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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 08-01-25

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

From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>


  • [03] FM - LIBYA - MEETINGS


    Cypriot President Tassos Papadopoulos pointed out on Friday that ``we cannot have sustainable and regional security without the creation of a viable and territorially contiguous Palestinian state living in peace and prosperity, side by side with a secure Israel.``

    In remarks during the international conference ``Peace Perspectives in the Middle East: A Focus on the Arab-Israeli Conflict``, organised in Nicosia by Daedalos Institute of Geopolitics and the Middle East Studies of the Nicosia University, President Papadopoulos said ``we cannot have a comprehensive peace in the Middle East without the peaceful resolution of the other tracks of the Arab-Israeli conflict, namely the Lebanese and the Syrian tracks,`` adding that ``to this effect, engagement of regional actors is essential, and the cooperation of the European Union with the Arab League is also beneficial.``

    ``Almost two months after the Annapolis Conference and the reinvigoration of the peace process between Israel and the Palestinians, we have not witnessed any improvements on the ground. On the contrary, the security situation has deteriorated, with both Israeli and Palestinian civilians being the victims of spiraling violence,`` he said.

    He added that ``at the same time, the humanitarian situation in the occupied Palestinian territories, exacerbated by the current blockage of Gaza from Israel, still remains a source of grave concern, not only for the short-term negative consequences to the peace process but also due to the potential growth of political and religious radicalism which flourishes in such conditions of political and economic stagnation.``

    Referring to the role Cyprus can play towards a peaceful settlement of the Arab-Israeli conflict and regional security in general, President Papadopoulos said that since it`s accession to the EU, ``Cyprus has been transformed into the Union`s external frontier in the Eastern Mediterranean and its potential to act as a political, economic and cultural bridge between the EU and the Middle East has been further enhanced.``

    He added that ``in the endeavor to establish a coherent framework of principles and rules of justice and democracy throughout the region, Cyprus has a significant comparative advantage vis-a-vis other countries, which derives from the fact that it enjoys cordial bilateral relations with all its neighbors, both the Arab countries and Israel,`` adding that ``our objective is clear, namely peace and security in the Middle East.``

    President Papadopoulos pointed out that ``the geostrategic importance of Cyprus was highlighted in practical terms during the crisis in Lebanon in the summer of 2006`` and that ``the expansion of the mandate of the UN Interim Force in Lebanon to include a naval component resulted in the use of the port of Limassol by the participating EU countries as a base of their fleet.``

    ``The successful establishment and functioning of such a comprehensive peacekeeping operation, through the vital assistance of an adjacent EU member state, proves that Cyprus is a strategic access strip for the speedy and secure deployment to the Middle East of UN or EU peacekeeping forces,`` he added.

    Further to this, he said, Cyprus ``is assisting the modernisation of the civil service of Lebanon and of the Palestinian Authority.``

    ``It is my conviction that particularly on the Palestinian track, a well-trained, transparent and efficient civil service will reflect positively on the peace process. Through our government`s Strategy for Development Cooperation we have allocated over 3 million US dollars for both Lebanon and the Palestinian Authority for capacity and institution-building projects for the period 2008-2010,`` the President said..

    He added that, ``more importantly, and due to the geographical proximity of Cyprus to both Lebanon and the Palestinian Territories, as well as our infrastructure, it becomes evident that Cyprus can be also utilised by EU member states, as well as governmental and non governmental international organisations, for such purposes of capacity and institution building.``

    ``Indeed, mutual and simultaneous steps, as prescribed by the Roadmap, need to be taken by both parties in order to build a political environment of cooperation and trust,`` he pointed out.


    Greek Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis has said that ending actions which contravene the international law is a precondition for the full normalization of the Greco-Turkish relations.

    Speaking at the Turkish-Greek Business Forum, which took place n Constantinople, Karamanlis noted that Greece aims at the full normalization of its relations with Turkey, adding:

    We firmly pursue the full normalization of the Greco-Turkish relations. In order to achieve substantive progress, actions which contravene international law or cause tension should end. Our relations should be based on European values, the principles of the European Union.

    [03] FM - LIBYA - MEETINGS

    Cypriot Minister of Foreign Affairs Erato Kozakou Marcoullis held a series of meetings with Libyan officials, during a working visit to the country, where she signed a Memorandum of Understanding for consultations between the Ministries of Foreign Affairs of Cyprus and Libya.

    According to an official press release, Marcoullis, who is visiting Libya at the invitation of the country`s Minister of Foreign Affairs Abdurrahman Shalgam, held meetings with Prime Minister El Baghdadi A. Mahmudi, General Secretary of the General People`s Congress Al-Zanati Mohamed Al-Zanati, Secretary for European Affairs at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Abdelati Alobidi and Secretary of the National Oil Corporation Shukri Ghanem.

    During her meeting with the Prime Minister, Marcoullis handed him a letter from President Tassos Papadopoulos addressed to Libyan leader Colonel Mu`ammar Abu-Minyar al Qadhafi. The Prime Minister requested that she convey the regards of the Libyan leader and his own towards President Papadopoulos and the people of Cyprus.


    The European Commission made a detailed presentation on Friday of the operational programme ``Fisheries`` for the period 2007-2013 for Cyprus, which was approved on 19 December 2007.

    The total eligible public expenditure of the programme amounts to 39,448,836 euros, of which 50% will be covered through the European Fisheries Fund (EFF).

    The Commission has announced that during the period 2004-2006, Cyprus benefited from EU support under the Financial Instrument for Fisheries Guidance (FIFG), amounting to 3,419,073 euros. As a result, a relatively large number of projects received financial support. The capacity of the fishing fleet was reduced by 560 GT (2,515 KW), twelve new investments in aquaculture were co-financed, fishing shelters were improved and seven investments in the processing industry also received support.

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