Cyprus should participate in EU-NATO meetings, says Javier Solana
Brussels, Mar 5 – EU High Representative for Common Foreign and Security Policy, Javier Solana, has acknowledged there is a problem caused by Turkey regarding the participation of Cyprus to EU and NATO joint meetings, according to EU sources.
Turkey’s tactic is to systematically impede the participation of Cyprus to EU and NATO joint meetings.
Mr. Solana was briefed on this issue as well as on the July 8 agreement on the Cyprus problem and on Turkey’s threats against the exploitation of possible oil deposits or natural gas in the sea area off the island by Cyprus Foreign Minister Yiorgos Lillikas.
On July 8th 2006, Cypriot President Tassos Papadopoulos and Turkish Cypriot leader Mehmet Ali Talat agreed, during a meeting in Nicosia in the presence of former UN Undersecretary General for political Affairs Ibrahim Gambari, to begin a process of bicommunal discussions on issues that affect the day-to-day life of the people and concurrently those that concern substantive issues, both contributing to a comprehensive settlement to the Cyprus problem.
Cyprus, an EU member state since May 2004, has signed agreements for the delimitation of its Exclusive Economic Zone with Egypt and Lebanon. Turkey, which has been occupying 37% of Cyprus’ territory since her invasion of the island in 1974, has reacted with threats as regards the government’s intentions for exploration and exploitation of possible oil deposits or natural gas in the sea area off the island.