President holds telephone conversations with Eide and Duncan

Cyprus President Nicos Anastasiades had on Monday telephone conversations with the UN Secretary Generals Special Adviser on Cyprus Espen Barth Eide and the British Minister for Europe Sir Alan Duncan, after the conclusion of the Summit of the seven Southern EU countries that took place in Madrid, Government Spokesman Nikos Christodoulides has told CNA.

Replying to a question, Christodoulides noted that Anastasiades spoke with Eide on the phone, in view of the resumption of the UN-led talks on the Cyprus problem, on Tuesday, and more specifically about what should be expected from the meeting which Anastasiades and Turkish Cypiot leader Mustafa Akinci will have tomorrow, in the framework of the negotiations.

He added that the two leaders meeting will mainly focus on procedural issues and that Anastasiades and Akinci will discuss about the way forward and the further steps concerning the process.

The spokesman also said Anastasiades spoke on the phone with British Minister Sir Alan Duncan on the occasion of the resumption of the Cyprus talks on Tuesday. He noted that Duncan called Anastasiades to express the UKs support to the process.

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

The UN have announced that talks for a Cyprus solution will resume on April 11 after a lull since mid February, when Akinci walked out of a meeting, claiming that a House decision to commemorate, briefly, in school a 1950 referendum advocating union with Greece was in fact a shift in the long standing position of the Greek Cypriot side for a bicommunal, bizonal federal solution in Cyprus.

President Anastasiades had described the decision “wrong”, saying the timing was not right. Akinci said he would not return to the negotiations unless the decision was revoked. The House voted last Friday on an amendment on the bill, which essentially annuls the earlier House decision.

Source: Cyprus News Agency