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Cyprus News Agency: News in English (PM), 98-03-26

Cyprus News Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>


  • [01] Chief EU negotiators to meet in Prague
  • [02] Excellent Cyprus-Greece coordination
  • [03] Cyprus Stock Exchange
  • [04] Puppet regime bans T/C women from meeting with G/C
  • [05] Cordovez briefs envoys on Cyprus
  • [06] Cyprus Greens protest Turkey's nuclear plans

  • 1430:CYPPRESS:01

    [01] Chief EU negotiators to meet in Prague

    Nicosia, Mar 26 (CNA) -- Cyprus chief negotiator for the accession talks with the European Union, George Vassiliou, was due to leave today for the Czhech Republic, for meetings with his counterparts from the five other countries that will begin membership talks end of March.

    "The Czech government has taken the initiative to invite the chief negotiators to Prague, to exchange views in anticipation of the EU talks," Vassiliou said, after meeting here today Finance Minister Christodoulos Christodoulou.

    He said this is the second meeting of the chief negotiators, the first was held in December, that takes place a few days before the accession process will be officially launched.

    The accession process of the six countries (Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Slovenia, Hungary, Poland) will be launched at a Foreign Ministers' meeting in Brussels, March 30-31.

    Vassiliou said at the Prague meeting, the applicant countries will examine ways of cooperating.

    "I will examine how Cyprus could offer the other countries as it has more and different experiences than the former socialist countries," he added.

    Tomorrow, Vassiliou and the other five chief negotiators, will call on Prime Minister Vaclav Havel and will then attend a meeting at the Foreign Ministry.

    Later on they will meet Czech Foreign Minister Jaroslav Sedivy.

    The former Cyprus President will be in Brussels on Monday to join Cyprus Foreign Minister Ioannis Kasoulides, for the start of the accession process.

    Referring to Cyprus' bid to join the EU, Vassiliou pointed out "the road ahead is difficult, we need hard work and a common target."

    He also expressed concern that the Cyprus economy is not in convergence with the basic Maastricht indexes.

    "At the moment, there tends to be an increased deficit and a higher inflation rate than in the rest of Europe," Vassiliou said.

    However, the Finance Minister expressed disagreement even though he acknowledged there is a need to examine economic tendencies.

    Pointing out difficulties that the Cyprus economy has faced in the past two years, such as a serious drought, Christodoulou described the Cyprus economy as "healthy".

    "The only index with which there is no convergence is the public deficit, which has reached 5 per cent, whereas according to the Maastricht indexes it should be 3 per cent," he added. CNA RM/KN/MA/GP/1998


    [02] Excellent Cyprus-Greece coordination

    Nicosia, Mar 26 (CNA) -- The governments of Cyprus and Greece enjoy "absolute and unwavering" coordination in their moves, Government Spokesman Christos Stylianides said here today.

    He also welcomed comments by Greek Foreign Minister, Theodoros Pangalos, that Greece would support Cyprus in the event of a Turkish offensive against the island or the defensive missiles system it intends to deploy.

    "The government is ready to look into the possibility of suspending or cancelling the deployment of the Russian missiles if significant steps are made leading to the demilitarisation of Cyprus within a specified timetable, " Stylianides said.

    The Russian-made surface-to-air missiles system, ordered by the Cyprus government January 1997, is expected to be deployed here later this year.

    Welcoming Pangalos' expression of support, the spokesman said his statement "is part of the coordination between Greece and Cyprus in defence and strategic matters, as these are defined in our joint defence pact."

    Nicosia and Athens agreed on a joint defence pact in November 1993.

    Commenting on a separate statement by Pangalos that he cannot see at present an American initiative on Cyprus, Stylianides said "the government believes that further pressure should be exerted to bow Turkish intransigence and we are trying to promote these views with the help of the Greek government."

    The government, he pointed out, wishes to see "more effective pressure by the international community, which would lead to a comprehensive settlement, and hopes this can be achieved."

    Dismissing press suggestions that there is a rift in the views of the government and those expressed by Pangalos, on a US initiative, Stylianides said the Greek Foreign Minister referred to a more productive initiative on a different level.

    "No-one can claim there is no American initiative since there exist a line of communication and US Presidential Emissary, Richard Holbrooke, is expected to visit Cyprus," Stylianides added.

    The government as well as Pangalos expect to see a more substantive intervention, he concluded.

    CNA MM/MA/1998

    [03] Cyprus Stock Exchange

    Nicosia, Mar 26 (CNA) -- The Cyprus Stock Exchange (CSE) All Share Index closed at today's stock exchange meeting as follows:
    CSE All Share Index                    88,43 (-0,21)
    Sectural Indices
    Banks                                  98,74 ( 0,21)
    Approved Investment Companies          65,94 (-1,58)
    Insurance Companies                    66,36 (-1,06)
    Industrial Companies                   86,25 (-0,55)
    Tourist Industries                     78,02 ( 1,62)
    Commercial Companies                   54,79 (-0,74)
    Other Companies                        82,51 (-3,37)
    Trading Volume                         1.511.332
    * The difference in brackets represents the percentage increase (+) or decrease (-) of the index from the previous stock exchange meeting.
    CNA AP/1998

    [04] Puppet regime bans T/C women from meeting with G/C

    Nicosia, Mar 26 (CNA) -- The illegal Turkish Cypriot regime has banned four trade unionists from traveling to London to attend a peace meeting with Greek Cypriots.

    According to the Turkish Cypriot press, three women of the self-styled "civil service" in the Turkish-occupied areas of Cyprus were not allowed to leave for London yesterday, because they were not granted a leave from their jobs.

    Another Turkish Cypriot woman working for the illegal "civil service" was today barred from leaving the pseudostate for London, it was reported Thursday.

    The four were to attend a peace meeting in the British capital and have talks with Greek Cypriot women.

    However, seven other Turkish Cypriot women managed to go to London for the meeting, the press reports said.

    "The organisers of such meetings have ill intentions," Taner Etkin, the illegal regime's so-called "foreign minister" was quoted as saying.

    The decision prompted reaction from Turkish Cypriot trade unions and strong criticism from Turkish Cypriot newspapers that reported on the issue under headlines such as "Dictatorship" and "Human Rights on the shelf".

    This ban is part of a recent tactic by Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash not to allow any meetings between the Greek and Turkish Cypriots, on the island, which aim at forging closer ties between the two communities.

    Denktash also refuses to attend the UN-led peace talks aiming at a comprehensive settlement of the long-standing Cyprus question, unless his illegal regime is internationally recognised.

    Only Turkey recognises the puppet regime, unilaterally declared in November 1983, and the UN has called on all states "not to recognise" the self-styled entity and "not to facilitate or in any way assist the aforesaid secessionist entity."

    Turkish troops have been occupying 37 per cent of Cyprus territory since they invaded in 1974, in violation of repeated UN resolutions calling for their withdrawal.

    CNA AP/MA/1998

    [05] Cordovez briefs envoys on Cyprus

    Nicosia, Mar 26 (CNA) -- UN Secretary-General's special advisor for Cyprus, Diego Cordovez, today met in Geneva with foreign government envoys on the Cyprus problem.

    Cordovez briefed the envoys on his recent meetings in Nicosia, Athens and Ankara, aimed at the resumption of the UN-led Cyprus peace talks.

    The UN envoy told a press conference his main objective is to achieve a meeting between President Glafcos Clerides and Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash.

    According to the Cyprus radio, Cordovez said Denktash asked to meet the UN chief to find out how the Security Council reacts to his demand for recognition of the illegal regime in the Turkish-occupied areas of Cyprus.

    The meeting between Denktash and Kofi Annan will take place in Geneva, on Saturday.

    Denktash has said he will no longer participate in peace negotiations unless there is recognition of his puppet regime, unilaterally declared in 1983 in the areas occupied by Turkish troops since they invaded the island, in 1974.

    So far negotiations have been held between the leaders of the Greek and Turkish Cypriot communities of Cyprus.

    Cordovez reiterated that he has informed the Security Council three times on Denktash's demand and said it was not favourably received.

    He pointed out that President Clerides and Denktash are only considered politically equal during negotiations, where they have the same rights and obligations.

    Meanwhile, private TV station Antenna reported from Geneva that the American and Russian representatives have said they were not in favour of a change in the basis of the negotiations.

    US representative Tom Miller, Russian envoy Vladimir Tchizhov, as well as Sir David Hannay, the representative of Britain and the European Union's presidency, participated in the Geneva meeting.

    CNA MA/AP/1998

    [06] Cyprus Greens protest Turkey's nuclear plans

    Nicosia, Mar 26 (CNA) -- The Ecological and Environmental Movement (Cyprus Green Party) today sent a message of solidarity and support to Turkey's anti-nuclear campaigners in their struggle against their country's nuclear plans.

    The Cypriot environmentalists are trying to establish a permanent co- operation with their Turkish counterparts and pacifists who are fighting against the construction of the nuclear plant in Akkuyu, on Turkey's southern coast.

    Cypriot and Turkish environmentalists are planning on holding simultaneous activities on March 28, with massive demonstrations in Ankara and Nicosia.

    At a press conference here Thursday, the Green Party pointed to the danger from the operation of nuclear reactors and said they will affect the Eastern Mediterranean region and beyond.

    "The Chernobyl accident, 12 years ago, caused death and destruction at a radius that nobody had anticipated. The capital of Cyprus lies only 125 kilometres from Akkuyu," it said.

    Forms of renewable energy are gradually replacing nuclear energy worldwide, it added.

    "On the contrary, the plans for the construction of the Akkuyu nuclear reactor, in an area of high earthquake danger, using questionable technology is an ethical challenge."

    The Cyprus Green Party will step up its efforts to stop Turkey's nuclear plans, by informing Cypriots and people in the Eastern Mediterranean on the dangers from such plans, in co-operation with other groups and parties in the region.

    It will also exercise pressure on countries supplying nuclear technology to investigate the impact of its use.

    They will ask the European greens to help prevent the expansion of nuclear reactors in the Mediterranean region, while at the same time they will protest to international organisations.

    The Cypriot environmentalists will also support the Greenpeace initiative to encourage the use of renewable energy sources in Turkey and the Mediterranean.

    "We aim at promoting co-operation between the Green parties and environmental groups in the area, as a fundamental step towards peace, respect of human rights and sustainable development," they stressed.

    Earlier this week the Parliament's Environment Committee discussed the issue and expressed concern over the real purpose of the Turkish project.

    Committee President, Demetris Eliades, said the World Bank does no longer fund projects like the construction of nuclear plants in developing countries, because they are not considered economically viable.

    "The fact that Turkey is investing into projects that are not economically viable creates suspicion that it does not aim at producing electrical energy using nuclear reactors, but to develop its own nuclear weapons," he concluded.

    The Cyprus Government has asked the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to ascertain whether Turkey's southern areas are earthquake prone, in a bid to prevent the proposed construction of nuclear reactors.

    Foreign Minister Ioannis Kasoulides informed the House of Representatives about a government request to the IAEA to establish whether there is a risk of accident or leak of nuclear material, in case of an earthquake.

    He said the area suffered from two tremors in 1925 and 1956, measuring 7,0 on the Richter scale.

    Last week the Council of Ministers approved an agreement between the Cyprus Republic and the IAEA regarding the application of guarantees in relation to the Nuclear Proliferation Treaty.

    CNA DA/MM/MA/1998
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