|Wednesday, 11 December 2019|
Cyprus Broadcasting Corporation: News in English, 02-03-15
From: The Cyprus Broadcasting Corporation at <http://www.cybc.com.cy/>
 HEADLINESEU leaders kicked off a two-day summit in Barcelona today that will focus on bolstering the bloc's economic and social development,
Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi said he had drawn up plans for a 6.2 billion euro aid package for Palestinians aimed at fostering peace in the Middle East,
Israel withdrew its troops from Ramallah ending a brief reoccupation of Palestinian President Yasser Arafat's West Bank base,
Foreign Minister Ioannis Cassoulides rebuffed claims by his Turkish counterpart Ismail cem that Cyprus cannot be the exception to the ideological tendency of the times which encourages the division of countries based on nationality,
AND some 120 international jet-setters including Elton John arrived in Paphos last night to attend a birthday party for a billionaire Briton who lives permanently in Cyprus.
 Summit1EU leaders kicked off a two-day summit in Barcelona today that will focus on bolstering the bloc's economic and social development.
The EU 15 will review a plan drawn up during the Lisbon summit two years ago for the modernisation of member states' economies.
The goal is for the EU to become by 2010 one of the most dynamic and competitive economic zones with more jobs and a better standard of living.
At noon, EU leaders will break to meet with their counterparts from the 13 accession candidate countries who are taking part in the summit.
The meeting was the initiative of EU president country Spain which noted the need to discuss economic development among future bloc members.
Cyprus will be represented at the meeting by President Glafcos Clerides.
Foreign and Finance ministers from EU accession candidate countries will hold a parallel meeting.
The island will be represented by Foreign Minister Ioannis Cassoulides and Finance Minister Takis Klerides.
EU 15 leaders, as well as their counterparts from accession candidate countries, will attend a lunch hosted in their honour by the Spanish royal couple.
The Summit will carry on with its work following the lunch with the main topic of discussion being liberalisation of the energy sector.
EU Commission President Romano Prodi said the aim is to set a date on which the energy market will be liberalised.
 summit2Meanwhile, Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi said he had drawn up plans for a 6.2 billion euro aid package for Palestinians aimed at fostering peace in the Middle East.
The project, which requires international backing, is based on the post-World War Two Marshall Plan and will be presented at the Barcelona summit.
Berlusconi said he would also relay a message to EU leaders from Saudi Arabia calling on Europe to support its new initiative designed to end escalating tit-for-tat violence between Palestinians and Israelis.
The European Union called on Israel to withdraw its forces from the occupied territories and said Palestinians must also do their utmost to combat "terrorist violence".
 mideastIsrael withdrew its troops from Ramallah today, ending a brief reoccupation of Palestinian President Yasser Arafat's West Bank base.
The Israeli army said its forces quit positions in two other West Bank cities but remained in Palestinian territory on the outskirts of another four.
The United States has called for a complete withdrawal of all Israeli forces from Palestinian-run areas, saying a pullback would create a better environment for its envoy, retired Marine Corps general Anthony Zinni, to try to broker a truce.
In further violence today, Israeli forces killed a Palestinian policeman in the southern Gaza town of Rafah. In northern Gaza, troops shot dead a gunman near the Jewish settlement of Dugit.
But Yasser Arafat, confined to his headquarters in Ramallah by the Israeli military for three months, called the order a trick.
 CassoulidesForeign Minister Ioannis Cassoulides rebuffed claims by his Turkish counterpart Ismail cem that Cyprus cannot be the exception to the ideological tendency of the times which encourages the division of countries based on nationality.
Speaking in Barcelona, Mr. Cassoulides pondered whether Mr. Cem ment that the Turkish state should grant Kurds - and anyone else who makes similar demands - autonomy and independence.
 chinaA Chinese delegation reciprocating a visit by Disy members to Beijing, began a round of contacts with political leaders this morning.
The delegation met first with Kisos leader Yiannakis Omirou who said that he briefed Chinese officials on the latest developments on the Cyprus issue.
Mr. Omirou said that Cyprus wants closer relations with China which is a member of the UN Security Council.
The delegation met later with Diko leader Tassos Papadopoulos who stressed the need to boost relations between the two countries.
He added that he was briefed by delegation members of the progress the Chinese economy has marked over the last few years.
 settlersDiko leader Tassos Papadopoulos labelled the continuing flow of illegal Turkish settlers to occupied Cyprus as an international crime.
Mr. Papadopoulos again pointed to the need for a population census to be carried out in the occupied areas, saying that this has been a long-held demand that has been ignored by the occupation regime.
The Diko President made the remarks following a meeting with a Chinese communist party delegation on a visit to Nicosia.
 koreiaNorth Korea declared that the American mainland "will not be safe" if the United States launches a nuclear strike against the communist North.
The warning of a retaliatory strike follows a threat to pull out of a crucial deal with the United States that froze Pyongyang's suspected atomic weapons programme in 1994.
Even before U.S. newspapers reported that a review includes contingency plans for using nuclear weapons against seven countries including North Korea, Pyongyang was angry at President George W. Bush for branding it part of an "axis of evil".
North Korea's official newspaper said the country's "nuclear activities are in the state of freeze" but made no mention of ballistic missiles which North Korea is believed to have been developing and which would be necessary for a strike on the U.S. mainland.
 partyRoyals and celebrities from the world of music including Elton John and Prince Albert of Monaco arrived under a veil of secrecy in Paphos last night to attend a birthday party being thrown for a billionaire Briton who lives permanently in Cyprus.
Sources said 120 members of the international jet-set and Britain's social elite arrived to Paphos last night on a chartered flight to attend the party organised by the billionaire's wife who took all the rooms at a luxury hotel in Akamas for the entire long weekend.
The guests will leave Cyprus on Sunday night.
 policePolice are taking extra safety precautions on the island's roads this holiday weekend as heavy traffic is expected.
A police announcement said that traffic officers will increase patrols and will crack down on speeding, dangerous passing and not wearing safety belts or motorcycle helmets.
Alcootest units will also be out in force to catch any drunk drivers.
 flowersThe Forestry Department is calling on the public not to cut wild flowers and bushes during their outings this Green Monday.
In a statement, the Forestry Department said that rooting out or cutting wild vegetation from any state park is punishable by a thousand-pound fine, imprisonment of nine months or both.
 sewerAn ancient tomb has been uncovered in Limassol by crews working on the town's sewer system.
The crew found the opening of an ancient tomb containing four vessels believed to be thousands of years old.
The Antiquities Department has dispatched experts to examine the tomb.
 WEATHERThis afternoon will be mainly fine, but scaterred clouds may produce some isolated showers.
Winds will be southwesterly moderate, 3 to 4 beaufort with slight seas.
Temperatures will reach 21 degrees.
Fine conditions are expected for tonight with light, northwesterly winds, 2 to 3 beaufort with slight seas.
Temperatures will drop to 9 degrees inland, 11 on the coasts and 6 in the highest mountains.