|Sunday, 15 December 2019|
Cyprus Broadcasting Corporation: News in English, 03-07-03
From: The Cyprus Broadcasting Corporation at <http://www.cybc.com.cy/>
 HEADLINES-- Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash is trying prevent so called "voters" in the occupied north of Cyprus who have passports of the Cyprus Republic from voting during the illegal elections in December.
--The representative of Maronites at the House of Representatives, Antonis Hadzirousos, said that he did not ask for the return of three thousand Maronites to their Turkish occupied villages but instead asked Serdar Denktash to allow 12 families of pensioners after their own request.
-- Two thousand Hotel employees at 36 hotels, members of the Cyprus Hoteliers Association (PASIXE), are on an indefinite strike as of this morning with regard to the renewal of the collective agreement in the hotel industry.
--Seven American soldiers were wounded in two separate attacks on occupation forces in Iraq today.
And, --German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder demanded a full apology from Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi today for comparing a German lawmaker to a Nazi concentration camp guard.
 DENKTASHTurkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash is trying prevent so called "voters" in the occupied north of Cyprus who have passports of the Cyprus Republic from voting during the illegal elections in December.
Mr. Denktash said he will examine whether holders of Cypriot passports, who generally oppose his policy, can vote.
According to Kibrisli newspaper, Mr. Denktash's latest move is due to his panic over the result of the elections.
Geni Duzen newspaper has criticised Rauf Denktash, noting his new statements on holders of Cypriot passports where he claimed they will either be imprisoned or are traitors.
He also claimed that Turkish Cypriots will enter the European Union at the same time with Turkey.
 MARONITESThe representative of Maronites at the House of Representatives, Antonis Hadzirousos, said that he did not ask for the return of three thousand Maronites to their Turkish occupied villages but instead asked Serdar Denktash to allow 12 families of pensioners after their own request.
Speaking to CNA, Mr. Hadzirousos said the return of Maronites to their homes is possible only through a solution to the Cyprus problem.
He said made the request during a meeting with Mr. Denktash on June 18 at Ledra Palace, noting the meeting was called to table several humanitarian issues and not political issues.
 HOTELIERS STRIKESTwo thousand Hotel employees at 36 hotels, members of the Cyprus Hoteliers Association (PASIXE), are on an indefinite strike as of this morning with regard to the renewal of the collective agreement in the hotel industry.
The action was taken to protest the non acceptance by the Association of a proposal by Labour and Social Insurance Minister Iacovos Keravnos on the renewal of the agreement. Yesterday 80% per cent of PASIXE's members voted at an extraordinary Annual General Meeting in favour of a counterstrike.
Union leaders did not rule out the possibility strike action to spread to more hotels. They also said that the measures will not be lifted unless PASIXE changes its positions.
 IRAQSeven American soldiers were wounded in two separate attacks on occupation forces in Iraq today, a day after U.S. President George W. Bush said there were enough U.S. troops in Iraq to deal with the militants.
In a sign the guerrilla-style attacks were growing increasingly bold, assailants fired a rocket-propelled grenade on a U.S. Humvee vehicle on a major street in central Baghdad early this morning. Hospital sources said one Iraqi passer-by had been killed and 11 others wounded.
The American soldier was given first aid by his comrades on the scene while the Iraqi casualties were taken to hospital. Iraqis then set the damaged Humvee ablaze, hurling stones and, in a particularly Arab insult, threw shoes at the vehicle.
The other attack took place in the town of Ramadi, some 100 km west of Baghdad, where six U.S. soldiers were wounded when an explosion hit their convoy of two Humvees, the military said in a statement.
The wounded soldiers were evacuated to a combat hospital.
At least 23 U.S. troops have been killed by hostile fire since Mr. Bush declared major combat in Iraq to be over on May 1. U.S. officials blame them on former intelligence officers and Iraqi army elements loyal to ousted President Saddam Hussein.
 EU ITALY GERMANY- German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder demanded a full apology from Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi today for comparing a German lawmaker to a Nazi concentration camp guard.
Pressure on Mr. Berlusconi to make amends for his outburst in the European Parliament grew with members discussing whether to make him atone to salvage Italy's six-month presidency of the European Union.
"This comparison is inappropriate and completely unacceptable," Mr. Schroeder told the German parliament in Berlin. He also said he expected the Italian prime minister to apologise fully for what he described as "unacceptable comparison,".
Mr. Berlusconi told reporters in Rome he would speak to Mr. Schroeder by telephone today but made no further comment.
Mr. Berlusconi made the comments in reaction to criticism by German Social Democratic MEP Martin Schulz of a perceived conflict of interest between Mr. Berlusconi's political role and his extensive media empire.
 ISRAELIsrael closed the north-south highway in the Gaza Strip to Palestinian traffic during the morning rush hour on Thursday after militants fired anti-tank missiles at a Jewish settlement.
An Israeli army bulldozer placed large cement blocks on the road, reversing a move that this week reopened Gaza's central artery to Palestinians after two-and-a-half years under steps by both sides that have raised cautious optimism for peace.
An Israeli military source said the road would be shut for three hours, from 0400 GMT to 0700 GMT. He said three Israelis had been hurt by the anti-tank missile fire overnight at the Jewish settlement of Kfar Darom.
Dozens of Palestinian trucks and cars lined up on either side of the army's cement barrier.
Palestinian witnesses said soldiers opened fire at one point, wounding two Palestinians. The army was checking the report.
The army's move to block the highway followed a partial Israeli withdrawal from parts of Gaza, on the Mediterranean Sea, on Sunday and Monday. It virtually divided the Strip in half.
 SLOVAKIA ABORTIONS- Slovak lawmakers approved a controversial abortion bill today that could lead to the fall of the government if it takes effect.
The bill, which allows abortions into the 24th week of pregnancy in cases involving genetic problems, has caused open hostility between the Christian Democrat party and the coalition's liberal ANO party.
It was authored by ANO and supported by opposition deputies in the largely Roman Catholic country that is set to join the European Union in 2004. KDH said it was a breach of the coalition pact.
 WEATHERThis afternoon, the weather will be clear. Winds will be south-westerly to westerly light to moderate, three to four beaufort and the sea slight. Temperatures will reach 39 C inland, 34 C on the south coast, 31 over the west and 30 over the mountains.
Tonight, the weather will be clear but thin mist and low cloud will form in some ares. Winds will be north-westerly to north-easterly light, two to three beaufort and the sea calm. Temperatures will fall to 22 C inland and onn the coasts and 20 over the mountains.
The fire hazard remains extremely high in all forest areas.