- The Washington Times - Thursday, May 16, 2002

The president of Greece's parliament expressed concern yesterday over the strength demonstrated in Europe by right-wing movements capitalizing on widespread resentment against non-European immigrants to score political points.
"Europe has not addressed sufficiently the needs of all its people," Apostolos Kaklamanis said.
He also expressed hope that the anticipated accession of Cyprus to the European Union "would contribute to a solution of the problem of ethnic divisions there."
U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan met yesterday with Greek and Turkish Cypriot leaders in Nicosia, the Cypriot capital, in a bid to rekindle peace talks and avert the prospect of Cyprus joining the European Union as a divided nation.
Mr. Kaklamanis said high unemployment rates, slow growth and low incomes have contributed to the rise of an anti-immigration movement across Europe.
"Also, the uncertainty created by the September [11th] terrorist attacks and their aftermath have fueled extremism," he said.
Mr. Kaklamanis is visiting the United States to strengthen ties with U.S. officials and to inform them of important events just over the horizon affecting Greece.
It is Greece's turn next year to head the rotating presidency of the European Union.
"In that role, Greece hopes to make a contribution in addressing the social issues," the Greek parliamentarian said.
The question of Cyprus' membership to the European body will have major consequences for the standoff over the future of the island's Greek and Turkish communities.
"We in Greece agree with the government in Cyprus that accession will contribute to the solution of the deadlock," Mr. Kaklamanis said.
On arriving in Nicosia yesterday, Mr. Annan conferred with President Glafcos Clerides of the Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash.
The U.N. chief said he was concerned that the reunification talks are well behind schedule.
Mr. Annan met Mr. Clerides in the south of the divided capital and drove across the Green Line separating Greek and Turkish Nicosia for talks with Mr. Denktash.
"We discussed various ways to speed up the negotiations," said Mr. Clerides of his talks with Mr. Annan. "It was a very good meeting."
Cyprus has been effectively partitioned along ethnic lines since 1974, when Turkey invaded and seized the northern third after a brief Greek Cypriot coup aimed at union with Greece.
The Greek Cypriots want a single, sovereign state federated into two ethnic communities, Greek and Turkish.
The Turkish Cypriots, backed by the government in Ankara, want two sovereign states tied together in a loose confederation.


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