09 September, 2003
Greek Foreign Minister George Papandreou is due to carry out a working visit to Cyprus on Wednesday and Thursday, during which he will have talks with the country's state and political leadership.
During the meetings and the dinner that will be given in his honor by Cyprus President Tassos Papadopoulos, talks with cover all aspects of the Cyprus issue and preparations for Papadopoulos' visit to Athens on September 16.
While on Cyprus, Papandreou is also due to speak at an event organized by Greek-Cypriot and Turkish-Cypriot teachers at the Ledra Pallas Hotel about the future of education on Cyprus.
According to foreign ministry spokesman Panos Beglitis, however, Turkish-Cypriot opposition parties have refused an invitation to meet with Papandreou during his visit and exchange views on the Cyprus issue.
The spokesman said that the possibility of a new initiative for Cyprus on the part of United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan appeared unlikely at this time, given that the intransigent attitude of Turkish-Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash did not create the right conditions for the resumption of talks.
At the same time, he noted that the final target was the full accession of Cyprus to the European Union on May 1, 2004.
On a planned visit by Turkish Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul to Athens, Beglitis said that no firm date had yet been decided but it would probably take place within October.
On Monday, meanwhile, Papandreou will represent the Greek government at the inauguration of a new European Parliament hall bearing the name of Constantine Karamanlis and will then travel to Sweden to take part in the campaign initiated by Swedish Premier Goran Persson for Sweden's entry into the Euro-zone.
After his return from Cyprus, Papandreou is next scheduled to visit the United States on September 15-16 to receive a prize for his work as head of the EU Council of Ministers, while he is also expected to meet US Secretary of State Colin Powell and White House Security Advisor Condoleeza Rice.
Source: Athens News Agency