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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 08-11-11

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From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>




    The negotiating process between Cyprus President Demetris Christofias and Turkish Cypriot leader Mehmet Ali Talat, aiming at finding a comprehensive solution to the Cyprus problem, is progressing according to the positions submitted at the negotiating table, Government Spokesman Stephanos Stephanou has said, adding that if the positions are reasonable there is a good pace in the negotiations, if not, then talks cannot get anywhere.

    Speaking after a meeting with the Board of the Union of Cyprus Journalists, Stephanou said that the meetings between the aides of the two leaders, George Iacovou and Ozdil Nami, fall within the framework of the negotiation process.

    He added that the aim of these meetings is to handle and further discuss issues that will be raised at the next meeting of the leaders, or talk about issues arising from previews meetings.

    ``This makes the negotiating process more efficient and increases the possibilities to reach agreements on specific issues``, he explained.

    Stephanou pointed out that the negotiating process is progressing according to what positions are being submitted at the negotiating table.

    ``If the positions are reasonable and they reflect the basis of what the two communities have agreed on so far, then, we have a good pace in the negotiations. If not, even meetings on a daily basis cannot get anywhere. So everything depends on what is being submitted at the table``, the Spokesman concluded.


    The Republic of Cyprus and the State of Qatar signed here seven bilateral agreements to enhance cooperation between the two countries.

    The bilateral agreements were signed after talks at the Presidential Palace between President of the Republic of Cyprus Demetris Christofias and Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs of Qatar Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim bin Jabr al Thani and delegations from the two countries. Sheikh al Thani and his entourage were received earlier Tuesday by President Christofias and members of the Cabinet.

    Speaking after the official talks and the signing of the agreements, President Christofias described as very significant the seven agreements achieved in various sectors. He said Sheikh al Thanis visit constitutes a cornerstone in relations between the two countries.

    During our talks, we have agreed to develop rapidly, the economic, tourist and political relations between the Republic of Cyprus and the Qatar Emirate, the President remarked. President Christofias accepted an invitation by the Prime Minister of Qatar to visit Qatar. Regarding the Cyprus issue, President Christofias thanked the PM for his readiness and great understanding exhibited in the analysis he made on the Cyprus issue.

    President Christofias said Qatar maintains very friendly and close relations with Turkey and for this reason I have asked the Prime Minister to make use of these relations to ensure that Turkey understands that the successful outcome of the current difficult efforts for a just, viable and functional solution of the Cyprus problem will be to its benefit as far as its accession to the EU is concerned.

    The Cypriot President repeated Cyprus full support in the struggle of Arab countries and especially the Palestinian people for justification based on UN resolutions and the agreements that have been achieved in creating an independent Palestine state.

    Sheikh al-Thani, speaking through an interpreter, thanked the President for the warm reception noting that todays discussions were merely the start of a course to develop relations between the two countries, noting that his country has great aspirations to enhance these relations.

    Today, we have managed to set a small foundation in building these relations, in enhancing relations between the two countries and I have conveyed an invitation from the Emir of Qatar to the President of the Republic to visit our country and we hope that he will soon, the Prime Minister said. On the Cyprus problem, Sheikh al-Thani said it is a fact that his country maintains very good relations with Turkey and hoped that the Cyprus problem will be solved soon.

    We hope that this issue is resolved through negotiations, through diplomatic dialogue and wish that peace and security prevail in the region for the benefit of all countries, he added.


    Sixteen graves around the deserted Georgian monastery near Gialia village in the Paphos District were revealed during excavations, which brought to the surface clayware and glass vessels.

    According to a press release by the Department of Antiquities of the Ministry of Communications and Works, the Georgian mission`s fourth excavation season was completed successfully on 29 May 2008, under the direction of Dr. David Mindorashvili, which has been excavating the monastery for three years.

    The excavation is co-organised by the Georgian Ministry of Culture, Protection of Monuments and Sports and the Department of Antiquities of Cyprus. Georghios Philotheou is the Archaeological Officer in charge on behalf of the Department of Antiquities.

    The aim of the excavation was the study of the area around the monastery where the revelation of the archaeological finds as contemporary with the monastery was expected.

    The water basin of great capacity (10x3x5m) built in the 12th century was completely studied while excavating the area south of the monastery.

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