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    Turk Cypriots say Greeks' isolation efforts continue

    Hurriyet English with wires
    14.05.2008 - 10:35 | Son Güncelleme:

    A Turkish Cypriot spokesman said on Tuesday the Greek Cypriot party changed its leader, however, there had been no change with its efforts to isolate Turkish Cypriots, the Anatolian Agency reported.

    "Although Greek Cypriots have selected a new leader, they continue to politically, economically and socially isolate Turkish Cypriots," Hasan Ercakica, Turkish Cypriot leader Mehmet Ali Talat's spokesman said during his weekly press briefing.

    Ercakica said there was a platform available for the improvement of the relations between Turkish Cypriots and the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC), commenting on the Secretary General of the OIC Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu's recent visit to the island.

    He said certain opportunities were currently offered to Turkish Cypriots, adding concrete projects could be developed if his country could evaluate these chances.

    He also said there were positive developments regarding the activities conducted by the working groups and technical committees that were formed after the meeting held by Talat and Greek Cypriot leader Demetris Christofias on March 21.

    Ercakica said the Cyprus issue should not be deadlocked anymore, stating the Turkish Cypriots' goal was to reach a settlement in 2008.



    Turkish Cypriot Prime Minister Ferdi Sabit Soyer said on Tuesday the March 21 agreement between the Cypriot leaders gave hope to the Turkish side.

    Soyer said at a banquet in Larnaca hosted by a Greek Cypriot businessman, he strongly desired the resumption of talks between the leaders in June.

    He said peace and settlement in Cyprus should be common values on the island.

    "No matter which language they speak, either Turkish or Greek, peoples in Cyprus should march for a solution and the future," he told the banquet, which was attended by politicians and businesspeople from the two sides of the island.

    He added, Cyprus was the "common country" for Turkish and Greek Cypriot peoples and reiterated a solution based on U.N. parameters.

    Talat and Christofias decided to meet on May 23 to review progress in the preparations for the peace negotiations during their meeting at a cocktail party on Wednesday held to mark the new efforts to find a solution to the conflict which has divided the island for 34 years.

    Turkish and Greek Cypriot leaders also met in March to revive the reunification talks, which have been stalled since 2004, and agreed to start formal negotiations in July. Since then technical committees have been holding preparatory talks

    Photo: AA

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