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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 07-11-09

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From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>




    Cyprus is making representations to Islamic countries, members of the Organisation of the Islamic Conference (OIC), with regard to an illegal landing by a OIC official in the Republics Turkish occupied areas.

    The Foreign Ministry has instructed all heads of missions accredited to OIC members to protest the action of the OIC President of the Chamber of Commerce to land his private jet at an illegal airport near the village of Tymbou, in the northern Turkish occupied part of Cyprus.

    Speaking before departing for meetings in Cairo and Damascus, Foreign Minister Erato Kozakou-Marcoullis said her ministry reported the incident to Eurocontrol, noting that both the authorities of the Republic and Eurocontrol were misled.

    Marcoullis said representatives were also made to the government in Dubai where the flight originated. I want to stress that the flight path of this private plane had Antalya as its destination and both the authorities of the Republic but also Eurocontrol were deceived.

    Instead of the plane heading to Antalya, she said, it went to the illegal airport near the occupied village of Tymbou and the incident will be reported to all relevant authorities.

    Referring to her trip to Cairo, Marcoullis said that on Saturday she will hold talks with her Egyptian counterpart and the SG of the Arab League with whom she will sign a Memorandum of Understanding between the Republic of Cyprus and the Arab League which she described as very important.

    Marcoullis said they will discuss the Cyprus problem and the Middle East issue which is entering a critical phase with the preparations for the Annapolis meeting, as well as the situation in Lebanon and Cyprus relations with Arab countries.

    She said she will go to Damascus on Saturday night for talks on Sunday with the President and Vice President of the country to discuss the Cyprus problem, the Middle East issue and other international concerns.

    On her visit to Lebanon yesterday, Marcoullis said it was a very important and interesting visit and she had the opportunity to hold talks with the countrys Prime minister, the President of the Parliament and the leader of the majority in the Parliament, as well as to have a working lunch with her Lebanese counterpart.

    I am completely satisfied both with the level of contacts I had as well as their contents, she said, adding that there is a deep appreciation on the part of Lebanese officials and the people for Cyprus contribution to the country throughout the years, and the help it continues to provide for the countrys reconstruction as well as the role Cyprus can play as a member of the EU.

    Cyprus has been divided since 1974 when Turkish troops invaded and occupied the islands northern third. The illegal regime in the Turkish occupied north of Cyprus is recognised only by Ankara.


    Britain continues to urge both sides in Cyprus to engage constructively with the UN to enable settlement negotiations to start as soon as possible.

    The statement was made by British Minister for Europe Jim Murphy, answering questions by Conservative MP Ann Winterton at the House of Commons about the issue of the Turkish Cypriot properties in the government controlled areas of the Republic, religious freedom and cultural heritage on the island.

    Murphy said the the issue of property in Cyprus is complex, with many Cypriots from both communities unable to return to their homes. Ultimately, he said, Britain believes that this difficult issue is only likely to be fully resolved in the context of a comprehensive settlement. In this context, we continue to urge both sides to engage constructively with the UN to enable settlement negotiations to start as soon as possible.


    The new Larnaca airport will be completed in June 2009, according to the company in charge of the construction of the airport.

    Cyprus President Tassos Papadopoulos, who toured the construction site, said he was very impressed with the progress, the coordination and the planning of the project by the strategic investor. A new airport in Paphos, on the west, is also under construction and is expected to be completed and become operational before the end of 2008.

    He said this was a unique project, noting that the runway is set to be one of the most sturdy ever built and that the airport, once completed, will prove to be very operational.

    Papadopulos said the consortium of companies which has undertaken to build the airport shows high quality work, adding that in two years and two days from now, the first passenger will be served at the airport.

    The new five-storey airport will have 100 thousand square metres covered area and will serve 7.5 million passengers per year.

    There will be 67 check-in desks and eight automatic check-in points, with sufficient parking for 27 planes and 22 airgates


    Within the next few weeks tests in London and Cyprus will show the extent of the foot and mouth disease (FMD) on the island as well as its type, Minister of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Environment Photis Photiou has said, noting that from the moment the last case appears a three month period must pass before measures are lifted.

    Speaking after a meeting at the Veterinary Services, Photiou also said that EU Health Commissioner Marcos Kyprianou reassured him today that Cyprus cooperates fully with the special measures to tackle the problem and should continue to take these measures.

    We have meetings on a daily basis, two - three times a day and this will continue for a while, the minister said, noting that according to the EU Commissioner and European experts this situation will need a lot of time to be sorted out and might last for two three months.

    The instructions, the Minister said, are clear: From the moment the last incident appears, there shall be a period of around three months before we ease or lift the measures.

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