Cyprus president ill, to skip EU summit

2014-10-23 16:42
President  Nicos Anastasiades of Cyprus. (Alex Mita, AFP)

President Nicos Anastasiades of Cyprus. (Alex Mita, AFP)

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Nicosia - Cyprus President Nicos Anastasiades was briefly hospitalised with high blood pressure on Thursday in Brussels and asked Greece's premier to stand in for him at an EU summit, the government said.

"After prolonged nosebleeds the president of the republic was admitted early in the morning to a hospital in Brussels where it was found that the incident is due to high blood pressure," an official statement said.

The 68-year-old Greek Cypriot leader was discharged several hours later after receiving treatment and told to stay at his Brussels hotel to be closely monitored by a doctor, government spokesman Nicos Christodoulides said.

The spokesperson later said that Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras would represent Anastasiades at the summit and "analyse the positions of the Republic of Cyprus".

The president confirmed the arrangement in a message on his Twitter account.

Anastasiades had been expected to condemn the entry of a Turkish survey ship into Cyprus's exclusive economic zone where Nicosia has licensed multinational firms to explore for energy reserves.

In reaction to the Turkish incursion, EU member Cyprus said it will block any new opening of chapters of Ankara's own European Union accession process.

Anastasiades recently suspended UN-brokered peace talks with the Turkish Cypriots on the divided island after Ankara announced it was going to search for gas and oil inside Cyprus waters.

Conservative Anastasiades was elected president in February 2013 only days before Cyprus had to negotiate a painful $12.6bn bailout with international lenders.

He is credited with having steered the country from near-bankruptcy and ensuring the economy did not suffer a double-digit recession as feared.

Read more on:    eu  |  eu summit  |  nicos anastasiades  |  cyprus

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