|Sunday, 13 October 2019|
Cyprus Broadcasting Corporation: News in English, 99-06-29
From: The Cyprus Broadcasting Corporation at <http://www.cybc.com.cy/>
TUESDAY 29 JUNE 1999
 HEADLINES--- A Turkish court condemned Kurdish rebel chief Abdullah Ocalan to death today.
--- The UN Security Council is expected to pass the two resolutions on Cyprus tonight.
--- The United States have equated the illegal American weapons sent by Turkey to the occupied areas, with the armaments sent by Greece.
--- Messengers today staged a demonstration outside the House of Representatives, demanding that they be let off wearing helmets.
--- A pastel painting on paper by Impressionist Edgar Degas fetched a record 28 million dollars at Sotheby's.
 OCALAN DEATHA Turkish court condemned Kurdish rebel chief Abdullah Ocalan to death today for leading separatist forces in a bitter conflict that has cost 29,000 lives in almost 15 years.
The Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) rebels threatened a fresh wave of violence after the ruling, delivered in a specially built courtroom on an isolated prison island.
Turkey rejected pressure from Western allies to commute the sentence, now subject to a lengthy appeals process.
Ocalan, 50, stood with his hands folded behind his back in a bullet-proof glass box in court. He did not react when judge Turgut Okyay told him he must hang for treason and mass murder.
Ocalan was arrested by Turkish special forces in February in Kenya after months on the run through Europe and Africa.
Until then, he had directed the PKK's fight for Kurdish self rule from Damascus and was believed never to have visited the conflict zone in the mountains of southeastern Turkey and northern Iraq.
European cities beefed up security to avoid a repeat of the angry protests by members of the Kurdish diaspora that followed Ocalan's arrest.
Kurds gathered today for protests in Moscow, Paris, The Hague, and Strasbourg, home of the 41-nation Council of Europe. There were no immediate reports of violence.
Although Turkish courts sometimes sentence convicts to death, no execution has been carried out since 1984.
Ocalan's case must pass first to the appeals court and then to parliament for ratification.
 OCALAN CYPRUSKurds in Cyprus reacted to Ocalan's death sentence.
About 150 Kurds gathered in Eleftherias Square this morning and marched to the US embassy.
On hearing the court's ruling, the burst into tears and began hurling stones at the embassy building.
The Police cordoned off the area to restrain the demonstrators, who were chanting slogans against Turkey and the United States.
Special Police forces, equipped with anti-riot gear, arrived at the embassy and dispersed the crowd peacefully.
Embassy staff refused to receive a letter addressed to US President Bill Clinton.
In their letter, the Kurds requested US involvement to peacefully solve the Kurdish problem.
 OCALAN REACTIONSThe death penalty against Ocalan was condemned today by various European countries.
Furthermore, Germany warned Turkey that executing Ocalan would not be a wise move, keeping in mind Turkey's application to join the European Union.
In Nicosia, Government Spokesman, Costas Serezis, said that the Republic of Cyprus is against the death sentence.
Amnesty International questioned the legality of the death penalty and demanded a fresh trial.
 UN RESOLUTIONSThe UN Security Council is expected to pass the two resolutions on Cyprus tonight.
The first draft resolution urges the UN Secretary-General to invite the leaders of the two communities in Cyprus for talks in Autumn, based on UN resolutions.
It also urges the two leaders to begin talks without any preconditions, will all issues on the agenda.
The resolution urges the leaders to continue to negotiate until a solution is found.
The second draft resolution refers to the renewal of the UNFICYP mandate on the island, and confirms previous principles on finding a solution to the Cyprus problem.
 RUBIN WEAPONSThe United States have equated the illegal American weapons sent by Turkey to the occupied areas, with the armaments sent by Greece to Cyprus, in the context of its responsibilities.
US State Department Spokesman, James Rubin, said that both Greece and Turkey sent weapons of US origin to Cyprus, in violation of their commitment to the United States.
Mr Rubin said that research of the matter has indicated that the US administration asked the governments of Turkey and Greece to withdraw the specific weapons from Cyprus.
He also said that both governments agreed and notified Washington that the weapons had been withdrawn.
 CREDENTIALSPresident Glafcos Clerides said today that the government feels encouraged after the recent initiative of the international community and the interest shown towards finding a solution to the Cyprus problem.
The President was speaking during a ceremony to receive the credentials of the new Korean ambassador to Cyprus,Chang il Park.
The Korean ambassador referred to the commercial and economic ties between the two countries and expressed hope that they could be improved.
President Clerides also received the credentials of the new ambassador of Indonesia to Cyprus, Zarkowi Soejoeti.
The Indonesian ambassador said that his country closely follows efforts to solve the Cyprus problem.
President Clerides said that the issue has not yet been settled, due to Turkey's intransigence and lack of political will.
 VASSILIOU QUITSUnited Democrats chief, Giorgos Vassiliou, today abandoned his seat at the House of Representatives.
The party's first vice-president, Giorgos Christofides, will take his place.
Mr Vassiliou announced his decision today, and has notified the President of the House in writing.
After the parliamentary elections, Mr Vassiliou had said he intended to step down, but awaited for legislation to be passed, which would allow the same party to fill the empty seat.
 MESSENGERS HELMETSMessengers today staged a demonstration outside the House of Representatives, demanding that they be let off wearing helmets.
The told MPs to try wearing a helmet themselves, before imposing legislation that obliges people to wear helmets regardless of the size of their bike.
The messengers from the civil service and the private sector urged MPs to wear helmets for a while to get the feel of it.
Their representatives elaborated on the issue before the President of the Communications Committee, Nicos Pittokopitis, who promised to promote their demand to the authorities to find a solution.
 LIMASSOL STABBINGA 17-year-old stabbed an 18-year-old in Limassol for no apparent reason.
Andreas Christou Adamou, 18, was taken to the Limassol hospital early this morning with two knife wounds.
The victim seems to be out of any serious danger.
He other teenager was taken to court today, which issued an 8-day remand order against him.
 DRUGSA foreigner was arrested and placed in custody in connection to 30 kilos of hashish oil found in the village of Ormidia.
The man arrested is Elia Akanian from Lebanon, of Armenian origin, permanent resident of Cyprus.
The Police told the court that Akanian had received a bag containing 36 packets of hashish oil, from the tourist area on the Larnaca-Dhekelia road, in order to hand it over to another person in Ormidia.
The person who was to receive the drugs is thought to be Stelios Georgiou Kattis, 58, from Ormidia, who will be taken to a British Bases court tomorrow.
Akanian is thought to have given five thousand pounds to the person who gave him the bag. He was to receive ten thousand pounds on handing the bag to Kattis.
The black-market sale price of the drugs is estimated to be two million pounds.
 WEATHERTomorrow will be fine, but around noon local clouds will form over the mountains and inland, and may yield some isolated showers.
Winds will be north-westerly to south-westerly, light to moderate, three to four beaufort, and locally on the south coast, in the afternoon, strong, five beaufort.
The sea will be slight, and in the afternoon, on the south coast, moderate.
The temperature will reach 36 degrees inland, 32 on the south coast, 29 on the west coast, and 26 over the mountains.
The fire hazard is very high in all forest areas.