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26.1.

2001 EN Official Journal of the European Communities C 26 E/149

(2001/C 26 E/185) WRITTEN QUESTION E-1056/00
by Theresa Villiers (PPE-DE) to the Council

(6 April 2000)

Subject: Cyprus

Accession negotiations with Cyprus pose special challenges to the EU.

What is the total amount of finance which has been made available to date so as to aid Cypriot accession?
What commitments have been made as to future funding?

What, if any, funds have been made available for projects designed to foster reconciliation between the
two communities in Cyprus?

If such funds have been made available, can the Council give details of the nature and number of such
reconciliation projects?

UN Resolution 1283, adopted in 1999, states that links and contacts between the Greek and Turkish
Cypriot communities remain very limited, largely because of the restrictions imposed by the occupying
Turkish regime (‘the Denktash regime’). Have the Council or its agents or employees experienced any
difficulties in implementing projects designed to foster reconciliation between the two Cypriot commu-
nities?

If so, could the Council give details of these difficulties and state whether they have still to be resolved?
In particular, could it state what role the Denktash regime played in blocking or otherwise hindering such
reconciliation projects?

Is the Council aware of any non-EU initiatives aimed at reconciliation between the two Cypriot
communities which have been blocked or in any way hindered by the Denktash regime?

Reply

(8 June 2000)

Council Regulation 555/2000 on the implementation of operations in the framework of the pre-accession
strategy for the Republic of Cyprus and the Republic of Malta took over from the 4th Financial Protocols
with both countries and is intended to support cooperation projects and operations to prepare them for
accession in line with the priorities identified in their respective Accession Partnerships. In the specific case
of Cyprus, operations may also be financed which contribute to the reconciliation of the two Cypriot
communities.

While the financial reference amount for the period 2000  2004 for Cyprus and Malta together has been
fixed in the above-mentioned Regulation at € 95 million, the annual appropriations for each country will
be authorised by the budgetary authority within the limits of the financial perspective.

As for bicommunal projects in Cyprus, the Council attaches importance to promoting reconciliation
projects between the Greek and Turkish Cypriot communities and will do everything to facilitate them.
The Union is hopeful that the proximity talks launched by the UN Secretary-General in New York
in December 1999 will allow for a rapprochement of both communities and thus further the reconciliation
process.

The Commission is now studying bicommunal projects in Cyprus for financing under the above-
mentioned Regulation. This work is currently in the pre-programming phase. Of the € 9 million already
committed for 2000, € 6 million will be for projects and operations within the pre-accession strategy for
Cyprus and € 3 million will be reserved for bicommunal projects.