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Cyprus Internet Directory [ Pot shots begin fired all round ]

Pot shots begin fired all round

Author: 
Stefanos Evripidou

THE GOVERNMENT appeared to be fighting on two fronts yesterday, excluding criticism on the economy, with the leaders of DISY and EDEK taking pot shots over its handling of the Cyprus problem.

DISY leader Nicos Anastassiades yesterday all but confirmed reports that he and President Demetris Christofias came to verbal blows during Wednesday’s national council meeting. Noting that he did not leak the meeting’s contents, Anastassiades clarified that his criticism sprung from his concern with the government’s handling of the Cyprus issue.

According to reports, Christofias had told party representatives at the meeting that Cyprus would face great difficulties over the European Court of Human Rights’ latest decision on property cases and the move to reignite the direct trade issue in Brussels.

Anastassiades yesterday said his party had not changed position on a solution. “One cannot help but worry watching the negative developments unfold,” he said, referring specifically to the ECHR, the guardianship law on Turkish Cypriot properties, direct trade and elections in the north.

He called on Christofias to consult more with the parties before taking decisions, referring to “Soviet-era” tactics. He suggested a more “realistic” approach, hinting that the president’s proposals for the executive of a united Cyprus might not be accepted by the people.

The DISY leader accused Christofias of adopting a “because I want to” attitude in the talks, and then expecting DISY to support his policies. “This is not acceptable,” he said.

EDEK leader Yiannakis Omirou yesterday spoke of the urgent need for a change of strategy in the talks and the “withdrawal of unacceptable, undemocratic proposals” like rotating presidency and weighted voting.

Government spokesman Stefanos Stefanou responded to Anastassiades’ criticisms, arguing that the DISY leader had never mentioned his latest concerns regarding the executive before, not even in his letter on the executive sent to Christofias last October. He accused the DISY chief not only of a delayed reaction but also of mixing up the powers of the executive and the federal state, reminding Anastassiades what he had voted for in 2004.

In a further sign that the government has a bumpy ride ahead, top candidate for the Turkish Cypriot leadership, Dervis Eroglu was quoted in the Turkish press saying that the Greek Cypriots would probably get fed up of him saying no to their requests at the negotiating table, and walk out first.

“Because they have no intention nor need for understanding, but for the world to understand that, we must stay a little longer at the negotiating table,” Eroglu was quoted saying.



(Source: Cyprus Mail)
Copyright © Cyprus Mail 2008 Please contact Cyprus Mail for the copyright terms of this article.



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