/ Hercus to blame for shift in UN stance
THE CYPRUS problem has become the main news item once again, in the wake of
the G8 document and UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan's report to Security
_ accused UN representative in Cyprus Ann Hercus and the US of being behind
Annan's new stance, which has caused concern among the island's government
and political parties. Annan's latest comments and his report on Cyprus
left the window open for a departure from federation as the basis for a
settlement and introduction of confederation.
Government circles attributed Annan's new stance to the briefings he was
receiving from Hercus and to the intentions of the US, which had repeatedly
said that it was the substance of the settlement that mattered and not its
name. The paper alleged that Hercus was influenced by the US and Britain,
and that her links with the US were the reason the UN had promoted her to
Special Representative to Cyprus.
_ claimed that Turkish diplomacy was working for the calling of a
"quadripartite" meeting -- to be attended by Greece, Turkey and the two
Cyprus communities -- as part of the US initiative. The paper claimed that
Turkey wanted to deflect attention from the fact that it had rejected the
G8 call and that Rauf Denktash had turned down the UN Secretary-general's
call for talks.
The Turkish diplomatic move was being closely monitored by Athens. Although
nothing had been said officially about such a meeting, it was expected to
appear as an option when the efforts to get talks restarted were stepped
up. It was not the first time that Ankara had tried to impose a
quadripartite meeting in order to pre-empt other initiatives and safeguard
the Cyprus status quo, it said.
_ led with excerpts of an interview given by Greece's Foreign Minister
George Papandreou to an Athens paper, in which he said that good relations
between Greece and Turkey could be restored only if there was a Cyprus
settlement. He did not rule out the possibility of taking some steps in
order to improve relations with Turkey in the meantime.
Papandreou had been responding to a question suggesting that the Cyprus
problem was determining Greek foreign policy. He explained that the problem
would always affect Greek-Turkish relations, which was why a settlement was
_ led with Akel's call to the Turkish Cypriots for a "common struggle" for
a united Cyprus. The call was made in a message read at the 17th conference
of the Republican Turkish Party (RTP), in occupied Nicosia, which was
attended by Akel leader Demetris Christofias.
In its message, Akel said that the lack of communication between the two
communities and the absence of a substantive dialogue contributed to the
maintenance of the status quo, "which cannot constitute the future of
Cyprus". The RTP leader Mehmet Ali Talat supported a bizonal, bicommunal
federation and urged Denktash to participate in the talks.
_ reported that the government had decided to go ahead with the liquidation
of the Hellenic Chemical Industries, so as to put an end to scandal
surrounding the company and in order to recoup some of the 50 million
pounds it was owed by the company. The only asset of the company was the
land on which its factory stood, but a large part of that belonged to
Turkish Cypriots, it said.
_ published a letter from the Auditor-general Chrystalla Yiorkadji to the
Finance Ministry, in which she criticised the time it took, after a tender
invitation, for computers to be supplied to government departments. By the
time the computers were delivered they had become obsolete, she said.
© Copyright Cyprus Mail 1999