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Cyprus President dismisses Turkish reports as ''imaginary''
2005-06-03 11:08:15

Larnaca, Jun 3 (CNA) -- Cyprus President Tassos Papadopoulos has dismissed as ''imaginary'' Turkish press reports suggesting that he had put forward such proposals for the resumption of negotiations that led the Turkish Cypriot leader to reject them.

Speaking on departure for Luxembourg for a meeting with Prime Minister Jean Claude Junker, he called on Mehmet Ali Talat to clarify whether he wants a solution through acceptance of a UN proposed plan (the Annan plan) which the Greek Cypriots rejected in their overwhelming majority in a referendum last year.

On fresh moves to resume negotiations, Papadopoulos said the UN are determined to offer their good services, meaning make every effort to bring the Greek Cypriot and the Turkish Cypriot sides back to the negotiating table, to facilitate, put forward proposals but without acting as arbitrators.

''The press reports on what I am supposed to have proposed to the UN are not fully correct, they contain many inaccuracies and one wonders whether such reports have a specific objective, to preempt the climate or to create conflict among the Turkish Cypriots and those who want a solution,'' he said.

Responding to questions, he said ''leaking documents means leaking the truth. Imaginary reports is something different.''

He pointed out that the demands of the Greek Cypriot side are more or less known and it would not take a lot of effort by somebody to draft a report about what the Greek Cypriot side has told UN Undersecretary General Sir Kieran Prendergast, who was here for talks with the two sides.

Papadopoulos is said to have suggested, among other ideas, the complete demilitarisation of Cyprus, the abolition of the right of guarantee, currently held by Turkey, Greece and Britain, the return to Turkey of all but 30,000 Turkish settlers and the abolition of Turkey's right to intervene in Cyprus.

On his meetings with the UN official, Papadopoulos said Prendergast is trying to create a framework for the resumption of talks and added that the content of the discussions are confidential.

''Any paper can publish what it thinks has been said at the meetings but the course of the consultations is confidential. We cannot negotiate through the press,'' he said.

Responding to questions about Talat's actual stance on the effort for a solution, Papadopoulos called on the Turkish Cypriot leader to say clearly what he means when he is talking about reunification of the island.

Talat, he explained, has to explain if his repeated statements that he wants a solution soon signify a wish to bring back the Annan plan as it stands.

President Papadopoulos is seeking to bring about such changes to the plan as to make the solution viable and workable and to serve the interests of the Cypriots.

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