Cyprus ire at UK pact with Turkey

Athens and Nicosia yesterday complained to London about a cooperation pact signed by the British and Turkish prime ministers which refers to the Turkish-occupied north of Cyprus as the «Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus.» Cypriot Foreign Minister Erato Marcoullis complained to Britain’s High Commissioner to Cyprus Peter Millet. Millet said the document – which foresees closer economic cooperation between Britain and the Turkish-occupied north of Cyprus – «contained nothing new.» «Britain’s policy of non-recognition… remains unchanged,» he said. But Nicosia spokesman Vassilis Palmas said the document «is imbued by the logic of consolidating the division of Cyprus.» «Britain appears to go along with Turkey’s policy on the Cyprus problem,» Palmas added. Greek Foreign Minister Dora Bakoyannis called for «clarifications and corrections.» «On such a significant issue, clarified so precisely by international law… there is no room for oversights and misconceptions, particularly from such an experienced and professional ministry,» she said. The agreement, signed by Gordon Brown and Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Tuesday, foresees financial support for the Turkish Cypriots and the development of trade ties between Britain and the occupied north of Cyprus. Erdogan is to meet with Greek Premier Costas Karamanlis in Thrace in mid-November to inaugurate a Greek-Turkish natural gas pipeline.

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