President Christofias Concludes Official Visit to Bulgaria
Nicosia, Oct 7 - From the moment the Cyprus problem occurred, Bulgaria has maintained a consistent position, expressed through full support of all relevant UN resolutions which condemn the Turkish invasion and call for full withdrawal of Turkish troops from Cyprus. The above statement was made by the President of Bulgaria Mr. Georgi Parvanov, after the meeting he had on October 6th in Sofia with President Demetris Christofias. Bulgaria’s position is that Cyprus must remain an independent, united sovereign state, with sovereignty extended to the whole island, he said. Mr. Parvanov added that he congratulated President Christofias on the resumption of the process and he expressed his support for the negotiations and the hope that they will be fruitful and successful. Bulgaria will support any decision, in the spirit of European values that will be to the benefit of the Cypriot people as a whole, he said further.
In reference to Turkey’s accession course, he stressed that as a neighboring country, Bulgaria supports Turkey’s European prospects and expressed the wish that accession negotiations will be successful. However, he added, our view is that every country which accedes to the European Union must comply with the regulations and the values expressed by the whole. Finally he expressed the hope that in the future the EU itself would actively pursue a just and viable solution to the Cyprus problem to which we all hope.
As regards the issues discussed in the meeting, Mr. Parvanov noted that Cyprus and Bulgaria share common views in many issues, such as issues related to the West Balkans, the enlargement of the EU and energy. He also expressed joy at the fact that during the talks they had the opportunity to discuss other issues regarding neighboring countries, Black Sea Economic Cooperation, the Mediterranean initiative and other issues that concern the EU.
Concerning the two countries’ economic relations, the Bulgarian President said that Cyprus investments in Bulgaria amounted to 1.2 billion euros, which placed Cyprus in the eighth position of foreign investors in the country. He also expressed the conviction that the talks as well as the economic forum would increase the prospects of economic cooperation in various sectors, that they would not be limited to the sectors of tourism and property ownership, but would open prospects for the creation of mixed enterprises.
For his part, President Christofias thanked President Parvanov for Bulgaria’s support toward Cyprus and the people of Cyprus, in their struggle to reunify their country and to put an end to the Turkish occupation. “This is a long standing position of Bulgaria, which is based on the principles and values of international law and the EU” he said.
President Christofias said he was pleased that the Bulgarian President had accepted his invitation to pay an official visit to Cyprus and added that he has agreed to the suggestion for Bulgarian Culture Days to be organized during Mr. Parvanov’s stay in Cyprus.
After the talks, the Foreign Ministers of Cyprus and Bulgaria Messrs Marcos Kyprianou and Ivailo Kalfin signed a Protocol on Enhanced Cooperation between the Foreign Ministries of Cyprus and Bulgaria.