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Cyprus News Agency: News in English (AM), 97-05-15

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

From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>


  • [01] UN pleased with support for bicommunal concert
  • [02] President receives AHEPA delegation
  • [03] UN envoy holds "very valuable talks" with President
  • [04] Cyprus Stock Exchange

  • 1230:CYPPRESS:01

    [01] UN pleased with support for bicommunal concert

    by Maria Myles

    Nicosia, May 15 (CNA) -- A spokesman for the UN peace-keeping force in Cyprus (UNFICYP), Waldemar Rokoszewski, has welcomed the support from the Greek and Turkish Cypriot sides for a bicommunal concert by a Greek and Turkish popular singers on Monday.

    The spokesman has also welcomed the cooperation of the police force with the UN in anticipation of security arrangements for the concert.

    "The concert has the support of both leaders (Cyprus President Glafcos Clerides and Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash) and UNFICYP appreciates the active support from political parties on the island," he told CNA.

    He also noted the concert "provides a unique opportunity to demonstrate the willingness of both communities to work for a common future."

    The younger generation, he added, will prove that "both communities can live together peacefully with mutual respect."

    The concert, by Greek pop star Sakis Rouvas and Turkish singer Burat Kut, will be televised live by satellite to Greece and Turkey.

    The response to ticket availability (3,000 free tickets to each community) has been "good", Rokoszewski told CNA and noted there are more tickets available for distribution among Greek Cypriots.

    "We shall continue giving out tickets today and Friday at the two designated local hotels and a third ticket stand will be set up at the main downtown square in central Nicosia, Eleftheria Square, to offer more tickets," he said.

    Referring to security arrangements, Rokoszewski said "400 UN military and civilian police will take charge of security on the night of the concert", which will be attended by UN top envoy in Cyprus, Gustave Feissel.

    This, he said, means one UN to 12 participants, a ratio which any police force dealing with crowd control would envy.

    "Security is not a problem at all, the police are cooperating well with us and are doing what is necessary. All procedures have been worked out in the past week," he added.

    The concert has attracted media interest from both sides of the divide on this Eastern Mediterranean island and abroad, but it has also come under criticism from various quarters on the Greek and Turkish Cypriot sides.

    Some Greek Cypriots have raised objections about the date on which the concert will take place, May 19, which marks Kemal Ataturk Day (the founder of modern secular Turkey) and is the anniversary of Turkey's massacre of Pontiac Greeks on the Black Sea, in 1916.

    Reports in the Turkish Cypriot press have called on Turkish Cypriots not to attend such events until the self-styled regime in Turkish-occupied Cyprus is recognised by the international community.

    Government Spokesman, Manolis Christofides, said yesterday UN preparations for the concert were going ahead despite criticism by different factions on both sides.

    The UN and others have been trying to promote bicommunal meetings to encourage Greek and Turkish Cypriots to get together and exchange views and experiences, in a bid to push for rapprochement between the two communities, forcibly separated since Turkish troops invaded and occupied the island's northern part in 1974.

    Turkish Cypriot leader, Rauf Denktash, has often blocked such events, which organisers, including foreign governments, have had to cancel.

    Recently Turkish Cypriot artists were refused permission to attend the opening of a bicommunal exhibition in Nicosia and last month Denktash reneged on a promise to allow Greek Cypriot pilgrims to hear Easter Mass in the Turkish-occupied Monastery of Apostolos Andreas, having originally given his "consent" to the visit.

    In contrast, some 450 Turkish Cypriots crossed over to the government controlled areas of the Republic to pray in one of the holiest Islamic shrines, the Hala Sultan Tekke built in memory of Umm Haram, an aunt of Prophet Mohammed, located on the shore of Larnaca's Salt Lake.

    CNA MM/AP/1997

    [02] President receives AHEPA delegation

    Nicosia, May 15 (CNA) -- Cyprus President Glafcos Clerides is likely to hold a schedule of meetings with Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash in New York, later in June.

    The President of the American Hellenic Education Progressive Association (AHEPA), Dr. Spiro Macris, who is heading a high-level delegation of officers from across North American on a fact-finding mission which took them to Athens, Constantinople, Thessaloniki and now to Nicosia, said President Clerides briefed them today on the latest developments regarding efforts to bring a solution to the protracted Cyprus problem.

    "He has informed us he will be travelling to New York. There is apparently a schedule of meetings that will be taking place between President Clerides and Denktash, one step at a time, to see if developments at one meeting would warrant a second meeting, and then a third meeting," Macris said.

    The President of AHEPA said "Cyprus throughout the years has shown great flexibility in seeking to resolve the problem here".

    He also noted "the question remains and the entire international community will be watching to see if the Turkish side will show any flexibility in its positions in these talks."

    Earlier today, the delegation held separate meetings with Foreign Minister, Ioannis Kasoulides, and the House of Representatives President, Spyros Kyprianou.

    Meanwhile, speaking after a meeting with the 13-member AHEPA delegation, the Primate of Orthodox church in Cyprus, Archbishop Chrysostomos, said they represent Hellenism in the USA.

    "It is natural that we have urged them not to forget Cyprus and work for the implementation of human rights all over the island, for both Greek and Turkish Cypriots," Archbishop Chrysostomos said.

    Dr. Macris reassured the Archbishop that AHEPA will continue its efforts in the US to "effect a change in the policy of our government towards the problem which exists here so that we can effect a fair and just solution, so that Cyprus can be unified in one nation once again."

    Cyprus has been divided since 1974 when Turkish troops invaded and occupied 37 per cent of the island's territory.

    AHEPA is the largest Greek heritage group in the world and a major community service organisation in North America. Its central objectives are philanthropy, education, civics and the promotion of Hellenic culture and heritage through local, district and national efforts.

    It also works to educate US and Canadian policy makers and the public on foreign policy issues of concern to Greek Americans.

    CNA EC/AP/1997

    [03] UN envoy holds "very valuable talks" with President

    Nicosia, May 15 (CNA) -- Sir Kieran Prendergast, UN Under Secretary-General, said he has had "very valuable talks" with President Glafcos Clerides, which will help him in his report to UN Secretary-General, Kofi Annan.

    "I am not going to make any substantive statement, I just would like to say I have had an hour of very valuable talks with his Excellency, and these will be helpful in the advice I will have to give the UN Secretary- General when I get back to New York," he told the press after meeting with the President.

    He said he will "reserve any substantive comments until tomorrow's press conference" at the Ledra Palace hotel, for Greek and Turkish Cypriot journalists, in the UN controlled buffer zone.

    Asked if the door is still open for direct talks between President Clerides and Denktash, he replied "the door is open until tomorrow evening at the Ledra Palace."

    Sir Kieran, who was accompanied by Deputy special envoy for Cyprus, Gustave Feissel, and senior advisor, Peter Scmitz, said talks will continue over the lunch President Clerides is hosting for him.

    Foreign Minister Ioannis Kasoulides, Government Spokesman Manolis Christofides and Undersecretary to the President Pantelis Kouros, were present at the meeting.

    Sir Kieran will see Denktash later today and have dinner with him in Turkish occupied Nicosia.

    Tomorrow he is scheduled to meet the ambassadors of European Union member states in Cyprus and the representatives of the five permanent members of the UN Security Council.

    He will also have a working dinner with British High Commissioner, David Madden.

    Sir Kieran served with the High Commission here in the late 1960s.

    CNA MM/MA/1997

    [04] Cyprus Stock Exchange

    Nicosia, May 15 (CNA) -- The Cyprus Stock Exchange (CSE) All Share Index closed at today's stock exchange meeting as follows:
    CSE All Share Index                    77.01 (+1.54)
    Highest: 82.46 (2/1/97)
    Lowest : 73.90 (30/1/97)
    Sectural Indices
    Banks                                  86.07 (+1.94)
    Approved Investment Companies          66.23 (+1.33)
    Insurance Companies                    59.81 (+0.79)
    Industrial Companies                   80.86 (+0.11)
    Tourist Industries                     60.87 (-0.18)
    Commercial Companies                   52.59 (+3.75)
    Other Companies                        56.26 (+1.61)
    Trading Volume                         CYP 695369.117
    * The difference in brackets represents the percentage increase (+) or decrease (-) of the index from the previous stock exchange meeting.
    CNA MA/1997
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