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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 10-11-01

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From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>




    UN Secretary General Special Adviser on Cyprus Alexander Downer expressed the belief that the forthcoming meeting of UN Secretary General Ban Ki moon with Cyprus President Demetris Chrsitofias and Turkish Cypriot leader Dervis Eroglu in New York on November 18 is important, adding that Ban wants to meet with the leaders in the hope of re-injecting momentum into the process of the ongoing direct negotiations on the Cyprus problem.

    In statements after a meeting between Christofias and Eroglu in the framework of direct negotiations, Downer noted that the leaders decided to establish a new committee to look into opening new checkpoints between the north and the south and had some discussion about that.

    So, that joint committee will no doubt be put together fairly soon. Secondly, the leaders had an exchange of views about their upcoming visit to New York for the meeting with the Secretary-General, he noted.

    He added that the leaders had the opportunity to spend a good deal of their time talking still further about the property question.

    Dower said that the representatives of the two leaders are going to meet on Wednesday November 3 and possibly on Friday November 5 and that the leaders are going to meet again next Monday November 8 at 3 oclock.

    Asked about the agenda of the New York meeting, Downer said the details of that are still being worked through, and we know the leaders have another meeting between now, at least one more meeting, perhaps more, between now and then; and the Representatives have meetings and those meetings will no doubt principally, not exclusively, be on the property issue.

    So, no doubt the Secretary-General will want to talk to the leaders, inter-alia, about the property question, but I am sure will want to talk more broadly about the whole process. But all of that will be finalized much closer to the time; we have a way to go yet. We still have two and half weeks to go until the meeting takes place, so all of that will be worked out much nearer the time. And we, of course, in the United Nations here on the ground in Nicosia are in discussions with the two leaders about the meeting, he noted.

    As he said, he met with Eroglu on Friday and with Christofias on Saturday morning and weve had discussions about it already. So they have talked to each other today about it in a meeting that included me and Ms Buttenheim (UN SGs Special Representative in Cyprus), and well have further discussions with them and of course we will be talking with New York as well about how it will all work.

    Asked how important the meeting in New York is, Downer said he believes it is important. We want there to be real momentum in this process. There obviously has been some slowing of the momentum in recent times, and the Secretary-General has taken the initiative of calling the leaders about that, and he thought it best to invite them to New York and to meet with him, he noted.

    He expressed the belief that this is an important part of the overall engagement by the United Nations with the leaders. We always emphasize that this is a Cypriot-led and Cypriot-run process. We do what we can to help; we obviously, other than hosting the meetings, help in a number of different ways, and the Secretary-General will very much want to continue to help, not change the modus operandi of the United Nations. That is not the objective here. He wants to meet with the leaders in the hope of re-injecting momentum into the process, Downer pointed out.

    Asked if any of the leaders put any new proposals on the table on the property issue today, Downer said he was not in the habit when there are or not new proposals put forward of making public announcements about that.

    I dont want to sound as though we in the United Nations are cagey about this because we dont want to be. But our role here is to help the leaders as best we can to achieve a negotiated solution to the Cyprus problem and a constant stream of announcements from us on all of the details that occurs in these meetings is probably not going to be helpful, he noted.

    Asked what the Secretary-General can say to the two leaders that has not been said here, Donwer said the Secretary-General obviously does from time to time convey messages through me. I have a fairly constant stream of contact with him and his officials in New York.

    He also noted that the Secretary-General can talk to the leaders on the telephone. And as you know he did that last Thursday, and he has done that on other occasions.

    But thirdly, if the Secretary-General actually meets with them and they spend some time together talking through the issues, particularly the two leaders togetherBecause as you know the Secretary-General met with both of the leaders individually late September, early October. So he has met them fairly recently but to meet with them together obviously is a different situation again. So we will see how that goes, Downer concluded.

    Direct negotiations have been going on since September 2008, with a view to solve the problem of Cyprus, divided since the Turkish invasion of the island in 1974.


    The President of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe Mevlut Cavusoglu, who began on Sunday a three-day visit in Cyprus, expressed PACEs support to a fair, lasting and comprehensive solution for a peaceful and united Cyprus.

    As you know, PACE is strongly committed to reach a fair and lasting comprehensive solution for a peaceful and united Cyprus, which will guarantee the legitimate rights of both Greek and Turkish Cypriots in full compliance with the value and principles of the Council of Europe, he said after his meeting with House President Marios Garoyian.

    The Turkish President of PACE said that the Assembly welcomes the renewed political process between the two Cypriot parties, which started in March 2008 and has already produced encouraging results for the benefit of all Cypriots, including the opening of the Ledra street crossing in Nicosia and agreements on practical co-operation between the two communities in a number of areas.

    He added that the Assembly encourages all parties and countries that are directly or indirectly linked to the Cypriot question, to develop and maintain a climate of reconciliation, confidence and mutual respect.


    Finance Minister Charilaos Stavrakis said the government paid on Monday the second installment, worth 200 million euros, to the Social Insurance Fund (SIF), aiming to create a viable reserve fund.

    Moreover, the Minister stated that the governments intention is to deposit the third installment during the first semester of 2011.

    Stavrakis was speaking after the meeting with trade unions and the employers associations, aiming to determine the best possible investment for the 200 million euros installment.

    The Minister said that a part of the installment, worth 137.5 million euros, has already been invested in the 5 year government bonds, issued by the Republic of Cyprus last week.


    Enlightenment campaigns are considered by the government as an essential part in the effort to promote the position of the Republic of Cyprus on the Cyprus problem, both the Minister of Foreign Affairs Markos Kyprianou and the Government Spokesman Staphanos Stephanou said today, during the session of the House Committee on Financial and Budgetary Affairs.

    Due to the importance of the issue, the government has prepared a strategic enlightenment plan, after evaluating the current situation, which was put for approval to the Cabinet, the government officials said.

    Moreover, they further elaborated on the strategy, saying that it foresees the upgrading of the enlightenment services structure, and contains an action plan with specific aims.

    According to the data presented in front of the House Committee, the fund will be slightly decreased to 1.3 million euros, from the 1.43 million originally projected.

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