The European United Left is Cyprus’ most consistent ally in the European Parliament, Andros Kyprianou, the Secretary-General of AKEL, said on Tuesday.
He was addressing the opening of the European United Left – Nordic Green Left (GUE/NGL) study days, which are being held in Nicosia between January 8-10. Issues to be discussed include labor market relations and unemployment, the financial crisis and EU policies, the rise of far-right parties and the geopolitical situation in the Middle East and the Eastern Mediterranean.
“Ahead of these major issues of out time, communist, left and broader progressive forces in our continent need to fight, mobilize and unite” he added.
Kyprianou remarked that in the past few decades living standards are declining for the majority of citizens, especially during the crisis. The consequences of the crisis are not behind us and even the IMF admits in a recent report that global economy remains vulnerable, while a new crisis looms ahead, he added.
The EU fails to heed the voice of the people and continues to enhance the mechanism controlling the member states, Kyprianou said. He noted that we need to counter this with policies that serve the working force, the people who produce wealth and set the economy in motion.
Kyprianou also said that it is very likely that a Turkish Cypriot candidate will be included in AKEL’s ticket, sending important messages to the Cypriot people. Final decisions are expected to be announced on January 19.
He also expressed party support towards a bizonal bicommunal solution of the Cyprus problem and said he disagreed with calling this framework into question.
Our goal is to turn Cyprus into a model country not just for the wider region, but EU-wide and possibly globally, he concluded.
Greek MEP Dimitris Papadimoulis (SYRIZA, GUE/NGL) said from his part that his group is the only one consistently and firmly supporting at the European Parliament the need for a just Cyprus solution. We ask the Commission and the member states to exert pressure on Turkey and all sides to contribute in order to resume settlement talks, he added.
Cypriot MEP Neoklis Sylikiotis from AKEL and GUE/NGL Vice-Chair said from his part that the declarations for social protection made by the Juncker Commission remained hollow. In the coming European elections, we expect that the forces of radical Left will be reinforced in the next European Parliament, he concluded.
The Republic of Cyprus remains divided since the 1974 Turkish invasion of the island. Numerous UN-backed talks, aiming at reunifying the island under a federal roof, have failed to yield any results. The latest round of peace talks took place in July 2017 at the Swiss resort of Crans Montana but ended inconclusively.