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10° Nicosia,
16 February, 2019
 

#PoliticsBlog The imposing Mrs Lute and the moment of truth

Onasagoras

Onasagoras

I guess I wasn’t wrong when I likened Lute’s visit to that of a special mission of one of the Bond girls, at least, not in the familiar sense when we watch 007’s Bond girls on the big screen.

But besides the obvious fun and chatter that ensued (I hear my depiction even got the discussion going over at the United Nations) Mrs. Lute did have all the personality traits of a madam.

She came with a serious and imposing look on her face to meet seperately with Healthy Nic and Mustafa. If I was a fly on those walls, I imagine I would hear something like “my name is Lute. Jane Holl Lute!” while staring them down.

“Enough of your shenanigans, it’s time to get serious. As you can see gentlemen, I came alone. So, you better put all your cards on the table.”

The imposing Mrs. Lute corroborates up to this point what FinMin Nicos Christodoulides said about her visit to Cyprus, that basically it signals a moment of truth on the Cyprus issue. The readiness on the part of SG Guterres and the United Nations to make another effort to figure out whether or not there is hope in the Cyprus problem.

'What a precise strike of balance in assigning responsibilities, not even the UN would be capable of that,' declared one political leader who read Andros’ statement

At the same time, political leaders are anything but on the same page on how to handle the situation.

While most party leaders are basically waiting to see what happens, Akel’s Andros Kyprianou is berating Healthy Nic declaring in advance that the success of Guterres’ envoy and her mission will depend on what the Turkish side will tell her but also what President Anastasiades will tell her.

“What a precise strike of balance in assigning responsibilities, I don’t think even the United Nations would be capable of that,” declared one political leader who read Andros’ statement.

That same leader noted that “the situation with the other leaders isn’t that much better but at least they haven’t made it their mission to throw mud at the president before he even met with the UN envoy, unlike others as if they owed and had to repay a debt.”

The same person sees as failure the fact that “in the official written statement by Stefanos Stefanou, following the Anastasiades-Lute meeting, the president is once again on the receiving end of hasty criticism for the possibility that he might not have given a crystal clear answer like the one Guterres is expecting regarding a restart of negotiations. In the AKEL statement, as a matter of fact, there is no mention of Akinci but simply stating the hope that “the Turkish Cypriot side will act positively…”

I am also hearing from Mrs. Yiannoulla, who hears everything and then some that goes on in and around the corridors over at Ezekia Papaioannou street. So there was a big discussion over at Akel for the fact that Anastasiades would brief the party leaders following the Lute meeting and not before when he could hear more views.

“Someone suggested we’ll need to keep drilling him on this point all the time,” she said.

I am also hearing from the Hill of executive powers that Healthy Nic did not make much of Lute’s hard-to-read face and that he is waiting to get a clearer picture soon of the kind of services the envoy could offer.

However, his priority now is to meet with the party leaders.

According to my source, “the president understands there will be tension during the meeting and the jury is still out on whether he should worry more about Akel or the opposition in the centre.

One thing is for sure. The president will need to be very well prepared for this, perhaps even better than he was with Lute, if he wants to get through the meeting.”

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