|Monday, 19 March 2018|
Athens News Agency: Daily News Bulletin in English, 10-09-20
From: The Athens News Agency at <http://www.ana.gr/>Monday, 20 September 2010 Issue No: 3597
 ND leader Samaras at TIF: Truths needed to move aheadMain opposition New Democracy (ND) leader Antonis Samaras put heavy blame on the PASOK government and prime minister George Papandreou personally over the state of the economy, charging that the Memorandum had not been necessary, and accusing them of irresponsibility, while at the same time stressing that the lies must end. "Now, we need truths in order to move ahead," he said in his address Saturday night at the 75th Thessaloniki International Fair (TIF).
He accused the government and prime minister of irresponsibility and of never having consented or given a helping hand, whereas ND has maintained a responsible stance and also having lent a helping hand whenever needed.
Samaras recalled Papandreou's statement that "money exists" in his address, as the main opposition leader then, at last year's (2009) TIF, at the same time as then ND prime minister Costas Karamanlis had announced measures for the economy that, as Samaras said, were much milder than those actually implemented by PASOK.
At last year's TIF in September 2009, Samaras continued, Papandreou had warned that "if we freeze the salaries, we will freeze the market...If we increase the taxes on the middle class we will reduce their buying power, deepen the crisis and reduce the state's revenues, bringing a vicious cycle towards collapse". But later, when he came to government, Papandreou did not simply "freeze" the salaries in the public sector but reduced them at that. "He did not simply increases the taxes on the middle class, but literally skyrocketed them, and is now destroying the middle class," he continued.
"And he (Papandreou) had said all that in reference to much milder measures, which were announced at the time by (then prime minister) Costas Karamanlis," Samaras said, adding: "Back then, he had criticised the least. Today he has committed the most".
Samaras also charged lack of coordination in the government and, referring to the recent Cabinet reshuffle, criticised Papandreou for having announced a "smaller and more flexible" governmental scheme but actually creating "one of the biggest governments ever" with chaos instead of coordination.
Greece, he said, had become over-indebted in the 1980s under the then PASOK government and "since then no government has been able to control the debt".
However, resorting to the Memorandum had not been inevitable nor the only option, Samaras added.
The main opposition leader spoke of "seven lies" that describe the "era of decline", and "seven truths" reflected in ND's proposals for changing the climate and developmental model.
The first lie "that has collapsed", is that of the "social policy" applied in the recent decades through the redistribution of borrowed money at the expense of the future generations, Samaras said.
The second lie is the answer to the question 'when did the country become over-indebted?' Greece, Samaras said, became over-indebted in the '80s decade, under the PASOK government, when its debt skyrocketed from 32 percent to 110 percent of GDP "and since then all the consecutive governments have attempted, in vain, to contain the debt, because the debt breeds new deficits in the following years".
The third lie is PASOK's claim that the previous government of ND created the current problem of over-indebtedness, said Samaras, presenting data according to which of the 80 billion euros in new debts accrued in the five-year period 2004-2009, 70 billion went to obligations undertaken by the preceding PASOK governments.
The fourth lie is the claim that the situation handed over by ND to the new government was to blame for the events that followed October 2009, Samaras said, adding that the spreads are a mirror of the markets' confidence in the government at the time, "which were just 130 points last October and much later rose sharply when the new PASOK government did nothing to tackle the deficit". He added that the spreads started climbing after January 2010, under PASOK governance, due to its policy.
The fifth lie is that resorting to the Memorandum "was supposedly 'inevitable'", Samaras said, adding that, on the contrary, the markets were lending money to Greece with ease up until January 2010 and at reasonable interest. But at that time the current government refused to borrow on the markets and started humiliating the country abroad, and afterwards found itself out of the markets in May.
The sixth lie, he continued, is that the signing of the Memorandum was the only option for the country in early May. However, "there were margins for negotiation at that time, but the government did not negotiate and signed with the worst possible conditions".
The seventh lie, according to Samaras, is PASOK's claim that, despite everything, the Memorandum is the only way out of the crisis and that it was an act of 'irresponsibility' on the part of ND to vote against it. The ND leader stressed that the Memorandum policy is leading to a worse crisis than that existing today and is sinking the country into a vicious circle of recession, while the overall debt at the end of the four-year period will be much higher and that after so many sacrifices it will once again be hard for Greece to re-enter the markets for borrowing.
"The real irresponsibility is that PASOK was shouting that money exists, ahead of the 2009 elections, although it was fully aware of the deficit problem that existed then in Greece but also in all of Europe," Samaras charged.
ND, he recalled, had not sufficed itself in simply voting against the Memorandum, but had also presented its own, integrated plan for bringing the country out of the crisis, that combated the deficit and recession simultaneously with targeted measures of zero or minimal cost aimed at boosting the market, which would eliminate the deficit in 1 1/2-2 years whereas, with the Memorandum, the deficit will remain at 2.6 percent of GDP after four years of harsh sacrifices. The plan also combats the deficit and the debt through exploitation of the state's unexploited real estate holdings, the result of which would be, in four years' time, a debt that be much lower than it is today whereas, under the Memorandum, the debt in four years' time will be much higher than it is today.
ND's plan further provides for the restoration of injustices that have already been made, such as the cuts in low salaries, Samaras said.
The ND plan, he continued, comprises seven reforms, which he called "seven truths": Drastic reduction of taxation after Greece exits the Memorandum, and no new tax increases until then, since the state can generate more revenues with lower tax rates.; gradual reduction of the social security contributions of employers and employees, with subsidisation of labor by the OAED (Manpower Employment Organization) programmes so that the resources needed directly by the social security funds will not be lost; combating bureaucracy not in words but with priority on five major no-cost and immediately applicable reforms; boosting competitiveness through specific, targeted actions; priority on extroversion; de-vilification of entrepreneurship; branch strategies in all sectors in which Greece has comparative advantages.
The time has come, he said, to put an end to the lies. "Right now, we need truths to move forward. We need cutting truths, not 'rounded words'," Samaras said, adding that ND "doesn't believe that simply a few changes are necessary, but rather, a real revolution...a revolution of consciences, of priorities in policy and mentality in society...a veritable shock in competitiveness, investments and creation of opportunities.
 Samaras press conference at TIFMain opposition New Democracy (ND) leader Antonis Samaras reiterated that the Memorandum was not the only option for Greece, during a press conference on Sunday at the 75th Thessaloniki International Fair (TIF).
He also reiterated accusations against the PASOK government's policy and charged that the government is responsible for the rise in the cost of borrowing, thus turning the problem of an excessive deficit into a borrowing problem.
Samaras also said that the policy being followed for materialisation of the Memorandum was a dead-end that is leading to recession, which in turn aggravates the deficits, thus rendering all the efforts and sacrifices "just a drop in the bucket".
The main opposition leader also stressed that his party is pressing for a change in the economic policy mix in order to enable the country to exit the Memorandum and return to the international money markets as quickly as possible
 Government spokesman on ND leader's press conferenceDeputy Minister to the Prime Minister and government spokesman George Petalotis, replying to questions by the press on the press conference in Thessaloniki by main opposition New Democracy (ND) party leader Antonis Samaras said:
"Mr. Samaras, from the floor of the TIF as well, proved that he is trapped in the past without being able to escape. He defended Mr. (former ND prime minister Costas) Karamanlis, he re-membered his own 'transcending' as Political Spring and denied his adviser Mr. Vardas, who revealed ND's hypocrisy on the memorandum issue."
Petalotis further said "being a select member of the government of the renegades who deserted from the problems after leading Greece to the verge of bankruptcy, Mr. Samaras can say what he likes. Even that he could annul, in a magical way, the deficit by the end of 2011. They escaped from responsibility as a government, they are escaping from patriotic duty while being in the opposition."
The spokesman concluded by saying "we, as the PASOK government, are continuing with seriousness along the path of the country's salvation and on the major changes, that will lead us ahead at last."
 PM Papandreou holds talks with UNSGNEW YORK (ANA-MPA/P. Panagiotou)
Prime Minister George Papandreou discussed the Cyprus issue, the name issue of the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (fYRoM), issues of Greek interest, the Middle East question, climatic change and the goals of the millennium in his meeting with UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon at the international Organisation's headquarters in NewYork on Sunday.
The prime minister expressed his satisfaction, saying that he had a "very constructive meeting" with the head of the UN.
A written statement by the Organisation's Secretariat said that "the discussion included the issues of economic recovery, the monetary crisis, the climatic change and regional political issues, such as the peace process in the Middle East and Iran."
It was then pointed out that "the secretary general encouraged Greece to continue to help in the continuation of the momentum in the peace process for Cyprus. The secretary general and the prime minister exchanged views on the course of negotiations between Athens and Skopje on the issue of the name."
Speaking after the meeting, Papandreou said "I had a very constructive meeting with the General Secretary of the UN, Ban Ki-moon. We discussed in general the issues that concern international developments. Greece always is and remains a strong supporter, not only of international law, but of institutions as well, as is the UN, in the global governance, promoting special issues, the goals of the millennium, that have to do with the combatting of inequality, social injustice and poverty. And for this reason Ban Ki-moon thanked us for our stance and our active role.
"We also had the opportunity to set out our initiatives as well in this framework, particularly with regard to the Eastern Mediterranean and the possibility of us tackling the major problem of climatic change, in a developmental and constructive way. In this framework, a session will be held in Athens, on October 22, with the participation of many leaders of the wider region."
Referring to the issue of Cyprus, the prime minister said "I stressed once again that it is my conviction that the President of the Republic of Cyprus, Demetris Christofias, is the man who has every will and he is proving this in practice on a daily basis, for there to be a solution to the Cyprus question with the reunification of Cyprus always within the framework of UN resolutions and the EU acquis communautaire."
Papandreou further said that "Greece fully supports the initiatives of the President of the Republic of Cyprus and that outside pressures and interventions, which are unproductive, do not always help the promotion of a serious and substantive dialo-gue between the two communities. Something that, of course, both the Turkish government and Mr. (Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip) Erdogan must be aware of."
The prime minister also referred to the issue of fYRoM's name, saying "we discussed the issue of the name. As we stressed, we have proved our will for a mutually acceptable solution, always within the framework of our positions and the red lines that are clear. Our will exists and, of course, we are expecting the necessary will from the other side for there to be a solution."
Lastly, Papandreou said that a discussion took place as well "on the wider region of the Middle East, the Palestinian issue, Iran, as well as on the contacts I had, as well as Mr. Droutsas in the wider region, highlighting Greece's role again as a player for the support of the peace process."
 PM Papandreou meets Jewish organisation officialsPrime Minister George Papandreou had a meeting with members of Jewish organisations who play an important role in the decisions of the very powerful Jewish lobby in the United States, following his meeting with the UN secretary general.
The prime minister stressed during his meeting with the representatives of the Jewish organisations that there is a "very good climate" in relations between Greece and Israel, pointing out that prospects are being created for the "deepening of relations" and for the further development of cooperation in "vital sectors" of the Economy, such as Tourism and Trade.
Papandreou referred to Greece's role in the Middle East, aiming at the "peaceful solution" of the problems of the wider region.
In addition, he briefed his intrerlocutors on the efforts that Athens is making for a solution to special issues that it is facing, such as those of Greek-Turkish relations and the issue of Cyprus.
The meeting took place in a very good climate and the officials of the Jewish organisations in the US appeared satisfied with the stance of the Greek government and of the Greek prime minister personally over the latest developments, with regard to both the consolidation of Greece's cooperation with Israel and Greece's "constructive role" in the region.
On Monday, Papandreou will be meeting the President of Iran, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, with whom the Cyprus President Demetris Christofias, who arrived in New York on Sunday night, will also be meeting.
Also on Monday, Papandreou will address the opening session of the 3-day Millennium Development Goals summit, and also take part in a round table discussion on meeting the challenges of poverty, hunger and gender equality.
Afterwards he will go to the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) to attend a luncheon with the NYSE chairman and other Wall Street officials, where he will present the Greek government's developmental and investments program. He will also have meet with financial editors of the US media.
On Monday afternoon Papandreou, who is also president of the Socialist International (SI), will chair a meeting of the SI presidium.
On Tuesday, Papandreou will have series of contacts in Washington, including meetings with US vice-president Joe Biden, Senate Foreign Relations Committee chairman John Kerry and Senate Finance Committee chairman Max Baucus
Back in New York, on Wednesday, Papandreou will meet with Greek American businessmen and address the Economic Club, while in the afternoon he will have separate meetings with Cyprus President Demetris Christofias, Turkish President Abdullah Gul, whose country chairs the UN Security Council this month, and with Albanian prime minister Sali Berisha. Later, he will address a reception in his honor at Greece's Consulate General, where he will meet with leaders of the Greek American community, academicians and representatives of the arts and letters. Later in the evening, he will attend a reception hosted by the Bill Clinton (former US president) Foundation in honor of the heads of state and government attending the summit.
On Thursday morning, Papandreou will attend the formal opening of the 65th UN General Assembly, which will be addressed by US president Barack Obama, while that same night he will attend a reception hosted by Obama in honor of the heads of state and government attending the General Assembly opening, before leaving New York.
Foreign minister Dimitris Droutsas will address the General Assembly this year on behalf of Greece on Tuesday, September 28.
While in New York, Droutsas will also attend the traditional lunch hosted by the Secretary General on the occasion of the new General Assembly session, while he will also accompany Papandreou in the latter's meetings with foreign dignitaries, attend scheduled NATO-US, EU-US and EU-Russian high-ranking meetings.
While in New York, Papandreou will have a number of meetings with several other heads of state and government.
Droutsas, in turn, will accompany the prime minister in most of his meetings, and also hold a series of contacts with other foreign ministers.
On Monday, Droutsas will meet with the UN chief's special representative on the FYROM name issue Matthew Nimetz.
 Papariga addresses KKE youth organisation rallyCommunist Party of Greece (KKE) leader Aleka Papariga said that a vote in November's local parliament elections is equal to a vote in the national elections, although a government is not elected, addressing the 36th Festival of the KKE youth organisation KNE on Saturday night.
She said that the government's claim that the people back the Memorandum "is not true" and, on the contrary, the great majority of working people feel anger and indignation and have lost any confidence in had in the two mainstream parties -- ruling PASOK and main opposition New Democracy (ND) -- that alternate in the government.
 Government vice president at journalists' conferenceIZMIR (ANA-MPA/A. Kourkoulas)
Government Vice President Theodoros Pangalos, addressing a conference of Greek and Turkish journalists taking place here, said that cooperation between Greeks and Turks is the most logical option in the present geopolitical environment, as in the decade of the '30s cooperation between Venizelos-Ataturk was likewise imperative.
"What is necessary is for one to understand the other," he said and referred to political, military and other parameters that make the understanding of each other more difficult.
Later in the day, Pangalos will be meeting the government vice president, Hayati Yasici, who is also in Izmir for the journalists' conference.
 Justice minister on scandal casesJustice Minister Haris Kastanidis, speaking in an interview with the "Vima fm" radio station, spoke of the government's iron will to have all cases concerning scandals cleared up.
He added that if there is any involvement of political persons, that will be ascertained by the Parliamentary committees, then they will be referred to a special court.
 ND leader Antonis Samaras tours 75th TIFMain opposition New Democracy party leader Antonis Samaras toured the pavilions of the 75th Thessaloniki International Fair (TIF) on Saturday and stressed afterwards that the "great prerequisites for the Greek economy" are "competitiveness" and "extroversion."
Samaras stressed that "what is necessary is extroversion. To show that Greek businesses have within them the seed and the strength to be competitive internationally. We came here for this reason to support the Greek business, in difficult times, in tough times. And to say at the same time that there is an amazing human potential to be utilised, that can really achieve great things when it finds the suitable incentives and the suitable ground."
The ND leader further said "what is necessary in our view is competitiveness everywhere. However, we are in a period where the people are suffocating and choking in this dimension, an economic policy that is neither aligned with the possibilities that we would have, nor with the dreams that we want to have, nor with the future that we are seeking."
Samaras referred to the address he will be making later in the evening on the economy. He congratulated the employees and the staff of the international exhibition, stressing that "we received a picture of the great possibilities appearing for the Greek economy, if we all act together and we all decide together that what is necessary is competitiveness."
Samaras began his visit to the TIF from the administration building where he met with the boards of HELEXPO and TIF. He then visited the pavilion of the Thessaloniki municipality, as well as the city's new town hall later on, where he was welcomed by the mayor Vassilis Papageorgopoulos.
He was also given a guided tour of the pavilions of the fire brigade and the police and of the city's newspapers "MAKEDONIA" and "ANGELIOFOROS, as well as of the prefecture's pavilion where he was met by the prefect Panayiotis Psomiadis.
Samaras will be giving a press conference at noon on Sunday.
 8th exhibition of farm products and agro-technology in KateriniAgricultural Development and Foods minister Costas Skandalidis inaugurated the 8th Exhibition of Farm Products and Agricultural Technology in the municipality of Dion, Katerini prefecture, on Saturday night.
More than 80 enterprises, cooperatives, organisations and individual producers are exhibiting their products and services.
 Truck owners stepping up presence along motorwaysOwners of trucks and fuel trucks of public use have stepped up their presence at locations along national motorways, in the framework of their decision to escalate their mobilisations. According to the professional truckers, over 750 trucks and fuel trucks are currently parked along roads in the Attica prefecture.
 Foreign Exchange rates - MondayReference buying rates per euro released by the European Central Bank:
U.S. dollar 1.316
Pound sterling 0.842
Danish kroner 7.506
Swedish kroner 9.303
Japanese yen 112.88
Swiss franc 1.331
Norwegian kroner 8.028
Canadian dollar 1.351
Australian dollar 1.399
 Turkish consulate sentry box in Thessaloniki firebombedUnidentified persons having concealed their faces hurled firebombs at the sentry box of the Turkish consulate in Thessaloniki at 2:35 a.m. on Saturday. No injury occurred as a result of the attack, that burnt branches above the sentry box and caused damage.
 International conference on 'three genocides, one strategy'The 2nd international conference titled "Three genocides, one strategy" was held on Friday night at the Old Parliament building.
The event was attended by party representatives, the Athens Prefect and joint organiser of the session Ioannis Sgouros and former Parliament president Apostolos Kaklamanis.
Inaugurating the event, Organising Committee president Antonis Pavlidis said that the issue of genocides is raised with a substantive and human dimension with the ultimate aim of briefing Greek and international public opinion on the great importance of their recognition.
 Heroin haul in Iraklio, two arrestsPolice in Iraklio, on the island of Crete, located and confiscated 756.9 grams of heroin and at the same time arrested two foreign nationals, aged 28 and 32 for drug possession and trafficking.
Acting on information that two foreign nationals were selling drugs to drug dealers in the city of Iraklio and the wider region of Therisos, police detected and arrested them while they were riding a motorcycle.
 Drug arrests in ThessalonikiThree men aged 20-26 were arrested on Saturday in Menemeni by Thessaloniki police narcotics squad officers for drug dealing.
A search of the detainees and their house turned up 206.2 grams of heroin and 60 euros in cash, a precision scale, 20 cell phones and hand-written notes on drug sales.
The three men will appear before a local public prosecutor.
 Explosive device defused outside Hania cafeteriaPolice bomb disposal experts defused an explosive device at the entrance to a cafeteria in the city of Hania, on the island of Crete, at 8:30 on Saturday morning. According to an announcement, police arrived at the scene following a telephone call made earlier that a package had been placed outside the cafeteria and ascertained that it contained the explosive device.
 Four arrested for stealing truck, copperFour people were arrested on Saturday in the Dendropotamos region of Thessaloniki for stealing 4.5 tons in copper items and a truck.
The four, aged between 20 and 47, were arrested as they were loading the copper, which was stolen from a company in the Kilkis-Stavrochori industrial zone, onto a truck that had been stolen from a nearby car service station.
 Migrant smuggler arrested, 18 illegal migrants detainedA migrant smuggler was arrested and 16 illegal migrants were arrested on Saturday night by border guards in the Ferres region in northern Greece.
Police spotted the migrants late Saturday night as they were headed to the Kipi region, where they boarded two passenger cars awaiting them.
The cars were stopped by police, who arrested the driver and passengers of the first car on the spot. The second car, however, sped off and was later found abandoned near Alexandroupolis. The illegal immigrants from the second car were spotted and detained, but the driver evaded arrest.
 Mid-Byzantine watermills in new archaeological parkA new archaeological park encompassing the mid Byzantine-era watermills (12th-13th century AD) in the Polichni municipality of greater Thessaloniki will finally open to the public this month after 14 years of excavations and restoration at the site.
The outdoor archaeological park will open on Monday, with noted Paris-based Byzantologist Helene Glykatzi-Ahrweiler inaugurating the site.
The 23-hectare area features exhibition space, footpaths, parking space and a 500-seat outdoor theatre.
 Iraklis Thessaloniki tops Super LeaguePanathinaikos Athens drew 2-2 away with Kavala in games played for the Super League over the weekend, while Olympiacos Piraeus beat Panseraikos Serres 1-0 away and AEK Athens drew 2-2 at home with Asteras Tripoli.
In other action:
Ergotelis Crete-Xanthi 1-0
Iraklis Thessaloniki-Larissa 1-0
Kerkyra -Atromitos Athens 3-1
PAOK Thessaloniki-Olympiacos Volos 1-1
Panionios Athens-Aris Thessaloniki 1-0
Standings after three weeks of play:
1. Iraklis 7 points
2. Olympiacos P. 6
3. Ergotelis 6
4. Kerkyra 6
5. Panathinaikos 5
6. PAOK 5
7. Asteras 5
8. Larissa 4
9. Olympiacos V. 4
10. Panionios 4
11. AEK 4
12. Aris 3
13. Xanthi 2
14. Kavala 2
15. Atromitos 1
16. Panseraikos 0
 Cloudy on MondayCloudy weather and northerly winds are forecast in most parts of the country on Monday, with wind velocity reaching 2-7 beaufort. Temperatures will range between 14C and 32C. Slightly cloudy in Athens, with northerly 3-5 beaufort winds and temperatures ranging from 20C to 32C. Cloudy with local showers in Thessaloniki, with temperatures ranging from 19C to 28C.
 Athens' Sunday newspapers at a glanceThe economy and Troika delegation currently in Athens, and main opposition New Democracy (ND) leader Antonis Samaras' address at the 75th Thessaloniki International Fair (TIF) were the main front-page items in Athens' newspapers on Sunday.
ADESMEFTOS TYPOS: "Seven lies took us to the Memorandum - Samaras (main opposition New Democracy leader) uncovered Papandreou (prime minister) during his TIF address".
APOGEVMATINI: "There is a way out - PASOK's 7 lies...and ND's 7 truths - Samaras, in Thessaloniki, sends message of hope and potential".
AVGHI: "They fear the ballot (November's local government elections) - Prime minister being dragged to 'referendum' elections to halt the leakage of PASOK voters".
AVRIANI: "Greek businessmen laundering money via investment companies".
CHORA: "Samaras militant message of hope in Thessaloniki".
ELEFTHEROS TYPOS: "Derby in 7 regions - What the parties' secret opinion polls indicate".
ELEFTHEROTYPIA: "Amnesty to the tax dodgers, who get discount of 90 percent of the taxes they owe, has been given over the last 35 years with 'closure' of accounting books arrangement".
ETHNOS: "Window opening up for general abolition of tenure in the DEKO (public utilities and organizations) - Nightmare for 80,000 workers with dismissals, reduction of wages".
KATHIMERINI: "A thousand businesses at the cliff's edge - They were entered under the regime for protection from creditors".
LOGOS: "The troika 'signs' the budget - New measures will be asked if divergences are ascertained until December".
NIKI: "Memorandum no. 2 with 7.5 billion euros in taxes".
RIZOSPASTIS: "The KKE-backed candidates in the country's regions and municipalities".
TO VIMA: "100,000 Greeks with deposits abroad caught red-handed - 70 CDs with names of Greek depositors who did not declare the interest they received".
VRADYNI: "Consecutive social security - Calculate the pension you will get - The secrets for higher revenues".
 President Christofias says position on international meeting is clearLARNACA (CNA/ANA-MPA)
President of the Republic of Cyprus Demetris Christofias noted on Saturday that the government's position on an international meeting for the Cyprus problem, was clear, namely that it would deal with the international aspects of the problem and would be attended by the five permanent members of the UN Security Council, the UN Secretary General, the EU, the two communities in Cyprus, and the Republic of Cyprus.
Speaking at Larnaca Airport before departing for New York, President Christofias said that in all his meetings there he would elaborate on his proposals, as a follow up to the letters he has already sent.
''The international meeting will deal with the international aspects of the Cyprus problem, full stop. This of course for us means the participation of the Republic of Cyprus, the five permanent members of the UN, the Secretary General, the EU and the two communities,'' he added.
President Christofias pointed out that it was imperative that the Republic of Cyprus was present, because ''it has signed the treaties of guarantee.''
Cyprus, which joined the EU in 2004, has been divided since 1974, when Turkey invaded and occupied its northern third.
 Christophides: Eroglu should submit reasonable proposalsNICOSIA (CNA/ANA-MPA)
Turkish Cypriot leader Dervis Eroglu should submit reasonable proposals to the negotiating table for a solution of the Cyprus problem, in the context of international legitimacy, in order to reach a settlement, Director of the President's Office and Deputy Government Spokesman Christos Christophides said on Sunday.
He added that if Eroglu's proposals for the property chapter and other issues do not offer any possibility of moving forward, then Eroglu himself should take the responsibility for the situation.
Christophides noted that Eroglu's proposals could not form the basis for discussions if they worsened the situation, adding that the proposals submitted by the Greek Cypriot side were based on international law and UN Security Council resolutions, and thus could provide a way out.
''It would be better if Mr. Eroglu and in general the Turkish side, instead of publicly criticising and discussing the proposals of our side, saw how he himself contributes to the negotiating table with reasonable proposals, in the context of international legitimacy, in order to proceed and solve the Cyprus problem. Otherwise, if Mr. Eroglu's proposals on the property chapter and other issues are proposals that do not offer any potential of moving forward, then Mr. Eroglu should take the responsibility for this situation,'' Christophides pointed out.
Peace talks began in September 2008 between President Christofias and former Turkish Cypriot leader Mehmet Ali Talat. Talks continue now with Eroglu, who succeeded Talat.
Cyprus has been divided since 1974, when Turkey invaded and occupied its northern third.
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