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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 09-01-19

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From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>




    Cyprus President Demetris Christofias has condemned and expressed abhorrence for incidents that took place last Saturday in Nicosia against Turkish Cypriots, before the beginning of a football match between the teams Apoel and Omonia.

    In statements after the conclusion of a memorial ceremony held Monday honouring the memory of Cyprus` first President, Archbishop Makarios, Christofias said: I condemn with abhorrence the acts against our Turkish Cypriots compatriots.

    He added that such incidents do not serve the purpose of reunification of the island, divided since the 1974 Turkish invasion.

    There is an ongoing effort aiming at reunifying our homeland and such incidents are totally hostile to this effort, Cyprus President stressed, adding that the incident which occurred last Saturday, serves the Turkish propaganda claiming that Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots cannot live together in a reunited state.


    Greece aims to the achievement of the biggest possible progress in the direct talks between Cyprus President Demetris Christofias and Turkish Cypriot leader Mehmet Ali Talat currently underway in Nicosia with a view to reach a settlement of the Cyprus problem, Greek Foreign Ministry Spokesman George Koumoutsakos has said.

    Koumoutsakos also underlined that Greece does not support the imposition of time frames.

    Speaking to foreign correspondents in Athens, Koumoutsakos referred to the ongoing direct negotiations between the leaders of the Greek and Turkish Cypriot communities aiming at reunifying the island, divided since the Turkish invasion of 1974.

    He pointed out that there are messages regarding the direct talks at present that substantive discussions are taking place, underscoring however that the course of the negotiations has not been until now a straight line. There were times, he said, that left no room for optimism in the degree that it was expected and this is due to the fact that the Turkish Cypriot side appeared inflexible and submitted positions that were even worst than those in Annan plan, Koumoutsakos said.

    Furthermore, he pointed out that there were times when the talks were substantive and created the feeling that there is a prospect to continue the negotiations.


    Cyprus economy will also be negatively affected by global slowdown European Commission estimates, pointing out however that the island will be among the few countries to be less hit, attributing this to the strength of the Cypriot economy.

    Amid exceptional uncertainty about global developments, the European Commission released Monday its extended interim forecast. Commission refers to a deteriorated outlook of the European economy as a result of the impact on the real economy of the intensified financial crisis and the ensuing global downturn.

    As regards Cyprus, Commission says that economic activity remained strong in the first three quarters of 2008. However, due to the worsening external environment, GDP is expected to have decelerated in the last quarter of the year, which should lead to an annual growth rate of three and a half per cent. Economic growth is expected to slow down significantly in 2009 but still remain in positive territory, Commission estimates, pointing out that Cyprus will be one of the euro area three best performing countries in the areas of growth, unemployment and fiscal deficit.

    Specifically, Commission forecast estimates that GDP will increase by 1%, while in the euro area will decline by 1.9%.


    Cypriot Minister of Foreign Affairs Markos Kyprianou wraps up a trip to South America this week, with a visit to Brazil.

    According to an official press release, on January 16 Kyprianou held talks in Buenos Aires with Minister of Foreign Affairs of Argentina Jorge Taiana, who also hosted a luncheon in honour of Kyprianou and the Cypriot delegation.

    During the meeting, Kyprianou had the opportunity to brief Taiana on efforts to solve the Cyprus problem and expressed appreciation for the participation of Argentina in the UN Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus (UNFICYP) since 1993, as well as the contribution of a team of anthropologists from Argentina in efforts to determine the fate of missing persons in Cyprus.

    The two Ministers also discussed bilateral relations, the situation in the Middle East, the relations of Argentina with the EU and other issues of mutual interest, and examined the prospects for cooperation in the financial and shipping sectors.

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