meanwhile, the ceasefire is reported to be holding, although Israeli soldiers shot dead a 12-year-old Palestinian boy in the Gaza Strip yesterday. bringing to the number of Palestinians killed since the truce began on Wednesday to four.
 bulgaria parl elecsPreliminary results from yesterday's general elections in Bulgaria indicate that the political movement led by the country's ex-King Simeon II won just over 43% of the vote, giving it an absolute majority.
A spokeswoman for Bulgaria's Central Electoral Commission was quoted by Reuters as saying that "Under partial results based on 99.87% of the voting protocols processed so far, the movement has won 43.05%, that can eventually translate into 121 seats in parliament."
The single chamber has 240 seats. The ruling centre right UDF party of Prime Minister Ivan Kostov was running second with 18.24%, and the Socialist Party of ex-communists third with 17.35%. The Bulgarian ethnic Turks Movement for rights and Freedoms had 6.75%, while a small centrist coalition of two parties, Gergyovden/VMRO failed to pass the 4% election threshold, garnering just 3.67%.
Turnout was 66.7%, with the final results expected by the end of the week.
 armenian monastery occuAnother Christian religious and historical site in the occupied areas of the Republic is in the process of being desecrated for purposes of private enterprise.
According to the Turkish-Cypriot press, the Armenian Monastery of Sourp Magaravankh, situated on the northern slopes of the Pentadaktylos range just below Halefka peak, has been leased out for a period of 49 years to businessman Dervish Shenmester, who has already announced his intention of converting it to a hotel.
The announcement has led to a storm of protests raised by the Armenian lobby at the Parliamentary Conference of the Council of Europe, which is persistently demanding the reversal of the decision.
Querying the occupation regime's decision, the Turkish-Cypriot press notes that hoteliers in the occupied areas of the Republic are generally disappointed by the overall situation, given that current reservations have dropped to even lower levels than those recorded last year.
 cdb strikeCyprus Development Bank employees came out on an indefinite strike this morning, in protest at the agreement signed between their employer and the Greek-based Bank of Piraeus.
Speaking to our station, the Secretary-General of the Bank Employees Union ETYK, Loizos HjiCostis, said that the striking personnel is demanding the immediate publicisation of the agreement, and also wants the bank's Board of Directors to clarify the issue of the 5% share-capital to be alloted to the staff.
Responding, the Chairman of the CDB Board of Directors, Ioannis Strongylos, noted that the agreement is currently being worked out and that all details will be given to those interested after the Executive Meeting to be held on the 25th of this month. Mr Strongylos further said that he is personally arranging a tripartite meeting among himself, the leadership of ETYK, and Finance Minister Takis Kliridis in order to discuss the issue.
 pont paphosFour Pontiac Greeks were arrested by Police in Paphos late last night, following a row and ensuing clashes outside a cabaret, involving some 50 people.
Intervening to disperse the melee and on requesting personal details from an individual reported to have smashed a car's windshield, police personnel was beset by the four Pontiac Greeks, who now face charges of attacking officers of the peace.
 cseThe Cyprus Stock Exchange was marked by relative stability today, with the All-Share Index closing at 199.36, posting a marginal drop of 0.18%.
At the same time, the overall volume of trading reached some 12.8 million pounds.
 tailerOn to today's tailer....
The quintessential English vegetable known ungainly as "rhubarb" conjures up images of lumpy school meals, war rationing or cold British winters.
For self-proclaimed High Priestess of Rhubarb however, Janet Oldroyd Hulme, whose Yorkshire farm houses the world's largest concentration of indoor rhubarb plants, the vegetable is serious business. In defence of her ward, she mentions that the Chinese hijacked the British troops' rhubarb supplies during the opium wars in the hope that the ensuing constipation would force them to give up and go home, and that England's King Henry VIII took rhubarb on his death bed to try to fend off syphilis.
She further maintains that the Three Wise Men actually offered rhubarb and not frankinsence to the newborn Christ Child, while the myth that only British palates are partial to the vegetable is unfounded, given that it was discovered in Siberia and eaten by both the Egyptians and the Chinese.
Finally, Oldroyd Hulme practices what she preaches, and was quoted by Reuters as saying "Every day I have rhubarb cooked for breakfast with prunes to give me a good clearing out. It acts like a time bomb -- within the hour."
 WeatherGenerally fair conditions are forecast for this afternoon, with winds being moderate sea-breezes, 3-4BF, on slight seas, and temperatures not expected to exceed 34C inland, 29C along the coasts, and 25C at higher altitudes.
Generally fair conditions are also forecast for this evening, even though coastal regions are expected to marked by mist and low cloud. Winds will abate to light variable, 2-3BF, on smooth to slight seas, while temperatures will drop to 21C inland, 20C in coastal regions, and 17C on the higher reaches of the Troodos mountains.
Similar conditions are expected to continue into tomorrow, with midday highs reaching 34C inland, 30C along the coasts, and 25C at higher altitudes.