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Macedonian Press Agency: News in English, 2002-11-22

Macedonian Press Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Macedonian Press Agency at and

MACEDONIAN PRESS AGENCY Thessaloniki, November 22, 2002








  • [01] ND: ANNAN PROPOSAL IS A PAINFUL COMPROMISE "What has been presented to us as a plan, is a painful compromise. Harsh negotiations and a full disconnection of the Cyprus issue form the island's accession to the EU will be necessary", stressed President of New Democracy Kostas Karamanlis, during a m eeting of the party's Political Council on the Annan proposal yesterday.

    Both Mr. Karamanlis and all party officials, expressed their skepticism as far as the essence of the plan is concerned, and specifically on its functionality, the issue of the settlers and the application of communal acquis.

    The issue of communal acquis will also be the topic of Mr. Karamanlis' discussion with the President of the Commission Romano Prodi on the 28th in Brussels.

    Honorary President of New Democracy Konstantinos Mitsotakis also referred to the developments of the Cyprus issue on leaving the Political Council meeting.

    "I think that the President's proposal and the policy followed by ND on the Annan proposal and on Cyprus in general, finds ND unanimous", he pointed out.

    Mr. Mitsotakis underlined that "if the Annan proposal does not move forward due to Turkey, the path for Cyprus to enter the EU is open. We are not the ones to be saddened by this".

    DIKKI: Legalizing the partition

    "The Annan proposal overturns policies followed in all decisions by the UN since 1974, and rewards the Turkish violation of International Law and human rights of Cyprus' Hellenism, because it legalizes the partition brought by Attila in 1974", underlined

    the President of DIKKI Dimitris Tsovolas from Chios.

    "If this proposal, which is globally unprecedented, is finally accepted, Turkey will go after the Aegean, through procedures of long lasting Turkish claims at the Hague", he added.

  • [02] GREEK POLICE DRILL ON TERRORIST ATTACK A three-day training exercise code named "Rainbow", is beginning today and will end on Sunday in Athens, by the Greek Police, on a possible terrorist attack.

    The training grounds will be "Eleftherios Venizelos" airport in Spata and the Piraeus harbor, and the scenarios will mentioned an aircraft hijacking and a bomb threat on a "floating" hotel.

  • [03] PANTION UNIVERSITY STUDENTS ON THE ANNAN PLAN AND TURKEY'S EU ACCESSION Well-known Turkish journalist Ali Birad was met with the opposition of the Pantion University students regarding the Annan Plan and Turkey's EU accession prospect, during an open discussion in Athens yesterday that was broadcast live by CNN Turk.

    The event held in the "Sakis Karagiorgas" amphitheater of Pantion University was a co-production of CNN Turk and television news agency NETNEWS. In the discussion participated former ministers Gerasimos Arsenis and Stephanos Manos, right-wing main opposi tion party of New Democracy international and EU relations secretary and university professor Yiannis Valinakis, honorary ambassador Viron Theodoropoulos and university professors Yiannis Vavouras and Yiankos Andreadis as well as a large number of student s.

    The host of the talk-show, Turkish journalist Ali Birad stressed the importance of such events for the two peoples to have the opportunity to know each other better and asked those attending the talk-show to vote on certain crucial aspects of the Greek-T urkish relations. When the overwhelming majority of the students responded negatively to the question "Do you want to see Turkey in the EU?", Mr. Birad responded that the same response he got in all the European universities he posed the question. Also, n egative was the students' stance toward the Annan Plan. An intervention made by a Cypriot student caused a sensation when referring to those missing in Cyprus she stated that "we cannot live under the same roof with those who refuse to tell us what happen ed to our people".

    Former government minister Gerasimos Arsenis expressed skepticism on the course of the Greek-Turkish relations stating with an emphasis that "it takes two to tango". He characterized the UN Secretary General proposal as a "very bad plan". Mr. Valinakis e xpressed the belief that the climate in the Greek-Turkish relations is improving but their essence is not. A strong impression was caused by the statement made by Stephanos Manos, who said: "personally I prefer an amicable divorce than a forced union. I p refer partition. The Annan Plan will bring conflicts and disaster in the future".

  • [04] HITIRIS ON THE ANNAN PLAN Acting government spokesman Tilemachos Hitiris stated that nobody knew about the Annan Plan until the moment it was presented. The statement was made by Mr. Hitiris when he was called to comment on a press report according to which, the Greek government knew about the plan since October 16 based on a European Union document. Mr. Hitiris stated that the Annan Plan is based on the numerous meetings held between the Greek Cypriot and the Turkish Cypriot sides.

    When asked if the government was aware of the document, he responded negatively, while responding to a relevant question he denied that the Greek government participated in any procedure concerning the Annan Plan. He concluded by saying that the governme nt is always in close contact and cooperation with Cypriot President Glafkos Clerides.

  • [05] MARGINAL LOSSES IN THE ASE Marginal losses were recorded in the Athens Stock Exchange today. The general index dropped to -0.09% at 1.858,90 points, while the volume of transactions was satisfactory at 106 million Euro.

    Of the stocks trading today, 144 recorded gains and 167 had losses, while the value of 63 stocks remained unchanged.

  • [06] THE GREEK PRIME MINISTER WILL MEET WITH HIS DUTCH COUNTERPART Greek Prime Minister Kostas Simitis will meet with his Dutch counterpart in The Hague tomorrow.

    Acting government spokesman Tilemachos Hitiris responding to a question on whether there will be a meeting of Greek Foreign Minister Giorgos Papandreou with UN Secretary General special adviser on Cyprus Mr. Alvaro de Soto, he stated that no such meeting

    has been scheduled.

  • [07] THE UKRAINIAN PARLIAMENT PRESIDENT ON MPA Ukrainian Parliament President Vladimir Litvin in an interview with MPA referred to the great interest expressed by Ukraine in the further development of its relations with Greece and the honest interest expressed by Greece in the accession of Ukraine in to the EU and the Euro-Atlantic structures.

    Mr. Litvin stated characteristically that Ukraine wants to become an EU member and that the EU itself will benefit from this adding, however, that there are certain ones who object to that prospect.

    On the cooperation between Greece and Ukraine, he said that it could serve as a model for the development of Ukraine's relations with the European Union. He added that trade transactions between Greece and Ukraine reached US$226 million in 2001, while in

    the first 7 months of the current year they reached US$70 million. In addition, he said that a total of 9 tanker-ships worth US$300 million are going to be built in the Nikolaev shipyards. In 1992, a total of 18 ships were ordered in the same shipyard an d 6 of them are ready.

    Mr. Litvin also said that Ukraine's relations with Russia would not be affected in a negative way in case of closer Ukraine-EU economic-political relations.


  • [08] THE JUNTA PLANNED TO GIVE TURKEY A MILITARY BASE IN CYPRUS The Greek Junta was planning on providing Turkey with a permanent military base in Cyprus, in order for Ankara not to react to a unification of Cyprus with Greece, as was revealed in classified documents of the British Foreign Office, dating to 1967. It was also reveled that the British High Commission in Nicosia had heard whispers of the coup being planned by the Colonels.

    The documents appreciated that a coup in Cyprus by the Junta could only take place if they could make sure that Ankara would not react.

    Also, the Ambassador to Ankara at the time, Sir Allen, came to the conclusion that a coup in Cyprus would not make things worse for Turkey. The British diplomat also appreciated that Ankara believed that if it was forced to intervene in Cyprus, the outco me would not necessary be unfavorable.

    Specifically, the document from the British Embassy in Athens to the British Foreign Office, dated August 15, 1967, the April 21st Junta was dedicated to solving the Cyprus issue, even if that meant providing a military base for Turkey on the island.

    Greek Foreign Minister at the time, M. Christopoulos, told the British Ambassador immediately following the return of Georgios Papadopoulos from Cyprus, that the outline of the Cyprus solution was known.

    "Mr. Christopoulos told me that there were broad negotiations between Papadopoulos and President Makarios in Cyprus. He continued that the "skeleton" of the plan was already known. The Turkish side would have to accept the union and the Greek side would have to accept the need for a constant Turkish present on the island", mentions the document.

    A document of June 27, 1967, says, "in recent discussions with the Americans, Caglajangil (Turkish Foreign Minister) said that he had met with the Greek Foreign Minister, Economou Gouras in Luxembourg and discussed Turkish occupation of the British base in Dekelia. He initially proposed the renting of the base by Turkey, but when Caglajangil reacted, he spoke of Turkish sovereignty for two generations. Caglajangil did not find his specific enough".

    A Foreign Office document dated May 3, 1967, 12 days after the coup in Greece, reveals that the British Foreign Secretary at the time, George Brown, personally authorized the British Ambassador to Athens, Sir Ralf Murray, who was visiting in London at th e time, to inform the Colonels that Britain would take any actions causing trouble in Cyprus under very serious consideration.

    If there was an upheaval in Cyprus, it would lead to the "free disposal of Czech weapons, to dangers coming from Turkey, the involvement of British troops, problems in the UN, etc.", mentioned the British Foreign Secretary.

    Meanwhile, a telegram from the British High Commission in Nicosia to the British Foreign Office, dated June 26, 1967, referred to whispers about a coup in Cyprus by the Colonels, commenting that such an action could only be taken if an understanding had been reached between the Junta and Turkey, regardless of the final resolving of the Cyprus issue.

    "The way we see things here, a coup against Makarios can only be carried out with the initiative of the Greek government. It may move to such an action if it has made sure that Turkey will not react to this action. If the Turks gave their consent, I assu me that as far as we are concerned, any action against the Archbishop and the National Guard would be dealt with as a Greek-Cypriot issue which we should distance ourselves from", mentioned the document.

    In another document from the British Ambassador to Ankara, Sir Allen, dated June 26, 1967, to the Foreign Office, the Ambassador came to the conclusion that Ankara would not like to be presented as an accomplice in a coup, but may not consider that it wo uld make things worse.

    "I believe that the Turks possible appreciate that a coup would not necessarily make things worse, while Ankara would like to refuse insinuations of complicity. Internal pressures may force them to intervene", mentioned the Ambassador.

    "At the same time they may believe that if they cannot resist these pressures, the outcome may not be unfavorable for Turkey", added the document.

  • [09] SIMITIS-BUSH DISCUSS TURKEY'S POSITION Turkey's position on the Cyprus issue and the Euroarmy were the main points of the discussion between Prime Minister Kostas Simitis and US President George Bush yesterday, in the margin of the NATO Summit Meeting in Prague.

    Mr. Simitis asked George Bush to pressure Ankara to change its behavior and show good faith concerning the Cyprus issue and the Euroarmy. According to the Greek Prime Minister, if Turkey does not make any positive movements, our neighboring country canno t ask for a date to begin accession negotiations. On his side, Mr. Bush pointed out that he is discussing these issues during his meetings with the Turkish side.

  • [10] M. VRETTAKIS BECAME TIRANA CHAMBER OF COMMERCE HONORARY MEMBER Tirana's Commerce and Industry Chamber declared Greek embassy to Tirana economic adviser Michail Vrettakis its honorary member.

    In his speech Chamber President Luan Pregasi praised Mr. Vrettakis' contribution, who leaves his post after a six-year term in the Albanian capital, to the development of the bilateral economic and trade relations.

    Greece is the main investor in Albania with the presence of about 200 businesses active in telecommunications, banking, constructions and manufacturing. The Greek exports to Albania in 2001 reached US$360 million placing Albania at the14th place, in term s of its ability to absorb the Greek products, among the countries where the Greek exports are directed. Greece also receives 29-30% of the Albanian exports.

  • [11] GREECE: CYPRUS' EU ACCESSION MUST TAKE PLACE BASED ON THE EU DECISIONS Greek Prime Minister Kostas Simitis underlined Greece's firm position according to which, Cyprus' EU accession must take place regardless of the solution of the political problem on the island. The statement was made in a press conference in Prague where

    the NATO Summit meeting is held. Mr. Simitis called for a clean solution on Cyprus' EU accession and clarifying this he said that there shouldn't be any conditions putting the EU accession in question.

    On whether a decision on Cyprus' EU accession will be reached in the Copenhagen Summit, the Prime Minister stated that the decisions of the European leaders on Cyprus' membership are given, adding that no one can guarantee that there won't be somebody wh o will raise objections. However, he gave the assurance that the Greek side will continue the contacts aimed at Cyprus' EU accession and the solution of the Cyprus problem.

    On the likelihood for Ankara to react to the Annan Plan and have no solution in Cyprus before the Copenhagen Summit, he commented that Greece has certain thoughts on this likelihood stressing, however, that the goal is to solve the Cyprus problem.

    On the Turkish demand to receive a date for the opening of its EU accession negotiations in the Copenhagen Summit, Mr. Simitis reiterated that a positive message could be sent out in Copenhagen concerning Turkey's European prospect. This can happen on th e condition that Ankara sends out positive messages on Cyprus, the Euro-army and issues related to the European standards. He pointed out, however, that there are a number different views in Europe on the time and the way the issue of the date for Turkey' s EU accession negotiations should be handled, stressing that he will continue the contacts with the EU Prime Ministers on the issue.

    When asked on the contacts he had with US President George Bush and US Secretary of State Colin Powell, he stated that they were positive and friendly. He also underlined that the US side does not associate the issues of Cyprus and Euro-army with the dat e for the opening of the negotiations on Turkey.

    Mr. Simitis also stated that he met with FYROM President Boris Trajkovski and discussed with him bilateral issues, including the issue of the FYROM name. The Prime Minister stated that the issue was referred to the consultations taking place in the Unite d Nations.

  • [12] SIMITIS-ANNAN TELEPHONE COMMUNICATION ON CYPRUS Greek Prime Minister Kostas Simitis and UN Secretary General Kofi Annan had a telephone communication this afternoon during which they discussed the Cyprus issue.

    Mr. Simitis pointed out that Greece sees the Annan Plan as a starting point for meaningful negotiations. Mr. Annan pointed out that he will make every effort for the Turkish Cypriot side and Turkey to adopt a similar stance with that adopted by the Greek


  • [13] GREEK-SPEAKING RADIO STATION IN ALBANIA A local radio station has begun broadcasting in the region of Sarante, in Albania. The "Alpha Radio" station is based at the center of the ethnic Greek community in the region of Livadia.

    It broadcasts for five hours on a daily basis and its program includes music, socially oriented programs and news bulletins in Greek and Albanian, according to statements made by its directors Giorgos Kremmidas and Vasile Tzaferi.

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