14 December 2017

UN chief to return to Cyprus talks Thursday

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Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said Tuesday that UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres would return to Cyprus talks in the Swiss Alps on Thursday to speed up the reunification process. reports citing Anadolu news.

"It is very simple. We wanted him to come here and he is coming on Thursday. This is serious business and his role is important," Cavusoglu told reporters after a meeting in Crans-Montana, Switzerland with representatives from the Turkish and Greek Cypriot sides and those from two guarantor countries, Greece and the U.K.

"When he (Guterres) was here, we decided on the framework of the talks, and he brought positive energy. So, his presence is very important because, this is very important conference and the final conference," Cavusoglu added.

In a response to a question whether there is progress, Cavusoglu said "Moving slowly, slowly."

Earlier Tuesday, Cavusoglu criticized Greek Cypriots for not showing "good intentions and flexibility" in reunification talks taking place in the Swiss resort of Crans-Montana.

"If there is to be a solution, we should decide this week, because this is the last conference," Cavusoglu said.

"We have shown good intentions and flexibility but, this should get a response. Unfortunately, we could not see any positive response from the other side. We also saw that some confidential documents were leaked despite promises," Cavusoglu said.

Cavusoglu said Ankara could not accept “zero troops” in Cyprus.

Turkish Cypriot President Mustafa Akinci added: "The Turkish Cypriot side as well as the Turkish side follow the parameters that have been set by the secretary general and we are working hard along those lines, and we hope that the coming few days will be productive."

The four party representatives issued a joint statement inviting Guterres to return to the Swiss Alps, saying progress was slower in the second week of talks than in the first.

Cavusoglu also said Guterres should return to Crans-Montana regardless of progress.

Guterres left the Swiss resort Saturday after participating in the Cyprus conference on Friday, along with Turkish and Greek Cypriot leaders as well as the guarantor countries -- Turkey, Greece and Britain.

The latest round of Cyprus talks in Crans-Montana began June 28.

On Monday, the UN received proposals from the Turkish and Greek Cypriot sides, as well as from the three guarantor countries -- Turkey, Greece and the U.K.

The UN is seeking a peace deal to unite Cyprus under a federal umbrella, which could also define the future of Europe's relations with Turkey, a key player in the conflict.

The Eastern Mediterranean island has been divided since 1974, when a Greek Cypriot coup was followed by violence against the island's Turks, and Ankara's intervention as a guarantor power.

2017.07.05 / 09:12
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