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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 08-04-09

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From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>




    The developments regarding the progress on the Cyprus problem are going on smoothly and positively, Cypriot President Dimitris Christofias has said.

    Speaking after a National Councils session, here, today, President Christofias said that during the session he did not notice any negative reactions by the members of the National Council, regarding his handlings in the Cyprus issue. At the same time, he expressed the belief that the working groups and the technical committees will be able to operate in a week from now.

    President Christofias also pointed out that the way ahead has to be seen with seriousness. There is progress, and when this progress is positive, I am satisfied, he added. Commenting on the illegal visit of the Turkish General Ilter Basbug to the occupied areas, Christofias noted that this can only be viewed as a provocative action.

    This is something the United Nations and the International community are well aware, and they do not feel happy when leaders of the Turkish Military Forces visit the occupied area in order to inspect the troops, especially at a time when a positive effort has begun, Christofias added.


    Cypriot Presidential Commissioner George Iacovou and Ozdil Nami, aide to the Turkish Cypriot leader, finalized the agenda of another three working groups and technical committees in a 5 hour-long meeting.

    After today`s meeting, the number of technical committee and working groups, the agenda of which has been agreed, reached eight out of a total of 13 agreed by the two aides on March 26.

    Iacovou explained that today`s meeting took five hours to conclude because the two sides entered into the ``most important issues`` to be covered by the technical committees and working groups.

    ``We are towards the end and I expect that we will conclude all 13 working groups and technical committees, and (we will finish) perhaps by tomorrow night of Friday,`` he added.

    Iacovou also said that the work agreed between the two aides is on an ad referendum basis, that is, to be given the final approval by the leaders of the two communities, noting that he expects that another technical committee and one more working group will be created in addition to the 13 agreed initially.


    The European Parliament voted in favour of approving Androula Vassiliou as the new European Commissioner for Public Health, Food Safety, Animal Health and Welfare, with 446 votes in favour, 7 against and 29 abstentions.

    The result was announced by the EP President Hans-Gert Pottering.

    Vassiliou was subject to a hearing on April 1, before Members of the European Parliament from the Committee on the Environment, the Public Health and Food Safety Committee, the Agriculture and Rural Development Committee, the Committee on the Internal Market and Consumer Protection, and the Committee on Employment and Social Affairs.

    On the hearing, Vassiliou answered more than 60 questions raised by the members of the Parliament on issues regarding her post.

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