We hope dinner with UNSG will lead to substantive talks on security, Cyprus Government says

Nicosia hopes that the dinner Antonio Guterres will host tonight in New York for the leaders of Cyprus’ two communities will pave the way for substantive discussions on the core issue of the Cyprus problem concerning security and guarantees.

We hope that the outcome of tonight’s dinner with the UN Secretary General and the Turkish Cypriot leaders will pave the way for a substantive and result orientated discussion on the most pivotal chapter, that of security and guarantees, Government Spokesman Nikos Christodoulides said after a meeting in New York, chaired by Cyprus President Nicos Anastasiades, in preparation for the dinner.

If this materializes, it could help the entire peace process and the goal for a comprehensive solution in Cyprus, the Spokesman added.

He stressed that the will of the President and the Greek Cypriot side to achieve a solution cannot be questioned by anybody.

We believe that the time has come for Turkey as well, with regard to this most important chapter in the Cyprus negotiations, if Ankara really wants a solution to open up its cards and have a substantive and result orientated discussion on this core aspect of the Cyprus question, which will determine how the peace process will continue, Christodoulides told the press.

The dinner, hosted by Antonio Guterres at UN headquarters in New York, is expected to last three hours.

Guterress is expected to hear what the two sides will have to say about the course of the negotiations and how to move forward.

On Monday morning, Guterres’ Special Advisor on Cyprus Espen Barth Eide will brief the five permanent members of the UN Security Council and will also meet Turkish Ambassador Feridun Hadi Sinirlioglu, Undersecretary of Foreign Affairs.

President Anastasiades and Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci are in New York, having accepted an invitation to dinner by the UN Secretary General in an effort to help make headway in the Cyprus peace process.

Anastasiades and Akinci have been engaged in talks since May 2015 to find a negotiated settlement that will reunite Cyprus, divided since the 1974 Turkish invasion, under a federal roof.

Turkey does not recognise the Republic of Cyprus. So far it has refused to discuss security concerns, and insists that the anachronistic system of guarantees of 1960 is maintained (Ankara is one of three guarantor powers – the other two being Greece and the UK). Nicosia disagrees with such a prospect.

Source: Cyprus News Agency