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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 09-11-06

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From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>




    President of the Republic of Cyprus Demetris Christofias has said that during Fridays meeting with Turkish Cypriot leader Mehmet Ali Talat they have achieved some convergence, noting that there is still a lot that needs to be done.

    In statements after his meeting with Talat, held in the framework of UN led direct negotiations with a view to reach a solution to the Cyprus problem, President Christofias said they continued discussion on the properties chapter.

    The discussion will be continued, in my view for some weeks. We continue discussion on the issue of properties, which is not a simple matter. Anyway, we have made a move forward today but there is still a lot that needs to be done, he pointed out.

    Asked to elaborate on his statement, President Christofias said I don`t mean that there has been a progress, but that there is a certain convergence, because we will continue the effort regarding categorization.

    We have still a long way to go, he continued.

    The President was invited to comment on statements by the Turkish Cypriot leaders aide, Ozdil Nami, who said that the two sides have submitted papers of 12 points on the criteria for the properties issue and they have agreed on nearly half of them

    Which 12 papers? No, there is no such thing. Six of the twelve points of categorization maybe? The points on which there has been an agreement are much more regarding the categorization but there are still some which need to be discussed, he said.

    He added that there is a first paper on convergences and differences of last year and now we categorise properties, so we have not yet entered the essence of the discussion.

    Christofias and Talat began UN-led talks in September 2008 in a bid to achieve a mutually agreed solution to the problem of Cyprus, divided since 1974 when Turkey invaded and occupied its northern third.

    The two leaders have entered the second phase of the talks for the ``second reading`` of the six chapters of the Cyprus problem, namely, governance and power-sharing, property, EU matters, economic matters, territory and security and guarantees.


    The property issue was discussed in todays meeting between President of the Republic of Cyprus, Demetris Christofias and Turkish Cypriot leader, Mehmet Ali Talat, in the framework of the ongoing UN-led direct negotiations aiming to a solution to the Cyprus problem.

    As UN Secretary-General Special Adviser on the Cyprus problem, Alexander Downer said the meeting started with a brief tet a tet between the leaders of the two communities but subsequently there was a plenary discussion about the property question.

    The representatives of the two leaders, George Iacovou and Ozdil Nami are going to meet next Monday and Thursday. The next meeting of the two leaders is scheduled on Friday, November 13. Both the representatives and the leaders will continue next week with the discussion on the property issue, as Downer said.

    Asked if in todays meeting Christofias and Talat discussed the criteria on the issue of property, Downer said that he didn`t want to go into the details.

    It was a friendly discussion. They need more meetings to make progress on the property issue as they gradually make progress while getting closer to the end of the process and eventually they will move to another chapter, Downer added.


    French Minister for European Affairs Pierre Lellouche said on Friday that the situation of EU candidate Turkey which is refusing to recognize the Republic of Cyprus an EU member-state, cannot go on forever, speaking after his meeting with Cypriot Minister of Foreign Affairs Markos Kyprianou.

    We have a very strange situation of a candidate country, not recognizing a member. We cannot go on forever. So we need to make progress, said Lellouche.

    The French Minister said that France is on Cyprus side in terms of getting one unified state with federal structure and respect for minorities. He added that he will listen very carefully President of Cyprus Republic Demetris Christofias, who will inform him tomorrow about direct negotiations for a Cyprus solution.

    Lellouche also said that he is going to meet Turkish Cypriot leader Mehmet Ali Talat and hear what he has to say.

    We are eager to be on your side and help you to close this very sad period of European history, he pointed out.

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