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India assures President Papadopoulos of support for just Cyprus settlement
2006-04-13 14:06:39

New Delhi, Apr 12 - India supports a just and lasting solution to the Cyprus problem, in accordance with the United Nations Security Council resolutions and the aspirations of the people of Cyprus, Indian President Dr A.P.J. Abdul Kalam said Wednesday in his speech at the banquet in honor of the President of the Republic of Cyprus, Tassos Papadopoulos.

President Kalam also said that India welcomes the Paris meeting between President Papadopoulos and UN chief Kofi Annan for the preparation of the ground for the resumption of the negotiating process under the UN auspices that would lead to a mutually agreed, functional and viable comprehensive settlement of the Cyprus question.

In his speech, President Papadopoulos stressed anew the support that India has shown over the decades towards Cyprus.

''You have extended time and again your support to the sovereignty and territorial integrity of my country and to our just cause to solve the Cyprus problem in accordance with the relevant UN resolutions and the principles of the EU,'' he said.

The President of Cyprus reiterated his government's stance to support India in its application to become a permanent member state of the United Nations Security Council.

''We recognise the significant contribution of India, as the largest democracy in the world and a major power, to global affairs, and considering its size, I firmly believe that India deserves a permanent seat in a reformed, enlarged Security Council. I assure you of our support to this end,'' he said.

He also assured the government of India that Cyprus would practically support India in its relations with the EU.

Referring to the Cyprus issue, the President of Cyprus reiterated his commitment to reach a comprehensive settlement, based on a bizonal, bicommunal federation with a single sovereignty and international identity.

He expressed hope that the Turkish side would respond positively to Cyprus's proposals to commence discussions on a technical level, in order to help restore trust and prepare the ground for the full resumption of the negotiating process.

Referring to bilateral relations, he said that the first priority is the widening and further deepening of the cooperation in various domains, especially in the economic field.

''To this end, a large Cypriot business delegation is accompanying me on this visit,'' he pointed out.

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