Cyprus Talks: First session concludes on positive note

Cyprus Talks: First session concludes on positive note

The first session of the Conference on Cyprus, addressing the issue of security and guarantees, hosted by the UN in Geneva, has concluded on a positive note with prospects for a solution.

According to information, during his speech the President of the Republic of Cyprus Nicos Anastasiades elaborated on his proposal on the issue of security.

Anastasiades also stated in his intervention that he is attending the Conference in Geneva both as the President of the Republic of Cyprus as well as as the leader of the Greek Cypriot community.

The Conference was opened by UNSG Antonio Guterres who delivered a speech. Then the floor was given to President Anastasiades, Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci, Greek FM Nikos Kotzias,  Turkish FM Mevlut Cavusoglu, UK Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson, and European Commission President Jean Claude Juncker. According to information the Greek Foreign Minister referred to his proposal on a friendship pact.

The Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu in statements he made to Reuters News Agency after the first session of the Conference said that “the guarantees should remain and the realities on the island have to be recognised”.

According to IBNA sources all leaders from Greece, Turkey and the UK will arrive late on Thursday or on Friday. The Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras, Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim and British Prime Minister Teresa May will be present to ensure the framework agreement that will lead to a solution for the Cyprus problem is achieved.

President of the EU Jean Claude Juncker is leading the EU’s delegation to Geneva for the Cyprus settlement Conference.

He is joined by High Representative/Vice-President Federica Mogherini and his Personal Representative to the UN Good Offices at the UN Protected Area in Nicosia, Pieter Van Nuffel who has been in Geneva since the start of the Conference on Monday.

On his way to Geneva, President Juncker said: “Since becoming President of the Commission, I have taken a personal interest in the unification of Cyprus. We must now seize the moment for Cyprus‘ unification. All Cypriots deserve a better European future. When it is about peace, you have to take the plane. It is risky, but when it is about peace you have to take risks. Those who are taking no risks are taking the greater risk.”

Meanwhile Greek opposition party, New Democracy, MP and head of the ND Sector for Foreign Affairs Mr. George Koumoutsakos, stated that “the Geneva process, which today enters a decisive phase, can – and should – be an important stop on the way to the reunification of Cyprus.”

Koumoutsakos added that “there is a positive dynamic, but serious outstanding issues remain” in order for a functional and thus viable solution to be achieved.

The MP underlined that ND supports the efforts of Cyprus President Nicos Anastasiades “to put an end to the intolerable occupation situation, which has for 43 years divided the island”.

“Turkey should contribute, by withdrawing the occupation forces, abandoning invasive claims on European soil and by respecting international law”, he said.

Koutsakos concluded that to this end “we expect a meaningful and effective involvement of the partners and allies, the European Union, of which the Republic of Cyprus is a member”./IBNA