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Denktash Under Pressure From Turkish Cypriots To Push For Peace

by Lorys Charalambous, Tax-News.com, Cyprus

19 December 2002


Recent reports have revealed that pressure is increasing for Turkish Cypriot leader, Rauf Denktash to reach an agreement with his Greek Cypriot counterpart over an UN-sponsored plan to re-unify the Island by the end of February 2003, following the announcement that the Greek Cypriot side will accede to the EU alone if necessary.

Following a demonstration in which some 8,000 Turkish Cypriots expressed their displeasure at Mr Denktash's obstinate stance, Turkey's Foreign Minister, Yasar Yakis told CNN on Sunday that: 'There will probably be an agreement,' an announcement viewed by many as a clear message to the Turkish Cypriot authorities.

Additionally, the UK's Guardian newspaper on Monday revealed that polls conducted over the weekend showed that two out of three Turkish Cypriots questioned disagreed strongly with the negative posture adopted by Mr Denktash since the UN-supported talks began.

Although United Nations secretary general, Kofi Annan has given both sides until February 28 to agree to the plan - now on its second draft - Mr Denktash appears to be sticking to his guns, and announced at the weekend that the situation would 'have to remain unresolved until Turkey joins the EU.'


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