NEWS

Direct EU trade with N. Cyprus?

The European Commission will propose reopening Turkish-Cypriot ports, closed to international trade for 30 years, when it unveils plans next week to end the isolation of the Turkish-occupied north, a Commission official said. The official told Reuters that Commission proposals to boost the north’s economic development would be issued next Wednesday. These will include a package of measures on how to disburse 259 million euros for economic development in the north and measures to allow direct trade between northern Cyprus and the European Union, including the reopening of Turkish-Cypriot ports. [Meanwhile, the Turkish Cypriots’ top foreign policy official, Serdar Denktash, said Nicosia should be given a year’s deadline to accept the UN peace plan for Cyprus – which the Greek Cypriots overwhelmingly rejected in an April 24 referendum – and if that elapses, the international community should recognize the breakaway north as a legitimate state. «We cannot wait forever for the Greek Cypriots to agree to the plan,» Denktash said in an interview broadcast yesterday.]