Armenian politician calls on Cyprus to withstand threats
Nicosia, Dec 14 (CNA) - President of the political bureau of Armenian ''Tasnak'' socialist party, Hrand Markarian, has called on Cyprus to maintain a steadfast position regarding the possibility of Turkey commencing EU accession negotiations and not to give in to threats and promises, adding that he expected the Republic of Cyprus to raise with the EU the issue of Turkey recognising the Armenian genocide.
In statements to CNA after a meeting in Nicosia with President of the Republic Tassos Papadopoulos, Markarian said his party had launched a campaign for the recognition of the Armenian genocide.
Markarian, who also met with House of Representatives President Demetris Christofias, praised the stance of the Republic of Cyprus regarding the recognition of the Armenian genocide and called for the continuation of this support in the EU framework.
Speaking through an interpreter, the Armenian politician said ''we expect from the EU, which represents human rights and values for the rights of the peoples, not to forget the Armenian blood that was shed and we also expect from the Republic of Cyprus, along with the Cyprus problem, to raise the issue of the recognition of the Armenian genocide with the EU.''
Replying to questions, he pointed out that Cyprus has always been a pioneer in issues regarding the recognition of the Armenian genocide. ''That is why we have hopes that Cyprus will be, as always, by our side in this struggle,'' he said.
Regarding Cyprus' positions on the Turkish bid to commence accession negotiations with the EU, Markarian said ''we expect Cyprus to have a strong and steadfast position regarding Turkey's accession, we expect that Cyprus will not be easily persuaded by the threats or various promises it is receiving, and will remain steadfast in its positions.''
''Any threat or any promise ceases to be when the process is completed. So Cyprus should not give in to pressure or promises,'' Markarian pointed out.