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CoE to contribute to Cyprus reconciliation
2003-01-07 09:34:25

Nicosia, Jan 7 (CNA) -- The Council of Europe (CoE) will support a solution of the Cyprus problem and contribute to the reconciliation of the island's two communities, CoE Secretary General Walter Schwimmer pledged here today, after a call on President Glafcos Clerides.

Schwimmer, who is paying an official visit to Cyprus from 5 to 9 January, told journalists after the Presidential Palace meeting, that he was ''impressed by President Clerides' personal commitment to a solution of this conflict''. |

''He informed me'', Schwimmer said, ''about his intensions why he wants to run again for presidency of a period of 16 months. I think that is a great success for President Clerides that Cyprus is accepted as a new member- country of the European Union and he wants to use that time until the final accession to the EU and to find a solution for the reunification of the island''.

Schwimmer described his meeting with President Clerides as ''a very constructive and a very positive'' one.

''He informed me about the current state for the solution of the Cyprus problem and his personal commitment to contribute to the solution of a very long lasting conflict'', Schwimmer said.

President Clerides and the CoE SG agreed, according to Schwimmer, that ''there is now a window of opportunity to find a solution, in particular also with a change of the mood of the Turkish Cypriot population and a new attitude of the Turkish government in Ankara''.

''I confirmed'', Schwimmer said, ''the CoE will support with whatever we can do for such a solution and we, in particular after an agreement has been found, contribute to the reconciliation of the two communities on the island''.

Cyprus has been divided since 1974 when Tukrish troops invaded and occupied 37 per cent of its territory.

CNA/ΜΑΝ/ΝΜΑ/GP/2003
ENDS, CYPRUS NEWS AGENCY

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