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Kasoulides: Four messages conveyed by Annan
2002-05-18 10:55:44

Paphos, May 18 (CNA) - Cyprus Foreign Minister Ioannis Kasoulides has said the UN Secretary General Kofi Annan conveyed during his recent visit to Cyprus four messages to the leaders of the two sides, engaged in UN-led direct talks since mid January this year, with a view to negotiate until a settlement is reached.

According to Kasoulides the messages conveyed are the need to speed up the ongoing talks, to insist on the time-frame of June, to abandon unproductive discussions and focus on the fundamental principles and to take advantage of the UN Secretary General's Special Adviser on Cyprus Alvaro De Soto's presence to the talks.

No problem is being raised for the Greek Cypriot side by these appeals, Kasoulides said noting that it was up to the Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash to show whether he responds to them, at the forthcoming meetings between him and Cyprus President Glafcos Clerides.|

Foreign Minister expressed the Greek Cypriot side's genuine effort to look into the possibilities of solving the Cyprus problem.

"There is a window of opportunity, that will close by autumn and even if Denktash continues to have the same positions, Cyprus will proceed at full speed to join the EU," he added.

Cyprus opened accession negotiations with the EU in 1998. It has been divided since 1974, when Turkey invaded and occupied its northern third.

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