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Inicio arrow newsitems arrow EUCommission 1stV.President Timmermans to Eurofora: EU Security/Defense policy can be used in Cyprus

EUCommission 1stV.President Timmermans to Eurofora: EU Security/Defense policy can be used in Cyprus

Escrito por ACM
04.07.17
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*Strasbourg/EU Parliament/Angelo Marcopolo/- Experienced 1st vice-President of EU Commission, Frans Timmermans, former Foreign Minister from the Netherlands, speaking to "Eurofora" Today in EU Parliament, said that EU can play a Role also in order to Help UnBlock the Security Issues which (in addition to Human Rights, Governance, etc), are a crucial Challenge in front of an eventual International Agreement for the Solution Cyprus' issue and the peaceful ReUnification of the island, currently Negotiated, under UN auspices, at Crans Montana (Switzerland).


Timmermans was Representing the EU, Together with High Representative for External Action Federica Mogerini, a former Foreign Minister of Italy, in the UN-sponsored Multilateral Top Political Conference on Cyprus, which resumed recently there, with the Participation of Top Political representatives from Cyprus, Greece, Turkey and the UK, etc., under the supervision of UN Security Council's members.

 - "Yes, I was in Switzerland for Cyprus, and I should go back there, but I don't know yet exactly when, Replied Timmermans in relevant "Eurofora"s Questions, Today Afternoon, i.e. shortly Before it was anounced, later this Evening, that the New UN Secretary General, Antonio Guterres, would also Return at Crans-Montana apparently on Thursday, July 6.
 
+ Questioned by "Eurofora" about his Feeling on how these UN Cyprus' Talks are evolving until now, Timmermans appeared quite Sober, pointing at UnCertainties to lift :

- "I don't know : One Day I am Optimistic", but "anOther Day I am Less !..", Replied EU Commission's 1st vice-President, apparently noting the notorious Turkish Govenment's insistance to Ask, in addition to Keeping several of its Troops which Occupy the Northern part of Cyprus since the 1974 Invasion, even a Claim for Unilateral Military Interventions also in the Future :


I.e. something which was already a main cause for a "Sine Die" Postponement of UNO's Cyprus Talks since back on January 2017, and reportedly Risks, even Today, to Block them again, since Cyprus, Greece, and Many EU and Other States consider Unacceptable and Dangerous to submit a UN + CoE + EU Member State under a Constant Threat to be Invaded anew, at any moment, by the Military of a Foreign Country like Turkey...

=> Therefore, at another "Eurofora" Question about EU's possible Contribution into Solving eventual Security/Defense Issues in EU Member Cyprus, after a possible ReUnification, Timmermans started by a Positive initial observation :


- "Well, there are Elements in Economy...", (something which includes, at least partly, also Greek Cypriot Refugees/Displaced persons' Family Homes and other Private Properties, that they are practicaly Hindered by Ankara's Military to Access, resulting in many Condemnations of Turkey by the ECHR for Violations of Human Rights), "...and in State-Building, that Contribute to Security", he Rightfuly Noted, referring, at first, to certain among EU's traditional competences.


 + - "However, as such, Security Issues are not so much matters for the EU. They are also matters for others" (i.e. UNO's Security Council, etc), Timmermans went on to add. This probably includes Cyprus' President Anastassiades' proposal for UN SC (acting according to its Competences under Chapter 7 of UNO's Charter) to ensure the Security/Defense of a ReUnified Island in the Future. But, if limited only to that, it might also Underestimate EU's own capacities to act, nowadays and in the foreseable Future...


   - "But, you are (also) comming from Brussels, where EU has just spoken even about Defense policy !  Don't you think that something about it could be used here ?", "Eurofora" reacted by asking Timmermans.  


- "Yes. I think that Some of it (i.e. EU's Security/Defense policy), will be there (i.e. on Cyprus)", EU Commission's vice-President concluded Positively in Reply to "Eurofora"s Question.


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The Latest EU Summit in Brussels notoriously Decided to Boost EU' Security and Defense policy, (Comp. f.ex. "Eurofora"s NewsReport from BRX: ...), while More is Expected in ths field also by the December 2017 EU Summit, i.e. After the conclusion of the Electoral period of this year in France and Germany.


+ In Addition, concerning EU's Franco-German+ core, by a Timely Coincidence, this Summer 2017, EUROCORPS' Army Headquarters, based in Strasbourg, and Created since 1992/1993 (i.e. during the Historic German Chancellor Helmut Kohl's era, together with Mitterand, then, and developed further afterwards also with Chirac, etc), is due to celebrate its 25th Anniversary, while Spain will hand over its Annual Chairmanship to Germany for the period of September 2017 - August 2018.


EUROCORPS' full Member Countries (France, Germany, Spain, Polland, Belgium and Luxembourg, to which are also Attached, via Liaison Officers f.ex. Italy and Greece, etc., Turkey having a partly similar link via NATO, etc), have already considered, in the Past, as theoreticaly Possible for this Unique European Army Corps to eventualy serve, under UN auspices, inter alia, also for Tasks such as f.ex. Peace-Keeping for the Implementation of an Agreement on Cyprus, (Comp., f.ex., relevant INTW to "Eurofora"s co-Founder, by EUROCORPS' Press Spokesman, published previously at "TCWeekly", etc).


Moreover, "Eurofora" witnessed personaly, last Saturday, on the occasion of a PanEuropean/International Top Political Gathering at EU Parliament for the Memorial Ceremony in honor of Historic German Chancellor Helmut Kohl (Comp. f.ex. : ...) that New US President Don Trump's Director of National Intelligence (DNI), Dan Coats, was present in Strasbourg, at the Same Time and Building with Germany's super-Minister of Interior, De Maizières, a Merkel-faithful and close ally (initialy Head of her Chancellorship's Administration), even if the venue of the latter here had Not been Scheduled.


Such exceptional Key Contacts could have been used, naturaly, also in view of the forthcoming G20 Summit in Hambourg (Northern Germany) Later this Week, but Cyprus' UN related issue's developments are the only ones which have had several UnExpected U-Turns...


German Chancellor Angie Merkel has just concluded a Keynote Speech, in EU Parliament in Strasbourg, by stressing that "Now, it's up to us, to uphold (the) Legacy" of Helmut Kohl, World-Famous Father of Germany's and Europe's ReUnification, as well as of EUROCORPS (Comp. Supra).
And Both Merkel (Germany) as well as New French President Macron, met and discussed also here, in Strasbourg, with Prime Minister Medvedev from Russia, a key UN Security Council Permanent Member, traditionaly experienced and keen on Cyprus' issue.


UNO's Security Council is currently Chaired by China, during this July 2017.


By another Timely "coincidence", China's President Xi Jiping, just after visiting Russia, is currently paying an official visit to Berlin, to meet German Chancellor Merkel at the Eve of the forthcoming "G20" Summit in Hambourg.


China will be succeeded by Egypt, in UN SC's rotating Presidency, Next Month, on August 2017, followed by neighbouring Ethopia on September, and 2 EU Member Countries : France and Italy, on October and November, respectively, concluding by Japan, on December 2017 : Most of these Countries being also Participants at the forthcoming "G20" Summit, Later this Week in Germany, where their Heads of State/Government will meet precisely at the Aftermath of UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres' reported Trip Back to Crans - Montana (Switzerland), on Thursday, 6 July, for the UN-sponsored Top Political Conference on Cyprus' issue, (i.e. just before flying, during the Next 2 Days for the "G20" Summit in Hambourg (Germany), on Friday-Saturday, July 7 + 8, 2017.


I.e., this time, UN - sponsored Multilateral Negotiations on Cyprus' issue, have been inserted in an exceptionaly Dense Top Diplomatic Agenda, from Last Week's EU Summit in Brussels (where it was Discussed on the Sidelines, including with several Bilateral Meetings), Followed by last Saturday's European Ceremony in Memory of Helmut Kohl in Strasbourg, (with the Participation of more than 190 Heads of State/Government, Key Ministers, MEPs, etc : Comp. ...), and Concluding by that forthcoming "G20" Summit, (Comp. Supra).


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Swedish Foreign Minister, Carl Bildt, speaking  to "EuroFora", denied rumors on Turkey's attempts to avoid an EU check of its obligations on Cyprus on December 2009 by blackmailing Nicosia to either accept any deal with intransigeant Turkish claims contrary to EU values on the island's political issue, or face threats against the territorial integriy of the EU island, semi-occupied by Ankara's army.

On the contrary, the incoming EU President-in-office, speaking exclusively to "EuroFora", promissed that he will act for EU Council's decisions on December 2009 assessment of Turkey's commitments on Cyprus to be kept.


    Bildt was asked to react to Cyprus' President Christofias' denunciation, earlier this week, that some want to exert "pressure" on Cyprus in order for Turkey to escape from its obligations.

    Avoiding to mention any precise Deadline, Bildt, however, warned about "Consequences" in case of "failure" to reunite Cyprus, but without saying whose responsibility an eventual deadlock might be.  

 Asked by "EuroFora" if there is a risk for "Turkey's commitments to "be forgotten or downgraded", "despite crystal-clear EU Council decisions and EU Parliament's latest Resolution on the assessment to make at the end of this year on Turkey's obligations", according to rumours that, instead of pressing Turkey, on the contrary, there might be "pressure on Cyprus", even "blackmail", as Media reported and President Christofias denounced this week, Bildt denied :

- "No ! ", he clearly replied.


- On the contrary, invited by "EuroFora", to "reassure that the Swedish EU Presidency (7-12/2009) will keep a fair stance, based on principles",  Bildt promised that "we (Swedish EU Presidency) will be very clear on all of the decisions taken by the (EU) Council".

He added, however, that "we have very numerous decisions that have been taken" by EU Council, as if he warned, also, on something else.

- "'I am not aware of any sort of statements coming out today''", Bildt started to say, on our reference to Cyprus' President Christofias" denunciation of Turkish lobby's manoeuvers this week, replying earlier to 'another"EuroFora"'s question during a Press Conference at EU Parliament in Strasbourg.


 - '"I know the issues that you' are concerned with'", he added, remembering  the statements he gave us when Sweden was chairing the PanEuropean CoE on 2008.

- "But, obviously, .. I think that Cyprus' Peace negotiations are extremenly important".

- And "'I think that we are at a unique moment in History, in the sens that both (Cyprus') President Christofias and Mr. Talat (the Turkish Cypriot leader), are personally convinced of the need to overcome the division".

 - "It's 20 Years since the fall of Berlin Wal, but we still have a Capital in Europe (Nicosia) that's divided". ,

- 'I don't that we should loose any time in overcoming that"..

 - ''We should be aware of the fact that success will bring great benefits, but failure, will also have major consequences. There will not be Status Quo' " It's a question of seeking a solution, or entering another situation, which is somewhat difficult to see exactly how that could evolve", he warned.

- "That being said, this is a negotiation for Cyprus itself", Bildt admitted.

 - ''We (EU) can support, the (EU) Commission primarily, be technically helpful, and then, of course, there is a specific role for the UN, when it comes to the Cyprus' situation".  

- "At least so far. It might not be for ever'. Certainly not for ever, but for this period of time", Bildt added, skiping now any reference to concrete threats on UNO's Peace keeping force in face of more than 40.000 Ankara's soldiers, contrary to some Press claims, (See previous NewsReports).


     Replying to another "EuroFora"'s Question,  if anyone might attempt to "impose a Deadline for the conclusion" of Cyprus' Talks on December 2009, Bildt avoided to speak of any precise Time-frame, and indirectly evoked the fact that  35 Years of Turkish Invasion/Occupation obviously durated too long :

'- "If I was from Cyprus, I would say that the Deadline was Yesterday ! '",
Bildt concluded.

Cyprus' Government Spokesman, Stephanou, reportedly pointed out that "a settlement is possible on December if Turkey changes its stance", accepting a solution for the reunification of the island based on UNO resolutiona and EU principles.

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Earlier, EU Chair, Swedish Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeld, highlighted an "historic opportunity" to "re-Unite" Cyprus according to EU's "basic Values"' (i.e. Human Rights) and 'Rules'", in a last-minute change of his draft speech to EU Parliament in Strasbourg.

    The initial Draft spoke only about "healing" the island.

    Significantly, Reinfeldt linked Cyprus' reunification with Turkey's obligations to respect EU's "Values" and "follow" EU's "common Rules" :

    - What is "called Membership Negotiations" should lead, "at- the end of the day", into "sharing a set of common Basic Values (i.e. Human Rights, Democracy, etc), and following common Rules", stressed Reinfeld from the outset.
    
    - "This is something that those on the Outside (of the EU), are now  contemplating", up "to Ankara", for "a solution" on "Cyprus", observed the EU Chairman, immediately afterwards..  

    - "Both sides of Cyprus have been granted a historic opportunity to together reach an agreement on a solution to re-Unite the island, that has been divided for far too long", said Reinfeldt, modifying his draft text.


-  "The Swedish Presidency will act ...in accordance with Commitments EU has made, on the basis of Criteria that apply", "as a Honest Broker", he promised.    

- "To those on the inside (of the EU), allowing the membership process to become an opportunity to solve protracted disputes, can be tempting", he added.


    "In such cases, we must find solutions that can benefit both sides, and open up a way forward. Otherwise, it would jeopardize the progress we have made towards EU integration", Reinfeldt said.

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