Cyprus will appeal to the Security Council next week, as the President Nicos Anastasiades announced tonight.
Speaking to reporters in New York after completing his contacts during the UN General Assembly, President Anastasiades stated that “this morning we had an interesting and extremely important meeting with the Secretary General, during which I expressed the readiness, but also the determination of the Greek-Cypriot side to engage in a debate to conclude the terms of reference based on the common understanding that came out of the 9 August meeting with Mr. Akinci, while also to commence another meaningful, constructive discussion, in order to find a solution on the basis of terms of reference which will allow for the solution to be accepted by both communities.
What we are striving for and what I have made clear to the SG is to come up with a solution that will ensure the functioning of the state and thus sustainability.
The SG seems determined to engage effectively and in this context, at least as it appeared from this morning’s meeting, depending on what will come out of his contacts with Mr. Akinci, to convene a trilateral meeting in October, in order to finalize the terms reference. The possibility of convening an informal five-day meeting is also something that he thinks would help to get to a well-prepared, as he said, dialogue, that would give us results.
I had the opportunity to report to the Secretary-General what has been going on; Turkey’s activity with the violations within the EEZ of Cyprus, the statements by Turkish officials but also by Turkish-Cypriots regarding threats of settlement in Famagusta, as well as the violations that occur in the dead zone by the Turkish forces.
Today, by hosting lunch to the representatives of the five Permanent Members of the Security Council, I had the opportunity to brief them extensively on the Cyprus issue, the meeting with the SG, after giving specific details regarding the threats against Famagusta and our decision to appeal to the Security Council, in order for its position to be reaffirmed in the resolutions 550 and 789 during a closed session.
I have called on the five Permanent Members, after informing them of our determination to launch a new debate, to provide us with their support and assistance, which is much needed in such an event.
I welcome the response of the SG, as well as the fact that our positions were thoroughly heard by the five Permanent Members of the Security Council.
At the same time, I am pleased with our excellent cooperation with the Greek Government, the Prime Minister and the Minister of Foreign Affairs, and also time with our determination through well-organized actions to address the Turkish provocations within the framework of the EU and the UN.
I had a meeting with a number of leaders, including the Indian Prime Minister, the President of Egypt, the President of North Macedonia, during which we highlighted the development of our economic relations and in particular our position that we are ready to assist and contribute to the talks between the EU and India, but also regarding North Macedonia’s prospects for accession.
I consider the contacts with the Russian and Chinese Foreign Ministers to be rather important, as well as the Foreign Minister’s contacts, that by now amount to a double-digit number, with interest on the countries of the Middle East and the Arabian Gulf. During the Foreign Minister’s presence here, two trilateral meetings between the Foreign Ministers of Cyprus – Greece – Armenia and Cyprus – Greece – Egypt were held, cultivating the ground for the Tripartite Summit in Egypt on October 8, and with Armenia sometime this year.
Overall, I would like to express my satisfaction with the results of my contacts here, especially when it came to the Cyprus issue. I would like to note that, if all parties involved show the same constructive approach to the SG’s call, then yes, the chances for resuming talks from where they were left at Crans Montana are strong.
I hope that the SG’s next contacts will share our own political will and determination”.
When asked what agenda the SG could set for a potential informal five-part meeting, the President said that “the SG wanted to be informed of our positions which are clear, as they were stated in my speech to the UN.
He was thoroughly pleased and his intention to engage effectively and to help create the conditions for a meaningful and creative dialogue were evident. Regarding a five-part meeting, there are other important issues of procedural, methodological nature and so on.
We have clearly set out our intentions and determination; if the rest of the parties involved – I don’t mean Greece and England – express the same determination, then we begin to have prospects for a discussion that this time we hope and believe will be fruitful”.
When asked whether he would reject for a form of the solution issue to be raised during an informal five-part meeting, the President commented that “our position was clear, as I stated in my speech to the General Assembly. The basis of the Cyprus solution lies on the UN resolutions and the transformation of Cyprus into a bi-zonal bicommunal federation with one single sovereignty, international personality and nationality”.
When asked to comment on the Turkish position on the five-part meeting, the President said that “if they want to put something else on the table than what is being discussed, you realize that this is unacceptable.”
In another question, the President stressed that the Conference at Crans Montana was not well prepared, adding that had it been well-prepared it would had exposed Turkey’s intolerance and obsession with positions and claims that were impossible to accept from our side.
To a question on the subject, he replied “if one side retreats and does not cultivate the right conditions, it does not mean that we will cease to insist for a dialogue to take place that will lead to a solution whose content is based on international law, on the European acquis, to the construction of a solid, normal state, as everyone expects. Otherwise this will take us nowhere. If the other side insists on backing unacceptable positions, that is their problem. What we are trying to do is to protect the human rights of all citizens, Greek-Cypriots and Turkish-Cypriots, the interests of both communities, to address the concerns of both, but not the concerns of one at the expense of the other ”.
Subsequently, the President referred extensively to the developments in Crans Montana with Turkey’s unacceptable demands and insistence on the continuation of guarantees and the permanent presence of Turkish troops.
“There was also persistence in the issue of political equality, which is misinterpreted. Claiming to have a positive vote practically creates conditions that allow one community to be imposed on the other”, he said, adding that “let them show us even one state in which similar provisions can be found in the Constitution. ”
When asked why the Turkish Foreign Minister insists on a five-part meeting, in order for the basis of the solution to be clarified, the President said that “he might want to put on the table what he told us in private, that he would prefer a two-state solution. And my answer was that in order to escape the dead-end we have the choice of a decentralized federation of powers, we have the choice of parliamentary democracy, we even have the choice of the Belgian model. But I never shifted away from the bizonal bicommunal federation. Those were simply alternative suggestions or thoughts to help escape the dead-end created by such kinds of obsessions. And that was what the SG asked, to put on the table without hesitation some new ideas that would help overcome the problems”.
In a journalist’s remark that Mr. Cavusoglu insisted that he had talked with President Anastasiades about a confederation, the President said that “Mr. Cavusoglu gave an interview to the Politis newspaper, he was asked about it and not once made such a remark. Recently he just happened to remember to mention that it was allegedly my proposal. I am not going to start a conversation on the subject, it is well known that at times many are said to cause a rift within the Greek-Cypriot community; what counts is what I have put forward and tabled again and again either from the General Assembly floor or before the SG or its representatives”.
When asked how the Turkish obsession with other forms of solution is dealt with, the President said that “it will not lead us to a dialogue, in any case.”
Responding to the same question, the Foreign Minister intervened by saying that “any change in the form of a solution, taking into account the Security Council resolutions, also requires the Security Council’s assent at the request of all parties involved”.
In another question, the President, having reiterated our side’s determination for a solution to be reached, underlined that “apart from that that it will become clear who wishes and who does not, who insists or not on unacceptable proposals or solutions”.
When asked what the chances are for a dialogue to succeed and how plausible a new dead-end is, the President commented that “we do not forget the fact that for 45 years it has been the Turkish intolerance that disallowed for a solution to be reached, yet we will neither cease to insist, using our resources from the international organization and the international law, to pursue a solution that is both functional and sustainable. I do not prejudge the result because it is not up to us, since, if it was up to all of us, the Cyprus Issue would have been long solved”.
When asked about the general compromise he could proceed to in order to reach a solution for the Cyprus problem, the President said that “there are – I will not mention the red lines – some conditions that create a functioning and viable state. When these limits are exceeded, it is inconceivable to bring before the people a solution that cannot be accepted. And I would never be willing to accept something that, to my knowledge, would lead to a solution that would collapse the next day on the basis of any claims one side might make that the other one would accept.
What matters is for good will to exist alongside determination, and for everyone to know when to compromise and when to not back down so no troubles arise”.
Finally, when asked when Cyprus would appeal to the Security Council, the President replied “next week”. /ibna