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Cyprus PIO: News Update in English, 03-06-13

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]Friday, 13 June 2003 President Papadopoulos: No forthcoming US initiative on Cyprus problem
  • [02] Foreign Minister continues high-level contacts in US state capital
  • [03] The Cyprus Government condemns resurgence of violence between Israel and Palestinians
  • [04] Washington seeks resumption of UN peace talks, says Boucher
  • [05] Grossman pledges US continued support for Cyprus settlement

    [01] President Papadopoulos: No forthcoming US initiative on Cyprus problem

    The President of the Republic of Cyprus, Mr Tassos Papadopoulos, has pointed out that he is not aware of any forthcoming US initiative on Cyprus. Replying to press questions following a speech at the Finance Ministry yesterday, the President said that the Foreign Minister, who is in Washington DC for high-level contacts, was not aware of any US initiatives either and none of his interlocutors had mentioned anything on that matter. He further said that Mr Iacovou had phoned the President from Washington to inquire on press reports concerning supposed initiatives by the Americans this coming September. Regarding the visit to the island by the US State Department's Special Coordinator for Cyprus, Mr Thomas Weston, President Papadopoulos noted that it was arranged six weeks ago. "I am aware, from the [US] Embassy, of the agenda of our meetings, and certainly they do not constitute an initiative", he added. Mr Weston arrives in Cyprus today and will be received by President Papadopoulos late in the afternoon at the Presidential Palace.

    [02] Foreign Minister continues high-level contacts in US state capital

    The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr Georgios Iacovou, met yesterday in Washington with the Speaker of the US House of Representatives, Mr Dennis Hastert. Welcoming Mr Iacovou, Mr Hastert congratulated Cyprus for its accession to the European Union and made reference to the significant role of Cyprus' EU prospect in reaching a settlement. He pointed out that the Turkish Cypriot leadership had missed an important opportunity to resolve the Cyprus problem by rejecting the Annan plan. Regarding the recent developments on the island, such as the easing of restrictions on free movement, Mr Hastert said they were very important and could help towards a final settlement. Another topic of discussion was Cyprus' contribution to the reconstruction of Iraq. The Foreign Minister informed the Speaker of the US House that Cypriot companies were in a position to contribute to efforts for reconstructing Iraq, adding that Cyprus was already offering important humanitarian assistance to the Iraqi people. Mr Iacovou also had separate meetings with Senators Joseph Biden and Paul Sarbanes, both members of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and Congress Members Michael Bilirakis and Carolyn Maloney, who are co- chairing the Hellenic Caucus in Congress. The Cyprus Foreign Minister explained the government's positions regarding the resumption of negotiations based on the Annan plan, and reiterated that Ankara and the Turkish Cypriot leader had the sole responsibility for the collapse of the UN peace talks. He further stressed the need for Washington to intensify pressure on Ankara to change its policy and resume substantial negotiations for reaching a settlement.

    [03] The Cyprus Government condemns resurgence of violence between Israel and Palestinians

    The Government of the Republic of Cyprus condemns in the strongest possible terms the recent resurgence of violence between Israel and the Palestinians which resulted in great loss of life on both sides and the serious injury of many more. Acts of terror and the indiscriminate use of force lead to a new cycle of violence. The Government of the Republic of Cyprus, which hopes to see a new climate of reconciliation and cooperation in the area, calls on all sides to show maximum restraint. Cyprus will continue to strongly support the resumption, as soon as possible, of the peace process, and the implementation of the Road Map as the only way for achieving peace and stability in the region.

    [04] Washington seeks resumption of UN peace talks, says Boucher

    The Spokesman for the US State Department, Mr Richard Boucher, noted yesterday at the daily press briefing that Washington was aiming at the resumption of the UN-led peace efforts in Cyprus. Replying to a question on the meeting between the Cyprus Foreign Minister and the US Secretary of State, Mr Boucher said, "The Cypriot Foreign Minister met with the Secretary yesterday to discuss the status of negotiations. The Secretary has made clear in the past, as he did at the meeting yesterday, that our goal is to restart discussions in support of the United Nations, based on the UN Secretary General's plan".

    [05] Grossman pledges US continued support for Cyprus settlement

    "We are going to keep pushing for a just and durable Cyprus settlement on the basis of the Annan plan, one that allows all Cypriots to live in peace and enjoy the benefits of EU membership", US Undersecretary of State for Political Affairs, Mr Marc Grossman, noted during his speech at the 14th annual PSEKA (World Coordinating Committee Justice for Cyprus) Conference, in Washington last Wednesday. Mr Grossman expressed the view that the signature, on 16 April 2003, of the EU Accession Treaty was a "great accomplishment for the people of Cyprus" and added that Cyprus' EU accession prospect continued to be an incentive to reaching a comprehensive settlement. With regard to the easing of restrictions on free movement and the crossings of Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots along the ceasefire line, the US official said it was a "remarkable and great accomplishment". He also said he was immensely impressed by the huge demonstrations in the occupied areas of Cyprus in favour of a settlement and EU accession, and noted that "it is too bad that Mr Denktash did not allow SG Annan's plan to be judged by the people who deserve to judge it". He added that the US continued to believe that the Annan plan offered a unique basis for a solution, and expressed hope that all sides involved would not let the opportunity for a settlement slip away, since "it is a united Cyprus that could and should join the EU on May 1 2004". Replying to questions following his speech, Mr Grossman pointed out that the US administration was asking Turkey, "at every occasion, in every place, at every level", to do everything possible to support the Annan plan and encourage democratic procedures. Furthermore, the former US Ambassador to the UN, Mr Richard Holbrooke, who also addressed the PSEKA Conference, described the Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash as "immovable" and blamed him for the stalemate in the peace process. "Cyprus' membership into the EU will take place on May 1 of next year and with or without the north. And that is Denktash's failure before history", Mr Holbrooke said, adding that the Turkish Cypriot leader was hurting the interests of all 70 million Turks. Both Mr Grossman and Mr Holbrooke were presented with a framed copy of the EU Treaty of Accession signed by President Papadopoulos, in honour of their efforts in promoting a solution of the Cyprus problem.

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


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