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23 July, 2024
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Christodoulides' UN call: A bold push for Cyprus reunification

Advocating resolution and a fresh start for the island

Newsroom / CNA

In his address before the 78th UN General Assembly today, the President of the Republic of Cyprus, Nicos Christodoulides, will emphasize six key areas of focus, with the majority centered on addressing the Cyprus problem and the prospects for resuming negotiations while referencing the foundation for a solution.

This marks President Christodoulides' inaugural speech at this prestigious global gathering, which convenes leaders from across the world, following his election to the highest office of the Republic.

Responding to Erdogan

President Christodoulides' 12-page speech, as reported by the Cypriot News Agency, will provide a direct response to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's recent speech before the General Assembly. Addressing Erdogan, President Christodoulides will underscore that given their unalterable geographic proximity, Cyprus and Turkey will forever be neighbors. He will argue that resolving the Cyprus problem has the potential to bolster and enhance regional stability, urging a return to negotiations, and emphasizing that a Cyprus settlement can yield mutual benefits.

UN Envoy Appointment

Regarding the appointment of a UN envoy, President Christodoulides will stress its significance, echoing the UN Security Council's recent unanimous statement concerning the Pyla incidents and in line with the positions conveyed to him by the Presidents of the three EU institutions during his talks in New York on September 18 and 19. He will emphasize that the appointment of the Secretary-General's envoy represents a crucial step in activating EU involvement in the forthcoming period, a pivotal aspect of ongoing negotiation efforts.

First Post-War Generation President

Furthermore, President Christodoulides will highlight his distinction as the first President of the Republic of Cyprus from the post-war generation, specifically the post-1974 era. This reference holds both symbolic and essential importance, as it signifies the generation tasked with growing up in a semi-occupied nation, a generation that did not experience the invasion and is now entrusted with the mission to reunify Cyprus.

Message to the New Generation

Drawing on personal references, President Christodoulides will recall the historic peaceful coexistence of Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots. He will also extend a message to the new generation of both communities, encouraging them to work towards recreating such conditions through the resolution of the Cyprus problem.

Acknowledging Turkish Cypriot Support

President Christodoulides will acknowledge the numerous messages he received from Turkish Cypriots following his recent interview with a Turkish Cypriot journalist. These messages express a shared desire for a solution to the Cyprus problem, support for his commitment to the agreed framework for a solution, and recognition of his efforts to foster a positive climate.

Historical Mission and UN's Role

The President of the Republic will also reflect on the historical mission and role of the UN, emphasizing that the Ukraine invasion is not the first instance of aggression since World War II. He will underscore that Cyprus' 49-year ordeal resulting from the invasion and occupation is a fundamental issue that touches upon the principles enshrined in the UN Charter.

President Christodoulides' speech is scheduled for 4:30 pm Cyprus time (9:30 am NY time) and is expected to last approximately 15 minutes.

Additionally, later today, at 11:00 pm Cyprus time (4:00 pm local time), President Christodoulides will meet, as part of the Nicosia-Athens coordination, with Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis, who is scheduled to meet earlier in the day at 6:00 pm Cyprus time (11:00 am local time) with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

Following his address at the General Assembly, President Christodoulides will also host the president of Chevron International.

Subsequently, after his meeting with Mr. Mitsotakis, President Christodoulides will proceed to the Archdiocese of America for a meeting with Archbishop Elpidophoros of America.

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