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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 09-05-10

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From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>




    Cyprus Government Spokesman Stephanos Stephanou said that the Greek Cypriot side wants a settlement of the Cyprus question urgently and is striving to achieve it the soonest possible.

    Speaking during the funeral of the remains of five people from the same family who were killed during the 1974 Turkish invasion of Cyprus, in the village of Palekythro, Stephanou said that only with the settlement of the Cyprus question the people of Cyprus would be vindicated. He assured that we will continue to strive for the vindication of the relatives of our missing persons, who want to know and have every right to know what happened to their beloved ones and added that the identification of remains constitutes a major development as regards the ascertainment of the fate of missing persons, but this is not enough.

    Stephanou noted the need to proceed with the investigations that will ascertain the conditions under which these people were lost, as provided by the relevant European Court of Human Rights decision and assured that the Cypriot government will continue to support the work of the Investigation Committee on Missing Persons until they ascertain the fate of every missing person.

    The remains of Andreas Souppouris (father, 48 years old), Areti Souppouris (mother, 39 years old), Dimitris Souppouris (brother, 6 years old), Julia Souppouris (sister, 2 years old), and Thekla Souppouris (aunt, 47 years old), have recently been located in a mass grave along with the remains of 12 other people, murdered during the same incident in Palekythro and identified through the DNA method.

    Stephanou said that the settlement of the Cyprus question constitutes a firm goal for the Cyprus government, which remains consistent to the principles for a Cyprus settlement, as provided in 1977 and 1979 high-level agreements and UN resolutions on Cyprus.

    By insisting on the principles of international and European law, with determination and flexibility, we will continue to fight so that negotiations under way since last September will reach to settlement, he added.

    Stephanou said that the settlement of the Cyprus question would be a compromising settlement that will however restore and safeguard human rights and fundamental freedoms of all the people of Cyprus, Greek Cypriots, Turkish Cypriots, Maronites, Armenians and Latins.

    He reiterated that «any problems at the intercommunal dialogue do not discourage us and do not make us accept the occupational and divisional status quo, adding that efforts will continue despite the fact that the key for the settlement is in Ankara.

    Stephanou noted that division is destructive for Cyprus and added that there is no other alternative than to reach a settlement through intercommunal dialogue. He said that the settlement must provide for a bizonal, bicoummunal federation with political equality, as provided by UN resolutions, which constitutes a major compromise made by the Greek Cypriot community.

    He said that this solution basis has been reaffirmed by Cyprus President during his meetings with Turkish Cypriot leader Mehmet Ali Talat, with the very important addition that the federal unified Cypriot state would have a single sovereignty, a single citizenship and a single international personality.

    Christofias and Talat have been engaged in direct negotiations since September 2008 with a view to solve the question of Cyprus, which has been divided since 1974 when Turkey invaded and occupied its northern third.


    An informal meeting of the Foreign Ministers of Cyprus, Denmark and Poland, the three countries that will hold the EU rotating presidency during the second half of 2011 and during 2012, was held on Saturday.

    Cyprus Foreign Minister Marcos Kyprianou, said that the preparation of the Presidency is of great importance, since it is expected to be held according to the Treaty of Lisbon, «which means common goals and common preparation».

    Our partners, Kyprianou added, have already had joint meetings in respective capitals, but at a political level, it is the first time the FMs of the tree countries meet.

    On his part, Danish Foreign Minister Per Stig Moller said the aim the meeting was to plan jointly the rotating presidency of the EU Council, what the 18-month programme will include and how the goals determined will be achieved.


    Cyprus celebrated on Saturday Europe Day during an event held in Nicosia that included dancing, music, singing and the distribution of information leaflets about Europe.

    The event was organized by the European Commission delegation in Cyprus, in cooperation with the European Parliament Office in Cyprus, Cyprus Press and Information Office, Nicosia Municipality and Nicosia Traffic Accidents Department.

    Addressing the event, EU Health Commissioner Androulla Vassiliou said the goal of the events is to bring citizens closer to European affairs and to express the unity which exists among all of us.


    Cyprus Foreign Minister Marcos Kyprianou has said that the opening of Limnitis crossing point is among Cyprus President Demetris Christofias priorities as well as his own.

    Kyprianou said that he raised this issue during the recent meeting he had with UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, elaborating on the practical and substantial importance of the opening of Limnitis crossing point, but also about the political importance of implementing what has been agreed.

    He also stressed that the Republic of Cyprus cannot accept any absurd demands or preconditions posed by the Turkish side, noting that the Turkish side has been committed and must give its consent to the opening of the checkpoint.

    The Cypriot FM said President Christofias has been discussing this issue in the framework of the National Council, adding that the effort for opening the checkpoint will not be abandoned.

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