Guterres pleased with Sunday’s dinner with the leaders, Spehar tells CNA

Elizabeth Spehar, the Special Representative of the UN Secretary General in Cyprus, has said Antonio Guterres is pleased that the leaders of Cyprus’ two communities have accepted his invitation to meet at a dinner, in New York, on Sunday.

She expressed hope that discussions on Sunday could help move the Cyprus peace forward and perhaps reconvene a new conference on Cyprus in Geneva.

Speaking to CNA on the sidelines of a ceremony for the completion of restoration work at Agia Marina Church, in the Turkish occupied village of Agia Marina Skyllouras, Spehar said the Secretary General is of course pleased that the two leaders have agreed to have dinner with him on Sunday evening, along with Espen Eide, the Special Adviser.

The top UN official added that it is hoped that there will be a serious discussion on the way forward in the talks and in particular on the possibility of getting back soon to Geneva.

The Conference on Cyprus convened for the first time at the political level in January this year, in Geneva, under the auspices of the UN Secretary-General and with the participation of the leaders of Cyprus two communities, Cyprus President Nicos Anastasiades and Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci, the Foreign Ministers of Greece, Turkey and the United Kingdom as guarantor powers and in the presence of the European Union as an observer/interested party. The meeting aimed at addressing the issue of security and guarantees.

Cyprus has been divided since 1974 when Turkish troops invaded and occupied 37% of its territory. Anastasiades and Akinci have been engaged in UN-led talks since May 2015 with a view to reunite the island under a federal roof.

Source: Cyprus News Agency