Cyprus Foreign Affairs Minister, Ioannis Kasoulides, met on Thursday morning with the UN Secretary General`s Special Representative in Cyprus, Colin Stewart.
The Cyprus News Agency (CNA) has learned that the aim of the meeting was to discuss, in view of the UN Security Council`s resolution for the renewal of the UN peacekeeping force in Cyprus (UNFICYP) mandate until July 31, 2022, the situation of the Cyprus problem and efforts to improve the relations between the two sides. In addition, the two also discussed a way to lift the current stalemate so that the process for a settlement can get back on track.
Stewart was also going to meet on Thursday with the "foreign minister" of the Turkish Cypriot puppet regime. A source has told CNA that the UN diplomat will continue his meetings with stakeholders on the island and will hold discussions with them in view of the UN Security Council resolution.
Meanwhile, another well-informed source told the Agency that the implementation of Confidence Building Measures (CBMs) has been hindered by the intention of the Turkish Cypriot side to attribute a sense of "intergovernmental cooperation" to such measures.
The same source said that "various minor issues were discussed at the bicommunal Technical Committees meeting and there can be an agreement on some of them. We are talking about minor steps."
Furthermore, the source said that the other side is trying to present everything as an `intergovernmental cooperation' "that is why most of them stumble upon terminology issues."
The source went on to say that significant CBMs proposed by Cyprus President Nicos Anastasiades such as the one related to Famagusta, also stumble on the other side`s effort to discuss them in the framework of an "intergovernmental cooperation" to promote the idea of "two states" on the island.
Moreover, the source referred to an action plan for the participation of women in the peace process that has not been officially announced, noting that the UN Security Council was informed about it, and there is a reference about it in the UNSC resolution.
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.