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Foreign Minister says Cyprus has two aims on Turkish EU bid
2005-08-24 17:09:53

Limassol, Aug 24 (CNA) - Cypriot Minister of Foreign Affairs George Iacovou said here Wednesday that Cyprus has two aims ahead of the European Union meetings, which will decide on the commencement of accession talks between the Union and Turkey on October 3.

Briefing the oversees Cypriots who are holding their fourteenth conference in Limassol, Iacovou said that ''we must obtain an EU counterstatement which will overturn the Turkish declaration and will not leave anything unanswered and there must be improvements of the EU-Turkey negotiating framework.''

On July 29, Turkey signed a protocol expanding the Ankara Agreement (Customs Union) to cover the Union's ten new member-states, issuing simultaneously a declaration that said it does not recognise the Republic of Cyprus.

Iacovou appeared optimistic that Cyprus will face the new Turkish challenges and Ankara's declaration.

''Cypriot diplomats are abroad to promote our positions,'' Iacovou added, noting that ''we will try to have as much support in the Council, so our positions will be respected and incorporated in the conclusions.''

Noting that the challenges Cyprus is facing come from Turkey but also from within the EU, Iacovou said he believes it is unlikely that European partners would press Cyprus to accept inadmissible positions with regard the existence of the Republic of Cyprus.

Referring to the Cyprus problem, Iacovou said that any action by the United Nations Secretariat is expected to take place after the coming October.

He also said the fact that UN Secretary General Kofi Annan is sounding out certain persons for the position of his advisor on the Cyprus problem, ''means that the Secretary General is thinking of the next phase.''

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