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Cyprus Mail: News Articles in English, 00-05-07

Cyprus Mail: News Articles in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Cyprus Mail at <http://www.cyprus-mail.com/>

May 7 , 2000


  • [01] New House building may incorporate ancient remains
  • [02] Talks decision awaited after op on Clerides
  • [03] High dollar could mean petrol price rise
  • [04] Paralimni to bring in mobile desalination plant for 2 years
  • [05] The Beautiful and the Bold
  • [06] Car torched in arson attack

  • [01] New House building may incorporate ancient remains

    By Martin Hellicar

    THE NEW House of Representatives building could go up on the site of the old Pasydy headquarters after all, the Antiquities Department apparently having dropped its initial objections.

    Plans to build the new parliament at the Pasydy site in central Nicosia had to be scrapped earlier this year after preliminary digging uncovered rich archaeological remains.

    The Antiquities Department put its foot down at the time, insisting that archaeological heritage could not make way for the new House.

    In early February, Communications and Works Minister Averoff Neophytou made it clear an alternative site for the House would have to be sought. "Everyone has unanimously agreed that the use of the Pasydy hill site is ruled out," he said after a February 2 meeting with parliamentary party leaders. "It is technically impossible for the volume of archaeological remains to co-exist with a House building."

    Plans had to be put on hold as the search for an alternative site began.

    But now the Antiquities Department has now done a U-turn. Department director Sophocles Hadjisavvas says it could be possible to build on the old Pasydy site after all.

    In statements reported in Phileleftheros newspaper yesterday, Hadjisavvas suggests the new parliament could be built around the antiquities, with the ancient remains being incorporated into the building without being destroyed.

    But he added that his department would only give the final Ďall clearí for the Pasydy site to be used after it had seen detailed architectural plans on how this marriage of old and new could be achieved.

    The cost incurred to the state from the delays and re-thinks forced by the initial Antiquities department objections is not known.

    The new House of Representatives building is not expected to be ready for another decade.

    © Copyright Cyprus Mail 2000

    May 7 , 2000

    [02] Talks decision awaited after op on Clerides

    By Martin Hellicar

    PRESIDENT Glafcos Clerides yesterday continued his smooth recovery from an operation on Friday to remove a polyp growth from his large intestine.

    However it is still doubtful that the 81-year-old president will be well enough to travel to New York for the planned third round of UN-led proximity settlement talks on May 23.

    Foreign Minister Yiannakis Cassoulides said a decision would be taken at the end of this week. Results of a biopsy which will show whether the polyp was malignant are expected tomorrow.

    Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash -- the man Clerides is due to meet, albeit indirectly, in New York -- rang the Evangelistria private clinic yesterday morning to wish his talks Ďrivalí a speedy recovery. Government Spokesman Michalis Papapetrou said Clerides was asleep when Denktash rang, so the Turkish Cypriot leader said he would call back later.

    Doctors expressed satisfaction with the president's progress and said he would be ready to leave the Nicosia clinic in "seven or eight daysí time". The Evangelistria medics did not revise their original estimated total recovery time of six to eight weeks, which would force a postponement of the talks. Despite his physicians' advice that he should stay in bed, Clerides has expressed the confidence that he will recover in time to make it to New York for May 23.

    Dr Akis Kasios said Clerides was yesterday receiving a few visitors and had had his first session of physiotherapy.

    "The president will be out of intensive care on Sunday or Monday, though this will of course depend on various medical factors," Kasios said.

    Among Clerides' visitors yesterday were Archbishop Chrysostomos, Edek leader Vassos Lyssarides and acting President Spyros Kyprianou. They all reported him to be in excellent spirits.

    "The president's system behaved like that of a young person, not like that of a man of his age, which is very pleasing," said Lyssarides, a doctor by profession.

    Under-Secretary to the President Pantelis Kouros said Clerides was "a better colour" than he was after Friday's surgery.

    But the president's family said he was still in pain. "He can't speak very much, is sleeping quite a bit and has some pain, but can bear it," first lady Irene Clerides said.

    And his daughter, Disy deputy Katy Clerides, said her father still needed "rest, peace and quiet". Kyprianou, who only recently resumed his duties as Diko party leader after open-heart surgery -- said he would remain acting President until this afternoon and then leave it up to Clerides to decide if he would resume his duties.

    © Copyright Cyprus Mail

    May 7 , 2000

    [03] High dollar could mean petrol price rise

    By Martin Hellicar

    FUEL PRICE rises are on the agenda again, with the low value of the Cyprus pound compared to the dollar and the high price of crude making an increasing dent in the budgets of petrol companies.

    Local oil importing companies are seeking a meeting with Commerce Minister Nicos Rolandis this week to press their case for a pump price hike.

    Rolandis is likely to give the importers a sympathetic hearing, but prices could only go up on the say-so of the House of Representatives.

    Earlier this year, parliament gave short shrift to the idea of raising petrol, diesel and kerosene prices.

    In the first months of 2000, a barrel of crude was costing importers about $30, so they asked the government to intervene to help raise their revenue.

    Rolandis met all parliamentary parties in an attempt to persuade them of the merits of upping pump prices. But, mindful of the unpopularity of such a move, the parties said no. The government was thus left with no option but to subsidise oil importers by digging deeper into already depleted state coffers.

    The cabinet is to review this arrangement, which the government is anything but happy with, this month.

    Rolandis will probably then again be faced with the task of persuading parties to back a petrol pump price rise.

    The price of crude is currently about $26 a barrel. This is not as high as it was earlier in the year, but the drop of the Cyprus pound against the US dollar means import companies are still crying poor. They say they are currently losing about £3 million a month.

    © Copyright Cyprus Mail

    May 7 , 2000

    [04] Paralimni to bring in mobile desalination plant for 2 years

    A MOBILE desalination plant is to be brought in to provide desperately needed water for the Paralimni area.

    According to Paralimni Mayor Nicos Vlittis, the ship-borne plant will be operational off the tourist resort this August. Paralimni municipality is currently engaged in discussions with a European firm which promises to have a mobile unit operational within three months of contracts being signed.

    The floating plant will provide 20,000 tonnes of fresh water a day.

    The plan is to use the mobile plant for two years -- the time it will take to build a permanent unit for the area. Vlittis said the Cape Greco area had been chosen as the site to host the static desalination plant.

    The mayor promised the dry land plant would not go up near any of the areaís numerous tourist developments.

    Paralimni offered to host a desalination plant after government plans to build units at Zakaki in Limassol and Ayios Theodoros in the Larnaca area were scuppered by strong local opposition.

    The government sees desalination as the way out of the island's deepening water crisis. In addition to the Paralimni plant, there is one unit already up and running at Dhekelia and another being constructed near the Larnaca Salt Lake.

    Five straight years of drought have left the island's 101 dams almost empty, and impressive April rains -- which put eight million cubic metres of water into dams -- have made little overall difference.

    The government is digging deeper into already depleted ground water reserves to get us through the summer.

    © Copyright Cyprus Mail

    May 7 , 2000

    [05] The Beautiful and the Bold

    By Melina Demetriou

    RONN MOSS, who plays Ridge Forester in TVís long-running soap The Bold and the Beautiful, hosts the first round of the Miss Universe pageant tonight at the Eleftheria stadium in Nicosia.

    Moss, who flew in from California yesterday, told The Sunday Mail diplomatically that he could never choose one girl over the rest of them.

    "Iím happy I am not a judge in this competition. How can you can really choose one girl to be the most beautiful and intelligent?"

    Ronn Moss is from Hollywood and started out in show business in a band called the Player, until he broke into acting. About 14 years ago he began starring in The Bold and the Beautiful, an American soap opera which has also seen great success internationally.

    Ronnís own character and lifestyle are nothing like that of Ridge, although he admits he does find it impossible to choose between Brook and Taylor, the two women he has been bouncing between since the series started.

    "I canít prefer one between Brook and Taylor, because then the other side would absolutely hate my guts! They are both very nice people and good friends, so I love working with them."

    Ronnís future is in music, he said, and he is preparing his first solo record of melodic rock and roll, to be released next October or November.

    Tonight's pageant will feature the 79 delegates wearing their national costume, in swimsuits and in evening gowns. The winners of the Photogenic and National Costume awards will be announced and presented.

    Preliminary judges will select the top ten delegates, who will be revealed during the first 15 minutes of next Sunday morningís live telecast.

    © Copyright Cyprus Mail

    May 7 , 2000

    [06] Car torched in arson attack

    POLICE in Nicosia are investigating an early morning suspected arson attack on a car in the Acropolis area.

    The blaze was discovered at around 3am yesterday after Maria Demetriou from Latsia had left her car outside the building in Eleftheropoleos Street where her brother lives.

    Neighbours and fire-fighters managed to extinguish the flames, but the vehicle still suffered damage estimated at £1,500.

    Investigating officers identified traces of a flammable substance, possibly petrol, on the bodywork of the car as well as four separate fire points.

    © Copyright Cyprus Mail

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