• Congressmen call for US financial assistance to facilitate the reunification of Cyprus

    Sixteen members of the US Congress support the position that “the U.S. should facilitate a successful reunification of Cyprus through assistance to Cyprus.”

    In a letter dated March 16, the members of Congress call on the House Appropriations Committee Chairman Hal Rogers and Ranking Member Nita Lowey to “include language stating the United States’ position that assistance appropriated for Cyprus should support measures aimed at solidifying the reunification of Cyprus and the unified government in Cyprus” in the State, Foreign Operations and Related Programs Appropriations bill for the fiscal year 2019.

    “It is important for the United States to continue to play an active role in ensuring that Cyprus – a strategic partner of the United States – and the new federal structure that would arise out of a settlement will be able to cope with any political and fina … (More)

  • Greek Cypriot side’s delegation leaves for Mont Pelerin

    The delegation of the Greek Cypriot side that will be part of the working group at the level of deputies which will begin holding meetings as of January 18, in Mont Pelerin, with the task to identify specific questions with regard to the issue of security and guarantees, and the instruments needed to address them leaves on Tuesday for Switzerland.

    CNA has learned that the delegation comprises negotiator of the Greek Cypriot side Andreas Mavroyiannis, member of the negotiating team Toumazos Tselepis, Lt. Colonel, and Military Representative of Cyprus to the EU Military Committee Neophytos Pachoulides, academic Aris Constantinides, diplomat Pantelis Pantelides and two diplomats who work at the negotiator`s office.

    According to CNA information, members of the delegation attended on Tuesday morning a meeting under Cyprus President Nicos Anastasiades.

    Participants in the Conference on Cyprus held on January 12, in Geneva, decided to establish a working group at the level of deputies, with the task to identify specific questions and the instruments needed to address them, a statement issued from the Conference on Cyprus said.

    According to the statement issued, the group will commence its work on 18 January and the Conference will continue at political level immediately thereafter to review the outcome of the working group’s discussions. In parallel, the negotiations on outstanding issues in the other chapters will continue between the two sides in Cyprus.

    Cyprus has been divided since 1974, when Turkish troops invaded and occupied 37% of its territory. Anastasiades and Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci have been engaged in UN-led talks since May 2015 with a view to reunite the island under a federal roof.

    CNA/MK/GCH 2017
    ENDS, CYPRUS NEWS AGENCY

  • Negotiators to discuss agenda of Tuesday’s meeting between Anastasides-Akinci

    The negotiators of the two communities of Cyprus will meet today to prepare the ground for the leaders` meeting on Tuesday in the framework of the ongoing Cyprus talks aiming at reaching a solution that would reunify the island under a federal political system.

    CNA has learnt that Greek Cypriot negotiator Andreas Mavroyiannis and Turkish Cypriot negotiator Ozdil Nami will hold a meeting today to discuss and decide on the agenda of the meeting that will take place on Tuesday between President of Cyprus Nicos Anastasiades and Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci.

    The leaders` meeting will be the first after the dinner they attended on December 1st during which it was decided that the UN-backed peace talks for the reunification of the island will be resumed immediately after the Mont Pelerin collapse and that a multilateral conference will take place on January 12th in Geneva.

    Meawhile, last week, President Anastasiades said that the critical juncture we are in the negotiation process for a solution of the Cyprus problem, requires bold political decisions.

    “As you all know, we are at a critical juncture in the negotiation process for the solution of the Cyprus problem, which requires bold political decisions. A solution, which, as we have so many times repeated, needs to take into account the legitimate sensitivities and concerns of both communities of Cyprus, leaving neither winners nor losers,” he said.

    The President reiterated that he remains committed and determined to reach a comprehensive and viable settlement to the Cyprus problem.

    Cyprus has been divided since 1974, when Turkish troops invaded and occupied 37% of its territory. President Anastasiades and Turkish Cypriot leader Akinci have been engaged in UN-led talks since May 2015, with a view to reunite the island under a federal roof.

    The two leaders decided that they will meet in Geneva on the 9th of January 2017, on the 11th of January they will present their respective maps and that from the 12th of January, a Conference on Cyprus will be convened with the added participation of the guarantor powers, while other relevant parties shall be invited as needed.

    CNA/AAR/GV/2016

    ENDS, CYPRUS NEWS AGENCY

  • Cyprus to host tourism conferences

    Cyprus will host two very important tourism conferences which are set to attract over 1,000 participants from the UK.
    The conferences will take place in November and December in the coastal city of Paphos.

    Tour operator “Thomas Cook“ and airlines “Jet 1” and “Jet 2 Holidays” will hold their conferences and workshops in Paphos and will be briefed about the island`s tourism product and its main attractions.

    CTO Officer Marina Mylona told CNA that “Thomas Cook” is considered the second largest of its kind in the UK.
    Some 660 delegates will arrive in Paphos for the conference, among them travel agents and other senior executives from the tourism industry. The participants will visit the port of Paphos and will attend formal dinners.

    Mylona also said that a number of 250 participants are expected to attend from “Jet 1” and “Jet 2 Holidays” who will also take part in workshops and seminars about Cyprus as a tourist destination.

    Paphos is the European Capital of Culture for 2017.

    CNA/AAG/KCH/GV/2016
    ENDS, CYPRUS NEWS AGENCY

  • CNA and Cyprus Institute sign MoC to promote research and innovation

    The Cyprus News Agency (CNA) and the Cyprus Institute (CyI) signed on Wednesday a Memorandum of Cooperation (MoC) which aims to promote research, innovation and technology.

    The MoC was signed by the Chairman of the CNA Board Larcos Larcou and President of CyI Professor Costas Papanicolas, in the presence of CNA Acting Director/Editor in Chief George Penintaex and members of the Institute.

    In statements after the signing ceremony, Larcou said that through this cooperation, CNA will contribute to the promotion of the innovative work being done in the Institute so that its role becomes increasingly known in the Cypriot public but also beyond, since CNA has a network of activities in the EU, the Balkans and the Middle East.

    “Our cooperation relates to an important field. It aims to highlight issues in the area of technology, innovation, innovative thinking, in a country which needs to do more in these areas. The Institute is a pioneer in this area and CNA wants to promote this pioneering thinking and creation”, he added.

    Professor Papanicolas praised the important role of CNA in providing accurate information in Cyprus and the wider region and said that the CyI is looking forward to this cooperation.

    “We hope that through this cooperation, we will have an important tool in achieving our common goals to the benefit of Cyprus and the wider region”, he said.

    He pointed out that the cooperation will promote the work being done in the Institute, the Cypriot science and innovation, as well as the regional cooperation.

    The CyI comprises three specialized multidisciplinary research centers, developed in partnership with leading international institutions in their respective thematic areas: Energy, Environment and Water Research Center (EEWRC), partnered with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT),Science and Technology in Archaeology Research Center (STARC) partnered with the Centre de recherche et de restauration des musées de France (C2RMF) and Computation-based Science and Technology Research Center (CaSToRC) partnered with the University of Illinois.

    Multi-level founding partnerships with internationally prominent institutions ensure the development of the Centers in close collaboration with world leaders in their respective fields. Additional collaborations with other research and academic institutions together with local authorities further enhance the development.

    Having launched its first research center in late 2007, with only a few years in operation, the CyI has demonstrated its keen ability to successfully conduct scientific research and to attract scientists of international repute. It is now pursuing a large number of research projects, many of them funded by the European Commission, including an ERC Advanced Grant.

    CNA/AAR/MM/2016
    ENDS, CYPRUS NEWS AGENCY

  • Syrian refugees rescued off Cyprus’ north-west coast

    Eighty three Syrian refugees, among which 37 children, drifting in an ungoverned boat were towed into Latsi harbour, at the western-north coast of Cyprus, by the Republic`s marine police, early on Friday.

    The boat believed to have come from Mersin, Turkey, was located off the coast of Kato Pyrgos on Thursday evening and according to information was left powerless after engine failure . It was towed to Latsi and by 7.30 am the occupants disembarked. Some of the refugees have been transferred to Polis Chrysochous police station for identification, while some children and their families were taken to Polis Chrysochous hospital for first aid. Among them is a pregnant woman.

    Paphos Police Spokesperson Michalis Ioannou told CNA that all competent authorities provide every possible assistance to the refugees and that police are making investigations to find out who was the trafficker and who was steering the boat

    In statements to CNA community council leader of Kato Pyrgos Costas Michaelides recalled that this is the fourth time in a period of three months that boats with migrants arrived to Cyprus and said that both the Police and the community council must be vigilant as more migrants are expected.

    Civil Defence Spokesperson Olivia Michaelidou said that the refugees can be accommodated at Kokkinotrimithia reception centre and that members of the department have already provided them with food, weather, blankets, shoes and clothing.

    CNA/KP/MAN/MK/GCH 2016
    ENDS, CYPRUS NEWS AGENCY

  • CNA launches a new website

    Cyprus News Agency on Thursday presented its new Website which will be available in two weeks from today.

    The new website, in three languages, Greek, English and Turkish was presented by Niki Georgiou, the E-Business Consultant of NETInfo Services Ltd, which developed it.

    Party representatives, the Commissioner for Volunteerism, a representative from the Greek Embassy, the Press Attache of the Office of the EP in Cyprus, journalists, associates and representatives from advertising agencies were present at a small event that took place at CNA`s offices.

    The new Website has a more attractive layout, a better access to various news categories, better usability and easier navigation for non-subscribers.

    Although CNA`s main mission is to produce news, the fresh Website is aimed at advertising agencies and companies who wish to advertise their products and services.

    Board Chairman Larkos Larkou said that ”we live in a changing environment and therefore we must constantly change if we do not want to stay behind”. He pointed out that the agency must keep its dominant position in the production of news, with accuracy and credibility and with the aim to reach a wider public.

    He referred to the ongoing training of CNA`s staff, the dedication to reliability and accuracy and the continuous efforts for improvement.

    He said that very soon CNA will implement an integrated news management system, that together with the new Website will classify the agency in high positions in news production in Europe.

    Larkou also referred to the use of social media saying that the agency attaches great importance to this end, because the social media are one of the best tools to reach the public.

    CNA, he said, has launched cooperation with Cyprus Broadcasting Corporation and other organisations and serves a role as media sponsor in various events. Larkou also referred to the production of news video with the use of drones.

    Niki Georgiou from NETInfo Services Ltd said that the Website has new features and offers new possibilities to its subscribers and the general public by being more efficient and easy to navigate.

    CNA/KCH/TNE/2016
    ENDS, CYPRUS NEWS AGENCY

  • UN: The two sides in Cyprus will decide when and how to address issues such as the time zone

    The two sides in Cyprus will decide when and how to address such issues as the time zone, UN Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus (UNFICYP) spokesman Aleem Siddique has told CNA, following a decision taken in Cyprus` Turkish occupied areas to implement the Turkish government`s decision to stick to summer time all year round and abolish winter time.

    “The UN remains focused on facilitating the sides with their efforts to reach a comprehensive settlement as soon as possible. The two sides will decide when and how to address such issues,” Siddique told CNA today, invited to comment on the decision taken on Thursday by the illegal council of ministers.

    Cyprus, in line with all EU countries, will revert to winter time at the end of October.

    UN-led negotiations between Cyprus President Nicos Anastasiades and Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci began in May last year with a view to reunite the island under a federal roof. Cyprus has been divided since 1974, when Turkish troops invaded and occupied 37% of its territory.

    CNA/MK/MM/2016
    ENDS, CYPRUS NEWS AGENCY

  • There is now a “massive opportunity” for a Cyprus settlement, UK Minister tells CNA

    The British Minister for Europe Sir Alan Duncan believes that the “homegrown” peace process in Cyprus is a good thing and advocates less interference from outside in the ongoing effort to find a negotiated settlement that would reunite the country, divided since the 1974 Turkish invasion.

    In an interview with CNA, Sir Alan talked about “a massive opportunity” for a political settlement in Cyprus which he hopes can be taken and endorsed by the people, warning at the same time that if it is not, the generations to come could be affected.

    He indicated that, should the leaders of the island`s two communities reach an agreement, this would increase the status in which Cyprus is regarded across the world.

    On Brexit, he said the UK is taking time to try and work out exactly how to go about it, adding that all options are open.

    Asked to assess the state of play in the Cyprus peace talks, he said there is “a strong feeling everywhere we went that the discussions are more developed and are in a more hopeful state than we have seen before,” adding that everybody would like to see this reach a successful conclusion for the long interests of Cyprus and for prosperity for future generations.

    “Let us hope the negotiations can be brought to a successful conclusion. Indeed the purpose of my visit here is to come here as a guarantor country to say we want this to work and we hope that it will,” he told CNA.

    Invited to qualify his assertion that there is “very good and encouraging progress”, he refrained from elaborating further, saying that “the exact details are for the two sides, it is not for us to get involved in the detail, instruct or direct.”

    “A lot of the ingredients are at a very good advanced stage, there are always loose ends which still need some more work but I think there is quite clearly good faith on both sides and a very strong wish to reach a conclusion,” he added.

    He also talked about “good trust between the two sides”, which he believes is “a very very important element in the path for a successful outcome.”

    The UK, he noted, “is here to encourage and say we hope you will see it through to the finishing line.”

    Asked to explain his comments about “exercising constructive influence behind the process”, Sir Alan indicated that the UK might exercise this influence through contact with “someone” and expressed hope that the negotiators will be given “constructive encouragement”.

    “In any kind of discussion like this, there are always diplomatic discussions one can have; may be we can help talk to someone on the phone and say please accept, this is a good idea, or not a good idea. I think just knowing that the UN, the EU and Britain all want this to happen, I hope we will give the constructive encouragement to the negotiators and the two sides to help bring them together to a successful agreement,” he explained.

    More specifically, on practical experience the UK could provide to help move the settlement process forward, he endorsed the “homegrown process which comes from within Cyprus,” pointing out that “probably the less outside interference the better.”

    Noting that the UK has been involved in many negotiations over the years, he said it was so good that what is happening is happening naturally from within the country and “they are doing it themselves and probably the less outside interference, the better.”

    “The fact that this is a home grown process which is coming from within and which eventually must secure the endorsement of the two communities, in the north and south of the island, is what needs to happen. I think because it is happening from within, it is all the more encouraging,” he added.

    Replying to questions, Sir Alan said the proposal London made in 2004 to relinquish part of the territory of its military bases in Cyprus remains in place.

    “The offer stands as a valid offer and we hope in as much as it can prove helpful that it will do so and if it helps piece things together and be a little piece in the jigsaw to make things happen that would be very good news,” he said.

    Asked if he had any feedback from the two community leaders on this, he said he had not discussed it in specific detail, noting that there are all sorts of chapter headings and discussions that they are going through.

    “The feeling I get is that we are on the verge of a massive opportunity for Cyprus, an opportunity which I hope can be taken and will be endorsed by people in a referendum and I would say, if it is not taken, it could affect people for generations to come,” he stressed.

    Leadership, courage, vision is about taking an opportunity, sometimes accepting compromises in order to do it, he added,

    On bilateral ties and ways to enhance them, he referred to “very deep” ties and “a relationship which is in a fantastically good shape.”

    “I think, even though we are leaving the EU, the bilateral relationship will not only continue but it can get deeper and that is what we are going to try to do as we leave the EU with a number of countries,” he said.

    Invited to identify areas in which these ties can improve further, he had this to say: “the only area is in seeing this process forward to a successful conclusion, because I think it would increase, if you like, the status in which Cyprus is regarded across the world and if they have shown the courage and the good sense to put together a reunification agreement along the lines that are being discussed, it opens up a whole new future for Cyprus which will be entirely for the good.”

    On Turkey`s EU accession course, given the recent developments in that country, he acknolwedged that it would be “impertinent” for the UK to interfere in that, saying that “any decision to admit Turkey into the EU is a matter between the EU and Turkey.”

    Reiterating Britain`s condemnation of the coup against Turkish President Erdogan, he said London will try to “build bilateral ties more strongly in a way that I hope will also assist the discussions taking place here in Cyprus and that is my priority as the Minister for Europe.”

    Invited to outline the “best possible agreement for Britain” as the UK negotiates its exit from the EU, he said the UK is leaving the EU, not Europe, and intends to remain “an outward looking trading global government” which wants to be able to continue to trade just as the UK’s current European partners will continue to trade.

    “In the meantime we are discussing trade deals, how we will try keep tariffs to a minimum but it is too early to say what exactly this would look like,”, he said, pointing out that “all options are open and we are taking time to try and work out exactly how we go about this.”

    CNA MM/KCH/2016
    ENDS, CYPRUS NEWS AGENCY

  • Cyprus shooting shows signs of recovery, President of Cyprus Shooting Sport Federation stresses in an interview with CNA

    The Cypriot shooting shows signs of recovery after a short period of recession that has been through the last couple of years, affected by the economic crisis, Demetris Lordos, President of the Cyprus Shooting Sport Federation has said in an interview with Cyprus News Agency.

    Lordos pointed out that a tangible evidence of this recovery constitute the three gold and one silver medal Cyprus secured in the European Championship Shotgun, held on 4-12 July, 2016, in Lonato, Italy.

    In his interview with CNA, Lordos referred to the forthcoming Olympic Games in Rio, the latest international achievements of the Cypriot shooters, the shooting events and games that will take place in Cyprus, as well as the priorities and challenges of the Cyprus Shooting Sport Federation.

    Asked about the goals of the Federation on the Olympic Games, Lordos said that the main goal is a place in the finals for the two athletes, Andreas Hasikos and Andri Eleftheriou, and if they do so, why not a medal. If they get in the finals it is a matter of being in a good condition that day and everything could happen as regards the claiming of one of the three medals, he stressed.

    He expressed his optimism about the two athletes, noting that they have the potentials for something really good. As he said, Hasikos and Eleftheriou are already in Brazil and are practising there with their coach.

    Replying to a question, Lordos admitted that the sport has been through a crisis as a result of the broader economic crisis in Cyprus. As he pointed out, many of the athletes could afford the participation in the local championships and this affected the results of the Cypriot shooters abroad.

    However, as he stressed replying to a question, the results of the European Championship Shotgun, held recently in Italy, were in one sense unexpected due to that crisis and proved that the sport is recovering again. Cyprus secured three gold medals and one silver in that Championship. The two cold medals were secured in the divisions of Men Junior and Women teams, leaving behind teams like Russia, Germany and Italy.

    The results of this Championship for our country constitute one of the greatest success of the Cyprus sports in the history of the Republic of Cyprus since we have never won three gold medals in one single European championship in any sport.

    Lordos also referred to the Cyprus National Team in Sporting that secured the 5th place in the World Championship in Sporting that held in Perugia, Italy earlier this month, stressing that this is also a great achievement for Cyprus shooting.

    CNA/TKE/GCH 2016
    ENDS, CYPRUS NEWS AGENCY

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