President Anastasiades to brief party leaders ahead of meeting the UNSG and Akinci in NY

Cyprus President Nicos Anastasiades will be briefing the leaders of the parliamentary parties on Friday afternoon, ahead of his meeting in New York on Sunday with UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres and Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci.

Guterres has invited the two leaders to NY on Sunday evening to discuss the state of play in the UN-facilitated peace talks and the way forward.

Yesterday, Elizabeth Spehar, the Special Representative of the UN Secretary General in Cyprus expressed hope that discussions on Sunday could help move the Cyprus peace forward and perhaps reconvene a new conference on Cyprus in Geneva.

President Anastasiades said on Thursday that if there is no irrationality or refusal to discuss the essence of the issue of guarantees, the prospects for a new Geneva Conference ?n Cyprus could exist.

The President was invited to comment on statements made by Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci and Turkish Minister of Foreign Affairs Mevlut Cavusoglu earlier that they do not intend to travel to Geneva on any terms and conditions.

The meeting of the two leaders, President Anastasiades and Akinci under the auspices of Antonio Guterrres is set to take place at his office, at the United Nations headquarters.

Guterres Special Advisor on Cyprus Espen Barth Eide will be present in New York, at the working dinner. The negotiators of the two sides, Andreas Mavroyiannis and Ozdil Nami, are also expected to attend.

CNA has learned from a top diplomatic source at the UN that the SG does not intend to impose anything on the leaders but rather he wishes to hear their views about the state of play in the negotiations and the steps to be followed.

President Anastasiades will be arriving in NY late on Saturday. After the meeting at the UN, he is set to depart for Washington to address the American Jewish Community (AJC) Global Forum. More than 2,500 participants will attend the Forum and more than 70 countries are represented.

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, President Anastasiades and 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-backed talks since May 2015 with a view to reunify the island under a federal roof.

Source: Cyprus News Agency