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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 11-02-01

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From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>




    Government Spokesman Stephanos Stephanou said on Tuesday that if the Turkish Cypriot side was as consistent as the Greek Cypriot side with the basis of negotiations for a Cyprus settlement, then the course of the negotiations would be much better.

    He also pointed out that if the Turkish Cypriot side had maintained a constructive stance, then it would have been possible to get closer to an agreement on the internal aspects of the Cyprus problem very soon.

    Stephanou noted that Turkish Cypriot leader Dervis Eroglu, ``breaking his promise to end the blame games, continues to make statements accusing the Greek Cypriot side and the President of the Republic Mr. Demetris Christofias`` regarding their meeting in Geneva with the UN Secretary General.

    He said Eroglu has been claiming that the Greek Cypriot side went to Geneva last week without a plan, dismissed his and thus there was no result.

    Stephanou pointed out that in Geneva, Eroglu ``made a proposal that provided for suffocating deadlines and led the process to a deadlock, suggesting a four- or five-party meeting to close the Cyprus problem.``

    ``The proposal that Mr. Eroglu is advertising is totally outside the framework of UN Security Council resolutions, which clearly determine the process and the role of the involved parties,`` he said.

    He added that, ``contrary to Mr. Eroglu, President of the Republic Mr. Christofias, defending principles, submitted constructive proposals in Geneva, which however were dismissed by the Turkish Cypriot side, which is insisting on `two state` reasoning.``

    ``The proposals of the Greek Cypriot side are always within the framework of UN Security Council resolutions and are based on the agreed basis for a solution providing for a bicommunal bizonal federation with political equality, as the UN describes in its resolutions on Cyprus, for a single state with a single sovereignty, a single citizenship and a single international identity. If the Turkish Cypriot side was as consistent with this basis, then the course of negotiations for the Cyprus problem would surely be much better,`` he stressed.

    Stephanou noted that, ``if the Turkish Cypriot side accepts in practice the basis of the solution that has been agreed on and is defined in UN resolutions on Cyprus, as well as the linking of chapters in the negotiations, such as those concerning property, territorial readjustments and settlers, that is if it maintains a creative and constructive stance, then it will indeed be possible to reach within range of an agreement on the internal aspects of the Cyprus problem soon, a development that is a precondition for convening an international meeting under UN auspices with the participation of the five permanent members of the Security Council, the guarantor powers and the Republic of Cyprus, to discuss and solve the international aspects of the problem.``

    Asked when President Christofias and Eroglu would be resuming negotiations, Stephanou said a date had not been set and that in any case the UN Secretary General`s Special Adviser on Cyprus Alexander Downer was not in Cyprus.


    Cyprus, a stepping stone for many people fleeing the riots in Egypt, expects to receive more evacuees from Cairo, at Larnaca international airport, once the heavy air traffic congestion at Cairo airport eases.

    On Monday night, a total of 148 passengers, among them ten Cypriots, arrived in Cyprus aboard a Lithuanian airlines jet after being evacuated from neighbouring Egypt, scourged by mass protests against the regime of President Hosni Mubarak.

    A Cypriot couple, born in Egypt, said they fled the country after seeing 6,000 prisoners who had escaped from jail looting houses. However, they said they would return to Egypt once the situation gets back to normal.

    A foreign national, who abandoned his studies in Egypt due to the abnormal situation, said that ``the situation is not as bad as news channels make it out to be,`` adding that ``there are protected neighbourhoods.``


    The current situation, as well as the prospects and challenges of the Cypriot economy, were discussed on Tuesday at a meeting of the informal advisory council, presided over by Minister of Finance Charilaos Stavrakis, who informed the participants on the latest fiscal indices, the growth rate, the public debt and the public finances.

    The informal advisory council, comprising former Ministers of Finance, was attended for the first time by Cypriot Nobel Prize winner Christoforos Pissarides.

    Stavrakis said that one of the purposes of the meeting was to convey to the participants the improved financial data, in an effort to establish a better climate among the broader public.

    Referring to the participation of Pissarides, who specialises in labour market and productivity issues in the public sector, Stavrakis said he had many suggestions to make and ideas to put forward.


    The Department of Public Works achieved a total implementation rate 88.18% of its budget in 2010, which is the highest percentage ever achieved and was accordingly praised by the Minister of Communications and Works Erato Kozakou Markoulli.

    Markoulli praised the work carried out by The Department of Public Works, pointing out the great importance the Government attributes to infrastructure works and construction plans, which promote the growth of the economy especially amid conditions of financial difficulties due to global financial crisis that also hit Cyprus economy.

    Speaking at a joint Press Conference with the Director of the Department of Public Works Alecos Michaelides, the Minister said that the implementation rate of the Departments developmental budget reached 89.53% in 2010, which is considered very high.

    The budget of the Department for 2011 has been increased by 9.4%.

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