President Anastasiades: I continue to support dialogue to achieve peace

Cyprus President Nicos Anastasiades assured on Thursday that the reunification of the island has been his primary and main concern and that he was and continues to be in favour of dialogue with a view to achieving peace.

Addressing the 56th General Meeting of the Employers and Industrialists Federation (OEV), Anastasiades said that the significant progress achieved at the negotiations was due “to the great efforts we have made on a series of decisive issues, such as the chapters of governance, economy, EU, property and partly the territory issue.”

The President said that despite the progress achieved at the talks, problems remain concerning the functionality of the state, and have an impact on human rights, creating concerns as regards the first day after the solution, instead of conditions of stability and prospect for the future.

Anastasiades assured that his vision which is the vision of all the Greek Cypriots and of the vast majority of the Turkish Cypriots can be achieved as long as we all, Greek Cypriots but particularly Turkish Cypriots, understand that the sensitivities and concerns of each community must be met by the other.

If we want to create a state which will have prospects for the future, we will have to bear in mind that it must be fully harmonized with the EU principles and values, it must be functional so that we dont see phenomena we faced in the past, it must be financially viable, he stressed.

He added that at the same time, Turkey has to understand that demands such as the continuation of guarantees, the implementation of the four freedoms for Turkish citizens increase the mistrust of Greek Cypriots as regards Ankaras intention to reach a settlement that will be accepted by both communities.

The President assured that he will not stop working until the last day of his tenure with a view to realize his vision for a settlement accepted by both communities, which will allow the new state to survive, and the new generations to feel safe.

This is the only way a mutually accepted settlement can be achieved, he added, noting that in a European environment security relies on the democratic institutions and the respect of human rights, as well as on the implementation of the EU regulations.

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