The Irish Times reports that Cyprus has taken over the EU's rotating six-month council presidency only days after it became the fifth eurozone country to receive a bailout for its ailing financial sector.
According to the paper, Cyprus insists its presidency agenda will not be overshadowed by its request for financial assistance, despite its banks struggling under the weight of huge losses on their investments in Greece.
BBC News reports that European commission European Central Bank and International Monetary Fund auditors arrived in Nicosia yesterday to begin an assessment of the struggling country's needs.
Cyprus' president Demetris Christofias called for budgetary discipline in the EU to be complemented by a "strong growth strategy", saying that "austerity-only policies have not proven successful", says the broadcaster.
The Washington Post says Cypriot government officials are hopeful that the island would avoid the kind of harsh austerity measures endured by other bailout countries, with Nicosia very keen to retain its 10 per cent corporate tax rate.
The Cypriot government is also sounding out Russia and China over possible bilateral loan deals, as its junk credit rating status prevents it from trading on international debt markets, reports the paper.
Meanwhile, according to the Famagusta Gazette, the UN and EU have expressed frustration that Nicosia has announced that it plans to put reunification talks with northern Cyprus on the "back burner" while the country concentrates on its presidency duties.
The paper says EU enlargement commissioner Štefan Füle has urged Cyprus to maintain the peace process saying that there was "no contradiction" between a successful EU council presidency term and continued reconciliation talks.