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Polish President: Cyprus solution can be reached through accord under UN aegis
2005-03-17 14:22:44

Nicosia Mar 17 (CNA)-- A just and lasting solution to the Cyprus problem may only be reached through an accord between Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots, worked out under the aegis of the United Nations, Polish President Aleksander Kwasniewski said today.

At a lecture he gave at the Cyprus University on ''The Republic of Poland and the Republic of Cyprus in the United Europe'', in the presence of Cyprus President Tassos Papadopoulos, other officials and students, Kwasniewski said he is in favour of a future enlargement of Europe with new member states, including Turkey and praised Cyprus' position during the EU Summit last December in Brussels, where the EU leaders decided to grant Turkey a date (3rd of October, 2005) for the commencement of its accession negotiations.

He also said he was encouraged after the talks he had earlier with Cypriot President Tassos Papadopoulos that through UN and EU efforts it is possible to find a good solution ''for this so complicated, so sensitive and so old problem.''

Kwasniewski praised the unification of Europe as a historic success, noting however that ''the tragedy of Cyprus, a country divided for three decades now is something to which we cannot remain indifferent''.

''We are paying close attention to the efforts of the Republic of Cyprus towards a peaceful resolution of the division of the island,'' the Polish President said, adding ''I am convinced that the EU will approach this challenge with all its commitment.''

According to Kwasniewski, ''a peaceful and enduring resolution of the conflict will convincingly attest to the effectiveness of European policy.''

In his address, Kwasniewski said he supports the enlargement of Europe, with the future accession of Bulgaria, Romania, ''conceivably Croatia'' and Turkey.

He also noted that ''giving Ukraine a clear prospect for EU membership is a task our hearts, morality and political farsightedness call us to perform.''

As regards Turkey he said, ''I believe that there is a place for Turkey in a united Europe'', noting that ''the position taken on this issue by the Republic of Cyprus demonstrates great responsibility and imagination.''

Kwasniewski also stressed the role of Europe's Constitution in the completion of European integration as one of the ''stronger legal instruments.''

Regarding the cooperation between Cyprus and Poland in the framework of the EU, Kwasniewski noted that his country as the gateway to the East has developed economic ties with its eastern neighbours, while Cyprus is evolving into a business, financial and logistics centre, facilitating exchange between Europe and the Middle East, North Africa, and the Orient.

''I am convinced that Poland and Cyprus can achieve meaningful results through understanding and partnership'', he said, noting ''membership of the EU is a ticket to a prosperous future and a bond that closely links our countries.''

''Let us therefore apply all our energies and imagination to take advantage of this wonderful opportunity'', the Polish President noted.

Kwasniewski and his entourage left Cyprus tonight, after attending an official farewell ceremony at the presidential palace.

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