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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 07-08-07

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From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>




    Director of the Energy Department of the Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Tourism Solon Kassinis has expressed satisfaction with the interest shown so far regarding licenses to carry out research for hydrocarbons in Cyprus` exclusive economic zone.

    Kassinis told CNA on Tuesday that the authorities of the Republic of Cyprus were monitoring Turkish moves in the region, noting that there was no cause for concern, since Nicosia was acting within international law and the Law of the Sea Convention.

    He said interested parties would have to submit their tenders on August 16, which would be evaluated by a ministerial committee and sent to the Council of Ministers with an accompanying report, for a decision on the three-year license.

    Replying to questions, Kassinis said the evaluation would be completed by the end of the year and the second phase would follow, which has to do with exploration of other areas and new data with three-dimensional graphs and their evaluation.

    Referring to Turkish moves in the Eastern Mediterranean, Kassinis said the Department was briefed on developments and the Republic was acting within international law, which is observed by over 140 countries and the European Union.

    ``So, we believe there is nothing to worry about regarding our actions and, if the Turks violate this legal framework of the Law of the Sea Convention, we will report them internationally,`` he added.


    The US Congress has taken another significant step toward improving American policy on Cyprus with the introduction of two Cyprus bills, which the sponsors noted complement each other, said the leaders of the Coordinated Effort of Hellenes (CEH).

    According to a CEH statement, one of the two bills, House Resolution 620, calls on Turkey to `end its military occupationparticularly because Turkeys pretext has been refuted by over 13 million crossings by Turkish-Cypriots and Greek-Cypriots into each others communities without incident.

    This legislation carries particular weight with American policy-makers because its primary sponsors, Congressmen Albio Sires (D-NJ) and Gus Bilirakis (R-FL), are among only 14 out of the 435 members of the U.S. House of Representatives selected by their colleagues to oversee matters relating to Europe -- as members of the House Foreign Affairs Committees Subcommittee on Europe. Cyprus advocates Representatives Carolyn Maloney (D-NY), John Sarbanes (D-MD) and Zack Space (D-OH) are also original co-sponsors, CEH added.

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