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Danish PM expects full implementation of Ankara protocol by Turkey
2006-09-05 11:33:18

Nicosia, Sep 5-- Danish Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen has said he expected from Turkey the full, unconditional and non-discriminatory implementation of the Ankara protocol.

?This implies removal of all obstacles to the free movement of goods that is free access to ports and airports for all EU member states including the Republic of Cyprus.?

Replying to questions, after official talks here with Cyprus President Tassos Papapoulos, Mr. Rasmussen said the opening of accession negotiations on a number of chapters will depend on Turkey?s implementation of its contractural obligations to all member?states.

''A non compliance with this may have severe consequences with regard to the opening of negotiations on a certain number of chapters and a failure to implement Turkey?s obligation in full will affect the overall progress in the negotiations between Turkey and the EU and Turkey should take stock of that,? he warned.

Referring to the Cyprus question, he also said ?the objective is very clear, Cyprus should be reunited. I strongly regret that we were not possible to find a solution to that before the entrance of Cyprus into the EU but now we should do our outmost to find a solution to that problem within the framework of the UN".

Mr. Rasmussen thanked Cyprus for its close cooperation and help during the evacuation of Danes from Lebanon.

On his behalf, President Papadopoulos stressed the need for good preparation and a show of willingness on the part of the Greek Cypriot and the Turkish Cypriot sides to negotiate constructively towards reunification.

Mr. Papadopoulos also said they had a very useful and friendly meeting, which covered a wide range of issues concerning European issues, bilateral relations and the Cyprus problem.

On July 8 Mr. Papadopoulos met Mr. Talat agreed the commencement of meetings between Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots on a technical level on issues that affect the day to day life of people and concurrently those that concern substantive issues. Asked what should happen to Turkey if it does not lift the embargo on Cyprus, Mr. Rasmussen reiterated that he expects full implementation of the additional protocol that is free access to Turkish ports and airports.

?And then the question is what will happen if Turkey does not fully implement the Ankara protocol. In my opinion Turkey has a legal obligation to allow free access to ports and airports, according to the Association Agreement between Turkey and the EU and its member states. So if Turkey does not fulfill this requirement we must look closer into the legal aspects of that,? he added.

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