Cyprus president ill, plans to send premier to summit

Source:AFP Published: 2014-10-24 0:03:01

Cyprus President Nicos Anastasiades was briefly hospitalized with high blood pressure 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, government spokesman Nicos Christodoulides said.

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

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 EU 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 $12.6 billion bailout with international lenders.

Posted in: Europe

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