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Monday, March 4, 2024

“Cyprus is heavily burdened by immigration,” says Steinmeier

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    «Η Κyπρος επιβ&alpha ;ρyνεται ισχυρa απo μεταναστευ&tau ;ικο», λεει ο Σταινμαγιερ

    The President of the Republic and the President of Germany answered journalists' questions – Reference to Cypriot, immigration, RES but also Donald Trump's statements

    The President of the Republic Mr. Nikos Christodoulidis and the President of Germany Mr. Frank Walter Steinmeier answered questions from journalists, after today's their meeting, in the context of the German President's official visit to Cyprus.

    • A clear message of Germany's support for the solution of the Cyprus problem (pics)

    Among the questions they were asked to answer, they related to the Cyprus issue and also to the immigration issue. In fact, as they mentioned, within the framework of the European Voluntary Solidarity Mechanism, the two countries cooperated intensively and successfully and 1000 asylum seekers were transferred from Cyprus to Germany.

    When asked how he assesses the solution possibilities > of the Cypriot, President Steinmeierhe said, speaking through an interpreter, that “over the last several decades, and I can assess this through my previous qualities as well, there were optimistic phases where we could hope for a better situation. But politics has a duty. to attempt what seems impossible. For this I am grateful to President Christodoulidis who has made the resolution of the Cyprus issue his priority and has the support of the UN. And we will support the UN, but the other European countries will too”.

    Answering a question about the prospects of resolving the Cyprus issue without losses and how ready the Cypriot people are, President Christodoulidis stated that “the resolution of the Cyprus issue has been a key priority since the day I assumed my duties and I am glad that it is recognized and from the German President and from the international community and from the UN Secretary General, since the appointment of the personal envoy was also the result of our own persistent efforts.

    The current state of affairs cannot be the solution to the Cyprus problem and I think we all understand this dimension. I strongly believe that the vast majority of the Cypriot people, Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots, desire reunification, a solution based on the agreed framework.

    The message I conveyed is that within this context we believe that EU involvement will be catalyticto achieve the solution of the Cyprus problem, (it is up to) Ankara and we believe that the EU, acting as a reinforcement to the UN's effort, precisely because it has the tools, precisely because it has the means, within the context of Euro-Turkish relations, can, yes, help us lead to a mutually beneficial state of affairs through the solution of the Cyprus issue, for Cyprus, for the Greek Cypriots and the Turkish Cypriots, for our region, for the EU's relations with Turkey.

    And towards this direction, we are ready to work with all our partners,including Germany, which maintains excellent relations with Turkey, so that we can achieve the goal of solving the Cyprus problem, which I consider – if I didn't think so I wouldn't invest so much – to be an achievable goal”.

    Asked whether it is time for Europe to be more practical in solidarity with the countries facing the largest immigrationburden, but also that there should be changes for a more rational treatment of the issue, the President of Germany said that “clearly the immigration situation in Cyprus is a big challenge, we understand it and we admit that Cyprus, with the large number of illegal arrivals of applicants, is heavily burdened and needs support from both Germany and the EU.

    However, it was said that the relations between Cyprus and Germany are special. In the context of the European Voluntary Solidarity Mechanism, we cooperated intensively and successfully and transported 1000 asylum seekers from Cyprus to Germany. This is solidarity in practice at the European level. This is not enough. It is a major European challenge that requires exceptional solutions.

    An agreement has been reached in the EU Council on questions that were open in the past regarding the common European asylum system. We have an intermediate goal and there must be a solution before the end of the term of the European Parliament in 2024″.

    He also mentioned the great efforts made for the Common European Asylum System and noted that an agreement has been reached with the heads of state and government.

    He added that “I will visittomorrow the reception center for asylum seekers in Kofinou< /strong> to get an idea of ​​how Cyprus is dealing with this problem and how the EU can support”.

    For his part, President Christodoulidisstated that “the present Government, from the first day of assuming its duties, faces the challenges of immigration as the highest priority. And I am happy because a year later, our actions have concrete, measurable results that cannot be disputed by anyone, both in terms of returnees and in terms of arrivals and in terms of the time horizon for examining applications and many other things that brought results.

    I want to thank Germany once again for voluntarily accepting more than 1000 asylum seekers from Cyprus. The EU's decision was for voluntary deportation, and most of those sent from Cyprus were sent to Germany.

    Also, as an EU we should do much more on immigration. Frontline countries are taking on a huge burden that they are unable to meet on their own.

    But if we really want to deal with immigration, it is not through funding or actions aimed at dealing with the phenomenon. If they want to holistically end the phenomenon of immigration, it is by dealing with the generative causes that cause the phenomenon of immigration. This is why we need to work as an EU with the countries from which the migrants come.

    There is another issue for which I know there are sensitivities from some EU member states, it touches on immigration, but also the general effort of the EU to have a geopolitical role. We as the EU must open up the issue of the situation in Syria. There are areas in Syria that we should consider if they are safe and, by extension, that migrants from these areas can be returned. Not discussing the situation in Syria I do not think is the right choice on the part of the EU. And the Republic of Cyprus, in cooperation with other EU member states that embrace this approach, we are working towards the direction of the discussion within the EU and the issue of of Syria, but more generally of the situation in the region”.

    In response to the question of why Cyprus does not utilize as much as it could of Renewable Energy Sources(APE), President Christodoulidis said that “you are absolutely right and the question is very apt. We are making significant strides especially in recent years. Let me tell you that today we have 50% production from RES. Unfortunately, however, only 19% of our electricity mix is ​​from RES due to the lack of storage capacity for generating electricity from RES. It is for this reason that within 2024 the Government will announce two projects, with a total value of approximately 80 million euros, precisely to develop batteries which will allow us to store the energy produced by RES. It is an issue that – and we discussed it with the German President – we want and desire the technical support from the German Government as well”.

    For his part, the German President stated that “soon we will talk with the Cypriot Minister of Energy and representatives of the economy, exactly, about these issues. Germany is open to technology, and especially energy, and we are ready and willing to share our know-how with other countries and we will raise the issue when we return to Berlin.”

    Invites to comment Donald Trump reportwho said that if elected US President, NATO partners who do not pay their share to NATO will not have US help in case they are attacked by Russia, the German President said that “they are in an election race in the US ».

    He added that “in October last year I went to Washington myself and spoke to President Biden and called on the Europeans not to consider that the US elections have already been decided. I believe that the current President of the USA is an ally of NATO and ensured the unity of NATO and this continues to this day. We have every interest and interest in the unity of NATO, not only regarding this question, to remain strong. It is clear. We in Europe and we in Germany must do everything we can to ensure that NATO is strengthened in the near future, regardless of the new US President. This is not only said by me, but also by other representatives of the German Government.

    In relation to what was heard from Trump, they certainly do not contribute to the strong position that we want. These statements are not responsible and they help Russia and they are certainly not positive for the alliance”.despite whatever problems there are and asked whether this should be done this time with more specific conditions for Cyprus and the Cyprus issue and what is his opinion about the desire for Cyprus to appoint an EU envoy for the Cyprus issue to give further impetus in the process to move this matter forward, the President of Germany said that “I know the desire of Cyprus to have an envoy and also Turkey to be more involved. The appointment, the sending of an authorized person is one thing”.

    He added that it is equally important in Cyprus to make it clear to Turkey often, regardless of who will do it, that the behavior regarding the solution of the Cyprus issue must it is also related to other issues of Turkey such as the approach to the EU. “The member states must also send this message to Turkey”, he noted.

    Finally, when asked what is the message he wants to send to the European partners in relation to the same question, President Christodoulidis said that “the Republic of Cyprus is an ardent supporter of closer relations between the EU and Ankara the which go through the developments and the resolution of the Cyprus issue.

    And it is within this context that we consider that the most active involvement on the part of the EU – a leading role that will not replace the role of the UN, and I am glad that at Brussels level there are advanced specific discussions, and possibly we will see what will be the agenda of the European Council in March, if there will be a discussion on Euro-Turkish relations, we we wish, it is something for which we answered positively to a related question from Brussels – it will create those data, through the more active leading involvement of the EU, for the effort to resolve the Cyprus issue”.

    Source: cyprustimes.com

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