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Media Watch 2003

13 May 2003
Source: Cyprus Mail
Author:
Comment: The following article appeared in the Cyprus Mail of Nicosia on 13 May 2003 written by a staff reporter.
Cyprus urges Turkey to lift embargo


COMMUNICATIONS AND Works Minister, Kikis Kazamias, yesterday pressed on with a government demand that Turkey lift the embargo it illegally imposed in 1974 on Cypriot-registered transport means.

The minister will put forward this demand when he attends an informal meeting of European Union Transport ministers in Athens later this week.

''When we join the EU in May 2004, Turkey will essentially bar some 25 per cent of the European fleet, if it continues to bar Cyprus-registered vessels from its ports,'' the minister said.

Commenting on recent statements by Turkey’s Prime Minister, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Kazamias was quoted by Cyprus News Agency as saying it is not the Republic of Cyprus which is prohibiting the transport of goods to the occupied areas, but the EU whose decisions clearly state that transactions with illegal ports and airports are prohibited.

According to an official statement, Kazamias said with Cyprus’ accession to the EU, Turkey will basically prohibit 25 per cent of the European fleet being served at Turkish ports, a measure which not only affects Cyprus but also European citizen’s interests who have chosen to register their ships in Cyprus.

Regarding the opening of the air corridors, also closed in 1974 by Turkey, Kazamias said the issue had already been raised with Ankara, noting that the initial response was not negative.

(CNA)."