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President Christofias Says Leaders are Determined to Continue Talks
2009-05-08 10:53:36

Nicosia, May 5 (CNA)- President of the Republic of Cyprus Demetris Christofias has stressed that direct negotiations between himself and Turkish Cypriot leader Mehmet Ali Talat on the Cyprus issue, will continue.

In statements Tuesday after the conclusion of the 27th meeting between the leaders of the two communities in Cyprus, President Christofias said that the two leaders are determined to continue negotiations and solve the Cyprus problem.

President Christofias and Mr. Talat have been engaged in direct negotiations since September 2008 with an aim to reunite the island.

“We are determined to continue the process of talks because we aim at solving the problem,” he stressed.

During Tuesday’s meeting, the two leaders discussed, in the presence of their aides and UNSG’s Special Representative to Cyprus, Taye Brook Zerihoun, the course of the direct negotiations and what is further needed to be done, the Cypriot President said.

He added that the two leaders decided to continue negotiations and intensify them even more, by more frequent meetings between their aides, George Iacovou and Ozdil Nami.

President Christofias told reporters that discussion on the property issue would continue, adding that the Greek Cypriot side will defend its positions, which are reaffirmed by the European Court of Justice during its recent decision on the Apostolides vs. Orams case.

The ECJ’s ruling of April 28th 2009 paves the way for Cypriot displaced people to defend in an effective manner their property rights against the usurpers of their properties in Turkish occupied Cyprus, before Cypriot and other European courts.

Asked whether the Court’s decision was among the issues discussed during talks, President Christofias said that they discussed the issue, noting that he reiterated at the negotiating table his positions on the matter.

He pointed out that the Court’s decision confirms the pertinence of the Greek Cypriot side’s positions regarding the property issue.

Replying to questions, the Cypriot President said that Talat did not talk about the possibility of abandoning the talks’ process in case the British justice implements the European Court’s ruling.

The Cypriot President was also asked whether the two leaders discussed statements by Turkish Cypriot National Unity Party’s leader Dervis Eroglu, winner of the illegal elections in the Turkish occupied areas of Cyprus last month, who said that the Turkish Cypriot side should abandon the negotiating table.

President Christofias recalled that his interlocutor at the Cyprus talks is the leader of the Turkish Cypriot community, which is Mehmet Ali Talat not Mr. Eroglou.

The European Court of Justice ruled April 28th, that a judgment of a Court in the Republic of Cyprus must be recognized and enforced by the other EU member states even if it concerns land situated in the Turkish occupied areas of Cyprus.

The Court’s ruling refers to the Apostolides vs. Orams case and came after a dispute has arisen before the Court of Appeal of England and Wales, which has requested a preliminary ruling from the Court of Justice, between Greek Cypriot refugee Meletis Apostolides, and British couple David and Linda Orams, in relation to the recognition and enforcement of a judgment of the District Court of Nicosia.

The court in the government controlled southern areas of Cyprus had delivered a judgment ordering the Orams couple to vacate an area of land in the Turkish occupied north and to pay various monetary amounts.

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