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Papapetrou says UN role upgraded in Cyprus peace effort
2002-09-06 15:18:57

By Maria Myles -- Paris, Sep 6 (CNA) - Government Spokesman Michalis Papapetrou described today's meetings in Paris between UN Secretary General Kofi Annan, President Glafcos Clerides and Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash as "significant".

He told CNA that the role of the UN in the peace effort is being upgraded and is gradually becoming a leading role in the whole peace process.

Papapetrou also said that to achieve specific progress by the beginning of October, when Clerides and Denktash will go to New York to meet the Secretary General anew, the Turkish side should return to the negotiating table with a political will in line with UN resolutions.

"The Paris meeting is proved to have been an important one in the UN effort to reach a settlement in Cyprus," the Spokesman told CNA.

He said Annan assessed the situation so far at the direct talks and the attitude of each side to the talks, and added that "essentially the Secretary General has demanded from the two leaders that they make specific progress in a short period of time because the timeframe is closing in."

Papapetrou said Annan expects Clerides and Denktash in New York to hear from them whether they have succeeded in doing what they have been asked to do.

"To achieve this goal (concrete progress) it is necessary that the Turkish Cypriot side goes to the talks in a different political will, which will be in line with the letter and the spirit of UN Security Council resolutions," he told CNA after today's meetings.

Papapetrou is in Paris accompanying President Clerides, who met earlier today with Annan, first in private and then attending a lunch hosted by the Secretary General.

The President returns home tomorrow.

President Clerides and Denktash have been engaged in UN-led direct talks since mid January this year with a view to reach a comprehensive settlement of the Cyprus problem.

Cyprus has been divided since 1974 when Turkish troops invaded and occupied its northern third.|

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