President Anastasiades and his entourage leave for Crans-Montana

Cyprus President Nicos Anastasiades and his entourage departed on Tuesday morning for Crans-Montana, Switzerland, to attend the Conference on Cyprus, which begins on Wednesday, under the UN auspices.

Anastasiades said in a written statement on Monday that he is going to Switzerland with the sole purpose and intention of reaching an overall solution to the Cyprus problem and urged the Turkish and the Turkish Cypriot sides to come forward with the same determination and willingness to find a solution.

He also noted that the draft document which the UN Secretary General’s Special Adviser on Cyprus Espen Barth Eide has prepared does not bind him since it does not correspond to what was agreed during the 4th June meeting with the UNSG in New York.

Anastasiades said that the positions expressed by the Greek Cypriot side and the Greek government are not negative but they are a requirement for an impartial presentation of the positions of the parties involved.

President Anastasiades and Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci had a meeting on June 4 in New York with the UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres after which it was announced that the two leaderss and the UN Secretary-General agreed on the need to reconvene the Conference on Cyprus in June, in line with the 12 January statement of the Conference.

It was also said that the Special Adviser of the Secretary-General, Espen Barth Eide, would engage with all participants in the preparation of a common document to guide the discussions on security and guarantees, based on the outcome of the meetings of the Conference on Cyprus in Geneva and Mont Pelerin and that Anastasiades and Akinci also agreed to continue in parallel the bi-communal negotiations in Switzerland on all other outstanding issues, starting with territory, property and governance and power-sharing.

According to a press release issued on Monday by the Presidency of the Republic, Anastasiades is escorted by the Attorney General of the Republic Costas Clerides, the Greek Cypriot negotiator Andreas Mavroyiannis, Government Spokesman and Director of his Diplomatic Office Nikos Christodoulides, Undersecretary to the President Vasilis Palmas, Deputy Government Spokesman Victoras Papadopoulos and other officials.

He is also accompanied by the members of the negotiating team Erato Kozakou Markoulli, Kypros Chrysostomides, Polis Polyviou, Panagiotis Demetriou, Nikos Kleanthous, Toumazos Tsielepis, Marios Eliades, Constantinos Kombos, Aristotelis Constantinides, Nicolas Kyriakou and other technocrats.

Former President of the Republic George Vasiliou and political party representatives, namely Democratic Rally President Averof Neophytou, left-wing AKEL Secretary General Antros Kyprianou, Democratic Party President Nicolas Papadopoulos, Social Democrats Movement President Marinos Sizopoulos, Citizens Coalition leader George Lillikas, Solidarity Movement Deputy President Polis Pallikaros and Ecologists Envronmentalists Movement President George Perdikes also escort the President at his invitation.

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