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Cyprus News Agency: News in English (PM), 97-05-13

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

From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>


  • [01] President Clerides discharged from hospital
  • [02] Kyprianou says impossible to refuse invitation for talks
  • [03] Ambassadors asked to promote Cyprus' economic interests
  • [04] No alternative place for British army exercises

  • 1715:CYPPRESS:01

    [01] President Clerides discharged from hospital

    Nicosia, May 13 (CNA) -- President Glafcos Clerides was discharged from the Nicosia General Hospital, earlier this afternoon and will resume his duties tomorrow.

    Leaving the Hospital, President Clerides told reporters he was feeling fine and thanked everybody for their interest and concern.

    Replying to questions, President Clerides said the condition of his health would not have any consequences on developments in the Cyprus problem.

    On his part, Head of the Cardiology Unit at the Nicosia General Hospital, Dr. Costas Zambartas, said "there is no reason for concern", adding that "the President will resume his duties tomorrow morning."

    The President had been feeling minor chest pains for the past two days and was admitted to hospital early this morning for a coronary angiography.

    Zambartas said the angiography has shown that the President has a "perfect myocardium".

    CNA MCH/AP/1997
    1720 CYPPRESS:02

    [02] Kyprianou says impossible to refuse invitation for talks

    Nicosia, May 13 (CNA) -- Refusal to an invitation by UN Secretary-General, Kofi Annan, for direct talks, would have serious political repercussions for Cyprus, President of the House of Representatives, Spyros Kyprianou, said here today.

    Expressing disappointment with the way "things have developed", as he said, Kyprianou noted that there could be no progress in direct talks between President Glafcos Clerides and Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash, if common ground were not reached beforehand.

    He said, however, that "even if common ground were not reached it will be, if not impossible, very difficult to reject any invitation by the UN Secretary-General."

    Refusal to an invitation for direct talks would have "great political cost for Cyprus," Kyprianou, added.

    CNA KK/MCH/AP/1997
    1800 :CYPPRESS:03

    [03] Ambassadors asked to promote Cyprus' economic interests

    Nicosia, May 13 (CNA) -- Ambassadors of the Cyprus Republic abroad will be more involved in promoting the island's economic interests especially on tourism in their host countries, Minister of Commerce, Industry and Tourism, Kyriakos Christofi, said today.

    The Minister was speaking after a meeting today with Cypriot ambassadors abroad and Cyprus Tourism Organisation (CTO) officials, where they discussed a number of measures aiming at strengthening the ambassadors contribution to Cyprus' trade and tourism strategy. A meeting with the rest of the ambassadors will follow on Friday.

    The embassies' role must be enhanced, in order to comprise issues related to trade and tourism, in view of the intensified international competition, Christofi said.

    "We examined ways for better and closer co-operation between our trade and tourism offices abroad, and our respective embassies. We have concluded that this co-operation is satisfactory but there are prospects for further improvement," he added.

    CNA GG/AP/1997

    [04] No alternative place for British army exercises

    Nicosia, May 13 (CNA) -- Much to the ire of local environmentalists, British Forces in Cyprus will carry on with military exercises in the ecologically sensitive Akamas region, at least for the time being, Foreign Minister, Ioanis Kasoulides said here today.

    Speaking before the House Environment Committee, Kasoulides said that no alternative sites to Akamas northwestern peninsula have yet been found for British Forces to conduct their training exercises.

    The Foreign Minister in fact revealed that the National Guard has assessed Akamas to be the most suitable place for British Forces to carry on with military training.

    Given these circumstances, Kasoulides said, the government had previously granted permission to British Sovereign Base Area (SBA) authorities to go ahead with exercises in Akamas, between May 26 to 30, on the condition that no live ammunition is used during the exercises.

    The Cyprus government has adopted the stance that it could re-negotiate the season in which the exercises are conducted, taking into consideration the fact that during the summer season, there is an increased fire hazard in the Akamas area.

    Akamas, located in the south-western region of the island, is home to some of the rarest species of flora and fauna on Cyprus and is also home to the endangered Mediterranean Green and Loggerhead turtles.

    Local environmentalists caused a raucous last February when British Forces carried out military exercises in Akamas. The environmentalists charged SBA authorities endangering one of Cyprus' most environmentally fragile areas and vowed to disrupt future exercises.

    SBA spokesman, Mervyn Wynne Jones, told CNA that British authorities will take the "necessary measures" so as to prevent further disruptions.

    "We are hopeful that there will be no attempts to disrupt the exercise which by right we can conduct under the Treaty of Establishment," Jones said.

    The 1960 Treaty of Establishment, which accorded Britain two sovereign military bases in Cyprus (the island used to be a British colony), stipulates that British Forces in Cyprus can conduct military exercises on the island pending the approval of the government of the Republic of Cyprus. "I wish to reassure everyone that every effort will, as always, be made to prevent any damage to the environment," Jones said.

    The SBA spokesman stressed British troops will carry out "dry training", or training without the use of live ammunition, which will consist of troop movements firing black ammunition.

    Socialist party EDEK deputy, Yiannakis Omirou, told the Committee the House is asking for an end to British military exercises in the Akamas peninsula and not to the Treaty of Establishment.

    Omirou said the British have deliberately sought permission for more exercises in such a short time, in order to send the message they do not intend to abandon the Akamas area.

    The Foreign Minister also informed the House Environment Committee on the government's talks with the SBA authorities for finding an alternative training area which, however, have been inconclusive.

    Jones said SBA authorities will continue to discuss alternative training sites with the Republic.

    "We have long maintained that we would carefully consider any proposal (from the Cyprus government) for an alternative area," Jones added.

    House Environment Committee Chairman, Demetris Eliades, said the committee maintains its position that British military exercises in Akamas must end immediately.

    Eliades noted his Committee will lodge a complaint on the matter with the European Parliament, the Commonwealth Council and the Council of Europe. CNA SD/RM/MH/AP/1997


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