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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 11-11-03

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

From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>




    President of Israel Shimon Peres urged Turkey to respect international law, saying that the world is not being run by military threats, it is based on international law.

    Peres was speaking in Nicosia at the Presidential Palace at a joint press conference with President of Cyprus Demetris Christofias, after official talks in the framework of the official visit he pays to Cyprus.

    To a question regarding explorations for natural gas and the Turkish presence in the area, and cooperation between Cyprus and Israel, Peres said ``the world is not being run by military threats,`` adding that ``we are based on international law.``

    Peres pointed out that Turkey should also respect international law and that ``this is the basis of political relations.``

    ``We are not going to threaten anybody and we are not going to be afraid of threats,`` he added.

    Peres also noted the importance of maintaining friendly relationships with other countries.

    Replying to the same question, President Christofias said he agreed with his Israeli counterpart, noting that I welcome the message of peace and friendship of President Peres to Turkey and I would like to send the same message too.

    I would also like to stress (to Turkey) that relations are based on international law and that each country`s actions must respect international law and order.

    He added that Turkeys actions in the Eastern Mediterranean against Cyprus sovereign right to explore and exploit any hydrocarbon reserves it finds in its Exclusive Economic Zone, are condemned in international fora.

    President Christofias recalled that he condemned Turkeys behavior at the UN General Assembly in September, adding that Cyprus has made representations to the UNSC and the EU, while the issue will be discussed at the December European Council.

    Turkey must respect international law, not only as regards the hydrocarbon reserves, but as regards the Cyprus issue as well, he pointed out.

    Referring to Cyprus and Israel cooperation, he recalled that there is a defence cooperation agreement, noting that this does not mean that this is an agreement for a joint action to attack anyone or for combating an aggression.

    We do not have such agreements. Our effort is to work for peace in our region, President Christofias noted.

    Hydrocarbons, he said, are natures gift to us and will be exploited by the two countries through a close cooperation to the benefit of both peoples and peace in the region.

    Meanwhile, to a question regarding Iran, Peres said ``Iran is a danger for the rest of the world`` due to, inter alia, its nuclear development with political aims, the threats against the existence of other states, and the fact that it is a centre of terror.

    Concluding, the President of Israel said that the world has to stop Iran from becoming more and more dangerous.

    NATURAL GAS --------------------

    Israeli President pointed out on Thursday that the natural gas reserves would be used for the right reasons, in the context of international law, adding that the discoveries of Cyprus and Israel are for their people.

    Peres said ``we do not want to make an alliance based on military strengths but a cooperation based on goodwill,`` adding that ``we have to show the rest world how small countries can be great people.``

    He noted that ``we both recognised that the distance between Israel and Cyprus is so short, so why not make the short geographic distance a closeness of political relations,`` adding that he believed ``that is happening.``

    Referring to the agreements, Peres said that an agreement between the antiquities departments was signed because both Cyprus and Israel are ``old nations``, while the energy agreement was signed because ``you discovered something new and we discovered something new.``

    ``Cyprus is not a very large island and Israel is not a large land but in your small island and our small land, great events, spiritually and socially, took place,`` he said, adding that ``Cyprus, out of all the islands in the Middle East, is the first to become a full member of the EU and your are going to serve as president of the EU next year`` which is ``not bad for a small country.``

    Peres noted that ``Israel is an associated member of the EU.``

    Referring to the region, Peres said he believed Cyprus ``can play a role in the peace process, not by mediating but by really offering the opportunities that exist in the united Europe.``

    Peres said the countries of the Middle East would like to join the global market and that the EU could provide opportunities, adding that Israel was very advanced in science and agriculture.

    ``The Middle East is facing a terrible challenge of poverty. There is no water and no food. We cannot enlarge the land and we cannot enrich the rivers but what we can do is to take the technology that makes better use of the land we have and better use of the water we have,`` he said.

    He added that ``by having a Mediterranean-European operation we can produce technology and science that would be helpful.``

    Peres noted that ``the Middle East today is full of fire and death, from Syria to Yemen,`` adding that he would like to see a change.

    ``I think it is a good occasion that Cyprus is becoming president of the EU and instead of the Europeans coming to us with proposals it is not bad for our two small countries to come with our own proposals,`` he said.

    Referring to the issue of natural gas, Peres said ``we are going to use the gas the way peaceful and democratic people should use it,`` adding that ``we are not going to waste it, we are not going to play with it, we are not going to use it for the wrong purposes.``

    ``We shall cooperate according to international law,`` he said, adding that ``we intend to follow the law``.

    He pointed out that ``our discoveries are not against anyone, our discoveries are for the people.``

    Peres said ``we look upon gas, not as a power, but as an occasion to better the life of the people,`` adding that ``we shall do it peacefully.``

    ``I think when it comes to Israel and Cyprus, where we can really cooperate is in the domain of agriculture, the domain of health and the domain of energy.``

    Peres said ``we do not want to make an alliance based on military strengths but a cooperation based on goodwill.``

    He added that ``we have to show the rest world how small countries can be great people.``


    Cyprus and Israel have decided to establish a joint committee on their Mediterranean vision for peace and for the relations between the European Union and all the states in the region.

    The decision was announced Thursday by President of Cyprus Demetris Christofias, after the conclusion of a meeting he held with President of Israel Shimon Peres, who is currently in Cyprus on a state visit.

    ``Together with President Peres we have decided to establish a joint committee on our Mediterranean vision for peace and for the relations between the European Union and all the states in the region. This was a very creative proposal on behalf of President Peres and we have accepted it``, President Christofias said.

    He expressed hope that ``the realization of our vision will be completed before the Republic of Cyprus assumes the EU Presidency (in the second half of 2012) because this will be very helpful to our EU Presidency``.


    Cyprus inflation accelerated to 3.0% year on year in October 2011, compared with 2.4% in September of the current year, according to data released by Cyprus Statistical Service on Thursday.

    The Consumer Price Index for October 2011 increased by 1.69 units or 1,45% to 118,55 units compared to 116,86 in September 2011.

    According to the CySTAT, this is mainly due to increases in the prices of certain clothing and footwear items, electricity, certain fresh vegetables, tuition fees of higher education and gas. Decreases have been recorded in the prices of certain fresh fruit and petroleum products.

    The rate of increase of the Index, and therefore the rate of inflation for October 2011 increased by 3,0% compared to 2,4% in September 2011 and 3,0% in October 2010.


    Pafos aspires to become an open cultural plant, extending in time, space and in the various forms of arts, by bidding for the European Capital of Culture title for 2017.

    Yiannis Anthis, a member of the artistic team for the candidacy of Pafos, speaking to CNA said that the citys motto is going along the lines of connecting continents and bridging civilizations.

    This, he said, reflects the citys historic role, as a crossroads between East and West, North and South.

    Pafos aims to become a European niche in the area of the Middle East and North Africa, Anthis went on, adding that such an influence has always existed due to the citys geographic location and remains still apparent, albeit in a different way. He explained moreover that this influence is evident today through immigrants and tourists flocking to the area.

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