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Commission assures Cyprus report will be positive
2002-09-05 11:21:35

By Nicos Bellos-- Brussels, Sep 5 (CNA) -- The last progress report on Cyprus' accession to the European Union, to be submitted by the European Commission in October, is expected to be positive.

The message was conveyed yesterday to Cyprus' EU Chief Negotiator, George Vassiliou, after meetings he had in Brussels with German Enlargement Commissioner, Gunter Verheugen, and Director General of the Enlargement Directorate, Eneko Landaburu.

Both Commission officials assured Vassiliou that the contents of the report, being prepared by the Commission, would be very positive on Cyprus.|

Vassiliou told CNA that the Commission's report would also be positive on the substance of the negotiations and the political problem.

Cyprus has been divided since 1974 when Turkish troops invaded and occupied the island's northern third.

It is expected to take into consideration the successful accession course from its start in 1998 until today and the hard work done by the Cyprus government and the House of Representatives in speeding up the implementation of the acquis communautaire.

Vassiliou told the Commission that the House of Representatives would hold an extraordinary session on September 13 to complete harmonisation.

Regarding Cyprus, the Commission's position is based on the decisions of the UN Security Council and the conclusions of the Seville European Council in June.

The EU said in its conclusions that a comprehensive settlement in Cyprus should be consistent with relevant UN resolutions.

Present at the meetings were former head of the European Commission Delegation to Cyprus, Donato Chiarini and his successor, Adrian van der Meer.

Vassiliou also met Greek Commissioner for Employment and Social Policy, Anna Diamantopoulou, and Michael Lee, in charge of relations with Cyprus, Turkey, Romania, Malta and Bulgaria.

The EU is expected to invite Cyprus and other candidate countries this coming December to join the Union. It has said that a political settlement would facilitate accession but it is not a precondition for it.

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