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Cyprus PIO: News Update in English, 98-02-04

Cyprus Press and Information Office: News Updates in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Republic of Cyprus Press and Information Office Server at <http://www.pio.gov.cy/>

News Update

Wednesday, 04/02/98


CONTENTS

  • [01] Cyprus reacts to Yilmaz's partition ideas
  • [02] Richard Holbrooke urges that UN and US move from the top to deal with deep political differences in Cyprus problem
  • [03] Aid to Cyprus proposed by President Clinton
  • [04] Money-laundering and sacrilege charges brought against Turkish Cypriots in Europarliament


[01] Cyprus reacts to Yilmaz's partition ideas

Foreign Minister Ioannis Kasoulides has rejected allegations about reported exchange of ideas between Greece and Turkey concerning Turkey's notion for a division of Cyprus. Mr. Kasoulides said on Tuesday, 3.2.98, that the government was committed to reunifying Cyprus on the basis of UN resolutions even if Turkey backed partition.

"I wish to reject categorically any notion of accepting the fait accompli resulting from the 1974 Turkish invasion", the Foreign Minister said in a written statement.

He was responding to reports that Ankara sees a divided island as the only viable solution to the Cyprus problem.

Former Greek premier Constantinos Mitsotakis said in an interview with national Greek television this week that Ankara's pro-partition stance had been revealed to him by Turkish Prime Minister Mesut Yilmaz.

Mr. Mitsotakis said that Mr. Yilmaz had intimated that Turkey was willing to return some territory in exchange for Cyprus being divided into two separate entities.

But Mr. Kasoulides dismissed any attempt to "readjust the so-called borders and any idea of (only) part of Cyprus joining the European Union".

He emphasized that Cyprus's borders were its coastline and that the application for EU entry covers the entire island.

His stance was reaffirmed by President Clerides during a Democratic Rally election rally in Nicosia on 3.2.98.

Mr. Clerides said Cyprus's sovereignty was not for sale.

Commenting on possible EU entry before a political solution, Mr. Clerides said accession would concern the "whole of Cyprus, as was the case in Germany, and is the case today with the (EU-Cyprus) Customs Union agreement".

The Mitsotakis interview also brought a strong response from the various party leaders.

Democratic Rally's (DISY) President Nicos Anastassiades said the interview signalled that Cyprus was at a critical turning point in its history and underlines the importance of the coming elections.

Democratic Party (DIKO) leader Spyros Kyprianou said Mitsotakis revelations showed Turkey was only interested in partition. It was now up to the US, the UN and the EU to make Ankara change its stance, he said.

Mr. Kyprianou said there could be no concessions on the issues of sovereignty, a rotating presidency and the presence of settlers from the Turkish mainland.

[02] Richard Holbrooke urges that UN and US move from the top to deal with deep political differences in Cyprus problem

Ambassador Richard Holbrooke, the US special emissary for Cyprus participating in an event of the "International Conflict

Resolution Programme" said on 30.1.98 that theoretical models for resolving the 24-year-old Cyprus conflict are of little value because they ignore practical and political factors.

Ambassador Holbrooke said he believes face to face meetings at the community level in such conflicts are useful, even vital, but that political disagreements can only be resolved with a commitment from the highest levels of government. Mr. Holbrooke added that the differences of the opposing sides in these conflicts are usually much deeper than some believe.

Speaking at the event, organised by the University of Columbia, the American diplomat said that conflict resolution models that he was shown "completely omitted the practical and the domestic political factors which are in fact the only reason why the Cyprus problem has not been resolved a long time ago. The substantive issues dividing the two communities are not technically that difficult but the political factors that led to the current division are real and deep and deeply felt we have to talk about the practical solutions.

There is a tremendous argument between the two communities over the political issues. Those political issues can only be resolved if they are discussed among the leaders of the two communities, the Greek Government in Athens and the Turkish Government in Ankara".

Mr. Holbrooke also stressed: "I want to stress that in order to address these problems of East Timor or Cyprus or Kosovo you have to go from two directions. The top down and the bottom up. I don't buy that theory of some conflict resolution experts that you build from the bottom up and that it is a question of communications and some misunderstandings that can be cleared up by some group Psycho-drama. It is not true. Differences are much deeper than that. All that pressure in the rears that we were doing in Brussels has to be matched by top down pressure from governments. I want to be clear on this. The US., the UN and the EU must take leadership roles. A failure of these institutions to do so it is the reason why we had a war in Bosnia. And we must address these problems before it is too late."

[03] Aid to Cyprus proposed by President Clinton

President Clinton has proposed that 15 million dollars be approved as foreign aid to Cyprus. The proposal was included in figures submitted to Congress for the fiscal year of 1999.

In reference to Cyprus, the proposal said: "Of the funds appropriated under the headings "Development Assistance" and "Economic Support Fund", not less that $15,000,000 shall be made available for Cyprus to be used only for scholarships, administrative support of the scholarship program, bicommunal projects, and measures aimed at reunification of the island and designed to reduce tensions and promote peace and cooperation between the two communities on Cyprus".

The US administration is seeking from the Congress an increase in the budget for foreign affairs, including higher sums for African development, for the peace corps and for repaying its arrears in its UN contribution.

[04] Money-laundering and sacrilege charges brought against Turkish Cypriots in Europarliament

The Turkish Cypriot regime in occupied Cyprus is being charged in the European Parliament by Greek Euro MP Nikitas Kaklamanis, in two written questions he submitted, with extensive money laundering and sacrilegious practices against an Armenian monastery.

The MP refers in his question submitted on 29.1.98 to published reports about the extent of money-laundering operations carried out in the Turkish occupied part of Cyprus under the disguised blessing of the illegal regime.

The second question refers to Turkish plans to turn an Armenian Monastery in occupied Cyprus into a 50-bed hotel, according to details published in the Turkish Cypriot paper "KIBRIS POSTASI"


From the Republic of Cyprus Press and Information Office (PIO) Server at http://www.pio.gov.cy/


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