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EU: Turkey Must Support Cyprus Peace Process
2008-05-29 10:03:31

Brussels, May 27 – The European Union stated that it expects Turkey to actively support the ongoing peace process in Cyprus, aiming at a viable political settlement based on UN resolutions and EU principles.

This is stated in the text of the EU joint position presented by the EU Slovenian Presidency to Turkish Foreign Minister Ali Babacan, during the EU-Turkey Association Council.

The EU recalled its conclusions of 11 December 2006, and noted “with regret that Turkey has not fulfilled its obligation of full non-discriminatory implementation of the Additional Protocol to the Association Agreement and has not made progress towards normalization of relations with the Republic of Cyprus.”

The Council said it will continue to follow up and review progress made on the issues covered by the declaration of the European Community and its Member States of 21 September 2005 in accordance with its conclusions of 11 December 2006. Swift progress on these issues is expected.

“Under the Negotiating Framework and the Accession Partnership, the EU expects Turkey to actively support the ongoing process agreed on 21 March 2008 leading to a comprehensive and viable settlement of the Cyprus problem within the UN framework and in line with the principles on which the EU is founded, as laid down in Article 6(1) of the EU Treaty, and consistent with relevant United Nations Security Council Resolutions,” the EU joint position said.

Furthermore it underlined that “this support should include concrete steps to contribute to a favorable climate for such a comprehensive settlement. The EU also underlines the importance of progress in the normalization of bilateral relations between Turkey and all EU member states, including the Republic of Cyprus.”

In this regard, the EU calls on Turkey “to stop blocking the accession of Member States to international organizations and mechanisms. Furthermore, the EU recalls the sovereign rights of EU Member States to enter into bilateral agreements in accordance with the EU acquis and international law, including the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea,” the EU 27 said.

The President of Cyprus, Demetris Christofias, expressed satisfaction with the outcome of the EU-Turkey Association Council and the joint position of EU members.

President Christofias said: “I would like to express my satisfaction with the joint position the EU 27 adopted, regarding Turkey’s EU accession course. The position expressed by the EU member states is correct and satisfactory. The point is Turkey has to align itself with this position.”

The President said that he would keep trying in every way possible to make Turkey act in line with the EU position.

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