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15.10.

1999 EN Official Journal of the European Communities C 297/137

(1999/C 297/188) WRITTEN QUESTION P-0025/99


by Mihail Papayannakis (GUE/NG) to the Council

(15 January 1999)

Subject: Accession of Cyprus to EU

On 31 December 1998, the authoritative news bulletin Agence Europe reported that at a congress on
Germany and the EU organised by TEPSA (Trans-European Policy) ahead of the German Presidency of the EU,
the Director of the Rome Institute of Foreign Affairs proposed that Cyprus should be asked to seek a form of
federation in exchange for membership and Turkey be told that it could enter the group of 11 applicants
provided it satisfied the Copenhagen criteria. If this strategy were not adopted, the EU would have to reject the
accession of Cyprus and seek a different form of relationship with Turkey on the basis of clearly defined
common interests. As the report presents the situation, the ‘proposals’ would entail an exchange of ‘offers’
from the EU to Cyprus and Turkey, though the acceptance of the offers would depend on the will of Turkey.
However, whatever form of federation Cyprus might offer has already been officially rejected by the Turkish
side and the possibility of Turkey joining the 11 other applicant countries has also been rejected because of the
linkage with acceptance of the Copenhagen criteria. In other words, the proposal is undermined from the
outset. However, as it was put forward at a congress with a view to the German Presidency by a reputable
organisation which frequently advises the Community institutions, will the EU Presidency say what view it
takes of the proposals concerned, which are completely contrary to the position adopted by the EU-Cyprus
Joint Parliamentary Committee, which expressly decided that the accession of Cyprus to the EU is in no way
connected with the search for a political settlement in Cyprus?

Reply

(26 April 1999)

It is normal that a subject such as the future enlargement of the European Union should give rise to a wide-
ranging public debate. However, it is not for the Council to comment on the proceedings of a seminar or on
information appearing in the press.

The position of the European Union on the accession of Cyprus has already been set out on several occasions
by the Council, most recently at its meeting on 5 October 1998. The Council’s conclusions have been
published.

(1999/C 297/189) WRITTEN QUESTION E-0028/99


by Mihail Papayannakis (GUE/NG) to the Commission

(20 January 1999)

Subject: Aitoliko Lagoon

The last few months have seen thousands of fish washed up on the shores of the Aitoliko Lagoon. The fish are
killed by a lack of oxygen and the presence of hydrogen sulphide in the Lagoon; this also poses a threat to the
health of local residents who regularly suffer from respiratory problems owing to the foul smell hanging over
the region.

Some of the factors which have reduced the local ecosystem to its present state are as follows:

< the embankments constructed around the Lagoon which prevent the circulation of the currents so that the
water is not renewed and stagnates;

< the fact that the water is full of organic matter which has led to the eutrophication of aquatic plants, the
creation of organic deposits, the breakdown of microorganisms and the production of hydrogen sulphide
which has accumulated in the lower levels of the Lagoon at a depth of some 10 to 30 metres;

< public works intended to assist the agricultural sector by the drainage of land and the establishment of
arable areas in shallow points of the Lagoon; and

< the fact that the biological purification plant has failed to function which means that all effluent from
sewage pipes finds its way into the Lagoon.