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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 09-11-14

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From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>




    For Cyprus, the decision to pursue a more structured and enhanced dialogue with the Arab League was the natural progression of the traditional friendship and cooperation that exists between Cyprus and the Arab world, Cyprus Foreign Minister Markos Kyprianou has stressed, addressing the Council of Permanent Representatives of the Arab League, in Cairo, the first Cypriot Foreign Minister who has addressed the Council.

    As Kyprianou said, todays bilateral consultations are a follow-up to the consultations held in Nicosia in February 2008. They fall under the Memorandum of Bilateral Consultations between the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Cyprus and the General Secretariat of the Arab League, which was signed in November 2007. Also very importantly, in August 2009, the first Ambassador of the Republic of Cyprus to the Arab League was accredited, a milestone in our bilateral relations.

    Through this regular dialogue, we aim at exchanging views on issues of common concern and interest. It is indeed noteworthy that on many issues Cyprus and the Arab League share common perspectives. Nonetheless, we want to achieve an even better understanding of the Arab positions and insights, especially on issues that are close to the heart of the Arab world.

    Referring to Cyprus accession to the European Union in 2004, Kyprianou underlined that Cyprus has a clear and transparent voice in the EU when it comes to issues related to the Arab world and the Middle East. And this is not only due to the fact that Cyprus does not have a hidden national agenda vis-a-vis the Middle East, nor any other interest or motive apart from collective peace, security and stability, he added. Cyprus is an avid supporter of the enhancement and institutionalisation of the relations and dialogue between the two regions, he stressed.

    Referring to the situation in Middle East, the Cypriot FM expressed his confidence that the formation of the new government of national unity in Lebanon, under President Michel Sleiman and Prime Minister Saad Hariri, will herald the dawn of a new era for Lebanon, adding that the international community ought to exert the right pressures and undertake serious initiatives that would resolve the thorny issues of the Shebaa Farms and of the Syrian Golan, and their restoration to their rightful owners.


    The government has condemned the illegal unilateral declaration of independence in the Republics northern Turkish occupied areas, saying it is also condemning the 1974 Turkish invasion, the continuing occupation and all the suffering that has followed, as a result of Turkeys offensive.

    We call on the international community to contribute in a substantive manner to current efforts aiming at an agreed settlement, which will rid Cyprus from Turkeys occupation and will reunite the country under conditions of peace, freedom and democracy, on the basis of UN resolution and international and European law, the Minister of Education and Culture Andreas Demetriou has said in a message for Sundays anniversary.

    In his message to students and pupils, he said the Greek Cypriot side is seeking a solution which will restore the unity, the territorial integrity and the sovereignty of the Republic of Cyprus without any dependencies on foreign states and which will also restore human rights, including the right to return to ones home and the right to property.

    We take it for granted that the real wish of the islands two communities is to live again together in reunited Cyprus, free, democratic and federal, in which the rights of the one community will not infringe on the rights of the other community, a peaceful and prosperous Cyprus where people will count, irrespective of his mother tongue or origin, the Minister stressed. This, he concluded, is our vision for tomorrow not for the distant future.


    The Committee of Missing Persons (CMP) in Cyprus and the European Commission Representation here co-organise a public event, in recognition of the two million euro contribution made by the European Union to the CMP, which will take place at the Ledra Palace on Tuesday. According to an official statement issued in Nicosia, the event will be attended by the leaders of the two communities in Cyprus, President Demetris Christofias and Mehmet Ali Talat, who will deliver statements acknowledging the EU contribution which supports the CMP in advancing its work in establishing the fate of persons reported missing in the inter-communal fighting as well as during the Turkish invasion of the island in 1974.

    Announcing the contribution early last month, European Commissioner for Enlargement, Olli Rehn said that the Commission is aware of the urgency of the issue of missing persons in Cyprus. For the families concerned, it is crucial to determine the fate of their loved ones. The CMP is the only institutionalized, bi communal committee in Cyprus and one of the most successful confidence building measures.

    ``The donation is crucial for the work of the CMP and brings us a step closer to healing the wounds of the past for people of both communities,`` stated Christophe Girod, UN representative of the CMP. This donation is the second contribution the EU has made to the CMP. In the past the EU had granted 1.5 million euro in 2007. The latest donation will allow the CMP to speed up its work by hiring additional archaeologists and anthropologist.


    The Greek Foreign Ministry has described November 15, 1983 - the day of the illegal unilateral declaration of independence in the Republics Turkish occupied areas a dark page for all those who respect international law and order.

    The Cyprus problem remains a problem of invasion and occupation of an independent state, a member of the UN and the EU and this unacceptable situation must end, the Greek FM stresses.

    Greece supports the efforts of Cyprus President Demetris Christofias to find an agreed solution it added, referring to effort towards a negotiated settlement in Cyprus. The solution, Athens points out, must have no guarantors, must lead to the end of the Turkish occupation and the reunification of the island, allowing Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots to live together in an environment of security, freedom and prosperity, as secured by Cyprus EU membership.

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