Steinmeir urges leaders to seize opportunity for a Cyprus settlement 

Steinmeir urges leaders to seize opportunity for a Cyprus settlement 

Nicosia, November 18, 2015/Independent Balkan News Agency

German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier believes that Cypriots have the historic chance to reunite the last divided country in Europe which, if missed, might not come again for decades.

Speaking at the reception of the German Embassy in Cyprus on Tuesday evening, Steinmeier said his country follows developments very closely and congratulated the leaders of both communities on their courage and far-sightedness.

He also congratulated the religious leaders on their presence and commitment to a peaceful coexistence of the two communities, an embassy press release says.

Steinmeir said Germany overcame its division twenty-five years ago and in this light, he was pleased that “our Cypriot partners have accepted our offer to re-examine together our experience of a complex unification process: through a series of seminars organized by the Goethe-Institute and the German Embassy. Not as a blueprint, but more as an attempt to provide some food for thought for representatives of both sides here in Cyprus”.

He said “you have the historic chance to reunite the last divided country in Europe. A chance that, if missed, might not come again for decades! It is an opportunity that I encourage you all to seize”, he remarked and assured that Germany and the European Union “are by your side in this process”.

Referring to the terrorist attacks in Paris, he said the scale of the horror embodied by the
violence defies the comprehension of everyone, adding that Europe stands firm by the side of the French.

Steinmeier said the uneasy truth is that there are no simple solutions when it comes to joint efforts to fight against extremists, against terrorism, and to end the brutal conflicts in the Middle East and Northern Africa. Noting that military action on its own will not provide the answer, Steinmeier said “we must continue to work on political solutions, particularly in the case of Syria”.

Source: CNA