TRNC News Today 1st October 2013

PRESIDENT EROĞLU: “THE TURKISH CYPRIOT SIDE IS READY TO START THE NEGOTIATIONS WITH A TIMETABLE”

President Derviş Eroğlu, upon returning to the island after completing his New York contacts yesterday evening  (30th September), evaluated his visit at a press conference in Ercan Airport.

Stressing that the Turkish Cypriot side was ready for the resumption of the negotiations towards comprehensive settlement of the problem within the framework of a time limit, Eroğlu said they expected the same will from the Greek Cypriot side.

Dervis eroglu
Derviş Eroğlu

Noting that the Greek Cypriot side besides its known delaying tactics, were trying to ignore the convergences reached up to now and to put pre-conditions for the start of the process, Eroğlu said : “the most obvious example of this was the Greek Cypriot leader Anastasiades’ letters to the UN Secretary General and the President of the EU Commission. The contents of these letters also appeared in the Greek Cypriot Press. Anastasiades, among other issues, also noted in his letters that the new partnership will emerge from the evolution of ‘The Cyprus Republic’ which is completely a Greek Cypriot State now.  Such a position has never been a UN parameter in any phase of the negotiations”.

Eroğlu stressed that the State which would emerge with the agreement of both sides, would be a new partnership State and it was obvious that this would come out with the equal consent of both sides. Eroğlu added that they would not accept approaches and regulations which would undermine or dilute Security and Guarantees and that the preservation of bizonality as defined by the UN was vital for the Turkish Cypriot side.

Noting that despite having been elected 7 months ago, Anastasiades did not sit at the table with the Turkish Cypriot side, Eroğlu said he expected Anastasiades to accept the progress achieved so far and show the political will necessary for reaching a solution by the end of this year.

Stating that the Turkish Cypriot side made the biggest gesture by saying ‘Yes’ to the Annan Plan, Eroğlu stressed that it was time for the Greek Cypriot side to make a gesture.

Noting that the Turkish Cypriot side’s aim was to reach a comprehensive settlement by the end of this year, Eroğlu stressed this would be followed by a multi-partite conference where all sides would attend and all the remaining issues would be concluded. He pointed out that if an agreement was reached, it would be submitted to a referandum to be held separately and simultaneously on both sides. Eroğlu also noted that this problem should be solved immediately without further delay.

Speaking about the territory issue, President Eroğlu once more stressed that this issue would cause uneasiness in the country, thus it should be negotiated at the last phase of the negotiations.

FOREIGN MINISTER NAMİ: “STUDIES ARE CARRIED OUT ON A JOINT TEXT”

Minister of Foreign Affairs Özdil Nami evaluated his contacts in New York last week to the press.

Ozdil Nami
Özdil Nami

Speaking to Turkish Cypriot daily Yenidüzen, Foreign Minister Nami stated that they had fruitful contacts during The New York Summit in terms of the solution of the Cyprus problem and added that: “Two sides are working on a joint text under the supervision of the United Nations for the resumption of the negotiations”.

Pointing out that the UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon was insistent on the resumption of the negotiations without further delay, Foreign Minister Nami said: “There are divergences between the two sides on how the negotiations will be resumed. In order to eliminate these divergences and prepare a joint text on this issue, work has been started under the supervision of the UN”.

Foreign Minister Nami added that the special representatives of the two sides had already started to work on a ‘joint text’ which they were aiming to complete by next week when the UN Secretary General’s Special Advisor Alexander Downer would visit the island.  Noting that the joint text would be announced by the two leaders, Özdil Nami underlined that there was an agreement on the resumption of the negotiations in October.

Referring to the divergences on how the negotiations would be resumed, Foreign Minister Nami said:

“The Greek Cypriot side wants to take up the issues within the solution process together. It avoids giving a clear commitment with regard to the convergences reached until today.  The Greek Cypriot side is also against putting a certain time-frame for the negotiations and solution. On the other hand, the Turkish Cypriot side gives a clear commitment on the convergences reached to date. Furthermore, we are in favour of reaching an agreement on the existing convergences at first and then bringing all the issues to the table”.

Drawing attention to the fact that all political circles they met in New York were in favour of the resumption of the negotiations in October, Cyprus Will TheyNami said these circles were also against an open-ended negotiation process and insistently emphasized that there should be a time-frame in the negotiations.

Referring to the recent understanding of the UN to the effect that ‘it would be the last initiative for a final settlement’, Özdil Nami said: “We are entering into such a phase that somebody would pay for the lack of a solution. In other words, an open-ended negotiation process was out of question. Whoever prevents a solution would bear the consequences”.

“Leakage to the press of the Greek Cypriot leader’s letter sent to the UN Secretary General has created a serious discomfort”, said Nami, stressing that they also observed that there was dissatisfaction with regard to the content of the letter.

Explaining that particularly the request to include the EU in the negotiation process in Cyprus was not welcomed, The Foreign Minister said also the issue of Maraş (Varosha), which the Greek Cypriot side made a big deal about, was not brought to the agenda in New York.

“The aim is the resumption of the negotiations in October and reaching a solution until 2014 spring”, said Foreign Minister Nami, noting that the United Nations requested all the related parties to focus on this aim. Nami added that during his contacts in New York, they once more saw that Turkey was very willing and determined on the solution of the Cyprus problem.

Also speaking to Turkish Cypriot daily Havadis, Foreign Minister Nami pointed out that the UN considered the next six-month period as a window of opportunity and would work intensively towards solving the Cyprus problem.

Ban ki Moon
Ban ki Moon

Stating that the UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon was continuing to show a close interest in Cyprus, Foreign Minister Nami said the Secretary General also conveyed his request for the two sides to overcome the difficulties for the resumption of the negotiations during the visit of Alexander Downer to the island.

Referring to the Secretary General’s expression that: “I cannot desire a solution more than Turkish Cypriots and Greek Cypriots. The responsibility belongs to Turkish Cypriots and Greek Cypriots”, Nami said this meant that it was the two peoples in the island who would solve the Cyprus problem.

In response to a question asked if a multi-lateral conference or a Burgenstock style summit were being considered, Foreign Minister Nami said the current agenda was the resumption of the negotiations.

Foreign Minister Nami also stated that on the table, there was a new method of negotiations, envisaging less frequent meetings between the leaders and more between the special representatives.

Source: TRNC Public Information Office