NEWS

Denktash remains undecided

Turkish-Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash yesterday continued to keep to himself whether he would accept UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan’s plan for Cyprus as the basis for talks on a comprehensive settlement. One day after Turkish Foreign Minister Yasar Yakis said that he and Denktash had similar views and that they did not «reject negotiation,» Denktash denied reports that he had accepted the plan. «We requested time from the secretary-general. Accepting or not accepting is something different from looking and confirming,» he said. Reports that he accepted it are wrong, he told Turkish-Cypriot television from New York, where he is recovering from heart surgery. Turkey says Annan’s plan is negotiable but, like Denktash, it has not replied officially. Greek Cypriots met Annan’s Nov. 18 deadline, saying they could negotiate on the basis of the plan. In Nicosia, President Glafcos Clerides got the backing of a refugee group, a day after another such organization had slammed the plan. In Athens, PM Costas Simitis called for national consensus at a meeting of his PASOK party’s Executive Bureau.