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Cyprus President expects UN move
2005-10-07 11:32:47

Nicosia, Oct 7 (CNA) -- Cyprus President Tassos Papadopoulos has said that UN Secretary General will make some moves in the not too distant future with regard to his continuing efforts to find a negotiated settlement.

Speaking at a televised press conference on the question of Cyprus, he said Kofi Annan's efforts on Cyprus have not come to an end, adding that Annan wishes to have a closer involvement in the question of Cyprus.

Responding to questions, he also said that Turkey's EU accession course could help the peace effort, reiterating his firm objective to achieve a solution of a bizonal, bicommunal federation.

''I will not consent to an unacceptable solution irrespective of the cost, we have strengthened out position,'' compared with what it was after the overwhelming majority of the Greek Cypriots rejected a UN proposed solution plan, he said.

The President described as ''hostile to Cyprus and a provocation for the EU'' a statement by Turkish premier that he would not allow Cypriot ships and aircraft to use his country's ports and airports until the so-called embargo on Turkish occupied Cyprus is lifted.

''This kind of behaviour has not passed unnoticed,'' he said.

Papadopoulos revealed that there are ''regular contacts'' with the Turkish Cypriot side under UN auspices to discuss matters of daily life, some of which are settled.

He said the right to exercise a veto will always be among Cyprus' options during Turkey's EU accession course, but pointed out that the prons and cons of such a move must be carefully thought out.

He explained that the EU has no monitoring mechanisms to ensure Turkey's compliance with its obligations to the Union and the available options are either to suspend or cancel membership talks with Ankara.

Papadopoulos explained that the European Council will be the judge that will determine whether Turkey meets its obligations to the EU, adding that Ankara has an obligation to recognize Cyprus de jure when membership talks start.

Responding to questions, he said he wants to see a more active EU involvement in the effort for a settlement, which would help the peace effort, noting that Brussels is best placed to determine whether aspects of the solution are in line with the acquis communautaire.

On the normalization of relations with Turkey, which does not recognize Cyprus, he said this would come through Ankara's accession negotiations, pointing out that decisions with regard to Cyprus on core issues are taken in Ankara.

On the prospects for a speedy solution, he said Turkey does not want a solution that would not meet its fundamental goal, which is to establish one way or another a stronghold in Cyprus.

Asked if he should renounce the Annan plan, he said such a move will not bury the plan but it would destroy the good will Cyprus has gained with regard to the positions of the Greek Cypriot side.

''We accept the fundamental philosophy of the plan, which is the bizonal, bicommunal federation,'' he said.

Responding to questions, he said the government had neither thought nor examined the possibility of applying to join NATO.

Papadopoulos confirmed that US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice did ring him earlier this week to express US concerns about EU decisions that would allow participation of member states in NATO.

Turkey, an acceding country, vehemently objects even to any hint that Cyprus may be thinking to apply for NATO membership.

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