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Cyprus finds misinterpretations in British Committee's report
2005-02-23 15:53:50

Nicosia, Feb 23 (CNA) -- The Cyprus Government believes that many of the conclusions of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the House of Commons report on Cyprus are mere misinterpretations of facts due to the lack of information.

Government Spokesman Kypros Chrysostomides said the Republic of Cyprus welcomes some of the references but on others expresses disappointment because they seem to support the belief that there are efforts to politically upgrade the divisive tendencies of the Turkish occupied north of Cyprus.

He added that the report on an inquiry conducted by the Committee into UK policy towards Cyprus would be subject to further examination by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

As regards the conclusion for the illegal Turkish settlers, the Spokesman said that the Committee justifies their participation in last year's referendum and suggests that they should participate in a new one, if such an event arises.

Chrysostomides described this conclusion as ''a mere misinterpretation of the principles of international law and selective implementation of different principles'' and wondered why there is a different approach where Cyprus is concerned.

He also noted a ''serious contradiction'' in the report since the Committee at one point suggests a population census for settlers either by an international organisation or by the so-called authorities of the puppet regime with international monitoring and at another point suggests that they can vote in the referendum.

The Spokesman described as unfair the conclusion that the British Government and other European states should work together with the Republic of Cyprus so that the latter can adapt European principles and working methods.

''The members of the European Parliament should not ignore the fact that Cyprus is the only European country, part of which is occupied by foreign troops of a country, Turkey, which aspires to become an EU member,'' he pointed out.

As regards the EU Regulations for the Turkish Cypriots, he noted the conclusions prove that the Committee was simply not aware that an agreement was reached on the Green Line Regulation for trade between the two communities of the island.

He further said that the reason the EU funds for the Turkish Cypriots, in the framework of the Financial Aid Regulation, have not yet been given to the community was the refusal of the Turkish Cypriot leadership.

Chrysostomides noted that it is the British Government that connects this regulation and the one for direct trade, adding that even the Turkish Cypriots agree that the non-allocation of the funds is due to the connection of the two regulations.

''The Cyprus Government up to now has offered more financial support to the Turkish Cypriots than anyone else,'' the Spokesman pointed out.

At another point the report said that British promises towards the Turkish Cypriots for direct trade and flights should be kept, and the Cypriot Spokesman wondered whether this reference proves or not the Republic's position ''about efforts, in essence, for the upgrading of the divisive tendencies of the north and the support of its efforts for political gains.''

He also expressed disappointment over ''actions on the UK part that tend to support efforts to bypass international law, international behaviour and to ignore the dangers for the international aviation.''

Responding to the reference that the Cyprus government does not recognise licenses for vehicles issued in the Turkish occupied areas, he explained that the Turkish Cypriots enjoy a lot of privileges on this issue, adding that the Cyprus Government must also comply with EU laws.

Referring to the conclusion, which the Cyprus government considers as positive, the Spokesman underlined the reference that the Turkish troops must leave after a Cyprus settlement. ''The Committee agrees that the occupation army must leave and also notes the British Government's intention to contribute to a settlement,'' he said.

Furthermore he said the Government agrees with the Committee that the property issue is critical for a solution.

Responding to questions on the methodology followed by the Committee, he said that what was asked by the Cyprus Government was to submit documents and it did but no verbal report or explanation was asked by the Government.

He concluded that it seems that the Committee relied extensively on the conclusions of the British former representative for Cyprus Lord David Hannay.

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