Each state is entitled to have its own views but the UNSC decides on UNFICYP’s mandate, Siddique tells CNA

Each UN member state is entitled to have its own views, but the renewal of the UN peacekeeping force in Cyprus (UNFICYP) mandate is a UN Security Council decision, UNFICYP spokesperson Aleem Siddique has told the Cyprus News Agency (CNA).

He was invited to comment the press release issued by the Turkish Foreign Ministry on Wednesday regarding the United Nations Security Council resolution 2453 on the extension of UNFICYP’s mandate for six more months.

Every member state is entitled to have its own views on UN Security Council decisions, but all decisions pertaining the UN peacekeeping operations are made by the Security Council. The renewal of UNFICYP’s mandate is the decision of the Security Council, Siddique told CNA.

The Turkish Foreign Minister claimed, among others, in its press release that the UN Security Council has adopted a position which goes beyond the UN Secretary-General’s views, and has voiced prejudgments regarding the result of the ongoing contacts by the UN Official assigned on a temporary basis by the UN Secretary-General and the possible future shape of the settlement process.

Meanwhile CNA has learned that the UNSG’s envoy Jane Holl Lute, who will have meetings with Cyprus President Nicos Anastasiades and Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci on Sunday, with a view to reach an agreement between the sides on the terms of reference that will pave the way for the resumption of the negotiations, will arrive in Cyprus on Saturday evening.

Lute is scheduled to meet with the UNSG’s Special Representative in Cyprus Elizabeth Spehar on Sunday morning, before her meetings with the leaders, as well as on Sunday evening, after the meetings. She is scheduled to leave the island late on Monday afternoon.

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 the summer of 2017 at the Swiss resort of Crans-Montana ended inconclusively.

Source: Cyprus News Agency