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Kasoulides: None of the Palestinians will continue to stay in Cyprus
2002-05-19 09:27:13

Larnaca, May 19 (CNA) -- Cyprus Foreign Minister Ioannis Kasoulides has said that Cyprus will fully comply with the EU directives, as to the issue of the 13 Palestinians, in Cyprus as part of the deal that ended the siege at the Church of Nativity in Bethlehem.

Kasoulides also made it clear that none of the Palestinians will continue to stay on the island, noting that should no EU country accept one of the Palestinians, Cyprus will be patient until the matter is resolved.

According to Reuters the Spanish state radio said that Spain, which is currently holding the EU presidency, brokered a deal in which six EU member states would take 12 of the 13 Palestinians and Cyprus would take the last.|

Kasoulides said that the procedure for resolving the issue had entered its last stages and that by the beginning of next week there would be developments on the whole issue.

"The issue is proceeding normally, there is a continuous progress on the matters examined. I am in constant contact with the EU representatives and I hope that by Monday or Tuesday all technical problems will be resolved and there will be developments on the issue," he said.

The 13 Palestinians arrived in Cyprus, after the siege of the Church of the Nativity was lifted. They are staying at a local seaside hotel under police guard, for their own safety.

Cyprus offered to take in the Palestinians temporarily.

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