President Nicos Anastasiades said on Wednesday he is promoting an initiative with the involvement of the European Union to avert any new Turkish faits accomplis on the island and to create the conditions for a settlement of the Cyprus problem, ahead of elections in Cyprus, Greece and Turkey.
Responding to questions before attending a lunch hosted by the Czech presidency of the EU, Anastasiades said that he does not expect that social meetings, such as the one with the Turkish Cypriot leader during a UN event later today, would achieve the aim of the resumption of the UN-led talks on Cyprus, which have been stalled since the inconclusive talks in the Swiss resort of Crans Montana in July of 2017.
“But I hold the latest visit by the UN Assistant Secretary-General for Europe who has assured that the UN SG’s interest remains active so that the necessary conditions for the resumption of the dialogue would be created,” Anastasiades said, acknowledging however that “in this period no one would expect any development due to elections in Cyprus, Greece and Turkey.”
Noting that he hopes that the UN Chief’s determination would be translated into the appointment of a special envoy on Cyprus, President Anastasiades added that he is promoting “an initiative on behalf of the EU, in collaboration with the UN, ahead of the resumption of the dialogue to avoid any new faits accomplis by Turkey and to prepare the ground so with certain initiatives the EU in collaboration with the UN would play a positive role towards the solution of the Cyprus problem, always on the basis of the UN resolutions, the EU acquis to the benefit of Cypriots, Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots alike.”
Replying to a question, Anastasiades said the first stage is averting any new faits accomplis and the next is in the run-up to the elections in the three countries to prepare the EU in collaboration with the UN “so that they could present a proposal that, without deviating from the UN resolutions, could form the common basis for reaching a functional and viable solution to our national problem.”
Cyprus has been divided since 1974 when Turkey invaded and occupied its northern third. Repeated rounds of UN-led peace talks have so far failed to yield results.