CYPRUS WORKING GROUP ON SECURITY TO MEET FOR 3 DAYS

A working group of technocrats formed to prepare a report on security arrangements after a Cyprus reunification settlement is due to convene from Jan 18 to Jan 20, Cypriot government spokesman said.

Nicos Christodoulides said in his Twitter account the technocrats will meet in Mont Peleren, Switzerland, to try to hammer out a report after which a conference will be convened.

The technocrats will come from the foreign ministries of guarantor powers Greece, Turkey and Britain, the European Commission (EU), the United Nations secretariat and the two communities of Cyprus involved in the negotiations for the reunification of the eastern Mediterranean island.

The parties agreed to set up the group after an initial conference on Jan 12 in Geneva could not immediately agree on future security arrangements.

Greek and Turkish Cypriots, the parties immediately involved in the negotiations, have agreed that the security of one side must not consist a threat of the other side.

The group of experts has been mandated to pin point the issues involved and suggest modalities of a breakthrough.

After they complete their job a new summit of politicians, possibly at a level higher than the foreign ministers who met in Jan 12, will be convened to make a decision on security arrangements and the modification of the 1960 system of guarantees.

There are more pending issues between the two sides that have to be settled before an agreement is completed.

Most important among these are adjustment of internal boundaries and the return of tens of thousands Greek Cypriots displaced in the 1974 action.

The two sides submitted maps in Geneva but each one has said that it cannot accept the map of the other.

They are close to an agreement that the Turkish Cypriot side will control between 28 and 29 percent of the island’s territory, but they disagree on which regions now under occupation will be returned to Greek Cypriots.

Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK