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Identifier
Created
Classification
Origin
05ATHENS2371
2005-09-11 08:35:00
CONFIDENTIAL
Embassy Athens
Cable title:  

MOLYVIATIS WORRIED TURKEY/EU IN DOWNWARD SPIRAL

Tags:   CY  GR  PGOV  PREL  TU  EU  TURKEY 
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This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.
						C O N F I D E N T I A L ATHENS 002371 

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: DECL: 09/10/2014
TAGS: CY GR PGOV PREL TU EU TURKEY
SUBJECT: MOLYVIATIS WORRIED TURKEY/EU IN DOWNWARD SPIRAL


Classified By: Ambassador Charles P. Ries. Reasons 1.4(b/d).


C O N F I D E N T I A L ATHENS 002371

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: DECL: 09/10/2014
TAGS: CY GR PGOV PREL TU EU TURKEY
SUBJECT: MOLYVIATIS WORRIED TURKEY/EU IN DOWNWARD SPIRAL


Classified By: Ambassador Charles P. Ries. Reasons 1.4(b/d).



1. (C) On the margins of the Prime Minister_ September 10
Thessaloniki Fair speech (septel), Foreign Minister Molyviatis
told Ambassador that he was worried political pressures in Cyprus
and France were pushing the Turkey/EU issue into a downward
spiral. A glum Molyviatis, who had assured Ambassador on
September 8 that the Cypriot hard line at Coreper September 7 had
been pre-arranged with the French for political effect in both
countries but would not go so far as to endanger October 3, was
by Saturday night in a less sanguine mood. Public opinion was
"very bad" in Greece, and "even worse" in Cyprus, he said.
Molyviatis admitted that he had directed MFA Spokesman
Koumoutsakos to issue a press statement on Friday September 9
critical of UK Presidency impartiality as "a signal" to Foreign
Secretary Straw, but argued that Straw_ cheerleading for Turkey

SIPDIS
(in the IHT article where Straw is reported saying that it was
"vital for the EU to draw Turkey into the EU at all costs") were
provoking the French and Cypriots, and making a reasonable
compromise on the counter statement that much harder.


2. (C) Molyviatis said that the situation was made much more
difficult by the fact that Cypriot President Papadopoulos was
presently in Florida for a checkup on problems with his throat
and Molyviatis had been unable to speak to him directly for
"three days." He had been passing messages to Papadopoulos
through Presidential National Security Adviser Tzounis but could
not be sure he was communicating directly with Papadopoulos.
Asked if he thought Papadopoulos was avoiding him, Molyviatis
said he did not think so. The Cypriot President had had a
procedure on his throat and simply could not talk. But in
Papadopulos_absence, Cypriot Foreign Minister Iacovou was in
charge. Iacovou was "impossible" on the Turkey/EU issue and "I
simply will not talk to him," said Molyviatis. Even if his
throat problems were to be cleared up, Papadopoulos would be
spending the coming week at the UNGA in New York, limiting his
ability to contain Cypriot political hysteria at home, explained
Molyviatis.


3. (C) Ambassador said this news would be of great concern to
Washington, which shared Greece_ strategic view that an October
3 start to the EU/Turkey negotiations would be essential to all
of our interests. The U.S. would want to be helpful. What
pressure points would Molyviatis suggest?


4. (C) Despite the situation, Molyviatis urged the U.S. not/not
to become publicly involved at this point. The French, already
making trouble for domestic political reasons, would like nothing
better than to add resistance to the U.S. (viz., "we shouldn_
let the U.S. define the shape of the EU") to their rationale.
That could kill it, he said.


5. (C) Molyviatis said that he had been told to expect a call
from Foreign Secretary Straw soon and promised a readout for
Ambassador. He opined that, "in retrospect," it was clearly a
mistake not to have settled the counter-statement at the Gymnich
in Wales. Although a special GAERC on September 26 was now a
virtual certainty, it was clear he didn_ relish the prospect.
RIES