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Cyprus PIO: News Update in English, 99-12-15

Cyprus Press and Information Office: News Updates in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Republic of Cyprus Press and Information Office Server at <>

Wednesday, 15 December 1999

  • [01] Annan hopes new climate between Greece and Turkey will help Cyprus
  • [02] UN expects Cyprus talks to be an extended process but current climate is positive
  • [03] UN Security Council briefed on Cyprus talks
  • [04] Archaeological digs reveal Kourion burial customs


    UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan said he is hopeful that both President Glafcos Clerides and Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash would attend a new round of proximity talks on the Cyprus problem in January.

    Speaking at a press conference on his annual report of the UN organisation, Annan said, "proximity talks on Cyprus are adjourning today after 12 days during which both parties have engaged very seriously with the whole range of issues that divided them".

    He expressed the hope that the new dynamic between Turkey and the European Union and between Greece and Turkey would facilitate the search for peace in Cyprus and that the leaders of the two communities on the island would meet again by the end of January 2000.

    The first round ended yesterday in New York with separate meetings between the UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan and Cyprus' President Glafcos Clerides and the Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash.

    Replying to questions after his meeting, Mr Denktash said he would be attending a second round of talks.


    The UN sees the process of proximity talks on the Cyprus problem as the beginning of what it expects to be an extended process, Mr Alvaro de Soto, the UN Secretary-General's Special Adviser on Cyprus said yesterday.

    "The issues are very complex and difficult and they have to be examined in great depth and with great care in order to ensure that the comprehensive settlement that is eventually reached down the road is indeed one that is solid and will stick", he said.

    Speaking at a press briefing at the end of the proximity talks, Mr de Soto said that when the talks resume, they would again be on the basis of proximity talks. He said he hoped to announce the dates of the resumption soon.

    "We look forward to keeping the parties engaged", he added.

    Mr de Soto wouldn't go into details as to what had been discussed in view of the news blackout, saying only "nothing is agreed until everything is agreed". He assured, however, that core issues had been addressed as well as other issues that were raised by the parties.

    He pointed out "what is significant about the talks is that the climate that now prevails has chances and we are fairly confident that the parties are indeed prepared to lend to this effort the constructive spirit that would be needed for the talks to eventually come to fruition".


    UN Security Council members yesterday welcomed the fact that the proximity talks on Cyprus had been conducted throughout in a positive and constructive atmosphere and without preconditions.

    Security Council President, Britain's Permanent Representative Sir Jeremy Greenstock told the press after a Security Council meeting during which members were briefed by the Secretary-General's Special Adviser on Cyprus, Alvaro de Soto on the proximity talks, that the Council commended the commitment shown by the participants and encouraged all concerned to continue their efforts towards a comprehensive settlement of the Cyprus question.

    They looked forward to the continuation of the talks early next year, underlining the importance of the process now started, he added.


    The latest archaeological excavations exploring the necropolis at Kourion have yielded valuable evidence concerning the population of Kourion and its burial customs.

    Located directly outside the Amathus Gate, the project proposes to reconstruct the mortuary customs practised at Kourion, particularly during a time of religious transition, from paganism to Christianity.

    During the Hellenistic and Roman periods, chamber tombs lined the road leading from the city. Such tombs housed families, and were sometimes richly appointed with frescos and architectural mouldings.

    Subsequently, perhaps during the fourth century AD, the cemetery was subjected to an intensive but short-lived quarrying operation intended to secure building material, incidentally destroying the chamber tombs.

    During the latter half of the fourth century AD, the site returned to its use as a cemetery, with a series of graves cut into the bedrock.

    From the Republic of Cyprus Press and Information Office (PIO) Server at

    Cyprus Press and Information Office: News Updates in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article
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