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Conciliation
Last Updated: 02/19/2004
Uniting Aphrodite's Island

ROAD TO RECONCILIATION: CYPRUS 2004

February 19 2004 is a big day for the renewed talks on the reunification of the ethnic Greek and Turkish parts of the island of Cyprus. The talks are a last chance before May 1 when Cyprus will join the EU. Can the North and the South of the Island reach agreements before then? Most think so despite an eleventh hour bomb in Nicosia, the capital of the Aphrodite’s divided island


Talks Begin Again

 

Feb 19 http://www.ntv.com.tr/news/257793.asp

 

The TRNC delegation, led by President Rauf Denktas, will hold its initial meetings on the island with Greek Cypriot leader Tassos Papadopoulos Thursday morning. Under the United Nations sponsored talks, the leaders are to meet three times a week, with representatives from both sides holding technical talks daily.
       The first round of talks come only hours after a bomb attack against the home of TRNC Prime Minister Mehmet Ali Talat. No one was injured in the blast and Talat vowed that the act would not deflect him from his support to finding a solution to the Cyprus dispute.
       The two sides have until March 22 to broker an agreement for a unified state. After that date, it has been agreed that the guarantor powers Turkey and Greece will take a greater role in the talks. If no deal is reached by March 29, UN Secretary General Kofi Annan, the author of the plans to reunify the two states, is to be called in to resolve any lasting disagreements ahead of referendums to be held to approve reunification in April.

Feb 19 from Turkish Daily News

http://www.turkishdailynews.com/

Opposition gets tough on government's Cyprus issue

After delaying it for two weeks, the government informed Parliament about Cyprus on Tuesday. Faced by harsh criticisms from the opposition, the government had hard times in defending itself. Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul explained the delay, saying: "I have attempted to inform Parliament but then, considering that this could harm negotiations, and I must tell you that I had been warned on that, and after consultations with parties' parliamentary groups, I gave up on my plans." Gul said 2004 had a decisive importance on the Cyprus issue.

Separate referenda for each side will be last unpredictable hurdle for settlement

Feb 19 From Turkish Press Review

http://www.byegm.gov.tr/YAYINLARIMIZ/CHR/ING2004/02/04x02x19.HTM#%201

CYPRUS TALKS TO BEGIN TODAY

New negotiations on Cyprus are set to begin in the Cypriot buffer zone today. Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) President Rauf Denktas and Greek Cyprus President Tassos Papadopoulos, accompanied by their respective delegations, are scheduled to meet to discuss the island’s future, along with UN Cyprus Envoy Alvaro de Soto. In related news, UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan said yesterday that the new talks constituted a historic opportunity for a resolution on the island which neither side should pass up. "I ... appeal to the leaders to really seize the moment and really work in good faith, in a give-and-take spirit, to make it a win-win situation for everybody,'' Annan told reporters. "I hope the leaders will work with us to produce a plan and a document that is fair and balanced that the people can vote on.'' /Milliyet/

 

DENKTAS: “BOTH SIDES SHOULD PROVE THEIR GOOD WILL TO PRODUCE AN ACCEPTABLE CYPRUS PLAN”

Speaking to daily Cumhuriyet yesterday, Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) President Rauf Denktas said that both sides on the island should demonstrate their good will during the new negotiations in order to produce an acceptable UN Cyprus plan. “I said during last week’s meetings in New York that certain changes should be made to the plan,” he said, adding that if the two sides fail to reach an agreement, then Ankara and Athens would weigh in. Denktas added that the Turkish Cypriots would make their decision in a referendum scheduled for April 21. The new Cyprus talks are set to begin today. /Cumhuriyet/
 

DE SOTO: “I’M OPTIMISTIC A CYPRUS RESOLUTION CAN BE REACHED”

UN Cyprus Envoy Alvaro de Soto, who is currently on the island to participate in new negotiations, said yesterday that he was optimistic for a resolution on the island, as both sides were already “very close” to reaching one. “During the negotiating process, which could last a month, the UN plan can be improved on,” said de Soto, adding that the solving of the sovereignty problem last week in New York proved all parties’ political determination for a resolution. He further stated that he hoped this determination would continue during the talks which begin today. Asked about a referendum on the plan expected in April, de Soto said that no one could guarantee approval, but added: “I’m sure that the Turkish and Greek Cypriots will not miss this opportunity.” /Cumhuriyet/

 

See also http://www.monitor.upeace.org/archive.cfm?id_article=15


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