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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 10-10-08

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From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>




    Permanent Representative of Cyprus to the UN Ambassador Minas Hadjimichael has sent a protest letter to UN SG regarding the breach of international air traffic regulations and the violation of Cyprus air space by Turkey.

    According to an official announcement issued Friday, Hadjimichael refers to specific violations by Turkey which took place from June 29th to August 31st. The letter was circulated yesterday at the UN GA and SC as an official UN document.

    The Cypriot government strongly protests the violations and asks that they cease immediately, said the Ambassador in the letter, whilst underlining that these violations are contrary to international law, international aviation rules and continue to pose a threat to flight security in the region.

    Referring to Turkeys constant efforts to undermine the sovereignty and unity of the Republic of Cyprus, he said they put the peace and security of the entire region at risk, adding that they also undermine confidence building efforts between the islands two communities and the ongoing negotiations procedure.

    Cyprus has been de facto divided since the Turkish invasion in 1974. UN led negotiations between Cyprus President Demetris Christofias and the Turkish Cypriot leader are currently underway in an effort to achieve a comprehensive solution to the Cyprus problem.

    According to the Hadjimichael such actions are not compatible with the status of a country serving as a non permanent member of the UN SC.

    In his letter the Ambassador also repeats a previous request of the Republic of Cyprus to the UN to include the Turkish violations in the UN SGs Report on the Peacekeeping Mission in Cyprus.


    European Parliament President Jerzy Buzek will pay an official visit to Cyprus from 10 to 12 October.

    According to an official announcement issued by the Office of the European Parliament in Cyprus, President Buzek will meet President of the Republic of Cyprus, with Demetris Christofias and President of the House of Representatives, Marios Garoyian. He will hold discussions with Turkish Cypriot leader Dervis Eroglu,.

    Speaking prior to his visit, President Buzek noted that Cyprus is celebrating this year the 50th anniversary of its establishment and that it is 6 years since Cyprus joined the EU and 2 years since successfully obtained the Euro as its currency.

    I come with a message of encouragement, support and trust in both leaders to reach a comprehensive solution. We see the future of Cyprus as a bi-zonal, bi-communal federation with political equality as defined in the relevant UN Security Council resolutions, comprising a federal government with a single international personality for the benefit of all island citizens.


    The need to achieve a just and viable solution to the Cyprus issue, based on the relevant UN Security Council resolutions and international and European law principles, was underlined in a resolution of the 23rd General Assembly of the International Organisation Peace Messenger Cities in Limassol.

    During a press conference at the end of the meeting, President of the organization Alfred Marder and Morphou Mayor Charalambos Pittas pointed out that the Cyprus issue was one of the most significant issues examined by the General Assembly and the decisions and resolutions approved by the Peace Messenger Cities will send a strong message on issues concerning peace and the security of peoples.

    In the resolution on Cyprus, which will be forwarded to the UN Secretary-General, the towns that participate in the organization note that Turkey continues to illegally occupy a great part of the Republic of Cyprus, violates international and European law, the relevant UN resolutions, human rights and the fundamental freedoms of the people of Cyprus. The resolution calls on the international community to exert pressure on Turkey to fulfill its obligations towards the UN resolutions on Cyprus and the EU as candidate state.

    The resolution advises the UN to dedicate a decade to disarmament and in addition it approved a petition on Olympic disarmament, submitted by the chairman of the Amphictyony Twinned Cities and regions of the Mediterranean, Demetris Argianas. He told CNA that the effort to adopt Olympic truce began in ancient times, while the organisations effort began before the Olympic Games in Athens, however it has not been possible to achieve it.


    Head of Implementation of the Ottawa Convention Kerry Brinkert congratulated Cyprus on fulfilling its obligations to the Convention, despite profound national security responsibilities. Brinkert, who was speaking during a ceremony after the destruction of a total of 494 landmines at the Kalo Chorio firing range in Larnaca district, said Cyprus has converted its commitments into meaningful action on the ground.

    He added that Cyprus decided that even in situations where the matter of national security is profound; the marginal utility of anti-personnel mines is greatly outweighed by the human suffering that results from the use of these weapons. Cyprus, he said, demonstrated leadership by ratifying the Convention and by making commitments to implement it, adding that real leadership rests in living up to ones commitments.

    This is the end of an important initiative undertaken by the Republic of Cyprus said Minister of Defence Costas Papacostas. Following the signature by Cyprus of the Ottawa Convention on December 3, 1997 a national plan for the destruction of mines was formulated by the Foreign Affairs and Defence Ministries containing detailed provisions for the timely undertaking and full respect of the obligations of Cyprus.

    48.475 landmines in storage were destroyed before July 1st 2007 whilst 2.183 landmines positioned in 5 different mine fields in areas which are controlled by the Republic are due to be destroyed before July 1st 2013.

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