The President of the Republic receives the credentials of the Ambassador of Bosnia and Herzegovina

The President of the Republic, Mr Nicos Anastasiades, received today, at a formal ceremony at the Presidential Palace, the credentials of the Ambassador of Bosnia and Herzegovina to the Republic of Cyprus, Mrs Jelena Rajakovic, stationed in Tel Aviv.

Presenting his credentials, Ambassador Rajakovic said:

Your Exellency,

Please allow me to thank you for the honor to perform the duty of the Ambassador of Bosnia and Herzegovina to the Republic of Cyprus.

I wish to convey sincere and friendly greetings of Bosnia and Herzegovina Presidency, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and all institutions of Bosnia and Herzegovina. I would especially like to convey greetings of all peoples and citizens of my country.

I intend to perform this honorable duty with full responsibility, and my diplomatic work and activities will be directed towards strengthening and improving the relations between our two countries.

Bosnia and Herzegovina and Republic of Cyprus have good relations and there are objective possibilities for their improvement. Our intention is to intensify cooperation in the future and I am convinced that both politically and economically relations will strengthen in coming years.

Regarding the Cyprus question, Bosnia and Herzegovina supports a fair comprehensive and viable settlement of the Cyprus problem within the UN framework, in accordance with UN Security Council resolutions.

During the period when Bosnia and Herzegovina was a member of the UN Security Council (2010-2011), the Council had held eight consultations on Cyprus. Representatives of Bosnia and Herzegovina participated at each of those meetings and expressed full support to the negotiating sides in Cyprus for their efforts.

Your Exellency,

I take this opportunity to thank for the assistance that Republic of Cyprus provided to my country on the European path. Also I would like to convey to you sincere wishes for the good of your country and the welfare of all its citizens, and the assurance of my higher consideration.

Receiving the credentials, the President of the Republic said:

Your Excellency,

It gives me great pleasure to receive today your Letters of Credence appointing you as the new Ambassador of Bosnia and Herzegovina to the Republic of Cyprus. ? wish to assure you that my Government will provide every assistance in the performance of you high duties.

The bilateral relations between Cyprus and Bosnia and Herzegovina have steadily improved during the last few years. In this respect, I truly believe that our two countries can join efforts and work towards deepening even further our bilateral relations, as well as strengthening our cooperation and coordination in the bilateral and multilateral levels.

The Republic of Cyprus supports the European perspective of Bosnia and Herzegovina and wishes to commend the Government of Bosnia and Herzegovina for its ongoing efforts and the meaningful progress in the implementation of the Reform Agenda, which has been agreed by the Bosnia and Herzegovina authorities at all levels. In this respect, I wish you every success in your European path, and I take this opportunity to reiterate that Cyprus stands ready to provide any assistance possible for promoting Bosnia and Herzegovina’s relations with the European Union.

Excellency,

Almost four years ago, just after my election as President of the Republic of Cyprus, this country was faced with nothing less than economic collapse. Today, Cyprus can be justifiably projected as a success story of economic reform. With the determination of my Government, the resilience of key productive sectors of the economy and the sacrifice and hard work of the Cypriot people, we have achieved:

? to address fiscal imbalances, through growth-friendly consolidation,

? to have a restructured and fully recapitalized banking sector, mainly through big international investors,

? to undertake and implement radical structural reforms,

? to return to the international markets much earlier than any other programme country, and

? to restore our credibility and regain confidence in the Cypriot economy.

Our ambitious reform agenda, aspires to lay the foundations for long-term sustainable growth, improving the business environment, which will increasingly attract foreign direct investments in the productive sectors of the economy. Towards this direction, there is a continuing process to modernise and reform the current tax and legal framework, while the effort to reform the public service and modernize our legislation continues, with additional measures underway, such as accelerated licensing procedures, updated permanent residency and citizenship programmes, the introduction of e-government and sector-related incentive schemes. Our reform agenda is aiming to eventually transform our economic model, to enhance our competitive edge and to attract foreign direct investments, in order to achieve sustained growth and prosperity for all Cypriots.

Your Excellency,

As regards the ongoing negotiating process to reach a comprehensive settlement on the Cyprus problem, for the last 18 months a new effort has begun which has provided, I have to admit, positive results. Progress has been achieved in the Chapters of Governance and Power-Sharing, Economy, EU and to a lesser extent the Chapter of Property.

I need to underline, however, that despite the remarkable progress achieved, differences remain on a number of issues relating to the Chapters I have mentioned.

Nevertheless, and in order to address another fundamental Chapter, that of the territorial adjustments �the outcome of which will significantly contribute towards reaching an agreement on the outstanding issues of the Property Chapter-, on October 26 it was decided to commence a new phase of intensive negotiations at Mont Pelerin, in Switzerland, focusing on this particular Chapter.

During the two rounds of discussions that followed, despite the progress that had been achieved in one of the three main criteria, which should govern territorial adjustments, we did not reach an agreement on the other two criteria. This prevented the submission of maps and consequently the negotiating process came to a deadlock.

On 1 December, and in order to safeguard the momentum of the negotiations and to prevent an overall halt of the process with unpredictable consequences, we agreed to resume and intensify the dialogue in Cyprus from the point it was left-off at Mont PAlerin.

This will lead to a three-day meeting to be held in Geneva between 9-11 of January 2017, with the aim of achieving further convergences on the internal aspects of the Cyprus problem.

On 11 January maps will be submitted on territorial adjustments. Progress on the above issues will allow us to come within reach of an agreement by creating the conditions and prospects for a successful conclusion of the multilateral Conference on Cyprus on 12th of January, which will discuss issues that relate to the international aspects of the Cyprus problem, and in particular on the Chapter of Security and Guarantees and ways and means to ensure the smooth implementation of the settlement.

At this critical juncture, I wish to reassure of my determination to reach a successful outcome at the negotiations in Geneva, so as to achieve a settlement that will reunify our country and fulfill the vision of the people of Cyprus of building an attractive future for our youth and the generations to come, setting an example for peace-making and enhancing security and stability in our region.

A settlement based on a bicommunal, bizonal federation with political equality, as set out in the relevant Security Council Resolutions, the High Level Agreements and the Joint Declaration of February 2014, with a single international legal personality, a single sovereignty and a single citizenship.

A settlement that will:

? Reunite our country, its people, the economy and institutions;

? Create a win-win situation for all Cypriots, taking into account the sensitivities and concerns of both communities;

? Ensure a modern member-state of the EU and UN, enjoying full sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity;

? Restore and fully respect the fundamental freedoms and human rights of all its lawful citizens;

? Rid Cyprus of third country military troops or guarantees, an anachronism in today’s World.

To this end, Turkey’s contribution in tangible terms in these negotiations is vital. There is no solution that can be reached without Turkey’s input. We do therefore expect Turkey, which is responsible for the illegal stationing of more than 40.000 occupation troops in Cyprus, to take practical and concrete steps towards this direction, particularly during the upcoming Conference of Cyprus, taking into account not only the benefit of the people of Cyprus, but also the positive impact a settlement will have to regional stability and cooperation.

Excellency,

In welcoming you to Cyprus, I would kindly request that you convey to the Government and the friendly people of Bosnia and Herzegovina my warmest greetings and a message of sincere friendship and solidarity. I conclude by assuring you once more of the support of my Government to your valuable mission, so that your tenure will be highly constructive and fruitful, and carried out in such a way that the genuine relationship that Cyprus enjoys with Bosnia Herzegovina will further flourish.

Present at the ceremony were the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr Christoforos Fokaides, the Chief of Protocol, Mr Marios Kountourides, and the Head of Presidency at the Presidential Palace, Mr Kypros Kyprianou.

Source: Press and Information Office