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21 May, 2024
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Deadlock could be broken if EU takes the lead, says Christodoulides

The president-elect was responding to a question about the deadlock in the Cyprus problem negotiations

Source: CNA

The deadlock could break if the EU undertakes a central role in efforts to solve the Cyprus problem, President-elect, Nikos Christodoulides, said on Monday evening.

He was responding to questions by journalists during a visit to Paralimni to thank volunteers and all those who supported his candidacy. Invited to comment on a statement by Turkish Cypriot leader, Ersin Tatar, that it will be difficult to agree with him, Christodoulides said that he looks forward to his meeting - which takes place at the request - with Tatar on Thursday.

He added that he is fully aware of Tatar's positions and approaches, noting that despite difficulties and different approaches the Greek Cypriot side will do its utmost with a view to breaking the deadlock and the dialogue for a Cyprus settlement to resume.

Christodoulides said that the message to the whole people of Cyprus, Turkish Cypriots and Greek Cypriots, is that the current state of affairs does not constitute the settlement of the Cyprus problem, adding that the current situation is dangerous both for Turkish Cypriots and Greek Cypriots. The deadlock should break and the dialogue should resume, with the EU playing a central role, he added.

Asked about a possible meeting between him and UN Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres, in late March, in Brussels, Christodoulides said that Guterres will attend a working lunch with the EU Heads of State and Government, adding that there will be an opportunity for a short discussion. Moreover, he expressed hope that they will be able to have a bilateral meeting with Guterres, which he considers important.

Invited to say when the composition of his government will be announced the President-elect said that everything will take place in due time, adding they are making efforts so that when the new government takes over, it will be able to implement the promises made to the people of Cyprus.

Asked about his meeting on Wednesday with the UNSG's Special Representative in Cyprus, Colin Stewart, Christodoulides said that they will certainly discuss the meeting with Tatar and generally the role which the UN can play in cooperation with the EU.

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. The latest round of negotiations, in July 2017 at the Swiss resort of Crans-Montana ended inconclusively.

Cyprus  |  Turkey

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