Questionnaire for interviews with MEPs 1. Which policy fields have you specialized in? As a Μember of the Εuropean Parliament I am specialised in the following fields and I participate in the corresponding Committees of the European Parliament: Development issues, Environment, Public Health and Food Safety, EU-Turkey interparliamentary relations, Womens Rights and Gender Equality, Africa Caribbean Pacific-EU interparliamentary relations, Cariforum-EU relations. 2. Which concrete political aims do you pursue at the moment? I consider of utmost importance to take action so that the ongoing negotiations on the Cyprus issue can reach a comprehensive, democratic and viable solution in line with the values and principles upon which the EU is founded. It is very important for me as well to protect the diachronicity and continuity of the Cypriot people and its civilisation by taking concrete actions: fighting all kinds of inequalities, reducing poverty phenomena and guaranteeing medical- pharmaceutical care and education for the Cypriot population but for the people of the whole world as well. 3. How big would you rate the influence of lobby groups and the economy on the decisions of the European Parliament? Lobby groups (LG) perform a catalytic action and could have a major role to play in the economy of the decisions in the European Parliament, but neither the LG themselves nor the European Deputies have realised the possibilities and the power of intervention of the LG. I consider that both sides conduct an ineffective fight, as their actions are sporadic and with no strategy. LG can constitute one of the most powerful levers of pressure and, in collaboration with the Members of European Parliament, they can influence important decisions to be taken in European level to the benefit of European citizens. 4. Please give an example in which way European policies have influenced our region and our daily life? In the framework of the Regional Development Policy of the EU, the support of local and regional governments and the transfer of power and competence
to the citizens have given important results to the city as well as to the province of Limassol, which can be conceived by the people in their everyday life. We have a long way to go and all citizens should be aware of all the possibilities and the advantages offered by the accession of Cyprus in the EU; For example, the patients have to claim the implementation of chart of their rights, which remain inapplicable in our country and, as a consequence, citizens have a rough time on a daily basis.5. To your mind, what are the greatest advantages of the EU? In my opinion, the greatest advantage of the EU is, inter alia, the support of prospect and hope for an amphictiony in Europe, for a big paneuropean confederation, where each state will be equivalently and proportionally represented and all inequalities will be suppressed. Through common education that will lit up and release spirits and through the protection of the civilisation and culture of each one of us, the EU will constitute a factor of peace, stability, safety and prosperity in the world.6. What was, in your opinion, the single most important decision the EU took in the recent years? Which role did the EP play in that decision? The decision concerning the integration of Cyprus to the EU gave a serious prospect to restore and safeguard all human rights for the Cyprus citizens. Thus I consider it to be one of the most important and wise decision of the EU, where the European Parliament played its decisive role of co-legislator.7. What would you like to change about the EU? One of the things that I would like to change the capital of the EU! The capital should be drawn in a way that all multicultural currents, as the EU wants them to be expressed, are represented, all functional expenses of European institutional bodies are minimized, and all transports for citizens and officials are facilitated. In my opinion, the capital of EU is supposed to be a modern, functional and likely more… southern and warm city!8. Do you believe it was justified to help Greece with credits? In my opinion, a real and active European budgetary policy should have taken place a long time ago and should have been one of the major priorities of the
EU; A policy in which phenomena of devaluation of economies could be avoided. However, in the frame of solidarity that the EU owes to demonstrate to its member states, not only was it justified to help Greece with credits but the EU should stay alert on the whole situation, so that no more such phenomena are repeated.9. Are you for or against the accession of Turkey to the EU? I have no objection concerning the integration of a modern and democratic Turkey in the EU, even if wed have to transfer the capital of the EU to Constantinople! Unfortunately, I do not believe that this will happen soon, as all provisions for human rights are still not implemented. Lets not forget that Turkey violates human rights not only in its territory but in our country as well, with the presence of its occupation army. I sincerely consider that with such behaviour Turks themselves boycott their accession to the EU.10. Why have you chosen to become a European politician? I have the ambition to work hard for our country as well as for the defence of human rights in the planet. I consider that the European Parliament offers me the ideal tribune to do so.11. If we go back to 2004, what were the most important reasons that pushed Cyprus to enter EU? I consider that the most important reason for Cypriots to enter the EU in 2004 was to help Cyprus in the resolution of its problem concerning the occupation of the island by the Turkish army. Moreover, we should not forget that the ideal of a united Europe lured us since our independence and that many Cypriots have been inspired by the vision of EU, the customs union and generally the incorporation in the EU and the European integration before and the Turkish invasion of 1974.12. Do you think EU can solve the Cyprus political problem? I honestly believe that there are enormous possibilities from the EU side to act in a decisive way for the application of human rights in a member state. This is one of the core issues in reaching a solution for the Cyprus political problem.
The question is for the Cypriots to believe in such a possibility which is at thesame time a real opportunity for them.