GCC Press Review 9 Dec 2021

Front Page Headlines


Danger of losing control in schools

Problems in tracing due to the non-compliance with protocols in educational units.

  • Protection to corruption whistleblowers: Motives to get mouths to open


Return to 17 municipalities

After the shock seen backstage for five big municipalities, the government bill is is gaining ground. Local governance is passing once again through the tough terrain of parties.

  • Anastasiades’ mission in Madrid high-risk: In view of EU decisions on Turkey
  • Turkey wants to re-write history
  • Protective umbrella for informants
  • New formula for telecommunication data of suspects
  • They’re asking for the prohibition of movement of migrants: Three communities around Pournara are shouting


Amendments by AKEL to deal with abuses and wastes

Unanimous rejection of the budget was decided by the AKEL CC.

  • Cyprus problem: Stewart hosting a dinner for the two leaders on December 14
  • Varosha: The options paper draft before COREPER

Cyprus Mail

Hospitals ‘ready’ for patient rise

Hospitalisations rise to 128, but hospitals are prepared for more than 300.

  • (photo caption) The new special representative of the UN secretary-general and head of Unficyp Colin Stewart being given a tour of the buffer zone on Wednesday. He will meet the two leaders on Friday
  • After long battle, whistleblowers bill headed for the House plenum


Paranoia continues this year with AKEL in the lead!

On the matter of the voting of the state budget. The party of the Left announced that it will submit amendments to improve the budget but it will then reject it entirely. In other words, it will reject itself!

  • Next Tuesday: Meeting between Anastasiades-Tatar in an event in the honour of Colin Stewart
  • EU FMs against Turkey: Important sanctions but which will be approved?
  • EU court: Halloumi is one thing, Grilloumi is another
  • The ‘peace law’ is going to the plenum for voting – legal protection web for whistleblowers on corruption matters

Main News

Both sides accept UN invitation for dinner reception

Alithia, Cyprus Mail, Haravgi
Negotiations Process


Both sides said they responded positively to both a first meeting with Colin Stewart, the new special representative of the UN Secretary General (UNSG), and a UN reception at the Ledra Palace next Tuesday evening on the occasion of Stewart’s arrival, the dailies report.

Government spokesman Marios Pelekanos confirmed on Wednesday that the GC side has responded positively to the invitation for a first meeting with Stewart, during which, he added, Anastasiades is expected to inform the UN official about the positions of the GC side regarding the resumption of the negotiation process for the settlement of the Cyprus issue.

Regarding the UN reception, the dailies report that it will take place on December 14 at 7pm, with both leaders to be in attendance.

Tatar’s office said the invitation concerned the UN’s customary end-of-year reception, to be hosted by Stewart. Tatar said he would attend if epidemiological data allowed for the event to take place.

The dailies report that on Wednesday morning, Stewart visited the Buffer Zone as part of his familiarisation with the area, UN Cyprus said in a tweet. Stewart was accompanied by UNFICYP’s force commander, Ingrid Gjerde and UNPOL senior police advisor, Satu Koivu. He also met peacekeepers in the area.

EU options paper draft to be discussed during COREPER meeting

Alithia, Haravgi, Politis
EU Matters


The latest draft of the EU’s options paper on possible responses to Turkey’s and the TC leadership’s actions regarding Varosha is scheduled to be discussed by the permanent representatives of EU member states during their COREPER meeting on Wednesday afternoon.

The draft will be discussed as part of the preparation for the next meeting of the EU’s Foreign Ministers at the next Foreign Affairs Council (FAC), which will be held in Brussels on Monday, December 13.

Citing the Cyprus News Agency, the papers report that the third draft, which has already been shared with the member states, includes options such as targeted legal measures on persons responsible for actions taken in Varosha, cuts in funds for Turkey from the European Investment Bank as well as in pre-accession funds, as well as the freezing of EU-Turkey high level contacts.

The dailies add that drafts that were circulated during the past few days also included calls to restart negotiations for a solution of the Cyprus Problem, as well as calls for a dialogue among the two communities regarding hydrocarbons and cooperation on issues related to the green transition.

If COREPER does not agree on a final draft, the completion of the document will pass to the Foreign Ministers. The options paper could then act as a guide for potential decisions vis-a-vis Turkey on the level of the Council of the EU.

Mitsotakis, Putin discuss Cyprus problem

Negotiations Process


Russian President Vladimir Putin reaffirmed that his country supports a viable settlement of the Cyprus problem within the framework of international law, Phileleftheros reports.

In a meeting with Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis in Sochi on Wednesday, among the topics of discussion between the two leaders were Turkey’s provocations in the eastern Mediterranean and the Cyprus problem, the paper writes.

Putin reaffirmed that Russia supports a fair solution on the basis of international law, with the aim of a bizonal, bicommunal federation (BBF), with one international personality, citizenship and sovereignty.

On his part, Mitsotakis said that any discussion regarding a two-state solution must be rejected immediately. Regarding relations between Greece and Turkey, Mitsotakis said that he was clear that Turkey not only engages in an inflammatory rhetoric, but it also undertakes actions that lead to destabilisation. He stressed that Greece was always in favour of dialogue on the basis of international law and the law of the sea.

Anastasiades headed for Spain to discuss Cyprob, migration

Alithia, Cyprus Mail, Phileleftheros
Regional/International Relations


President Nicos Anastasiades departs for Madrid on Wednesday for meetings with the country’s monarch Felipe VI and the Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez.

On Thursday, Anastasiades will meet in the morning with Sanchez at the Moncloa Palace where the two will examine issues pertaining to the European agenda, developments on the Cyprus problem and the Turkish provocations in Cyprus’ EEZ, the immigration issue as well as efforts to manage the pandemic, regional developments, Southern neighbourhood policy, and western Balkan issues. A joint statement will be issued at the end of the talks.

At 2pm Cyprus time, Anastasiades will be received by Felipe VI, the King of Spain, at the Zarzuela Palace. Anastasiades and the First lady will then attend a lunch, given in their honour by the Spanish royal couple.

Anastasiades will be accompanied by Foreign Minister Nikos Christodoulides, Health Minister Michalis Hadjipantelas, government spokesman Marios Pelekanos and other officials.

On the sidelines of the visit, Christodoulides will hold a working breakfast on Thursday with his Spanish counterpart José Manuel Albares at the Foreign Ministry. Together with Hadjipantelas, Christodoulides will sign a memorandum of Understanding between Cyprus and Spain.

Christodoulides will sign a Memorandum of Understanding for political consultations between the Ministries of Foreign Affairs of the two countries, and a Memorandum of Understanding for the establishment of official bilateral cooperation between the Spanish Diplomatic School and the newly established Diplomatic Academy of the Cypriot Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Hadjipantelas together with his Spanish counterpart, Carolina Darias, will also sign a Memorandum of Understanding for cooperation in the field of health concerning the exchange of knowledge and experiences regarding the response to the pandemic.

Anastasiades and his entourage return home on Thursday evening.

Phileleftheros reports that given Spain’s very expensive cooperation with Turkey, Anastasiades’ visit to Spain seems to be a high-risk one, despite the fact that the invitation was made by Sanchez himself. The paper writes that Spain may be an EU partner for Cyprus, but it also has excellent financial and friendly relations with Turkey, the results of which are always seen when Turkey emerges on the agenda of a EU summit, with Spain, along with Italy and Germany, forming a protection web for Turkey against EU measures.

The paper writes that Anastasiades, aware of these dynamics, is not so much hoping to break these relations between Spain and Turkey, but to at least cause some friction, especially in light of the upcoming EU meetings, first of which is the Foreign Affairs Council (FAC) on Monday when EU FMs will discuss the options paper for measures against Turkey for its actions in Cyprus.

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