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Cyprus News Agency: News in English (AM), 99-06-12

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

From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>


  • [01] Kasoulides - Singapore - South Africa - Luxembourg
  • [02] Protest rally - Ocalan - Trial
  • [03] British minister - Turkey - Loizidou case

  • 1320:CYPPRESS:01

    [01] Kasoulides - Singapore - South Africa - Luxembourg

    by Myria Antoniadou

    Hong Kong, Jun 12 (CNA) -- Cyprus Foreign Minister Ioannis Kasoulides left Hong Kong today for Singapore for a meeting with his counterpart Shanmugam Jayakumar.

    The Cypriot minister will then fly on to South Africa to represent the Republic of Cyprus in the inauguration ceremony for the country's new President Thabo Mbeki.

    While in South Africa, Kasoulides will have "substantive talks" with Greece's Foreign Minister George Papandreou.

    Kasoulides told CNA here today that he will discuss with his Singaporean counterpart issues relating to the Commonwealth, the UN General Assembly, the international situation and bilateral cooperation in the offshore sector.

    Both Cyprus and Singapore are thriving offshore business centres and cooperation between the two will help Cyprus to act as a bridge for Singapore and vice versa.

    In South Africa, minister Kasoulides will discuss "some developments in the Cyprus problem" with Papandreou and hopes to have the chance to meet with officials from other countries attending Mbeki's inauguration.

    On Monday, June 21, Kasoulides will travel to Luxembourg, where the European Union General Affairs Council will meet.

    In Luxembourg, Kasoulides and other Foreign Ministers from candidate countries, which have started substantive accession negotiations with the EU, will attend a working dinner during which the current EU President, Germany, will brief them about the results of the EU summit to be held between June 18-20, in Cologne.

    Present at these contacts will be Cyprus' chief EU negotiator George Vassiliou.

    CNA MA/MM/GP/1999

    [02] Protest rally - Ocalan - Trial

    Nicosia, Jun 12 (CNA) -- Some 100 people gathered in downtown Eleftheria Square here today to protest the conditions under which Kurdish leader Abdullah Ocalan is being tried.

    Protestors, mainly Kurds residing in Cyprus, called on Turkey to seize the opportunity and try and solve the Kurdish issue.

    They appealed to the UN and other international organisations to exert pressure on Turkey to respect human rights and retry Ocalan in accordance to international legal norms.

    "Ocalan, the key to peace and war", "Turkish troops out of Cyprus and Kurdistan" and "No peace without Ocalan", read some of the banners at the protest rally, which took place without incident.

    A letter, addressed to UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan and signed by Kurds living in Cyprus, called on him "to intervene" and rectify, through his legal and humanitarian representatives, the "bad conditions of Ocalan's trial."

    "The Turkish authorities are faced with a big opportunity to solve the most important problem they have and this opportunity is Ocalan's trial," the letter said.

    If the leader of the Kurdish Workers Party (PKK) is executed, the letter warns, Turkey will be turned into "hell."

    "We call on all UN international organisations to intervene and we ask a retrial in accordance with democratic principles and guarantees for the life of the lawyers, who are constantly under attack," the letter added.

    The Kurds express the view that the UN and human rights organisations "have an obligation to exercise pressure on Turkey to force her to respect human rights and adopt democratic principles for a fair trial."

    Addressing the demonstrators, Stelios Theodoulou, President of the Association for the Protection of Human Rights in Cyprus, described Ocalan's trial as "badly staged and badly produced performance" which is a "flagrant affront to international legal order."

    He said freedom, democracy and human dignity were never offered to anybody by its oppressors.

    "They were won with sacrifice and persistent struggle by people. This is the road the Kurdish people will follow, with or without their leader," Theodoulou said.

    CNA MM/GP/1999

    [03] British minister - Turkey - Loizidou case

    London, Jun 12 (CNA) -- The Chairman of the Committee of Ministers' Deputies at the Council of Europe will seek clarifications from Turkey about its intentions concerning a European Court decision relating to human rights violations in Cyprus, Joyce Quin, Britain's Minister of State at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, has said.

    Replying to a question by Labour MP Andrew Dismor in the House of Commons, about moves by Britain's Foreign Secretary to put pressure on Turkey to comply with the December 1996 ruling, Quin said "at its last meeting on 27 May, the Committee of Ministers' Deputies agreed that its Chair would write to Turkey asking for clarifications of Turkey's intentions."

    Quin said Britain intends to "discuss with our European Union partners, as with other members of the Council of Europe, how best to achieve Turkish implementation of the Court's judgement."

    She said Britain and the EU "continue to make clear to Turkey the need to respect the Court's judgement in this case."

    Turkey has steadfastly refused to comply with the ruling of the Strasbourg-based European Court of Human Rights, asking it to allow Greek Cypriot Titina Loizidou's access to her property in the areas of Cyprus its troops occupy since 1974.

    Turkey was also asked to pay compensation of more than 400,000 Cyprus pounds (about 800,000 million US dollars), including legal costs.

    Ankara claims it has nothing to do with the case despite the fact that the Court ruled that Turkey, through the presence of its troops in occupied Cyprus, exercises effective control of the northern part of the island.

    The Court decision also said the Republic of Cyprus is the sole legitimate government of Cyprus and that Loizidou is and remains the legal owner of her land in occupied Cyprus, noting that her right to peacefully enjoy her property is continuously violated by Turkey.

    The Loizidou judgement is considered by legal circles a "landmark" decision in that it paves the way for other Greek Cypriot displaced persons to seek justice through legal means.

    CNA MM/GP/1999
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