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Cyprus News Agency: News in English (AM), 97-03-07

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

From: The Cyprus News Agency at <http://www.cyna.org.cy>


CONTENTS

  • [01] Moderate earth tremour felt in Limassol
  • [02] Cypriot Ombudsman re-appointed
  • [03] Cypriot women to protest in London
  • [04] Albright meets Pangalos
  • [05] Hellenic Bank-new chairman
  • [06] US engagement on Cyprus issue, consistent, says Brill

  • 1030:CYPPRESS:01

    [01] Moderate earth tremour felt in Limassol

    Nicosia, Mar 7 (CNA) -- An earthquake measuring 4.0 on the Richter scale was recorded in the early hours today in Cyprus.

    According to the Geological Survey Department, the tremour was felt at 0424 local time (0224 GMT).

    The epicentre was 25 kilometres in the sea area, south of Limassol.

    "The quake was of a moderate magnitude and it is believed that it is part of the normal seismic activity in Cyprus", the Department added.

    An earthquake measuring 6,1 on the Richter scale was felt throughout the island on October 9, 1996. Around 50 persons were injured and many houses and block of flats in Limassol and Paphos were affected.

    A total of 67 people were killed in earthquakes in the last 100 years in Cyprus, which is situated in the second major seismic zone of the world.

    CNA EC/GP/1996
    ENDS, CYPRUS NEWS AGENCY
    1040:CYPPRESS:02

    [02] Cypriot Ombudsman re-appointed

    Nicosia, Mar 7 (CNA) -- The House of Representatives renewed Thursday for a further six-year term the appointment of Nicos Charalambous as the island's first Ombudsman.

    The House was acting upon a Council of Ministers' recommendation. The House approval is necessary, according to the relevant legislation.

    Charalambous is responsible for investigating complaints about the workings of government departments and the civil service.

    CNA EC/GP/1996
    ENDS, CYPRUS NEWS AGENCY
    1050:CYPPRESS:03

    [03] Cypriot women to protest in London

    Nicosia, Mar 7 (CNA) -- Over 60 Cypriot women are leaving for London today, to take part in a sit-in vigil outside the Turkish embassy and take part in three-day enlightenment campaign, about gross violations of their human rights by Turkey. The event takes place on the occasion of the International Women's Day, March 8.

    Speaking to CNA, Katina Mina, heading the events, noted the message the Cypriot women want to put across is that "Cypriot women are struggling for their right to live and work freely in a united country, without Turkish occupation troops and barbed wire dividing it."

    "What other rights can the women of Cyprus struggle for when nearly half of their country is under Turkish occupation?" she asked.

    Turkish troops have been occupying 37 per cent of Cyprus territory since 1974, in violation of repeated UN resolutions calling for their withdrawal.

    About 200.000 people (one third of the island's population) have been forcibly uprooted from their homes by the Turkish troops while a total of 1619 people have been missing since then.

    Mina added they are struggling for the right of the mothers and sisters of people missing since the 1974 Turkish invasion of Cyprus to know the fate of their loved ones and the right of women living in the Turkish- occupied areas to live and work freely in their homeland.

    Asked why London was chosen as a venue for the events, Mina said they want to join forces with London Cypriots protesting outside the Turkish embassy since last summer, after Turkish extremists and Turkish troops murdered two young Greek Cypriots in cold blood, during peaceful demonstrations in Cyprus.

    She also pointed out that Britain is one of the three guarantors of Cyprus' independence (along with Greece and Turkey) and has "an obligation to protect the rights of Cypriots".

    On Saturday and Sunday, some of the Cypriot women, together with London Cypriots, will hand out leaflets in central Oxford Street, on the violation of their human rights by Turkey. The rest will join a sit-in outside the Turkish embassy in London.

    On Monday afternoon the women will hold a four-hour silent and peaceful protest outside the House of Commons, before ending their campaign outside the Turkish embassy.

    A delegation is expected to hand over petitions for the British Prime Minister, John Major, and House Speaker, Betty Boothroyd.

    The events are organised by the Cyprus Anti-Occupation Movement (PAK) and are under the auspices of the National Federation of Cypriots in Great Britain.

    CNA MA/GP/1997
    ENDS, CYPRUS NEWS AGENCY
    1240:CYPPRESS:04

    [04] Albright meets Pangalos

    Washington, Mar 7 (CNA) -- The Cyprus problem was one of the major issues that the US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright and the Greek Foreign Minister Theodoros Pangalos discussed here yesterday.

    Responding to a question during the photo opportunity held before the meeting, the US Secretary said "we obviously have a great interest in this (Cyprus problem) and we have our envoy Mr (Richard) Beattie, who will continue to work."

    She said Washington considers 1997 "a year of opportunity because of the potential of EU accession and so we are highly involved in trying to find a settlement and we will continue to see it as a very high priority because we believe that it is essential to get a proper and just solution there".

    After the meeting, the State Department's Spokesman Nickolas Burns told CNA that "on Cyprus, the Secretary said, we do believe that this is a year of opportunity".

    As for the US initiative, Burns said "she did not unveil a comprehensive peace plan for him (Pangalos) in the meeting. She just said we do want to step up the effort to try to find a resolution to the Cyprus problem".

    The Spokesman said during the meeting Albright said that "we want to reduce the military tension on Cyprus, therefore, it's a good idea, it's a very good step that President Clerides has said he is not going to deploy the anti-aircraft system for the next sixteen months".

    Burns added the US concern about Cyprus "is not only rhetoric. We've been on the ground proposing very specific things, in the Cavanaugh mission. In this particular issue (Cyprus) we happened to have three exceptionally good Ambassadors. And frankly she (Albright) believes, she has such confidence in the three of them, that we've given them the play. And those guys have been very active. And the Cavanaugh mission, we've proposed very specific things on Cyprus and in Greek-Turkish issues".

    Turkish troops have been occupying 37 per cent of Cyprus territory since 1974, in violation of repeated UN resolutions calling for their withdrawal.

    CNA DA/GP/1997
    ENDS, CYPRUS NEWS AGENCY
    1400:CYPPRESS:05

    [05] Hellenic Bank-new chairman

    Nicosia, Mar 7 (CNA) -- Panos Galanos, Chief Executive of the Hellenic Bank, is the new Chairman of the Hellenic Mining Company (HMC), following the resignation of Paschalis Paschalides, on Tuesday.

    Paschalides' resignation, was the result of a disagreement with Archbishop Chrysostomos over the Group's ownership status and management.

    Galanos, one of Hellenic Bank's founding members, is a London School of Economics graduate, and member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales. He has been a member of the Board of Directors of the Electricity Authority of Cyprus, for 20 years.

    Meanwhile, the Hellenic Bank announced its 1996 annual results, including the onshore operations of Barclays Bank Plc, showing a 38,7 per cent rise in operating profits, compared to those of 1995, reaching 8,5 million Cyprus pounds (one Cyprus pound is worth two US dollars).

    The 1996 results, considered by the Group as "very satisfactory", show a profit after tax of 2,1 million pounds, and earnings per share of 12,5 cents.

    Provision for bad debts, reached 2,0 million pounds, compared to 1,4 million in 1995.

    After deducting the cost of a redundancy scheme and acquisition expenses, reaching 2,9 million pounds, pre-tax profit was 3,4 million pounds.

    The Board of Directors decided to propose a 15 per cent dividend for 1996.

    On December 31 1996, the Group's capital base exceeded 60 million pounds.

    The Group estimates that for 1997 the island's economy "has relatively better prospects, than the year before," and predicts "a slight recovery."

    CNA GG/MCH/1997
    ENDS, CYPRUS NEWS AGENCY
    1415:CYPPRESS:06

    [06] US engagement on Cyprus issue, consistent, says Brill

    Nicosia, Mar 7 (CNA) -- The US has been working quietly behind the scenes to facilitate a solution to the protracted Cyprus problem and will continue to do so, as it believes the time has come to push for a settlement here.

    Speaking after an hour-long meeting with Communication and Works Minister, Adamos Adamides, US Ambassador to Cyprus, Kenneth Brill, said the Cyprus issue will be discussed in Washington, next week.

    The American diplomat also said the US, Britain and the European Union are coordinating their efforts under the UN umbrella.

    "A lot of our efforts on Cyprus are done outside the glare of TV cameras and the dimea, we do it through a lot of private discussions in the key capitals and with key personalities," Brill said.

    "The American effort and the American engagement on the Cyprus issue has been quite consistent for years," he said, but noted it has been stepped up since July 1996 with "a series of activities on the part of the US to try to advance the Cyprus issue forward."

    US Secretary of State, Madeleine Albright, visited Cyprus last July to press on with a military dialogue between the tiNaonal Guard and the Turkish occupation troops in a bid to reduce tension.

    Brill noted the Cyprus question was discussed in Washington yesterday at a meeting between Albright and her Greek counterpart Theodoros Pangalos and said "there will be additional meetings in Washington next week that relate to the issue."

    The American diplomat made it clear that the US is acting "under the UN umbrella and as part of a team effort to move things forward."

    "We work closely with all involved ithn e Cyprus issue, particularly the EU, the UK and the UN. Whatever anybody in the international community does in Cyprus it will be done under the aegis of the UN and the Secretary- General," he said.

    Replying to questions, the American Ambassador said "there has been communication and coordination among all who are involved in trying to move the issue forward" and noted "there is a pretty common understanding of what needs to be done".

    Brill said there have been occasions when the US had to direct its efforts "at tension reduction and not at settlement advancement", but noted that today "we are beyond that, we are at the point where we are trying to move the political process forward." He said this "involves direct negotiations between the leaders (President Glafcos Clerides and Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash)".

    However, he appeared satisfied that "right now people are talking much more about a political process rather than anything else".

    Asked if he will be in any way involved in the UN proximity talks between the Greek and Turkish sides scheduled to begin next week, Brill replied he "is in touch with the two sides quite regularly and will continue to do so".

    The American diplomat said there has to be a comprehensive settlement and not a settlement "of one issue at a time" as there is a full range of issues involved.

    Commenting on reports that the US will focus on confidence building measures, Brill said "you need to have confidence between the two parties for a political and negotiating process to work".

    CNA MA/MCH/1997
    ENDS, CYPRUS NEWS AGENCY
    CNA ENDS
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