The President of the Republic of Cyprus, Nicos Anastasiades, is in New York from Sunday morning, where he will address the United Nations General Assembly, have a private meeting with the United Nations Secretary General and attend a lunch with the United Nations Secretary General and the Turkish Cypriot leader.
The President of the Republic, who was accompanied by Foreign Minister Nikos Christodoulides, Government Spokesman Mario Pelicanos and officials, attended an event held at the residence of the Permanent Representative of the Republic to the United Nations Andreas Hadjichrysanthos, during which he paid tribute to the Executive Director of the American Jewish Committee, Mr. David Harris.
President Anastasiades presented David Harris with the Order of the Grand Commander of the Order of Macarius III, one of the highest honours awarded by the Republic of Cyprus, for the important role played by Mr. Harris in the American Jewish Community. Harris plays in the upgrading of relations between countries of the Eastern Mediterranean, in strengthening the strategic cooperation between Cyprus – Greece, Israel, as well as for his support to the struggle of the Republic of Cyprus for finding a comprehensive and viable solution to the Cyprus problem.
Afterwards, the President of the Republic attended a dinner with representatives of the leadership of the Federation of Cypriot Organizations of America, whom he briefed on developments in the Cyprus problem.
On Monday, President Anastasiades went to Ground Zero, where he laid a wreath at a special ceremony at the Memorial to the victims of the September 11 terrorist attacks.
He then had a meeting with UNESCO Director-General Audrey Azoulay. During the meeting, the President of the Republic referred to the destruction of cultural heritage in the occupied territories by the Turkish occupation regime.
During the meeting, Ms Azoulay referred to the celebrations of the 75th anniversary of the establishment of the Organization and invited President Anastasiades to attend the celebrations to be held in Paris on 12 November, which will be attended by the UN Secretary General.
They also discussed the prospects for the reintegration of the US and Israel into the Organisation, requesting – to the extent possible – Cyprus’ assistance to both countries.
During the meeting, the special importance Cyprus attaches to the whole effort to protect the world’s cultural heritage was stressed. It is noted that Cyprus actively promotes the Nicosia Convention for the Protection of Cultural Heritage through the criminalisation of acts of illegal excavation, theft, preservation of stolen goods, commercialisation and destruction of all kinds of cultural property.
Afterwards, the President of the Republic will hold his customary press conference with the media during his stay in New York, where he will report extensively on his programme of contacts in the United States, as well as on his bilateral meeting with the UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres and his joint meeting with the UN Secretary General and the Turkish Cypriot leader Ersin Tatar.
After the press conference, the President of the Republic will receive a delegation of the American Jewish organization AIPAC (American Israel Public Affairs Committee), with whose members he will discuss the upgrading of the strategic relationship between Cyprus and Israel and will inform them about developments in the efforts to resolve the Cyprus problem./ibna