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Cyprus Mail: Press Review in English, 99-06-17

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From: The Cyprus Mail at <>

Thursday, June 17, 1999


Job Centre



/ 'Nuclear smugglers transit through Cyprus'


THE CONTROVERSY surrounding food imports from Belgium continued to be given first-page prominence as was the latest speculation relating to the Cyprus peace efforts.


_ avoided both issues, leading with a report that alleged that the US considered Cyprus to be one of the world's most popular transit stations for the smuggling of nuclear material. State-of-the art electronic equipment that can detect nuclear materials and radiation had been installed at Larnaca airport and Limassol port for this reason.

The paper also claimed that a nuclear reactor had been found in a container that was passing through Larnaca airport. The reactor had arrived from the Ukraine and was thought to be destined for Iran. The reactor was impounded and is still at Larnaca airport.


_ complained that two weeks after the breakout of the dioxin scandal, the Cyprus authorities had still not been informed by the Belgian authorities as which to products were safe and which were not. The Co-ordinating Committee for Public Health has been trying to find out which products had been produced at units or from raw materials contaminated by dioxin.

Once the Committee is informed by the Belgian authorities, it will order the destruction of unsuitable products. Other Belgian products will remain in storage until evidence proving that they do not contain dioxin is provided.


_ reported that the Public Health Committee had adopted a series of suggestions about handling the dioxin issue that were based on the guidelines from the EU, which has decided to lift the embargo on Belgian products as long as they carry a "certificate of suitability".

Some additional measures were also expected to be taken by the Cyprus authorities, which would have to lift the embargo if they were to align themselves with the EU.


_ said the Cyprus problem would be discussed by President Clinton and the EU Troika (Germany, Austria and Finland) in Bonn next Monday. Clinton, who will be touring European capitals, is also expected to raise the issue of Turkey's relations with the EU during his meeting. Cyprus will feature as part of this discussion in view of autumn's diplomatic initiative.

The US-EU meeting will take place immediately after the weekend summit of the G8. According to a US official, Cyprus is not on the G8 agenda, which includes some 20 topics.


_ reported that the Turkish side had rejected the involvement of both the G8 and the US in the Cyprus peace efforts. According to a Turkish newspaper, Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit had written to Bill Clinton to question US interest in Cyprus. "We find it difficult to understand why the Cyprus issue is of such concern to you," Ecevit reportedly said in his letter.

The paper also quoted Turkey's minister for Cyprus affairs Sukru Gurel backing Rauf Denktash's opposition to G8 involvement in the peace process.


_ gave prominence to the feud between Disy deputy Christos Pourgourides and lawyer Pavlos Angelides. The latter called on the deputy to resign because he said he had behaved unethically; Pourgourides had used his position as deputy to amend a law that would have otherwise led to the sentencing of a client of his law firm.

© Copyright Cyprus Mail 1999

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