Archive for Friday, December 27, 2002


December 27, 2002



Turkish Cypriots march in support of unification

Waving flags and olive branches, some 30,000 Turkish Cypriots marched Thursday through the capital of Nicosia to support reunification of divided Cyprus -- a requirement for their joining the European Union.

The demonstration, the largest pro-EU rally in the northern Turkish part of Cyprus, comes after Turkish and Greek Cypriots failed to iron out their differences earlier this month at the European Union summit in Copenhagen.

The demonstrators were demanding the resignation of Rauf Denktash, the leader of the breakaway Turkish Cypriot Republic, whom they accuse of blocking an agreement with Greek Cypriots.

At the Copenhagen summit, the European Union invited Cyprus to join the economic bloc by 2004 and asked both sides to find a solution by Feb. 28. If no agreement is reached by that date, only the Greek part of the island would enter the EU.


Marchers protest U.S. Navy's passage

With chants of "no blood for oil," about 1,000 people marched Thursday through Marseille, a southern French port city, protesting the passage of a U.S. Navy battle group and the prospect of a U.S.-led war against Iraq.

Dozens of police kept order during the rally, which was peaceful even though demonstrators briefly shouted at a small group of U.S. sailors.

The battle group -- led by aircraft carrier USS Harry S. Truman and involving nearly a dozen ships with 8,000 sailors and Marines -- is expected to end a five-day stop today in Marseille.

The flotilla is making a scheduled move to the Persian Gulf.

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