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Greek and Turkish Cypriot parties call for new ideas on Cyprus
2005-12-02 15:03:27

Nicosia, Dec 2 (CNA) - Greek Cypriot European Party and Turkish Cypriot Peace and Democracy Movement agreed here today that new ideas coming from Cypriots should create the prospects for the settlement of the Cyprus problem.

The two parties met today at the European Party's premises in the government-controlled areas and discussed the Turkish Cypriot party's proposals for the normalisation of the relationship of the two communities.

Furthermore, the parties stated they were in favour of a dialogue for the solution of the impasse regarding the opening of a checkpoint in Ledra Street in the heart of the island's capital, Nicosia, but maintain different views on whether the work carried out by the Turkish Cypriots constitutes a violation of the Green Line's status quo.

''We agreed that any new ideas and proposals can stimulate the discussion about the Cyprus problem. We are already more than one-and-a-half years after the referendum and we believe that new ideas can help an initiative on the problem,'' European Party's President Demetris Syllouris said in statements after the meeting.

Mustafa Akkinci, leader of the Peace and Democracy Movement, noted that the real need is for the Cypriots to move to try to find common ground for themselves and save the future of their country and of the new generations, adding that ''we believe that the passage of time is not helpful for neither side, the alienation is growing mainly between the younger generations of the two sides.''

Invited to comment on the UN Secretary General's report for the renewal of UNIFCYP's mandate, Syllouris said that the report is ''a good reason why we should stimulate new ideas,'' while Akkinci noted that the report ''is a message to the Cypriots which says that you Cypriots do something together so to create the conditions for me (UN SG) to help you.''

Replying to a question about the developments in the Ledra Street issue, both politicians noted that there should be a dialogue between the two sides for the solution of the problem.

However, Syllouris said that his party supports the position of the Cypriot government which has withdrawn its consent for the opening of the passage since it considers that the works carried out by the Turkish Cypriots for the building of an overpass is violating the Green Line.

Akkinci asserted that there is no violation of the Green Line and reminded UNFICYP's position on the issue. He also appealed to both communities to solve the issue through dialogue.

''I would prefer not to have a bridge and walk straight through but if you ask me what is my preference, to open it (the road) with the bridge or not at all, I would prefer to open it now and try to work for the removal of the bridge,'' he added.

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