President of the Republic Nicos Anastasiades received Thursday the leaders of the political parties of Cyprus, whom he informed about  recent developments on the Cyprus issue.

According to Government Spokesman Christos Stylianides, the issues on the agenda were the meeting President Anastasiades held Wednesday  with UNSG’s Special Advisor for Cyprus, Alexander Downer, as well as a reply letter the President will send to the Turkish Cypriot leader Dervis Eroglu.

“The letter will be send only to Mr Eroglu in the coming hours”, the Spokesman said, adding that there is convergence as regards the content of the letter.

The President also informed the political party leaders about the letters he will send to the UN Secretary General, the five permanent members of the UN Security Council and the Presidents of the European Commission, European Parliament and European Council.

Meanwhile, he announced that the representatives of the leaders of the two communities, Andreas Mavroyiannis and Osman Ertug, will hold on Thursday their first tete -a – tete meeting.

“These meetings prepare the ground for the recommencement of the Cyprus talks, especially for the first meeting of the leaders of the two communities”, Stylianides said.

Asked if the Cyprus talks will begin after the two leaders’ meeting in New York with the UN Secretary General, Stylianides said that the general impression is that the talks will commence in October, but pointed out that what is of utmost importance  for the Cypriot President is the best possible preparation.

As regards the Greek Cypriot side’s proposal for the return of the fenced off city of Varosha, (under Turkish military occupation since 1974) to its lawful inhabitants, the Spokesman said that if the proposal is accepted by Turkey, then this would give a new impetus to the Cyprus talks.

Downer said on Wednesday that he would convey the proposal to the Turkish officials.

“We will wait for the response of the Turkish side”, the Spokesman said.

Cyprus has been divided since 1974, when Turkish troops invaded and occupied its northern third. A new round of peace talks is expected to start this autumn, to find a negotiated settlement that will reunify the country, under a federal roof.

When Turkey invaded Cyprus on July 20, 1974, it continued its offensive on August 14 of the same year, occupying part of Mesaoria, Famagusta, Karpasia and Morphou.

The Turkish side continues to disregard international calls on Cyprus (including UN Security Council Resolutions) and continues to hold the city of Famagusta hostage of its illegal military occupation. Dubbed a “ghost town”, Famagusta’s fenced off section – called Varoshia – remains to this day deserted, abandoned to the elements

Leave a Reply