The Council of leaders of the political parties in Cyprus, which convened on Tuesday, under President of the Republic Nicos Anastasiades,  rejected a proposal by the Turkish Cypriot leader, Mustafa Akinci, for the co-management of the natural resources,
noting that it deviates from the essence, which is the resumption of substantive negotiations with the aim to reach a viable and functional solution to the Cyprus  problem.

The Council, under President Anastasiades, discussed Akinci`s proposal, in the light of Turkish illegal activities in Cyprus` EEZ and territorial waters. Akinci`s proposal was submitted to the UN Secretary General, Antonio Guterres, and was handed over last Sunday to President Anastasiades, by the Head of the office of the UN Secretary General`s Special Representative in Cyprus, Sergiy Illarionov.

Deputy Minister to the President of the Republic, Vasilis Palmas, read out the Council`s joint communique, issued after the meeting, which says that the proposal of the Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci cannot be accepted, since it disorients from the essence of the Cyprus problem and the need for an immediate resumption of substantive negotiations with the aim – if there is necessary political will by all involved – of achieving a viable and functional solution, on the basis of the UN resolutions and the principles and values of the European Union.

The joint communique stresses that in addition, Akinci`s proposal contains provisions that do not serve the interest of the Republic of Cyprus and the Cypriot people as a whole.

It notes that the Council of the political leaders has authorized the President of the Republic to give a substantiated reply regarding the negative points included in Akinci`s proposal, both to the Turkish Cypriot leader and to the UN Secretary-General.

Meanwhile, replying to questions, Palmas told reporters that the joint communique was adopted unanimously and that there was a very constructive and substantive discussion.

Asked about the letter, Palmas said that it will be prepared immediately, it will be thorough and give replies to all aspects that emerge from Mr Akinci’s letter and that the President’s letter will be sent to the UNSG and to the Turkish Cypriot leader.

Replying to questions, Palmas said that in the letter the President will reiterate “our main objective, which is the comprehensive solution of the Cyprus problem and  the creation of good conditions for the resumption of the talks.”

Akinci’s proposal, he added, creates a disorientation from the essence of the main problem which is the solution of the Cyprus problem.

Palmas was also asked about the visit of newly elected Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis to Cyprus, saying that he will be in Nicosia on the 29th of July.

Turkey issued in May a navigational telex, announcing its intention to start drilling off Cyprus until September 3. Since May 4, the Turkish drill ship “Fatih” is anchored in an area that falls within the EEZ and continental shelf of the Republic of Cyprus.

A second Turkish drill ship, “Yavuz”, arrived off the island’s northeastern coast last week.

Cyprus has been divided since 1974, when Turkish troops invaded and occupied 37% of its territory. Repeated rounds of UN-led peace talks have so far failed to yield results. The last round of negotiations, in the summer of 2017, at the Swiss resort of Crans-Montana ended inconclusively.

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