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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 07-05-15

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From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>




    A democratic Turkey in the European Union will serve the interests of both the Turkish and the Cypriot people, provided that Ankara ends its decades-long military occupation and meets its commitments to Brussels, House President Demetris Christofias has said.

    In his toast at a formal dinner in honour of South Australian Premier Mike Rann, Christofias reiterated that a political settlement in Cyprus, of a bizonal bicommunal federation, must be based on international law, UN resolutions and European principles and must also serve the interests of the people of Cyprus as a whole and not the interests of third parties.

    He noted that Rann, on an official visit here at the invitation of the House President, has been a firm supporter of the struggle of the people of Cyprus to rid their country of the illegal Turkish occupation.

    Rann has recently given us a prime example of his strong support when it comes to issues of principle relating to Cyprus. He secured a commitment by a Labour government, which might emerge in the forthcoming Australian elections, that it will work for a just and viable settlement, including the reunification and the demilitarization of the country, Christofias said.

    The House President expressed regret that the Turkish side has reneged a UN-brokered agreement to prepare the ground for substantive negotiations, through talks between representatives of the leaders of the two communities who will work to set up working groups and technical committees to deal with substantive issues as well as issues that affect the day to day life of the people in Cyprus.

    In spite of Turkeys attitude so far, we support the accession of a democratic Turkey in the EU because we believe that it serves the interests of the Turkish and the Cypriot people, provided that Ankara ends its occupation and meets fully its commitments to the EU, including commitments to Cyprus, he concluded.


    New Defence Minister Christodoulos Pashiardis has stressed that there is no room for confrontation, biased behaviour or experimentation with meritocracy in the ranks of the armed forces. Speaking at a special ceremony to assume his duties at the Defence Ministry, he said he would be happy if he could contribute to achieving the objectives set out by the ministry, stressing that strengthening the Republics armed forces is not an optional alternative but a national obligation, which has to be neither postponed nor neglected.

    We need a concerted effort and a spirit of cooperation, in particular at our ministry. There is no room for a lot of talking here, we need seriousness, responsibility and creativity, without much fanfare and publicity, he said, and called on everybody to contribute to this effort. Pashiardis paid tribute to his predecessor, the late Nikos Symeonides, saying he will do his best to serve the goals of the defence ministry.

    Acting Defence Minister Finance Minister Michalis Sarris referred to Pashiardis many qualities that will help him carry out his duties and said he has known him as a hard worker, effective administrator who performs his duties with integrity. Sarris also said that the ministry is manned with important and worthy personnel who will assist the new minister in the execution of his duties.

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