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Cyprus PIO: News Update in English, 03-06-12

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/>

  • [01]Thursday, 12 June 2003 Security Council adopts resolution renewing UNFICYP mandate
  • [02] Foreign Minister holds high-level contacts in Washington DC
  • [03] Ankara has 'historic responsibility' to press Denktash for a settlement, says British Minister for Europe

    [01] Security Council adopts resolution renewing UNFICYP mandate

    The UN Security Council, acting on the recommendation of the Secretary- General Mr Kofi Annan, adopted unanimously yesterday resolution 1486 (2003), renewing the mandate of the UN Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus (UNFICYP) until 15 December 2003. In its resolution, the Council expresses concern "at the recent, further violations by the Turkish Cypriot side and the Turkish forces at the southeastern village of Strovilia and urges them to restore the military status quo which existed there prior to 30 June 2000". It further "notes the limited steps taken by the Turkish Cypriot side to ease some of the restrictions imposed on 30 June 2000 on the operation of UNFICYP but urges the Turkish Cypriot side and the Turkish forces to rescind all remaining restrictions on UNFICYP". The Council also endorses a recommendation by the Secretary-General to increase the mission's civilian police component "by no more than 34 officers in order to meet the increased workload resulting from the welcome partial easing of restrictions on island-wide freedom of movement, which has been met by goodwill from Greek and Turkish Cypriots". The full text of the resolution reads as follows: ''The Security Council, Welcoming the report of the Secretary General of 27 May 2003 (S/2003/572) on the United Nations operation in Cyprus, and in particular the call to the parties to assess and address the humanitarian issue of missing persons with due urgency and seriousness, Noting that the Government of Cyprus has agreed that in view of the prevailing conditions in the island it is necessary to keep the United Nations Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus (UNFICYP) beyond 15 June 2003, Welcoming and encouraging efforts by the United Nations to sensitise peacekeeping personnel in the prevention and control of HIV/AIDS and other communicable diseases in all its peacekeeping operations, 1. Reaffirms all its relevant resolutions on Cyprus, and in particular resolution 1251 (1999) of 29 June 1999 and subsequent resolutions; 2. Decides to extend the mandate of UNFICYP for a further period ending 15 December 2003; 3. Endorses the increase of the UNFICYP civilian police component by no more than 34 officers in order to meet the increased workload resulting from the welcome partial easing of restrictions on island-wide freedom of movement, which has been met by goodwill from Greek and Turkish Cypriots; 4. Notes the limited steps taken by the Turkish Cypriot side to ease some of the restrictions imposed on 30 June 2000 on the operation of UNFICYP, but urges the Turkish Cypriot side and the Turkish forces to rescind all remaining restrictions on UNFICYP; 5. Expresses concern at the recent, further violations by the Turkish Cypriot side and Turkish forces at Strovilia and urges them to restore the military status quo which existed there prior to 30 June 2000; 6. Requests the Secretary General to submit a report by 1 December 2003 on the implementation of this resolution; 7. Decides to remain seized of the matter''. Following the adoption of resolution 1486, the President of the UN Security Council, Russia's Permanent Representative Mr Sergey Lavrov, was asked by the press whether there was any change in the positions of the two Cyprus' sides, taking into consideration the Secretary-General's statement that his plan was still on the table. Mr Lavrov noted that he could not speak on behalf of the two sides but pointed out that during the consultations, the Security Council members "expressed their support for this view of the Secretary-General that his plan is still not only on the table but is the best solution to the Cyprus problem."

    [02] Foreign Minister holds high-level contacts in Washington DC

    The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr Geogios Iacovou, met yesterday in Washington DC with the US Secretary of State, Mr Colin Powell, the Vice President, Mr Dick Cheney, and President Bush's National Security Adviser, Ms Condoleezza Rice. Mr Iacovou informed his interlocutors on the positions of the Cyprus Government, underlining the need to resume efforts for a comprehensive settlement of the Cyprus problem. He further referred to the Turkish side's negative stance, pointing out that the US government should focus its efforts on persuading the Turkish side, and Ankara in particular, to return to the negotiating table. "The Greek Cypriot side is prepared to return to the negotiations whenever the Secretary-General thinks proper to call us to do so", Mr Iacovou said, speaking to the press after his meeting with Ms Condoleezza Rice. "We expressed our concern that Turkey and the Turkish Cypriots are sowing a negative attitude towards the Annan plan and general his mission of good offices, we ask for the United States support in getting them back to the talks", he further said, adding that Ms Rice had assured him of the Bush administration's intent to discuss the issue with Ankara and the Turkish Cypriot leadership. The Cyprus Minister also met with the President of the Congressional Committee for Foreign Affairs, Mr Richard Lugar (R-Indiana), and the Member of Congress responsible for issues concerning Cyprus, Ms Olympia Snowe (R-Maine). They both emphasised the importance of Cyprus' EU accession and its impact on the efforts for a solution. In addition, Mr Iacovou gave a TV and radio interview to the Voice of America, for its English, Greek and Turkish programmes.

    [03] Ankara has 'historic responsibility' to press Denktash for a settlement, says British Minister for Europe

    "The Turkish Government, Parliament and military have an historic responsibility to press Mr Denktash to reach an agreement within the Annan proposals and then allow a united Cyprus to enter the European Union", the British Minister for Europe, Mr Denis MacShane, has noted. Replying to questions on Cyprus at the House of Commons last Tuesday, Mr MacShane said that his government had repeatedly urged the parties involved to resume negotiations on the basis of the Annan plan, "which is on the table and represents the best way forward". He also said that the British government continued to urge Ankara to play a more positive role in the peace efforts so that a united island could join the EU in May 2004. In other statements, Mr MacShane welcomed the partial easing of restrictions on free movement across the ceasefire line, as well as the European Commission's aid package for Turkish Cypriots, and hoped that they would lead to a comprehensive settlement based on the UN plan which remained vital. Asked by an MP to comment on the Cyprus Government's measures for Turkish Cypriots, the British Minister said they were "a move in the right direction". "The main stumbling block remains the position of Mr Denktash, which must be dealt with through direct communication with him. We believe that, again, the Turkish Government, Parliament and military have a key role to play", Mr MacShane added.

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


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