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Cyprus News Agency: News in English (AM), 98-08-24

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

From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>


  • [01] Kyprianou - British MPs
  • [02] President Clerides - British High Commissioner
  • [03] Kasoulides - Contacts abroad
  • [04] Cyprus Stock Exchange
  • [05] President Clerides - US ambassador
  • [06] Foreign Minister - Home front

  • 1040:CYPPRESS:01

    [01] Kyprianou - British MPs

    Nicosia, Aug 24 (CNA) -- Members of Britain's House of Commons have assured that they will work to keep the Cyprus problem high on the political agenda.

    The assurance was given here today by Nick Hawkins, after a meeting with Cyprus House of Representatives President Spyros Kyprianou.

    "We had an extremely constructive and very helpful briefing" from Kyprianou", said Hawkins, who was accompanied by MPs David Amess, Tony Wright and Stephen Hepburn.

    He said their talk would enable them "to go back to the House of Commons to continue to take up the Cyprus issue."

    Hawkins said MPs from both the Conservative and Labour parties "wish to continue to represent Cyprus and its concerns at the House of Commons."

    He said they regularly have debates on Cyprus and "from both the main political parties we want to ensure that Cyprus remains high on the political agenda".

    Kyprianou said he was very satisfied with this meeting, having a useful discussion with "members of the House of Commons who play an important role regarding the Cyprus problem".

    He said they emphasised "the need for Cyprus to join the European Union and for a just solution to the Cyprus problem".

    "There was a complete understanding on all issues and aspects which we discussed today", said Kyprianou.

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

    CNA EC/GP/1998

    [02] President Clerides - British High Commissioner

    Nicosia, Aug 24 (CNA) -- British High Commissioner to Cyprus, David Madden, today expressed the hope that the S300 defensive missile system ordered by the Cyprus government will not be deployed.

    After a meeting with President Glafcos Clerides, the British diplomat made it clear that there is no connection between the S300 missiles and Cyprus' European Union (EU) accession course.

    "We are hoping that conditions will be such that the S300 does not need to come to the island of Cyprus. That is what we are working for," Madden said.

    The Cyprus government ordered the Russian-made S300 in January 1997 in a bid to boost the country's air defence, in case of a new Turkish offensive. A 35-thousand strong Turkish force has been occupying 37 per cent of the island's territory since 1974.

    The British High Commissioner said there were various ways of achieving the cancellation of the deployment of the S300, noting that "the question of a moratorium is still very much on the agenda and we will see what progress can be made on that."

    "If progress can't be made on that, we will try to make progress in other areas as well," he added.

    A proposal, backed by the US, for a moratorium of flights by Greek and Turkish military planes over Cyprus had been put forward but was rejected by Ankara.

    The Cyprus government would agree to the creation of a no-fly zone over the island, with international guarantees.

    Replying to a question, Madden said there is no "direct connection" between the S300 and Cyprus' negotiations to join the EU, which opened in March 1998.

    He said the EU - Cyprus screening process was taking place and would continue into next year, as scheduled.

    Asked if there was an indirect link between the two issues, Madden said "they are all part of the various issues people are concentrating on at the moment".

    The British High Commissioner said the S300 was put on the agenda after the government decided to purchase the missiles.

    "We are hoping in the event a decision can be made that those missiles do not need to come on the island", he added.

    Invited to comment on the government's information that the Turkish occupation troops had been reinforced in the past year, Madden said he had no such evidence.

    Referring to his meeting with President Clerides, he said it was part of his regular contacts "to try and make progress on the Cyprus problem and other various issues connected with Cyprus".

    Madden expressed the view that President Clerides' presence in New York for the UN General Assembly, next month, offers the opportunity for a number of meetings to discuss the Cyprus question and other related issues.

    CNA RG/MA/GP/1998

    [03] Kasoulides - Contacts abroad

    Larnaca, Aug 24 (CNA) -- Cyprus Foreign Minister Ioannis Kasoulides today left for a three-nation tour that will take him to Portugal, Greece and South Africa.

    In Lisbon, Kasoulides will visit the EXPO '98, where Cyprus is represented with a state pavilion. The minister will attend celebrations on the occasion of the "Cyprus Day" on August 25.

    On Wednesday, Kasoulides will travel to Athens to accompany President Glafcos Clerides to meetings with the Greek government.

    Clerides will meet Greek Prime Minister Costas Simitis during his one- day visit to the Greek capital.

    From Athens, Kasoulides will fly on to Durban, South Africa, on August 27 for the summit of the Non-Aligned Movement.

    President Clerides will take part in the Durban summit conference.

    CNA MAN/GG/GP/1998

    [04] Cyprus Stock Exchange

    Nicosia, Aug 24 (CNA) -- The Cyprus Stock Exchange (CSE) All Share Index closed at today's stock exchange meeting as follows:
       CSE General Index                          87.85 ( 1.12)
       Traded Value            CYP 1,124,470
       Sectural Indices
       Banks                   CYP    807,870    103.96 ( 1.32)
       Approved Investment
       Companies               CYP    22,021      59.08 (-0.51)
       Insurance Companies     CYP    20,011      60.00 ( 0.38)
       Manufacturing Companies CYP    34,496      80.70 ( 1.18)
       Tourism Companies       CYP    39,188      71.10 ( 0.51)
       Trading Companies       CYP     9,480      42.38 ( 0.67)
       Other Companies         CYP    40,837      73.63 ( 1.50)
    The third column presents the percentage variation of the indices as compared to the last meeting.

    CNA MA/1998

    [05] President Clerides - US ambassador

    Nicosia, Aug 24 (CNA) -- US ambassador to Cyprus, Kenneth Brill, today assured that the American government continues its efforts for a settlement to the protracted Cyprus problem.

    "We continue to work on all the issues that relate to Cyprus and ways to make progress," he said after a meeting with President Glafcos Clerides.

    He dismissed a comment that the US efforts on Cyprus have reached a dead end, noting "it is not always an easy course, obviously, but we continue working on it".

    The American ambassador said "we think that there are opportunities to find constructive ways forward. We have to keep working on it and we will. That is our commitment".

    Efforts to settle the Cyprus question reached a deadlock in January, after Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash announced he would not enter into talks unless the illegal regime in Turkish-occupied Cyprus was recognised.

    He also demanded the withdrawal of Cyprus' application to join the European Union.

    Brill refrained from commenting on a visit to Ankara by US State Department Special Coordinator for Cyprus, Thomas Miller, last week.

    Miller came away empty-handed after meetings with Turkish Foreign Minister Ismail Cem and Deputy Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit during which he is reported to have suggested a halt to military flights of Greek and Turkish planes over Cyprus.

    Before the US official's arrival in Turkey, Ankara rejected an American- backed proposal for a moratorium of overflights.

    The Cyprus government had said it would agree to the creation of a no- fly zone over the island, provided there were sufficient international guarantees.

    Invited to comment on the government's information about the reinforcement of the Turkish troops in the areas of Cyprus occupied by Turkey since 1974, Brill said "we will check it out".

    Last week the Cyprus Foreign Ministry made representations to the ambassadors of the five UN Security Council permanent members in Nicosia over the reinforcement of the 35-thousand strong Turkish force in the occupied areas of the Republic.

    CNA RG/MA/GP/1998

    [06] Foreign Minister - Home front

    Nicosia, Aug 24 (CNA) -- Foreign Minister Ioannis Kasoulides has called for unity on the home front and stressed that President Glafcos Clerides is handling national issues in the best possible manner.

    The Minister's comments came in response to calls from a prominent politician and a fraction of the press for the President's resignation, if the Russian anti-aircraft missiles the government has purchased are not deployed on the island, as planned.

    "President Clerides is not abandoning his responsibilities. He had been given a mandate by the people of Cyprus to serve the national interest in the best possible manner and this is what he intends to do," Kasoulides said.

    Speaking to the press, the Minister called for unity among the political leadership to serve the national interest better through joint decisions.

    The government's intention to deploy the Russian S300 surface-to-air missiles for purely defensive purposes against Turkey's overwhelming military presence in occupied Cyprus has come under fire from the US and others, who consider it to be a wrong move on the part of the government as, they claim, it would increase tension in the region.

    Replying to questions, Kasoulides said the Cypriot and Greek governments will discuss later this week in Athens the latest developments in the Cyprus question, Cyprus' accession course to the European Union and defence matters.

    Asked if the Athens talks will also deal with a possible postponement of the missiles deployment, Kasoulides restricted himself in saying "we shall examine defence and arms acquisition issues in general."

    He pointed out that the decision of the National Council (top advisory body to President Clerides on the handling of the Cyprus problem) to deploy the missiles unless there is progress towards a solution or the demilitarisation of Cyprus is still valid.

    "What we need now is unity among the political ranks to tackle issues of national interest in the best possible manner," the Minister said, in reply to calls for the President's resignation.

    Commenting on a statement that the Jewish lobby in the US is working for Turkey, the Minister recommended more care in public comments of this kind.

    "It would be an offense to the members of Congress, such as Ben Gilman and many others, to utter such things. We should be more careful," he added, in response to comments by a Greek American leader.

    Speaking before his departure for Lisbon to visit Cyprus' pavillion in Expo '98, Kasoulides expressed the view that sooner or later Turkish Cypriot leader, Rauf Denktash, would return to the negotiating table.

    "It is a matter of how this will be achieved. We shall continue our efforts to get him back to the talks, as these are defined by the UN resolutions," he concluded.

    CNA GG/MM/GP/1998
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