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Cyprus says Turkey is delaying the signing of EU's protocol
2005-07-12 12:04:25

Nicosia, Jul 12 - Cyprus Government Spokesman Kypros Chrysostomides has pointed out that Turkey was using ''delaying tactics'' in signing the protocol extending its customs union to the 10 new EU member states, including Cyprus.

He noted that internal repercussions from signing the protocol could neither be used as an excuse nor reflect Turkey's stance towards the EU, if Turkey really wanted to begin accession negotiations on October 3.

Asked if the government had any information that Turkey would try any manoeuvres regarding the protocol, Chrysostomides said that ''the EU sent a letter to Turkey on June 15, asking it to sign the protocol,'' adding that everything has been discussed and the only thing left is for Ankara to meet its obligations towards the EU.

Replying to questions, Mr. Chrysostomides also said the British presidency of the EU was obliged to be impartial during its presidency and, ''as long as this objectivity is shown, Turkey's obligations are there and must be met before the opening of accession negotiations.''

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