President Anastasiades: New Geneva conference not ruled out, but we must be well prepared

The President of Cyprus Nicos Anastasiades has not ruled out the possibility of attending a new Conference on Cyprus, pointing out however that this must be well prepared.

Speaking tonight at the Presidential Palace, in Nicosia, after returning from a meeting he had with the Turkish Cypriot leader, in the context of the ongoing UN-facilitated peace talks, President Anastasiades said the climate between him and Mustafa Akinci was better than the results of their meeting.

The two leaders discussed the chapters of property and governance, as well as “the day after” a settlement.

It was an extensive discussion on a series of issues. We agreed that the negotiators will continue to look further for convergences and we will reevaluate the whole course on the 17 of this month the President noted. He said that the climate was good but this alone in not good enough.

Asked about the ideas the UN want to present the two leaders with, President Anastasiades replied that he had not seen any change in the ideas he was familiar with.

The issue, he said, is the methodology of the discussion but without the will to move away from positions that create problems, I don’t think it is the methodology that’s missing.

On May 17, when the leaders meet anew, they will assess the whole course, outstanding issues and the way forward, the President added.

Asked if they discussed considerations in relation to energy developments, as put forward by the Special Adviser to the UN Secretary General on Cyprus, Espen Barth Eide, the President said that this issue has been discussed with Eide separately.

Speaking bout the possibility of a new conference, President Anastasiades said that we don’t rule out a new Geneva, the point is to go there being well prepared.

He wondered, at the same time, if Turkey is ready to discuss the issue of security and guarantees or if they will go to the conference, raise peoples’ expectations and then return without any result or an impasse.

What we aim for is to find a settlement, not to find the way to terminate the dialogue the President concluded.

The Republic of Cyprus has been divided since 1974, when Turkish troops invaded and occupied 37% of its territory. President Anastasiades and Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa 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