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Cyprus Mail: News Articles in English, 03-06-24

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

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


Tuesday, June 24, 2003

CONTENTS

  • [01] Accusations fly over civil service reshuffle
  • [02] Romanian arrested over Cypriot man’s murder
  • [03] Turkish Cypriot man dies after collision
  • [04] All eyes on the chick
  • [05] Limassol couple on the run from the law
  • [06] Hellas Jet to launch flights today
  • [07] Hotels strike ‘postponed’
  • [08] Iranian protesters arrested
  • [09] Turkish Cypriots wants settlers’ election rights reversed
  • [10] Cyprus' Moscow embassy under full investigation
  • [11] Cypriot protester arrested in Thessalonica
  • [12] Smart tips to avoid being short changed this summer
  • [13] Weekend road death

  • [01] Accusations fly over civil service reshuffle

    By Elias Hazou

    THE ROW over appointments and transfers in the civil service reached a head yesterday, as the government denied allegations it was fostering widespread nepotism.

    And while the government said it considered the affair as shut, opposition DISY warned of further revelations exposing the extent of a “massive clean- up operation” in the civil service.

    DISY boss Nicos Anastassiades personally launched the all-out assault, accusing the President of reneging on his election-campaign promises of meritocracy. In an apparent bid to show he meant business, Anastassiades warned he would take recourse to the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) if necessary. He added his party was conducting a detailed investigation into discrimination in civil service appointments and would make these public sometime soon.

    Meddling with appointments in the National Guard was also rampant, claimed former Defence Minister and prominent DISY figure Socratis Hasikos. He said the present administration has set up a shadowy apparatus inside the military whose sole task was to control all appointments.

    President Papadopoulos seemed to be calling Anastassiades’ bluff, urging the DISY boss to make good on his intention to take recourse to the ECHR. “I hope he doesn’t change his mind about that, otherwise he might put himself in an embarrassing situation,” said Papadopoulos.

    At a news conference yesterday, Anastassiades said several civil servants seconded to the Presidential Palace were unreasonably replaced as soon as DIKO came to power.

    Papadopoulos was quick to respond to the allegations, explaining the services of the employees in question to were simply not needed anymore, as part of the Presidential Palace’s post-election reorganisation.

    “This is all perfectly normal, and I can’t understand what all the fuss is about.

    “Honestly, I don’t know of any country in the world where the President does not have the right to choose his aides,” remarked Papadopoulos.

    Government spokesman Kypros Chrysostomides added fuel to the flames, saying, “I hope Anastassiades doesn’t mean that the ministers of the previous administration should have stayed on as well.”

    “No one is saying that the President cannot choose his aides, that’s not the point,” countered Anastassiades. “But we’re talking about a supply clerk, two bailiffs and an employee in the archives office. These people were moved out so fast, it really makes you think. I mean, how could these employees possibly disrupt government policy?”

    As is the norm in local politics, the spat reverted to good old-fashioned references to the past, as DIKO accused DISY of developing cronyism and nepotism into an art form during the previous administration. Anastassiades denied the charge, saying up until the year 2000 the majority of employees in semi-government organisations were affiliated to opposition parties and not DISY.

    DIKO’s deputy chairman Nikos Kleanthous remarked: “For 10 years, DISY cleaned out the civil service and the military, appointing their lackeys to key positions; they left nothing untouched.”

    “Now it’s our job to clean up the mess,” he added.

    Copyright Cyprus Mail 2003

    Tuesday, June 24, 2003

    [02] Romanian arrested over Cypriot man’s murder

    By a Staff Reporter

    A 27-YEAR-OLD Romanian man, Liev Tejesku, was arrested in Haidari, Greece, yesterday in connection with the alleged murder of a Greek Cypriot man, Greek police confirmed.

    According to a police bulletin, the suspect admitted to stabbing 33-year- old Heracles Neophytou after an argument regarding the deceased’s affair with his sister.

    Police said the man allegedly went to Neophytou’s house at around 6.20am and the two argued because Tejesku was against Neophytou’s relationship with his sister.

    Copyright Cyprus Mail 2003

    Tuesday, June 24, 2003

    [03] Turkish Cypriot man dies after collision

    By a Staff Reporter

    A TURKISH Cypriot man died of a from internal bleeding in Nicosia General Hospital yesterday, less than 24 hours after he was found injured by police in Ayios Pavlos.

    According to reports, 41-year-old Suleyman Aziz, from Ayios Pavlos, died about 10am, having undergone surgery at the hospital on Sunday night.

    Police said yesterday Aziz was discovered pushing his bike along Ayios Pavlos road and calling for help just after noon on Sunday. He was rushed to hospital where internal bleeding was diagnosed by doctors.

    Nicosia Traffic Police, who are investigating the incident, said Aziz was probably involved in a road accident.

    They call on any witnesses to come forward with information.

    Copyright Cyprus Mail 2003

    Tuesday, June 24, 2003

    [04] All eyes on the chick

    By a Staff Reporter

    CLOSED CIRCUIT cameras have been installed inside a cage at the Limassol zoo to monitor the growth and behaviour of a Griffon vulture chick, officials said yesterday.

    With the CCTV system, visitors would have the opportunity to get a closer look at the newcomer through a large colour TV.

    The move is an effort by zookeepers to educate the public on the life and habits of the Griffon vulture, an endangered species on the island.

    Speaking at a news conference yesterday at the launch of the new system, zoo veterinarian, Lambros Lambrou said the vulture would be released once he is able to fend for himself.

    Limasol Mayor Demetris Kontides said the Municipality would be creating special programmes at the zoo in order to educate the public on the island’s endangered species.

    Copyright Cyprus Mail 2003

    Tuesday, June 24, 2003

    [05] Limassol couple on the run from the law

    By a Staff Reporter

    A 56-YEAR-OLD man and his spouse from Limassol are wanted for resisting arrest and threatening a police officer.

    According to the police, an arrest warrant had been issued for the couple for repeatedly failing to pay fines. When a police officer visited their home on Sunday, the couple resisted arrest and threatened to turn their rottweiler on the officer. The man also threatened to shoot the officer.

    After managing to break loose, the couple locked themselves in the house, and later fled the scene. Limassol CID is investigating the case.

    Copyright Cyprus Mail 2003

    Tuesday, June 24, 2003

    [06] Hellas Jet to launch flights today

    By Jean Christou

    HELLAS JET will take to the skies today, only 24-hours later than planned, after Cyprus Airways (CY) was finally given the green light by the Greek government last night.

    “We have just received the news officially that we obtained the commercial licence signed by the Greek Transport Minister,” Cyprus Airways spokesman Tassos Angelis told the Cyprus Mail. “We have now finalised all the formalities and we are ready to fly tomorrow (Tuesday).”

    Hellas Jet received an air operator's licence from Greece earlier in the month and had hoped to begin operating yesterday but a delay in obtaining the commercial licence forced the airline to postpone the launch for 24 hours.

    CY officials were in Greece two weeks ago for talks on obtaining the necessary licences and had enlisted the help of the Cyprus government to push Greek officials to move faster.

    Hellas Jet, which is 49 per cent owned by CY and 51 per cent by two Greek banks, Alpha and Omega expects to enter the Greek domestic market as well as provide links between Athens and four European destinations: London Heathrow, Brussels, Paris and Zurich. CY has leased three Airbus A320s and hired 200 staff for the new airline.

    The partners in the airline established Hellas Jet to capture a share of the expected increased traffic during the 2004 Summer Olympic Games in Greece.

    Copyright Cyprus Mail 2003

    Tuesday, June 24, 2003

    [07] Hotels strike ‘postponed’

    By Sofia Kannas

    A HOTEL strike scheduled for today was called off by hotel workers’ unions yesterday afternoon, amid hopes of a breakthrough in the long running dispute over the renewal of a worker-employer collective agreement.

    The strike has been ‘postponed’ until the end of the month after talks between Labour Minister Makis Keravnos, representatives of the Cyprus Hotel Association (PASIXE) and the Cyprus Tourist Business Association (STEK) in at the Labour Ministry in Nicosia yesterday.

    Employees’ unions SEK and PEO threatened industrial action at the end of last month, after the continuing refusal of hoteliers to accept a collective agreement already approved by hotel workers earlier in the year.

    Director General of PASIXE Zacharias Ioannides told the Cyprus Mail Keravnos had secured the postponement of the strikes for negotiations between hoteliers and the government to continue.

    “The Minister announced he secured the postponement of the strikes until the end of the month to get the time to proceed with further deliberations, ” Ioannides said. “There has been constructive communication between all parties and the ministry, with the ultimate objective of averting any strikes in the hotel industry.”

    General Secretary of the Hotel Employees’ Federation (SEK), Nicos Epistithiou, expressed the hope the negotiations would finally lead to hoteliers signing the collective agreement.

    “The Minister found that PASIXE had maybe changed their attitude, and in a couple of days he will be in a position to know if the agreement can be signed by them,” he said. “I hope there will be another meeting (today); it’s up to the Minister to decide whether it’s necessary for a new meeting with employers.”

    Epistithiou warned the strike would go ahead at the end of the month if hoteliers refused to put pen to paper and sign the agreement by Thursday.

    “Our aim is not to strike, but to solve the problem peacefully and provide good working relations within the industry,” he said. “But this is the final call for hoteliers both to accept the agreement, and to implement it.”

    Speaking after meeting hoteliers, Keravnos expressed his optimism that all parties involved in the dispute would “rise to the occasion” to avert a crisis in the tourist industry.

    In January and May, members of PASIXE were presented with proposals drafted by the Labour Ministry, but rebuffed them, saying they did not safeguard concessions gained by hoteliers in a 1998 collective agreement. ends

    Copyright Cyprus Mail 2003

    Tuesday, June 24, 2003

    [08] Iranian protesters arrested

    By Alex Mita

    POLICE YESTERDAY arrested three Iranian protesters who were threatening to set themselves alight outside the French embassy in Nicosia. The activists - two men and a woman holding her seven-year-old child - were expressing their opposition to last week’s crackdown in Paris which saw the arrest of arrest of 160 members of an Iranian opposition group.

    Fire Service trucks were deployed to the scene and the area was cordoned off by the police. Police persuaded the woman to let go of her child and it was taken away from the scene.

    Fire Service Spokesman Stelios Stylianou told reporters all the necessary steps were taken to prevent the protestors from being seriously injured.

    “We had foam ready because the protesters were holding a canister of petrol and we had already soaked fireproof blankets with water in case they went ahead with their threats,” Stylianou said.

    A police psychologist spoke to the demonstrators and they agreed to call off their protest as long as they were allowed to speak to the media.

    But when the police agreed and the men started walking towards the cameras, the female protester doused one of the men in petrol and attempted to set him on fire, only to be stopped by the police.

    A scuffle broke out between the group and the police and the Iranians ran towards the US embassy only to be arrested shortly afterwards by the police.

    There have been similar demonstrations in Paris London and Rome, which resulted in the death of a 38-year-old woman, who died in hospital from injuries she sustained after setting herself on fire. The Among those held was Maryam Rajavi, the wife of Mujahideen founder Massoud Rajavi, who is the head of the exile umbrella group the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI).

    Copyright Cyprus Mail 2003

    Tuesday, June 24, 2003

    [09] Turkish Cypriots wants settlers’ election rights reversed

    By Jean Christou

    THE TURKISH Cypriot Patriotic Unity Movement has launched a campaign at the Council of Europe (CoE) aimed at preventing Turkish settlers from voting in elections in the north in December.

    Hayati Yasamsal, a member of the movement and President of the Turkish Cypriot Rights and Freedom Association, is in Strasbourg for meetings with members of the Migration, Refugees and Demography Committee and CoE Commissioner for Human Rights Alvaro Gil Robles, the Cyprus news Agency (CNA) reported yesterday.

    Yasamsal will brief the EU officials on the issue and deliver a memorandum of the Movement asking the international community to declare that it will not recognise the results of the elections in the north if the settlers are allowed to vote.

    “Currently the population that was brought in from Turkey and made ‘citizens’ is double than that of the indigenous Turkish Cypriots and on top of that, there are almost half a million Turkish citizens in Turkey that were made citizens of the northern part of Cyprus without ever living in Cyprus and that can be used as a ‘substitute voter force’ in the elections,” a statement from the movement said.

    “This population has always been directed to vote along the lines advocated by the Turkish Embassy, military and other organisations.”

    It also said that elections in the north, because they have always involved external intervention, do not reflect the will of the Turkish Cypriot people.

    “We call upon the international community to take precautions and to remind Turkey that because it aspires to enter the EU that it cannot have the people it carried to Cyprus voting in the elections,” the movement said.

    “We also ask the international community to declare that it will not recognise the results of an election if the population carried from Turkey get to vote and that it will only recognise the results of an election in which only the Cypriots vote.”

    It also calls on international organisations to act on this issue and pledged that it would use all international channels available for the elimination of the current conditions.

    Yasamsal told CNA that the movement favoured reports by EU officials on the colonisation of Cyprus by Turkish settlers and the rights and fundamental freedoms of Greek Cypriots and Maronites living in the northern part of Cyprus.

    Some 80,000 Turkish settlers in addition to 35,000 Turkish troops have outnumbered the Turkish Cypriots in the occupied territory.

    Around 120,000 Turkish Cypriots, making up 18 per cent of the island's population, lived in the north before the Turkish invasion. Their number has shrunk to around 60,000 according to Turkish Cypriot estimates.

    Copyright Cyprus Mail 2003

    Tuesday, June 24, 2003

    [10] Cyprus' Moscow embassy under full investigation

    By a Staff Reporter

    INTERIOR Ministry Permanent Secretary Kyriacos Triantafyllides said yesterday his investigation into alleged goings on at the Cyprus embassy in Moscow would be completed in a month.

    Triantafyllides, who returned from Moscow last week, was testifying at the House Foreign Affairs Committee yesterday after DISY deputy Eleni Theocharous tabled a question regarding the embassy.

    Theocharous said that the Foreign Ministry's citing of financial reasons for recalling four immigration officers sent to the Moscow embassy in February, a month after they left, was "fooling no one".

    The officers had been sent to Moscow to assist in the issue of visas for Russians, which were to be reintroduced earlier this year.

    A bilateral agreement between Cyprus and Russia signed in 1995 on visa-free travel could no longer be effective due to the island's forthcoming accession to the EU. However authorities now say the visas will not be reintroduced until October.

    During a heated discussion, the Committee heard yesterday that an investigation was launched after allegations within the Foreign Ministry that "clerks were doing the work of the consul" and that abuses of power and irregularities were allegedly taking place at the embassy.

    Triantafyllides said he had accumulated a huge file as part of his investigation, and following his trip to Moscow where he has also interviewed embassy personnel.

    He declined to comment on the course of the investigation saying that there were procedures within the civil service for dealing with such cases.

    Copyright Cyprus Mail 2003

    Tuesday, June 24, 2003

    [11] Cypriot protester arrested in Thessalonica

    By a Staff Reporter

    GREEK police arrested a Cypriot man on Saturday in connection with violence at an anti-EU march near Salonica, Cyprus Consul General Antonios Theocharous said in Greece yesterday.

    Iacovos Mylonas, who is in his late twenties, was arrested and remanded in custody by police along with 29 other people after clashes between anarchist protesters and riot police broke out in the village of Marmaras, close to the coastal resort of Porto Carras where a European Union summit took place over the weekend.

    According to Theocharous, Mylonas, who lives in Alexandroupolis, will appear before magistrates when a date is set. He could not confirm what offences Mylonas had been charged with. However, the Cyprus News Agency (CNA) reported yesterday that 27 of the 29 people arrested were charged on Saturday with three counts of felony and five counts if misdemeanour by criminal prosecutor Argyris Demopoulos.

    According to CNA the 27 suspects were charged with a number of offences, including the possession and manufacture of explosive devices, carrying out malicious damage, resisting arrest and illegally carrying and using firearms.

    Copyright Cyprus Mail 2003

    Tuesday, June 24, 2003

    [12] Smart tips to avoid being short changed this summer

    By Tania Khadder

    AS CYPRIOTS and tourists make their way to the island’s beaches this summer, there are a few handy tips to keep in mind that will make your experience more enjoyable, Consumers Association spokeswoman, Egli Hadjipaschali, told the Cyprus Mail yesterday.

    Hadjipaschali maintains necessary facilities such as access to refreshments and reasonable prices and are not always accessible to consumers, and suggested ways to cope regardless.

    “Often there is no place to buy food and drinks near the beach, so people are obliged to eat at a hotel, which can be expensive,” she said. “When doing so, it is important to make sure that the menu is on display both outside and inside the establishment. This way, they cannot make you pay more than the given price.”

    She emphasised that visitors should make sure their chosen hotel or restaurant has the Cyprus Tourism Organisation (CTO) stamp on the menu, which shows that it has been approved by the organisation. Approval means the CTO has given the establishment a licence to operate, and has suggested appropriate prices for its services.

    The CTO also issued a statement yesterday outlining some of the same rules for tourists and owners of restaurants and hotels. It reminded establishments that they must provide a receipt with the breakdown of prices for each customer and informed customers to call the CTO if they feel they have been overcharged.

    She also warned that consumers be aware of expiration dates of snacks like ice cream while at the beach.

    “Make sure refrigerators are not directly under the sun and is cold enough to prevent spoilage,” she said.

    Hadjipaschali said some obstacles are more difficult to avoid, because while beachgoers can choose to bring their own food and drinks, there is often no way around parking or going to the bathroom.

    She said there is no car park at many beaches, meaning visitors have to find alternative places to park. Much of the time, parking in such places is illegal.

    “A lot of people complain that they get parking tickets, which can be £15 each, but they had no other choice. This is a big problem.”

    She urged drivers to be aware of this fact and to avoid parking in illegal spaces.

    And at some beaches, when nature calls, the only bathroom in sight is inside a hotel, which poses a problem for visitors and hotel owners.

    “Nobody likes to go to the bathroom in a hotel, and of course, it is private property, so hotels have a right to refuse access,” she said. “A lot of the time, people are forced to buy something in order to use the bathroom.”

    Her comments came just days after thirty-nine beaches in Cyprus were given the “Blue Flag” environmental award, the criteria of which includes beach area management.

    “I don’t understand how so many of our beaches have the award because there are no facilities for people and the beaches are not organised enough,” she said.

    Copyright Cyprus Mail 2003

    Tuesday, June 24, 2003

    [13] Weekend road death

    By a Staff Reporter

    AN 18-YEAR-OLD man was killed in a road accident in the early hours of Sunday, after his van collided with an oncoming vehicle, police confirmed yesterday.

    According to a police bulletin, Demetris Hadjikyriakou, from Latsia, was driving along the Cape Greco-Ayia Napa main road at about 2.15am when his van was involved in a head on collision with another vehicle, driven by 24- year-old Michalis Ouloupis from Sotira village. Demetris Demetriou, 21, also from Sotira, was a passenger in Ouloupis’s car.

    All three men were initially taken to Paralimni Hospital, where Demetriou was given first aid before being released. Ouloupis and Hadjikyriakou were later transferred to Larnaca Hospital, where the former was kept in overnight. Hadjikyriakou died from his injuries at about 5am.

    Famagusta police are investigating the cause of the accident.

    Copyright Cyprus Mail 2003


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