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Cyprus News Agency: News in English (PM), 98-05-26

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

From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>


  • [01] No statements on S-300s, says Russian ambassador
  • [02] Cyprus Stock Exchange
  • [03] US envoy outlines American position on Cyprus
  • [04] Popular Bank upgrades telephone services
  • [05] Japan wants peaceful solution in Cyprus
  • [06] Chilean Ambassador presents credentials
  • [07] Missiles deployment, Turkish threats "bad", says US envoy
  • [08] Irish deal offers lessons to Cyprus, says FM
  • [09] Syrian Deputy Minister points to investment possibilities

  • 1500:CYPPRESS:01

    [01] No statements on S-300s, says Russian ambassador

    Nicosia, May 26 (CNA) -- Russian ambassador to Cyprus, Georgi Mouradov, today said he will continue not to make statements regarding the S-300 defence missile system, until its deployment in Cyprus later this year.

    Mouradov also dismissed press reports that Moscow will be able to control the region through the S-300 radar system.

    "There is an embargo on statements relating to this issue until the end of autumn. We will speak afterwards," he said.

    Asked if the embargo will be enforced until the deployment of the missile system, Mouradov said "yes, exactly".

    Invited to comment on press reports that Moscow will be able to control the region through the S-300 radar, the Russian ambassador said "these ideas are completely unfounded".

    "The radar cannot be used for this purpose since it will belong to and be controlled by the Cyprus National Guard," he added.

    The Cyprus government ordered the Russian-made S-300 surface-to-air missiles in January 1997, in a bid to boost the island's defence capability, and has said it will only be used in the case of a new Turkish offensive against Cyprus.

    Foreign governments, including the governments of the United States and Britain, have expressed opposition to this decision.

    Cyprus has been divided since Turkish troops invaded the island in 1974, occupying 37 per cent of its territory.

    CNA MK/MA/GP/1998

    [02] Cyprus Stock Exchange

    Nicosia, May 26 (CNA) -- The Cyprus Stock Exchange (CSE) All Share Index closed at today's stock exchange meeting as follows:
    CSE All Share Index                    83,85 (-0,44)
    Sectural Indices
    Banks                                  97,66 (-1,00)
    Approved Investment Companies          60,70 (-0,64)
    Insurance Companies                    61,86 ( 0,26)
    Industrial Companies                   75,15 ( 0,33)
    Tourist Industries                     67,92 ( 5,24)
    Commercial Companies                   47,67 (-0,56)
    Other Companies                        67,92 (-1,24)
    Trading Volume                        1.239.282,85
    * The difference in brackets represents the percentage increase (+) or decrease (-) of the index from the previous stock exchange meeting.
    CNA MCH/1998

    [03] US envoy outlines American position on Cyprus

    Nicosia, May 26 (CNA) -- A senior US envoy has reiterated his administration's resolve to continue efforts for a settlement in Cyprus and called on the European Union to "step back and take a longer strategic prospective" to bring Turkey closer to Europe.

    Thomas Miller, US Cyprus Coordinator, appealed to Turkey to address issues of concern, including the Cyprus question, its relations with Greece and human rights, and acknowledged that Turkey is not likely to become a member of the EU for "many, many years."

    He also had a word of warning for all parties involved in the Cyprus question, that "time is working against a Cyprus settlement and the situation could get worse before it gets better."

    "The US objective is to start a process," Miller told some 200 delegates attending a two-day conference on "Doing business in Cyprus", organised by the financial review the "Economist."

    Miller said the preconditions Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash set before he returns to the negotiating table did not allow progress towards the resumption of the talks.

    Denktash, he explained, wanted recognition of his regime in Turkish occupied areas of Cyprus and demanded the withdrawal of the Republic's application for accession to the European Union.

    He said the EU dimension figured prominently in discussions on Cyprus and added "the US fully supports and continues to support Cyprus' application to the EU."

    Outlining the two opposing views of the Greek and Turkish Cypriot sides on the EU prospect of accession, Miller said both sides stand to gain "many advantages from EU membership."

    The US official explained that Turkey's European aspirations also featured prominently in his talks recently with both sides.

    "We have made it clear to our European friends that we believe that Turkey's candidacy for EU membership should be considered on the same basis as other existing applicants," he said.

    "This of course recongises, as Turkey's own government does, that such membership would, under any conceivable scenario, likely take many many years," Miller added.

    The Turkish side's insistence on linking Turkey's accession prospects and the accession prospects for Cyprus "was in our opinion simply not realistic," he pointed out.

    Miller praised the Cyprus government's support for Turkey's bid to join the EU and called on Turkey itself to take steps to address key issues, including human rights, relations with Greece and the Cyprus question.

    "As we look at where do we go from here, it is clear that the situation could get worse before it gets better," Miller warned and proceeded to link this remark with the Cypriot government's intent to deploy Russian anti- aircraft missiles.

    Reiterating American opposition to the purchase of the missiles, Miller hastened to stress the US is not questioning the Cyprus government's right to take whatever steps it considers necessary for its defence.

    "We are saying simply that this purchase makes efforts more difficult," he added.

    He said US efforts to resolve the Cyprus question are under the UN umbrella, and aim to establish a bizonal, bicommunal federation.

    "A solution in Cyprus remains high priority for the US, and all parties engaged have asked us to remain involved, " Miller said, noting that President Bill Clinton is "clearly committed to a solution."

    "We pledge to do all we can to assist UN efforts," he concluded.

    Expressing regret for the suspension of bicommunal contacts by the Turkish Cypriot side, Miller said "politically the refusal of the Turkish Cypriots to engage in straight forward discussions on practical problems reinforces the international image of being the intransigent or non- cooperative side."

    Asked to comment on double standards the US seems to apply in different situations around the world, Miller explained his government "works on realities" and noted there are "fundamental differences" between the situation in Bosnia or Kuwait and the Cyprus situation.

    Invited to say whether Denktash's demand for recognition, which is tantamount to separate sovereignty, is negotiable, Miller noted that in a negotiation "you have to put stuff on the table" and the result of the negotiation is up to the two parties.

    CNA MM/MCH/1998

    [04] Popular Bank upgrades telephone services

    Nicosia, May 26 (CNA)- Popular Bank telephone services have been upgraded, making access to ATM and accounts easier, the Bank announced today.

    Speaking today at a press conference, Popular Bank Senior Official, Nicos Hatjinicolaou said "the existing PhoneBank and StockLine services, operating on a 24-hour basis, are now connected with the Teleservice Line."

    That means access to the total of accounts of each subscriber is made possible, in contrast of only eight, which was the case before the new development, he explained.

    The new upgraded service, known as "PhoneBank" provides for nine new services, including account balances, bank statements, amount transfers, information on exchange rates and stock prices, and stock transactions.

    Hatjinicolaou pointed out the Bank considers the non-stop service as a top priority, noting that a customer must have instant access to his bank on a 24-hour basis 365 days a year from any place on the island.

    According to Hadjinicolaou, the new Popular Bank multi-purpose telephone service is the most advanced system offered by any other bank in Cyprus.

    Access to ATM becomes "a real game", he said, noting the "PhoneBank" and "StockLine" subscribers' code numbers remain the same.

    CNA NG/MCH/1998

    [05] Japan wants peaceful solution in Cyprus

    Nicosia, May 26 (CNA) -- Japan's desire for a peaceful resolution to the Cyprus problem and for development in bilateral ties were stressed here today by the country's new Ambassador to Cyprus, Kazuo Matsomoto.

    Presenting his credentials to President Glafcos Clerides, Matsumoto, pointed out that even though Japan and Cyprus are remote from each other geographically, nonetheless relations between them have always been friendly and cordial.

    "It should be noted that there is a lot of potential for the development of our bilateral ties, although it is yet to be explored", he added.

    The new Ambassador referred to a visit by Foreign Minister, Ioannis Kasoulides, to Japan, last June, and the participation of Japanese delegates in a tourism seminar held, here, last December, as good examples of bilateral economic cooperation.

    Matsumoto expressed Japan's earnest desire for a peaceful solution to the Cyprus problem.

    "My government observes carefully the development of efforts by the UN and various other initiatives undertaken by interested parties, hoping it will facilitate a solution" he said.

    Replying, President Clerides expressed the government's determination to work closely with Japan to promote bilateral relations even further.

    "Cyprus and Japan, committed to the principles of the UN Charter and international law, will also continue their cooperation at the international level for the advancement of the cause of peace, security and justice throughout the world", he added.

    Referring to the deadlock in efforts for a Cyprus settlement, President Clerides said:

    "It has become absolutely clear this is due to continuing lack of political will on the part of the Turkish side which persists in unacceptable demands and attempts to change the basis of intercommunal dialogue, contrary to the expressed provisions of UN resolutions on Cyprus as well as the principles of international law".

    He added, however, that despite its disappointment, the Cyprus government remains "committed to a peaceful settlement of the Cyprus problem and a peaceful reunification of our country".

    Cyprus has been divided since 1974 when Turkish troops invaded and occupied 37 per cent of its territory.

    CNA MCH/GP/1998

    [06] Chilean Ambassador presents credentials

    Nicosia, May 26 (CNA) -- Chile wishes to reinforce cooperation with Cyprus both in bilateral relations and in the framework of political, economic, social and humanitarian international organizations.

    Presenting his credentials to President Glafcos Clerides, new Ambassador of Chile to Cyprus, Ignacio Gonzalez Serrano, said the two countries agree that "a just and peaceful international order can only be achieved by the fulfillment of treaties, rejection of threat and use of force and settlement of disputes by peaceful means".

    He expressed his country's support for "the territorial integrity and sovereignty of the states, respect of minorities and the effective protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms".

    He also stressed that his country is convinced that the strategic geographical location of Cyprus, its cultural level and its commitment to the democratic and free trade goals are important elements "that should allow Cyprus to become a significant partner of Chile in this key Mediterranean region".

    Replying President Clerides said "Cyprus and Chile are linked by bonds of friendship and co-operation based on their common adherence to the values of freedom, peace, democracy, respect for human rights as well as the principles and norms of international law".

    Referring to the deadlock in efforts for a Cyprus settlement, President Clerides said "it is by now absolutely clear that this is due to the continuing lack of political will on the part of the Turkish side and their unacceptable demands".

    He also expressed the hope Cyprus' process of accession to the European Union "will act as a catalyst for the success of the efforts in bringing about a peaceful reunification of Cyprus and the prosperity for all its inhabitants".

    CNA DP/MCH/1998

    [07] Missiles deployment, Turkish threats "bad", says US envoy

    Nicosia, May 26 (CNA) -- The US believes that Turkish threats for a pre- emptive strike against Cyprus are just as unproductive as the deployment of Russian anti-aircraft missiles in Cyprus, US State Department Cyprus Coordinator Thomas Miller said here today.

    Speaking on the sidelines of a business conference, Miller said: "We have made it clear to the Turks that any kind of threats are also equally unproductive."

    "We have made it clear to the Turks that we think a reaction would be bad, just as we think that bringing in the missiles is bad," he added.

    Miller stressed however that "no-one in the US Administration is questioning the right of the government of Cyprus to make decisions about its defence needs."

    He also pointed out that a "relatively calm environment" is needed, if efforts to bring about a settlement of the Cyprus question are to materialise.

    Asked if the presence of Turkish occupation troops in Cyprus' northern part does not constitute a hostility, Miller noted that "there is a lot of things we would like to get rid of and this is one of them."

    "What I am saying is give us the ability to work to that end," he said, adding that the deployment of the missiles would make the peace effort "more difficult."

    Replying to questions, Miller said he got no assurances from the Cyprus government that the missiles would not arrive.

    He also expressed the view that "two batteries of missiles are not going to even things off" and described them as "a magnet to hostilities."

    The government of the Republic of Cyprus purchased the surface-to-air missiles as a purely defensive weapon and said the missiles will not be used unless Turkey launches a fresh offensive against Cyprus.

    CNA MM/MCH/1998

    [08] Irish deal offers lessons to Cyprus, says FM

    Larnaca, May 26 (CNA) -- Cyprus has a lot to learn from the peace agreement achieved in Northern Ireland, Foreign Minister Ioannis Kasoulides said here today.

    Speaking before his departure for a working visit to Dublin, Kasoulides said the visit is part of his tour to European capitals to promote Cyprus' bid to join the European Union.

    "We see that problems as complex and as difficult as that of Northern Ireland finally end up on the path towards a solution, while the continuing occupation of part of a significant part of Cyprus is a historic anachronism," the Minister said.

    Noting that his visit comes at a historic moment, the ratification of the Good Friday Agreement, Kasoulides said Cyprus has many things to learn which could benefit its efforts for a settlement.

    Kasoulides will meet the President of the Republic of Ireland Mary McAleese and Irish Foreign Minister David Andrews.

    He will also give a lecture at the Institute of International Relations.

    On his return to Cyprus, Kasoulides will stop over in Athens for talks with his Greek counterpart Theodoros Pangalos on the latest developments in the Cyprus question and a review of Cyprus' accession course. CNA MAN/KN/MM/../1998


    [09] Syrian Deputy Minister points to investment possibilities

    Nicosia, May 26 (CNA) -- Deputy Minister of Finance and Foreign Commerce of Syria, Fouad Al Sayed, has pointed to large investment possibilities in the country.

    During a business conference organized by the Cyprus Chamber of Industry and Commerce, the Syrian Deputy Minister said:

    "Cypriot businessmen can take up investments and have immediate results, due to the good economic infrastructure and the cheap labour that exists in Syria."

    He explained that Syria has a good infrastructure in many sectors such as commerce, industry and tourism and pointed to the advantages of Syria's free zone.

    Products transported through this zone are tax free he added.

    On his part the President of the Chamber of Industry and Commerce, Vasilis Rologis, spoke for the need of taking advantage of the wider area of the Arab Gulf by Cypriot businessmen and stressed the importance of Syria in the region.

    CNA AP/MCH/1998
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