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EU/CYPRUS: PROVISIONAL RULES ON CROSSING THE GREEN LINE.

Even if the reunification of the island were to become a reality before Cyprus joins the EU in May, the Commission believes the proposal would need to be applied during a transition period since application of the acquis communautaire will not necessarily be extended to the northern part of Cyprus (the Turkish part) from May 1, 2004. A second draft Regulation embracing all the decisions to be taken by the EU Council of Ministers if the Cypriot question were to be resolved prior to accession is being prepared. However, it will only be finalised once the terms of a settlement are known.

As for crossing the green line, the draft Regulation provides for the Republic of Cyprus imposing controls on all people crossing this line in order to prevent illegal immigration by third-country nationals and to detect and prevent all threats to public order and security. These controls will also concern vehicles and objects in the possession of people crossing the line. Everyone should be subject to at least one check to establish their identity. Third-country nationals will not be authorised to cross the green line unless they are in possession of either a residence permit issued by the Republic of Cyprus, or a valid travel document and a valid visa for the Republic of Cyprus (if required), and do not represent a threat to public order or national security. Moreover, the green line can only be crossed at crossing points authorised by the relevant authorities of the Republic of Cyprus (Ledra Palace and Agios Dhometios).

Regarding goods, only citrus fruit and their hybrids are authorised to enter zones placed under government control without being subject to customs duties or equivalent taxes and without needing a customs declaration, provided they are exclusively sourced in areas where the Government of Cyprus does not exercise effective control. Goods should only cross the green line at authorised crossing points (Ledra Palace, Agios Dhometios, Pergamos and Strovilia). They must be accompanied by a document issued by the Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Commerce duly authorised to this end by the Cypriot Government, which will duly verify the authenticity of documents. Citrus fruit will be subject to plant health controls in order to confirm that they meet conditions outlined in EU plant health legislation (including Directive 2000/29/EC) before crossing the green line. Live animals and products of animal origin will not be authorised to cross the line. No export refunds will be available for agricultural produce and processed agricultural products crossing the line.

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Publication:European Report
Geographic Code:4E
Date:Mar 6, 2004
Words:419
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