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Monday, March 29, 2010

German Chancellor Merkel urges Turkey to open its ports to ships and planes from Cyprus

March 29, 2010 10:10 a.m.

( - ANKARA, Turkey - German Chancellor Angela Merkel is stressing that Turkey should open its ports to ships and planes from Cyprus, which is a member of the European Union.

Turkey began EU membership talks in 2005 but some areas of negotiation are frozen because Turkey refuses to allow ships and planes from Cyprus to enter its ports and airspace.

Merkel has said Turkey should be given a "privileged partnership" that falls short of full EU membership. She said Monday that the matter of Cyprus "must be "addressed."

Turkey insists that what it calls an unofficial trade embargo on the breakaway Turkish Cypriot state be lifted.

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