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Cyprus Broadcasting Corporation: News in English, 03-10-03

Cyprus Broadcasting Corporation: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Cyprus Broadcasting Corporation at <http://www.cybc.com.cy/>

CONTENTS

  • [01] HEADLINES
  • [02] STRIKE
  • [03] MOUSTAKAS
  • [04] KAZAMIAS1
  • [05] KYPRIANOU
  • [06] TSOHATZOPOULOS
  • [07] SENER
  • [08] TARRIFFS
  • [09] APOSTOLOS
  • [10] ANNAN
  • [11] CIA
  • [12] BUSH
  • [13] WEATHER Friday 3/10/03

  • [01] HEADLINES

    Good afternoon, it's half past one and this is the Cyprus Broadcasting Corporation transmitting on 91.1 FM. It's time for the news. First, the headlines:

    One man was arrested as violence broke out in Aradipou between striking truck drivers and colleagues trying to break the picket lines,

    The Finance Minister pledged no new comsumption taxes unless the EU decides otherwise,

    Cyprus and Greece will sign an agreement on the island's crude oil reserves,

    AND the UN Chief Kofi Annan said the world body can't play a proper role in Iraq under Washington's terms.

    [02] STRIKE

    Things turned ugly in the Aradipou Industrial area this morning, after striking truck drivers took offense at two fellow truckers who tried to break the picket lines.

    The violence was sparked when two truckers tried to load animal feed for their own needs at Aradipou's Grain Commission silos, enraging picketers who tried to stop them.

    According to the CyBC's Larnaca correspondent, a strong police force was called in to disperse the crowd.

    One truck driver was arrested.

    Spokesmen for the stricking truckers said they won't allow anyone to break the picket lines and urged all drivers to respect their colleague's decision to walk off the job.

    [03] MOUSTAKAS

    Truckers' spokesman Kyriakos Moustakas said strike action will continue despite the hardship faced by local industry.

    Speaking on CyBC radio this morning, Mr. Moustakas declared the strike a success, despte the fact that some truck drivers are using their own cars to conduct personal business.

    He said a memo is being drafted listing the truckers' demands which will be handed to the Road Transport Department.

    Mr. Moustakas said truckers are willing to engage in dialogue as long as the government is equally willing to talk.

    The truckers began the strike to protest what they say are unfair EU laws which will rob them of their livelihood.

    [04] KAZAMIAS1

    On the government side, Communications Minister Kikis Kazamias urged truckers to sit down for talks and put an end to the indefinite strike.

    Also speaking on CyBC radio, Mr. Kazamias called the strike unecessary because it damages the drivers as much as it does the economy.

    He said truckers resorted to strike action based on misinformation because the government took steps to compensate about 1,000 truck drivers who will be squeezed out.

    The Commerce Minister added that the government is in discussions with Brussels to reach a compromise solution on the strict EU laws.

    He added that a meeting between truckers and government officials was scheduled for October 14, but the drivers acted hastily before talking out their grievances.

    [05] KYPRIANOU

    Finance Minister Markos Kyprianou ruled out any chance of new consumption taxes unless the European Union decides otherwise.

    He said ministries are looking into what levies will be imposed for each government service provided as per EU regulations.

    Mr. Kyprianou said extra revenue generated from a crack-down on tax-evasion will help bring down a burgeoning fiscal deficit.

    He made the remarks after signing a 200 million Euro loan agreement with the Council of Europe's Development bank. The money will go towards education programmes.

    Speaking on CyBC radio earlier, the Finance Minister said a three cent rise in diesel and kerosene prices won't lead to a price-hike in other products.

    Mr. Kyprianou said its the lowest amount of consumption tax demanded by EU as part of the island's harmonisation package and it could not have been pushed back any further.

    On the increase in cigarette prices, he said that came about after officials factored in a government push to reduce smoking and to inject cash in state coffers.

    [06] TSOHATZOPOULOS

    Greece's Development Minister Akis Tsohatzopoulos arrives to the island this afternoon to co-sign an agreement on the island's EU-mandated crude oil and petroleum product reserves.

    The island's reserves will be deposited in Greece so that as per EU regulations, there will be 90 days-worth of reserves.

    Up until now, Cyprus had only a month's worth of reserves.

    Mr. Tsohatzopoulos and Commerce Minister Yiorgos Lillikas will also sign a bilateral cooperation protocol on energy and industry.

    The Greek Minister will later hold talks with House Speaker Demetris Christofias and party leaders.

    [07] SENER

    Governing coalition partners Akel and socialist Edek condemned renewed threats against Turkish Cypriot reporters working for opposition newspaper Afrika.

    The threats, published in extremist Volkan, were made by Hasan Keskin, a leading figure in the far-right National Popular Movement.

    The two parties condemned the terror tactics employed by the occupation regime to muzzle opposition newspapers and actions which impede Cyprus settlement efforts.

    Both parties urged that European Parliament to intervene and ensure the journalists' personal safety, as well as their right to free expression.

    [08] TARRIFFS

    The occupation regime is attempting to block Turkish Cypriots from shopping in the free areas of the Republic.

    According to Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris, the occupation regime is considering imposing 30% tarrifs on goods Turkish Cypriots purchase in the south.

    Moreover, Rauf Denktash said his authorities are also contemplating slashing the 30 pound limit on purchases Turkish Cypriots can make in the south by half.

    [09] APOSTOLOS

    Meanwhile, Denktash regime officials are pocketing money left by Greek Cypriot pilgrims at the Apostolos Andreas Monastery in occupied Karpasia.

    According to Kibris, the money are deposited by Turkish Cypriot police in special bank accounts belonging to the so-called Trikomo District Authority.

    However, the so-called Rizokarpaso municipality is demanding a cut of the money its claims it is owed for services rendered at the monastery.

    The newspaper reporters that the Turkish Cypriot Rizokarpaso mayor is angry because Greek Cypriot faithful are giving money to the monastery's priest.

    [10] ANNAN

    U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan made it clear that the United Nations could not play a proper political role in Iraq under terms Washington wanted.

    While not refusing outright for the United Nations to participate in the political process in Iraq, Mr. Annan told Security Council members that a U.N. mandate could not be implemented properly under the terms envisaged in a new U.S.-drafted resolution.

    In comments to reporters after the lunch, Mr. Annan said the draft U.S. resolution had not followed his recommendation of setting up an interim Iraqi government before a constitution was written and new elections were held.

    The United States has specified in the draft it would stay in charge of Iraq until elections could be held and a constitution written, a process that might take two years.

    No Security Council member has threatened to veto the resolution but France has said it might abstain. Negotiations continue on Monday.

    [11] CIA

    CIA adviser David Kay said the U.S-led team hunting for weapons of mass destruction in Iraq has found no stockpiles of biological or chemical weapons, six months after American-led war on Baghdad.

    Mr. Kay was sent to Iraq this summer to coordinate efforts to find those weapons, and he presented a classified interim report to U.S. lawmakers behind closed doors yesterday.

    The CIA adviser said the team conducting the WMD hunt has also not found any evidence to confirm pre-war reporting that the Iraqi military was prepared to use chemical warfare against U.S.-led forces.

    Kay said the team would have a better handle on the status of Iraq's banned weapons in six to nine months.

    Critics have questioned whether President George W. Bush's administration exaggerated the Iraqi WMD threat to get support for the war.

    [12] BUSH

    More bad news for US President George W. Bush.

    A new CBS - New York Times poll shows that most Americans now believe the Iraq war was not worth it.

    The poll also showed a sharp fall in public confidence in the American president's ability to handle foreign and economic policy issues.

    It found new lows for Mr. Bush's foreign policy performance, which garnered just a 44 percent approval rating.

    Among respondents, 50 percent lacked confidence in his ability to handle an international crisis and 53 percent said they now believed the Iraq war was not worth it.

    Bush's overall job approval rating was just above 50 percent, almost back to the level before the 9/11 attacks and down sharply from his 89 percent approval rating after the attacks.

    [13] WEATHER

    Fine conditions are expected over the next three days, despite unstable weather this afternoon, with cloudy periods and a chance of showers and isolated thundershowers in the mountains.

    Winds will be generally southwesterly to westerly moderate, force 3 to 4, with slight seas.

    Fine tonight, with light fog and low rolling in in some areas.

    Winds will be weserly to northwesterly light, force 2 to 3, with slight seas.

    Temperatures will drop to 17 degrees inland and the coasts, and 11 in the highest mountains.

    A reminder that the fire hazard remains very high in all forest areas.


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