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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 09-12-13

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

From: The Cyprus News Agency at <http://www.cyna.org.cy>




    Cyprus` Permanent Representative to the United Nations Ambassador Minas Hadjimichael gave the consent of the Republic of Cyprus, during a meeting with the President of the Security Council, to the draft resolution on the renewal of the mandate of the UN Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus (UNFICYP).

    The resolution is expected to be adopted during a Security Council open meeting on Monday, with 14 votes in favour and one against, that of Turkey.

    After deliberations that lasted a few days, references suggesting an informal timeframe or indirect pressure were omitted from the text.

    The last point to change concerned the UN Secretary General`s Special Adviser on Cyprus Alexander Downer and efforts to enhance his role by referring to his personal good offices.

    The final text of the draft resolution says that the Security Council welcomes the reports of the UN Secretary General of 25 November 2009 on the UN operation in Cyprus and of 30 November 2009 on his mission of good offices in Cyprus.

    It notes that ``the government of Cyprus is agreed that, in view of the prevailing conditions on the island, it is necessary to keep UNFICYP beyond 15 December 2009.``

    The Security Council echoes ``the Secretary General`s firm belief that the responsibility for finding a solution lies first and foremost with the Cypriots themselves,`` stresses that ``there now exists a rare opportunity to make decisive progress in a timely fashion,`` and reaffirms ``the primary role of the UN in assisting the parties to bring the Cyprus conflict and division of the island to a comprehensive and durable settlement.``

    It commends the leaders of the two communities for ``the political leadership they have shown,`` warmly welcomes the progress made so far and the leaders` joint statements, and urges the leaders ``to increase the momentum in the negotiations to ensure the full exploitation of this opportunity to reach a comprehensive settlement, based on a bicommunal, bizonal federation, with political equality, as set out in the relevant Security Council resolutions.``

    Furthermore, it emphasises ``the importance attached by the international community of all parties engaging fully, flexibly and constructively in the negotiations,`` and looks forward to decisive progress in the near future.

    It welcomes the intention of the Secretary General to keep the Security Council informed, welcomes the implementation of some of the confidence building measures announced by the leaders, and calls for ``a renewed effort to implement the remaining measures,`` as well as agreement for further steps.

    The Security Council reaffirms the importance of continued crossings between the two sides, encourages the opening of further crossing points, welcomes the agreement to open the Limnitis crossing point, and urges the two sides to implement the second phase of the restoration of the Ledra Street crossing point.

    It is also convinced of the benefits for all Cypriots from a settlement of the Cyprus problem, and encourages both sides to clearly explain these benefits, as well as the need for increased flexibility and compromise, to both communities well in advance of any eventual referenda.

    The Security Council highlights the supportive role of the international community, takes note of the assessment of the Secretary General that the security situation on the island remains stable, and urges all sides to avoid any action that would lead to tension, undermine progress made so far, or damage the goodwill on the island.

    It recalls the Secretary General`s firm belief that the situation in the buffer zone would be improved if both sides accepted the 1989 aide memoire used by the UN, welcomes the progress and continuation of the work of the Committee on Missing Persons, trusts that this process will promote reconciliation, agrees that active participation of civil society groups is essential to progress and could contribute to making any future settlement sustainable, welcomes all efforts to promote bicommunal contacts, and urges the two sides to promote active engagement of civil society and encourage cooperation between economic and commercial bodies.

    Furthermore, it stresses the need for the Council to pursue a rigorous, strategic approach to peacekeeping deployments, welcomes the intention of the Secretary General to keep all peacekeeping operations under close review, and notes the importance of contingency planning.

    It welcomes Downer`s continued efforts to assist the parties in their negotiations, echoes the Secretary General`s gratitude to the governments of Cyprus and Greece for their voluntary contributions to the funding of UNFICYP and his request for further voluntary contributions from other countries and organisations, and welcomes and encourages efforts by the UN to sensitise personnel in the prevention and control of communicable diseases in all peacekeeping operations.

    The Security Council ``welcomes the analysis of developments on the ground over the last six months in the Secretary General`s reports, in accordance with his mandate, welcomes also the progress made so far in the fully fledged negotiations, and the prospect of further progress in the near future towards a comprehensive and durable settlement that this has created,`` and ``urges full exploitation of this opportunity, including by intensifying the momentum of negotiations, improving the current atmosphere of trust and goodwill, and engaging in the process in a constructive and open manner.``

    It ``urges also the implementation of confidence building measures, and looks forward to the agreement on and implementation of further such steps, including the opening of other crossing points, reaffirms all its relevant resolutions on Cyprus, in particular resolution 1251 (1999) of 29 June 1999 and subsequent resolutions, expresses its full support for UNFICYP and decides to extend its mandate for a further period ending 15 June 2010.``

    Furthermore, it ``calls on both sides to continue to engage, as a matter of urgency and while respecting UNFICYP`s mandate, in consultations with UNFICYP on the demarcation of the buffer zone, and on the UN 1989 aide memoire, with a view to reaching early agreement on outstanding issues,`` and ``calls on the Turkish Cypriot side and Turkish forces to restore in Strovilia the military status quo which existed prior to 30 June 2000.``

    It ``requests the Secretary General to submit a report on implementation of this resolution, including on contingency planning in relation to the settlement, by 1 June 2010 and to keep the Security Council updated on events as necessary.``

    The Security Council ``welcomes the efforts being undertaken by UNFICYP to implement the Secretary General`s zero tolerance policy on sexual exploitation and abuse and to ensure full compliance of its personnel with the UN code of conduct, requests the Secretary General to continue to take all necessary action in this regard and to keep the Security Council informed, and urges troop contributing countries to take appropriate preventive action, including the conduct of predeployment awareness training, and to take disciplinary action and other action to ensure full accountability in cases of such conduct involving their personnel.``

    The resolution concludes with the Security Council deciding ``to remain seized of the matter.``


    The first annual memorial service for former President of the Republic Tassos Papadopoulos was held on Saturday at Saint Nicholas church in Kato Deftera, with the events of the previous day looming heavy over the ceremony.

    On Thursday night, unknown persons violated the grave of Tassos Papadopoulos, who passed away last year, and removed the body, leaving only an empty coffin, which was found on Friday morning. The Police are investigating the case.

    The memorial service was led by Archbishop of the Church of Cyprus Chrysostomos II, in the presence of the island`s leadership, including President of the House of Representatives Marios Garoyian.

    The government was represented by Minister of Commerce, Industry and Tourism Antonis Paschalides.

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