Cyprus leaders to embark on new round of intensified talks, beginning October 4

Cyprus leaders to embark on new round of intensified talks, beginning October 4

Nicosia, September 29, 2016/Independent Balkan News Agency

President of the Republic Nicos Anastasiades and Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci embark on a new round of intensified talks for a Cyprus solution and their first meeting will take place probably next Tuesday, October 4.

The leaders had a meeting with UNSG Ban Ki Moon on September 25 in NYC, after which SG announced that they intend to further intensify their negotiations upon their return to Cyprus. He added that “I urged them to make the most of this opportunity, in order to resolve their outstanding issues, without delay, in earnest”.

Government Spokesman Nicos Christodoulides told the press on Thursday that most probably tomorrow the dates of the meetings will be finalised and the first meeting will most likely take place on Tuesday (4/10). He also expressed the opinion that the leaders will be meeting three to four times a week.

He added that no agreement had been made between the leaders, prior to the tripartite meeting in NYC as to the message they would convey.

Invited to comment on statements made by T/c leader to this end, the Spokesman repeated that no agreement was made between the leaders. He said that it is absolutely fair to have different approach and opinions and disagreements, however all these cannot be discussed publicly.

Christodoulides said that the two leaders can touch upon these issues during their next meting which will launch the new round of intensified negotiations.

Asked about the role of UNSG Special Envoy Espen Barth Eide, the Spokesman said that throughout the years, not only with Eide but with all SG Advisors, there have been some cases where either side (the Greek Cypriot side or the Turkish Cypriot side) publicly expressed its disagreement or complaint for the way he approaches the state of play on the negotiating table.

The Spokesman pointed out that what is important and was reiterated on Sunday, during the meeting the leaders had with SG, is that this is a Cypriot owned procedure and UN`s role is limited.

He said that the negotiations are under the aegis of the UN, however the two leaders have the responsibility for what is being discussed on the table.

The Spokesman also said that there have been cases where Eide`s suggestions or interventions have been helpful for our side, and other times when his suggestions were helpful for the Turkish Cypriot side. However, he pointed out that there has not been a time that he tried to impose anything to either of the two sides.

The Spokesman said that some statements made by Eide posed some questions and thus the President asked him to have a phone conversation with UNSG Special Envoy who said that his statements had been misinterpreted.

In another question whether the two leaders will meet abroad, in a meeting similar to Camp David summit, the Spokesman said that, according to statements made by Akinci, there is a differentiation in T/c side as regards the need to discuss the issue of territories not in relations to security and guarantees. He said that this is a an important advancement to the right direction. He added that it is up to the two leaders to decide how, when and where they will discuss this matter.

The Spokesman also said that Akinci has reassured President Anastasiades about the issue of citizenships, recalling that there has been a convergence on this specific matter.

President Anastasiades and Mustafa Akinci the leader of the Turkish Cypriot community, have been engaged in peace talks under the UN aegis with the aim to find a solution to the Cyprus problem. The island has been divided since 1974 when Turkey invaded and occupied its northern third.

Source: Cyprus News Agency