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Cyprus News Agency: News in English (PM), 98-08-20

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

From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>


  • [01] Cyprus - US governmnet
  • [02] President - Russian Missiles
  • [03] Cyprus Airways Group - Increase in passengers

  • 1600:CYPPRESS:01

    [01] Cyprus - US government

    Nicosia, Aug 20 (CNA) -- Cyprus has urged the US to take seriously into consideration the assessment its envoy has formulated after his meetings in Ankara yesterday.

    State Department Cyprus coordinator, Thomas Miller, described his discussions with Turkish Foreign Minister Ismail Cem and Deputy Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit as "useful", but said "look at my hands. As you can see they are empty".

    According to press reports, the American envoy came away empty handed on a proposal for a halt to flights by Greek and Turkish military planes over Cyprus.

    The spokesman expressed the view that "the American government should take seriously into consideration Mr Miller's assessment and see who is to blame for the tension in Cyprus and the Eastern Mediterranean."

    He added that the US government "should act accordingly". Talks to settle the Cyprus problem reached a stalemate after demands by Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash for recognition of the illegal regime unilaterally declared in the areas of Cyprus occupied by Turkey since 1974.

    Denktash also said he would not return to the negotiating table unless Cyprus withdraws its application to join the European Union.

    Both Ankara and Denktash have strongly criticised the Cyprus government decision to purchase the S300 surface-to-air missile system, expected to be deployed later this year, claiming it creates tension on the island.

    CNA MA/MM/1998

    [02] President - Russian Missiles

    Larnaca, Aug 20 (CNA) -- For the time being, the government stands firm on its decision to purchase and deploy Russian anti-aircraft missiles, President Glafcos Clerides said here today.

    Speaking on his return from his summer vacation, the President said "the government has no plans to postpone the arrival of the S300 missiles."

    "For the time being, the decision of the National Council is still valid," he added.

    The Council, the top advisory body to the President on the handling of the Cyprus question, has decided to deploy the missiles unless there is sufficient progress towards a resolution of the problem or moves leading to the demilitarisation of the island.

    The President dismissed press suggestions that he had told close aides that the missiles would not arrive in Cyprus if the government of Greece objects to this.

    The government of Cyprus has repeatedly stressed that the missiles are a purely defensive weapons system and would not be used to attack anybody.

    The decision to order the Russian missiles has come under fire from various circles, including the US and Britain, who consider it would increase tension in the area.

    Asked if there is any divergence of views between the Cypriot and the Greek governments on proposals for a moratorium of military flights by Greek and Turkish aircraft over Cyprus, Clerides said "the idea of a moratorium has not been debated since it was discussed and rejected."

    He said both governments oppose a moratorium of flights. The Cyprus government considers that a no-fly zone can be established provided there are UN or other guarantees to oversee its implementation.

    CNA AA/MM/MA/1997

    [03] Cyprus Airways Group - Increase in passengers

    Nicosia, Aug 20 (CNA) -- The Cyprus Airways Group, carried 9 per cent more passengers in the first seven months of 1998, compared to the same period last year.

    In the above period, the Group, comprising the island's air carrier Cyprus Airways and its subsidiary Eurocypria, specialising in charter flights, carried 920 thousand passengers, compared with 844 thousand passengers in the first seven months of 1997.

    The highest increase was recorded in the number of passengers from and to Holland with 34,8 per cent, followed by Germany 19,6 per cent, Greece 15, 5 per cent and the UK 7,1 per cent.

    The number of passengers carried by Cyprus Airways alone increased by 4, 7 per cent, reaching 725 thousand, compared to 692 thousand in the first seven months of 1997.

    In the same period, Eurocypria passengers reached 195 thousand, compared to 152 thousand last year, an increase of 28,5 per cent.

    CNA GG/MA/1998
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