EMBASSY OF CYPRUS NEWSLETTER, WASHINGTON DC
December 31, 1995
Embassy of Cyprus
DEMILITARIZATION TIMETABLE NEEDED
The Cyprus government has called for developing a
timetable for the complete demilitarization of Cyprus, as
a means of ending the Turkish military buildup in the
occupied areas which is endangering peace in the region.
"The government is ready to respond to the U.N. Security
Council call for a reduction in defense spending in
parallel with the withdrawal of the Turkish occupation
forces," Cyprus government spokesman Yiannakis
Cassoulides said on December 20, "provided a timetable
for the final demilitarization of the island is
Defense Against Turkish Military Occupation
By posing a threat to the security of the people of
Cyprus, the Turkish military buildup in occupied Cyprus
forces the government to increase its defense
"Significant Increase" in Turkish Military Forces
The Security Council resolution followed the December
10 report by Ghali on U.N. operations on Cyprus. As he
had in his previous report on UNFICYP in June, Ghali
expressed "serious concern at the excessive levels of
military forces and armaments in Cyprus and at the rate
at which these are being strengthened."
Sale of Missiles to Turkey Criticized
In light of the tensions in the region resulting from Turkey's military threat, members of the U.S. Congress, human rights groups, and the Cyprus government have reacted strongly to the proposed sale by the U.S. of 120 Army Tactical Missile Systems (ATACMS)--with a 100-mile range--to Turkey. Thirty-five members of the U.S. House of Representatives urged President Clinton to reconsider the sale and on December 21 Congressmen Michael Bilirakis (R-FL), Robert Torricelli (D-NJ), and Frank Pallone (D-NJ) co-sponsored a resolution to suspend the sale until Turkey "improves its human rights record . . . and progress is made to resolve the conflict on Cyprus." "The Turkish government in 1974 used NATO military equipment when it invaded the island of Cyprus," U.S. Senator Larry Pressler (R-SD) said on December 20, adding that the occupation continues more than two decades later. Pressler, along with Senator Alfonse D'Amato (R-NY), wrote Secretary of State Warren Christopher expressing their fear that the missiles might be deployed against Cyprus; several other Senators also criticized the missile sale. "The United States has a duty to ensure and guarantee that these deep-strike missiles will not be used against the Republic of Cyprus," Cyprus government spokesman Cassoulides said, while President Clerides emphasized that the missiles could attack Cyprus even if they were stationed in Turkey. In Washington, Cyprus Ambassador Andrew Jacovides delivered a formal government protest to the State Department and made other representations over the proposed missile sale.
EUROPEAN COUNCIL AFFIRMS CYPRUS ON ROAD TO E.U. ACCESSION
For Cyprus "the road for E.U. accession is open,"
Cyprus President Glafcos Clerides said at the conclusion
of the European Council summit in Madrid on December
Concrete Steps Needed to End Occupation
In a resolution also adopted on December 13, the European Parliament criticized Turkey's human rights record, as well as its occupation of Cyprus. The resolution "urges the Turkish Government to undertake concrete steps" to "bring the division of Cyprus to an end . . . by implementing the U.N. Security Council resolutions on this issue." Following its adoption, Cyprus Foreign Minister Alecos Michaelides said it was clear that if Turkey wants to strengthen its ties with Europe it "must understand that it cannot raid nor invade the territory of other countries, nor violate human rights."
Cyprus Adjusts to E.U. Economic Policies
Since July, 1995, a structured dialogue between the
E.U. and Cyprus--a series of pre-accession consultations
meant to ensure the harmonization of Cyprus' laws and
regulations with those of the Union--has been conducted.
To bring its economic regulations in line with those of
the E.U., the government is moving to further liberalize
Cyprus' financial markets. Beginning in 1996, the Central
Bank of Cyprus will start the twice-monthly auction of
treasury bills--the first major change in Cyprus
government monetary policy since independence.
Regulations are also expected to be adopted later in the
year to establish a comprehensive legal framework for the
Cyprus stock exchange.
SECURITY COUNCIL MEMBERS SEEK BREAKTHROUGH IN TALKS
In the hope that an important breakthrough can be
achieved soon, the permanent members of the U.N. Security
Council have heightened their involvement in the U.N.
effort on Cyprus.
U.N. CONFIRMS MASSIVE RIGHTS VIOLATIONS OF ENCLAVED CYPRIOTS
The Secretary-General's recent report also confirmed
that the human rights of the Greek Cypriot and Maronites
living in enclaves in the occupied areas are being
PRESIDENT CLERIDES SENDS NEW YEAR'S MESSAGE OF PEACE
In a New Year's message, Cyprus President Glafcos Clerides expressed the hope that "with the new year we will see the Cyprus problem solved, and Cyprus united in a federated state, one without foreign troops or settlers." Clerides said it was natural for the Cypriot people, during this time of the year, to remember "our occupied towns and villages, the enclaved, the missing, and all who suffered . . . as a consequence of Turkey's invasion and continuing occupation." Through these memories, he continued, the people of Cyprus must strengthen their resolve to overcome the consequences of the invasion, so all Cypriots--Greek, Turkish, Maronite, Armenian, and Latin--can live in peace, security and prosperity.
IN BRIEF . . .
Cyprus President Glafcos Clerides wrote U.N. Secretary-General Boutros Boutros-Ghali on December 11, the 47th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, that the day has special significance for the people of Cyprus, "whose human rights have for many years been massively and ruthlessly violated as a result of the Turkish invasion and continued occu-
pied." Clerides expressed hope "for a change in the Turkish attitude, which will result in the realization" of a settlement ensuring the fundamental human rights and freedoms of all Cypriots.
Cyprus Ambassador Andrew Jacovides explored the Cyprus problem in the context of the international rule of law in an article "Cyprus--The International Law Dimension," published by the American University Journal of International Law and Policy, (Vol. 10, No. 4, Summer, 1995). Turkey's 1974 invasion and continuing occupation of Cyprus is a clear violation of the U.N. Charter as well as the U.N. Code of Crimes against the Peace and Security of Mankind, he wrote, and while the U.N. resolutions on Cyprus provide the framework for a solution. During a speech December 18 to the Hellenic Organization of the World Bank and International Monetary Fund, the Ambassador stressed that the Cyprus government welcomes any initiative to overcome the current deadlock in U.N. talks, which has been created by the Turkish side. Jacovides also pointed to the importance of Cyprus' accession to the European Union as a potential catalyst to an overall solution, and emphasized the country's great economic achievements since Turkey's 1974 invasion, particularly in serving as a shipping and regional business center.
The Department of Antiquities recently announced that this season's excavations at Kouklia-Palaipaphos and Amathus have been completed. At the Kouklia-Palaipaphos site, of late Bronze Age origin, this year's fieldwork was devoted to excavation of the Sanctuary of Aphrodite Paphia. At the lower city of Amathus, recent excavations uncovered Byzantine and Roman sherds and coins, and an amphora from the seventh century A.D.
The University of Minnesota's Modern Greek Studies Program has just published a double issue (Vol. 10/11) of its Modern Greek Studies Yearbook, half of which is devoted to material on Cyprus. The issue includes "Reflections on the Cyprus Problem," by Cyprus President Glafcos Clerides, and "Managing Ethnic Conflict in the New World Order: The Case of Cyprus," by former Cyprus President George Vassiliou. The Yearbook also includes articles on the demography, education, religion, history and archaeology of Cyprus.