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Cyprus to decide on participation in Lebanon peace force if asked
2006-08-04 12:59:03

Nicosia, Aug 4 (CNA) - Government Spokesman Christodoulos Pashiardis said today that the Republic of Cyprus would decide whether or not it would participate in a peacekeeping force for Lebanon if and when the UN decides to establish such a force and calls on Cyprus to contribute.

Regarding Turkey's involvement in the force, Pashiardis said he suspected the only reason its contribution was requested is Ankara's unquestionable specialisation in creating crises.

Asked if Cyprus would participate in a peacekeeping force in Lebanon, Pashiardis said this has not yet been decided. ''The UN will take this decision and, if and when the UN invites the Republic of Cyprus to participate, then the appropriate decision will be taken.''

To a comment that Turkey has expressed its willingness to lead this peacekeeping force, Pashiardis said Turkey had been invited to the Rome meeting on the Middle East.

''I do not know the exact reasons for which Turkey was invited and participated in this meeting, nor of course do I know the reasons why some people want the involvement of Turkey in efforts to solve the escalating crisis in Lebanon and peace in the region. I can only assume that the sole serious reason is Turkey's unquestionable and recognised specialisation in issues of invasion, victimisation of refugees and ways of creating refugees,'' he said.

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