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Cyprus News Agency: News in English (PM), 97-03-18

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

From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>


  • [01] Cyprus Stock Exchange
  • [02] Accession prospect a catalyst for solution
  • [03] Direct talks sooner or later
  • [04] No date for EU - Cyprus structured dialogue
  • [05] Charges in dog fights case dropped
  • [06] Bicommunal Trade Union Forum continues in occupied areas
  • [07] Spokesman on composition of international force

  • 1500:CYPPRESS:01

    [01] Cyprus Stock Exchange

    Nicosia, Mar 18 (CNA) -- The Cyprus Stock Exchange (CSE) All Share Index closed at today's stock exchange meeting as follows:
    CSE All Share Index                    79.39 (+0.62)
    Highest: 82.46 (2/1/97)
    Lowest : 73.90 (30/1/97)
    Sectural Indices
    Banks                                  89.22 (+0.76)
    Approved Investment Companies          67.03 (+2.90)
    Insurance Companies                    61.40 (+2.11)
    Industrial Companies                   82.65 (-0.89)
    Tourist Industries                     62.97 (-0.46)
    Commercial Companies                   54.10 (+1.60)
    Other Companies                        56.61 (-0.40)
    Trading Volume                         CYP 1016520.950
    * The difference in brackets represents the percentage increase (+) or decrease (-) of the index from the previous stock exchange meeting.
    CNA MM/1997

    [02] Accession prospect a catalyst for solution

    Nicosia, Mar 18 (CNA) -- The prospect of Cyprus' membership of the European Union offers an opportunity for a politically viable and lasting solution to the island's political problem this year, Ron Van Dartel, representing the EU Dutch presidency, said today.

    Speaking at the 11th Meeting of the Joint Cyprus-EU Parliamentary Committee, Van Dartel said the prospect of EU membership "offers an opportunity to find a politically viable and lasting solution to the Cyprus question this year," stressing that "Cyprus remains a high priority on the agenda of the presidency for the coming months."

    The Dutch representative stressed the importance of coordination within the international community in support of UN efforts towards a solution and underlined the EU's potential as "a catalyst for a settlement."

    The EU, he said, "has a legitimate interest in the shape of any settlement in Cyprus given that this will have to be reconciled with the acquis of the Union."

    Referring to the postponement of the structured dialogue meeting, last month, due to the absence of a common position on Turkish Cypriot participation in accession negotiations, Van Dartel stressed the "Council has not departed from its long-standing position of non-recognition of the authorities of northern Cyprus."

    Van Dartel also said the EU Council shares UN concerns regarding the situation on the island, and stressed the importance for the Greek and Turkish Cypriot sides "to encourage steps designed to create genuine mutual confidence between them and to avoid any actions which will increase tension."

    The Dutch official called on all Mediterranean countries to attend the second Ministerial meeting of the Euro-Mediterranean Partnership to be held in Valletta, Malta on 15-16 April.

    CNA MCH/MM/1997

    [03] Direct talks sooner or later

    Nicosia, Mar 18 (CNA) -- Sooner or later President Glafcos Clerides will hold direct talks with Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash to try and settle the protracted Cyprus problem, Government Spokesman Yiannakis Cassoulides said today.

    However, he noted the timing of the direct negotiations depends on the outcome of the proximity talks carried out by the UN Resident Representative in Cyprus, Gustave Feissel, since last week.

    "As proximity talks continue, sooner or later issues, which need to be discussed face-to-face, will arise," Cassoulides told his daily briefing.

    He said the Greek Cypriot side will wait for the outcome of the proximity talks to decide whether a productive direct dialogue can be carried out.

    "We have said we will enter into proximity talks in the hope that they will pave the way for face-to-face talks between President Clerides and Rauf Denktash," the Spokesman said.

    Cassoulides said it seems "reasonable" to assume that direct talks will start towards the end of May or beginning of June.

    He noted these will be based on the UN resolutions regarding the Cyprus question and the high level agreements reached between the Greek and Turkish Cypriot sides in 1977 and 1979, which provide for the establishment of a bizonal, bicommunal federated state.

    Asked if the government will agree to a US proposal for a moratorium of flights by Greek and Turkish military aircraft over Cyprus, as a good-will gesture, Cassoulides said the government has not yet decided.

    "We will take this decision after we have entered a substantive exchange of views," he added.

    Cassoulides pointed out no military exercises in which the Greek Military Airforce will participate are planned in the near future.

    CNA EC/MA/MM/1997

    [04] No date for EU - Cyprus structured dialogue

    Nicosia, Mar 18 (CNA) -- Government Spokesman Yiannakis Cassoulides clarified today that no date has been set for the next European Union (EU) - Cyprus structured dialogue meeting.

    Cassoulides was commenting on press reports quoting Greek Foreign Minister, Theodoros Pangalos, as saying the structured dialogue will take place on March 24.

    He added that Pangalos, who was speaking after an informal meeting of EU Foreign Ministers at the weekend in Apeldorn, the Netherlands, had referred to March 24 as a possible date.

    It was later clarified that no date has been set, Cassoulides said.

    The structured dialogue was scheduled to take place at the end of February, but the meeting was postponed because EU member states failed to agree on a common position regarding Turkish Cypriot involvement in accession negotiations.

    CNA EC/MA/MM/1997

    [05] Charges in dog fights case dropped

    Nicosia, Mar 18 (CNA) -- Police have dropped charges against four men accused of organising deadly dog fights, one day before they were due to appear before the court.

    According to an official announcement, after examining the case the Attorney General's office ascertained that the offences, committed in 1995, have been annulled.

    The available evidence on the case refers to alleged offences which occurred more than a year ago, and according to the relevant legislation the police cannot press charges against someone who has contravened this law, if more than a year elapses since the offence was committed, or if six months elapse after the discovery of the offence.

    However, because of a public outcry and to prevent cruelty against animals, the Attorney General's office is preparing a bill to amend existing and outdated legislation.

    At the same time it has instructed the police chief to begin new investigations to determine whether dog fights continued after 1995 as well.

    The vicious dog fights, held for betting purposes, were revealed by private TV station "ANTENNA" that had televised a pirate film taken in 1995.

    Greek Cypriots Spyros Theodorou, 46, Charalambos Charalambous, 23, Stavros Neocleous, 21 and Fanos Efthymiou, also 21, were arrested as suspects and then released on bail.

    They were meant to appear before the Larnaca District Court tomorrow.

    CNA MA/MM/1997

    [06] Bicommunal Trade Union Forum continues in occupied areas

    Nicosia, Mar 18 (CNA) -- In a spirit of mutual cooperation and understanding, Greek and Turkish Cypriot Trade Unionists reaffirmed today their commitment to peace on the island and its accession to the European Union (EU) as a federated state.

    On the second day of the three-day All-Cyprus Trade Union Forum, representatives from over 15 Greek and Turkish Cypriot trade unions meeting in the Turkish-occupied town of Lapithos, expressed their common hope for a quick solution to the Cyprus problem at this opportune time and said trade unions can and should play a leading role in the process.

    "The liberation of Cyprus can only be achieved through peace. Our priority is peace and we are willing to do our part to achieve it," Turkish Cypriot Municipal Employees Trade Union representative, Gulev Sidal told delegates.

    Turkish Cypriot Professors' Trade Union representative, Ali Alnar, said Cyprus suffers the contradiction of division at a time when borders are being torn down all across Europe.

    "The two communities are in complete isolation from each other and have developed separate economies. This is not in harmony with global change. The two communities have lost so much as a result of division. The free movement of capital and labour between the two communities will make up for time lost," Alnar stressed.

    President of the Greek Cypriot Civil Servants Union PASYDY, Glafkos Hadjipetrou reverberated this anachronism, posing the rhetorical question of why Cyprus remains divided when Europe continues to shatter borders.

    Michalakis Papaefstathiou, from the Greek Cypriot trade union PEO, said trade unions have a great responsibility to help bridge the gap between the two communities by fostering closer links between workers' organisations.

    "We always believed the two communities can and must live together. We propose a committee between trade unions as a working group to help create a climate of trust and confidence," Papaefstathiou said.

    Secretary-General of the Cyprus Turkish Teachers' Trade Union, Cemal Ozyigit, stressed a solution to the island's problem should stem from its own inhabitants and that trade unions in Cyprus must contribute to that end.

    However, he noted that acts raising tensions here, like the killings of unarmed Greek Cypriot civilians by Turkish occupation troops on the buffer zone near the deserted Turkish-occupied town of Famagusta last year, must cease, if peace efforts should bear any fruit.

    One Turkish Cypriot trade union representative told CNA Turkish Cypriot workers' organisations share the sentiment that trade unionists would do much better in bringing about a solution to the Cyprus problem if they were not kept on a short rope by their political bosses.

    "We think differently from politicians, but they hold the sword. If we held the sword, things would be different. But, at some point, you do what the "commander" tells you to do", he said.

    The main thrusts of today's meeting were the Maastricht Treaty and the Free Movement of Capital and Labour tackled by Researcher with the Brussels- based European Social Observatory, Anne Raulier.

    She said the European Union has " finally broken the taboo" of grappling with social issues like unemployment and workers' rights, through the 1993 White Paper on Growth, Competition and Jobs.

    "There is a new direction of thinking now on a European level on social policy issues. There is a growing consciousness that European integration does affect workers such as the recent row over the Renault automobile plant closing in Belgium," Raulier added.

    On the free movement of capital and labour, Raulier said this has become a reality in Europe and that workers are able to move with their families in search of jobs throughout Europe.

    Raulier expressed the concern however, that in search of new markets in Eastern Europe, EU officials seem to hold back on accepting an influx of new labour from that region.

    "We want those growing markets, but we're not sure if we want those people in Europe. Will they become second class citizens and will they need a long time to become full citizens?" Raulier said.

    She added that Europe should be "like the ocean without frontiers carrying many vessels".

    Scottish Trade Union Congress Representative, Campbell Christie, said Europe still has a long road to travel on social issues because conservative governments remain at loggerheads with workers' groups on what must be done to expand and entrench workers' rights.

    The Trade Union Forum continues tomorrow in the government controlled areas of the Republic with EU social policy as the main agenda item.

    CNA MH/MM/1997

    [07] Spokesman on composition of international force

    Nicosia, Mar 18 (CNA) -- The government does not insist on participation of Turkish troops in the multinational force it has proposed to be set up in Cyprus.

    "We have proposed to establish a multinational force and have said that if the Turkish side wanted Turkish troops to be present in Cyprus, these troops could participate in a multinational force along with a Greek contingent," Government Spokesman Yiannakis Cassoulides said today.

    He was commenting on a report in today's edition of the Greek Cypriot daily "Fileleftheros" that western military experts who studied the idea of establishing a multinational force in Cyprus oppose the participation of Greek and Turkish contingents in the force.

    Quoting reliable sources, the high-circulation daily says the military experts believe a Greek and Turkish contingent would create increased operational problems for the force.

    It adds that Ankara accepts the presence of a multinational force in Cyprus, but does no agree with the idea of having a Turkish contingent under the command of an international force. Turkey insists its contingent should operate independently.

    "If they (the Turks) do not wish to participate, we will not insist that they do," Cassoulides said.

    According to "Fileleftheros", Britain's special representative for the Cyprus problem has outlined the views of the foreign military experts during his visit here last week.

    CNA MA/MM/1997
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