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Cyprus Mail: Press Review in English, 97-12-19

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From: The Cyprus Mail at <>

Friday, December 19, 1997

Diko to back Iacovou?

WITH the Attorney-general out of the presidential fray, attention has once again turned to Diko and what the party will finally decide to do in the elections.

Alithia said that Saturday would be the critical day because the Diko executive office would meet to take a decision. On Wednesday Diko's executive office had discussed two options - either to back its own candidate (Spyros Kyprianou or Alexis Galanos) or to back George Iacovou from the first round.

It said that most members of the executive office tended to support the Iacovou option. However if the party was to back its own candidate they felt it should be Kyprianou because only he could unite the party.

Phileleftheros, quoting sources close to Kyprianou, said that it was just a matter of days before Diko voiced its support for the candidacy of Iacovou. The Iacovou option enjoyed the biggest support in the party's executive office.

Kyprianou did not rule out the possibiity that Diko would support the candidacy of Edek leader Vassos Lyssarides. Meanwhile, three former Diko ministers of the Clerides government urged Kyprianou to stand in the first round of the election and back Clerides in the second. The Diko leader rejected this, the paper said.

Simerini said that behind-the-scenes efforts, aimed at arranging a meeting between Clerides and Kyprianou, were under way. This was a last- ditch attempt to mend the rift between Diko and Disy.

The man responsible for these efforts was Disy leader Nicos Anastassiades who had met Clerides twice and Kyprianou once on Wednesday. Anastassiades said he had discussed the reasons for the break-up of the Disy-Diko alliance and searched for a formula that would satisfy both parties and revive the co-operation.

Agon described Anastassiades as "a bridge of communication" between Clerides and Kyprianou. The Disy leader had taken several proposals to Kyprianou from the president, aimed at reviving the co- operation that helped Clerides win the last elections.

Haravghi led with a report about the electoral programme of Iacovou which was presented at a press conference. The Akel-backed candidate put great emphasis on his economic programme. EU accession made imperative the formulation of a strategic plan for the support and modernisation of the economy.

He wanted to make the economy competitive, modern and dynamic so it could meet the challenges of the 21st century.

Machi reported that Iacovou had asked the Greek government to make public all details regarding his time as director of Foundation of Repatriating Greeks. The paper said the facts, released by the Greek government, about Iacovou's running of the Foundation suggested bad management.

© Copyright Cyprus Mail 1997

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