Greece and Cyprus ‘are in accord’

Athens and Nicosia are in «complete coordination» as regards the best approach for relaunching talks aimed at reunifying Cyprus, Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis said yesterday following talks with visiting Cypriot President Tassos Papadopoulos. Karamanlis described the meeting as a «positive step in the right direction» for a fresh United Nations-backed initiative but stressed that such an effort should be «carefully prepared… without stifling deadlines.» «We do not have the luxury of another failure,» he said, echoing Foreign Minister Dora Bakoyannis. Karamanlis also praised Cyprus for «demonstrating once again that it is committed to finding a just and viable solution» to the divided island’s problems. The two leaders also discussed Turkey’s obligations toward the European Union, which it hopes to join. Questioned by reporters about US intentions to boost trade links with Turkish-occupied northern Cyprus, Papadopoulos criticized the USA «for believing that they can reunify Cyprus by adopting direct trade with the Turkish Cypriots.»