NEWS

UN vote on Cyprus welcomed

Nicosia and Athens yesterday welcomed the UN Security Council resolution on Monday which expressed support for Secretary-General Kofi Annan’s reunification plan for Cyprus and blamed Turkish-Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash for the failure of negotiations in February. «For us, the resolution was especially satisfying because it reconfirms the process of solving the political problem in the UN framework, reconfirms the role and good services of the secretary-general and supports the Annan plan as the sole basis for further negotiation,» said Foreign Ministry spokesman Panayiotis Beglitis. He said that after Cyprus signs the EU Accession Treaty today, Annan’s efforts to end the island’s division will continue if the Turkish Cypriots show the political will to do so. Denktash yesterday said that he wanted «important changes» made to the plan. The EU’s commissioner for enlargement, Guenter Verheugen, said at a meeting of the EU’s 15 foreign ministers with Turkish Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul that Cyprus’s accession would not hinder the effort to solve the island’s problem.