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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 09-11-20

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

From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>




    President Demetris Christofias described the meeting he had Friday with Turkish Cypriot leader Mehmet Ali Talat, in the framework of the UN-led direct negotiations for a solution to the Cyprus problem, as ``very creative``.

    During Friday`s meeting, in the UN Protected Area in Nicosia, President Christofias and Talat discussed organisational matters.

    ``It was a very creative meeting, we exchanged views on various pending issues, which are of course many,`` the President said, in statements to the press after the meeting, adding that they will meet again on Tuesday and take up the issue of aliens, citizenship, immigration and asylum.

    Christofias also referred to a report in the Turkish daily ``Hurriyet`` on the number of issues of convergence achieved at the talks so far. Many misunderstandings are caused following the publication of reports in the Turkish Cypriot or the Turkish press, as well as as a result of statements or documents obtained which have nothing to with our positions,`` the President pointed out.

    ``These are Turkish or Turkish Cypriot positions which have been interpreted as agreements to which we have consented, and I consider this unacceptable, not to say unethical,`` Christofias added.

    The President noted that it is correct that he and Talat have agreed on a federal solution, a single state with a single sovereignty and one international personality.

    Christofias also said that they had agreed on a dimilitarised Cyprus, with no armed forces and with police forces in the federal districts, as well as a federal police force with jurisdiction throughout the territory of the island.

    ``It is correct that we have agreed on a rotating presidency,`` Christofias added, pointing out however that the reference in the press report that the two sides agreed that the President and the Vice President will be elected by the Senate is ``incorrect.``

    ``Both positions are on the table. The report reflects the Turkish Cypriot position. Our position is that the President and the Vice President are elected by the people with a weighted vote,`` he explained.

    Christofias agreed with a statement by Ozdil Nami, the aide to the Turkish Cypriot leader, that during yesterday`s meeting with the Cypriot Presidential Commissioner George Iacovou they achieved the first convergence regarding the classification of properties.

    ``There is convergence on that issue but there are two issues on which there is no convergence,`` Chrisotofias said.

    The essence of the property issue, he said, is to accept the principle relating to the right to property. The Greek Cypriot side believes that the legal owner of a property has to have to right to that property, whereas the Turkish Cypriot side maintains that the current tenant of a property must have the right to the property.

    ``I believe that progress can be achieved on this issue too,`` the President added.

    Replying to a question, the President said he did not discuss this issue with Talat today, adding that classifying properties is necessary but this does not solve the issue at hand.

    ``Each side maintains its view on this issue,`` he concluded.

    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.


    Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General in Cyprus Taye-Brook Zerihoun has said that the leaders of the two communities in Cyprus discussed on Friday organisational matters, in the framework of the second round of UN-led direct talks, currently underway in Nicosia.

    This was a meeting devoted to organisational mattes, he said and added: They had a very thorough and constructive discussion on the process, on the substance. They did some stock-taking, some retrospect analysis and discussion for which both of them are very satisfied.

    The UN official also said that the two leaders will continue this kind of assessment periodically. They have done this before as you know in August, so they will do it from time to time, he said. Zerihoun noted that the next meeting, between the two leaders, will be held on Tuesday the 24th of November in the morning. Thats the meeting at which they will take up the issue of aliens, citizenship, immigration and asylum, he added.


    The key to the recovery of the Cypriot economy is the implementation of the government measures, Finance Minister Charilaos Stavrakis said on Friday, as Central Bank Governor Athanasios Orphanides expressed concerns over the fiscal deficit increase. The course of the Cypriot economy was examined Friday during a meeting of the Economic Advisory Committee, comprising the Ministers of Finance, Labour and Social Insurance, Commerce, Industry and Tourism and the Central Bank Governor, the General Director of the Planning Bureau and the social partners (employers, industrialists and trade unions).

    ``The challenge is to reduce the unnecessary state expenditure and to increase income with ways other than tax increases,`` Stavrakis said in statements after the meeting, adding that maintaining a fiscal deficit below the 3% ceiling for 2009 and 2010 is not an end in itself. He added that all participants agree on the effort to reduce costs in the public sector and unnecessary and unproductive state expenditure, and that emphasis should be given on development projects both from the public and the private sector.

    Stavrakis noted that everyone agreed also ``on the effort to maintain fiscal deficits at reasonable levels to preserve our credibility as an attractive centre for foreign investment and foreign deposits, as well as the effort to keep unemployment at the lowest possible levels through a sound macroeconomic policy and targeted actions from the Labour Ministry and the government.``


    Cyprus Police Chief Michalis Papageorgiou has assured that the Cypriot Police stands ready to promote cooperation between the European Police College (CEPOL) and the EU member-states, especially in the fight against drugs. Papageorgiou addressed the closing ceremony of a five-day seminar, entitled ``Fighting against Drugs in the EU``, organised by CEPOL in Cyprus.

    The seminar was attended by 38 delegates from 13 EU member-states and experts from Lebanon and the US, as well as from European organisations such as EUROPOL and the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drugs Addiction (EMDDA).

    In his address, Papageorgiou said that the production, trafficking and use of drugs and addictive substances is a phenomenon that is closely connected with the development of the social, economical and cultural structures of modern society.

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