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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 07-05-23

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From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>




    The political parties that support the government will be the first to know of the Presidents intentions with regard to next years presidential elections, Government Spokesman Vasilis Palmas said here today.

    His comments come as parties are intensifying their discussions and debate on Februarys presidential elections, with some observers suggesting that Papadopoulos will seek re-election and others saying that his main backer, General Secretary of AKEL Demetris Christofias, will also run. This in addition to speculation that former foreign minister Ioannis Kasoulides will run and the certain candidacy of former agriculture minister Costas Themistocleous, who has already announced his intention to run.

    Responding to questions about the Presidents intentions in relation to AKELs decision on its preference for the presidency, the spokesman said that this concerned Papadopoulos himself and he was not in a position to answer.

    Palmas said he had no reason to question Christofias statement that he had discussed his possible candidacy with the President.

    The President and the House President (Christofias) meet very regular and they exchange views almost on a daily basis. However I am not in a position to say exactly what they discuss, he added.

    The other main government partner leader of the Social Democratic Movement EDEK Yiannakis Omirou, whose party has already announced its intention to back Papadopoulos for a second term in office, said that the objective is to have the chosen candidate elected in the first round of the presidential elections.

    Replying to questions, Omirou said he had no hesitation in saying from now that EDEK will not support a candidate backed by the main opposition party Democratic Rally (DISY).

    EDEK Central Committee will debate a proposal to back Papadopoulos before the party announces its final decision on the elections.

    We have a duty, together with other forces, to safeguard the decision of the Greek Cypriots in April 2004, he said, referring to the overwhelming rejection (76 per cent) of a UN-proposed solution plan for Cyprus.

    Papadopoulos at the time called on the Greek Cypriots to say a resounding no to the proposed plan, saying it did not serve the purpose of reunification, nor did it serve the interests of the people of Cyprus.

    In his remarks about the presidential race, honorary leader of EDEK Vassos Lyssarides said each party has the right to make its own choices.

    EDEK is not concerned about a second round of elections because it does not want a second round. If there is agreement and the parties say they wish to maintain their tripartite coalition, there will not be a second round, he added.


    Ambassador of the Islamic Republic of Iran to Cyprus Ali Reza Bikdeli has expressed the support of his country to efforts for a Cyprus settlement, based on UN decisions and international law.

    The Iranian Ambassador was speaking during a meeting in Nicosia with House of Representatives President Demetris Christofias, who reaffirmed that the Greek Cypriot side was dedicated to seeking a mutually acceptable solution, based on a bizonal, bicommunal federation, which would guarantee respect of human rights for all citizens of the island.

    Christofias said that the Greek Cypriot community rejected a UN-proposed solution plan (the Annan plan) because it did not meet the real interests of the Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots but served the interests of third parties.

    Both Christofias and Bikdeli referred to the role Cyprus can play as an EU member state, especially in the Union`s external policy in countries of the wider region, which expect Cyprus to establish itself as a bridge of communication between these countries and the EU.


    The European Parliament has adopted, by an overwhelming majority, a compromise agreement on roaming charges of public mobile networks. The European Parliament has ensured that customers will benefit from cheaper roaming by the summer holidays.

    According to the compromise, the average wholesale charge excluding VAT that a ``visited`` operator can levy on a roaming customers ``home`` operator for the provision of roaming calls will be capped at 0.30 euros per minute instead of the proposed placing 0.36 euros on the average wholesale price. The cap, in line with MEP proposals, will decrease automatically by 2 cents per year over a three-year period after the regulation`s entry into force. The maximum retail charge excluding VAT for regulated roaming calls will be capped at 0.49 euros per minute for calls made and 0.24 euros per minute for calls received.

    Furthermore, the cap for outgoing calls will decrease automatically by 3 cents per year; the cap for incoming calls will decrease by 2 cents after the first year and 3 cents after the second year. As MEPs insisted, home providers will have to offer the Eurotariff to all their customers.

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