In a joint statement, the Foreign Ministers of Greece, Egypt and Cyprus express their support for a Cyprus solution on the basis of a bizonal bicommunal federation, in accordance with International Law, the relevant UN Security Council Resolutions, and in line with the European acquis.

The three Foreign Ministers issued their joint statement after a trilateral meeting held on Thursday, February 11, in Athens, in the margins of the “Philia Forum”.

“On the Cyprus question, we expressed our support towards the efforts of the United Nations Secretary-General aimed at the resumption of a result-oriented negotiation process under his auspices that will lead to a comprehensive settlement on the basis of a bizonal, bicommunal federation, in accordance with International Law and relevant UN Security Council Resolutions, in line with the European acquis”, the statement says.

During their meeting, the Ministers concluded that the Greece-Cyprus-Egypt cooperation “serves the common interest of our countries for promoting prosperity in the region, having laid the foundation of a positive agenda”, and expressed their commitment “to intensify coordination aiming at exploring common opportunities for cooperation”.

In this context, they welcomed “the advanced preparations in setting up the Secretariat for the Trilateral Mechanisms based in Nicosia, which will be operational in early spring 2021”, as well as “the entry into force of the Statute of the East Mediterranean Gas Forum (EMGF) on 1 March 2021 establishing the EMGF as a regional organization, based in Cairo, open to all countries that share the same values and objectives and willingness to cooperate for the security of the whole region and the welfare of its peoples”.

“We reiterated our strong commitment to International Law, including the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, the UN Charter and the principles enshrined therein as the foundation of peace, security, good neighbourly relations and peaceful resolution of disputes for all countries in the region”, the joint statement notes.

The three Ministers emphasized also “the importance for the respect of the sovereignty, sovereign rights and jurisdiction each State has over its maritime zones in accordance with International Law, denouncing all activities that violate International Law”.

“We urged for the full and consistent respect of the sovereignty and the sovereign rights of States in their maritime zones in the Eastern Mediterranean in accordance with the International Law, including UNCLOS”, they stressed.

With regard to the Middle East Peace Process, the statement emphasizes “that the resolution of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict on the basis of the two-state solution is an indispensable requirement to comprehensive peace and stability in the region, as well as the importance of ensuring an independent and viable Palestinian state based on the June 4, 1967 lines, living side-by-side in peace and security with Israel”.

The statement welcomes “the agreement by the Libyan Political Dialogue Forum (LPDF) on a transitional unified executive authority for Libya, recognizing it as an important milestone in the political process and a significant step toward ensuring credible and all-inclusive elections to be held December 24th, 2021 and that the transitional government and agreement shall cease to have effect subsequently”.

In this vein, the three Ministers stated that any foreign intervention in Libya is “unacceptable” and all agreements concluded in violation of International Law are “null and void”, calling on the new Libyan Government to consider the MOUs signed by Turkey and al-Sarraj in November 2019 as such.

Finally, the three Foreign Ministers reaffirmed their “commitment to the unity, independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity of Syria”, expressing their “unrelenting support for a lasting political settlement of the Syrian crisis”.

Cyprus has been divided since 1974, when Turkey invaded and occupied its northern third. The latest UN backed round of talks took place in 2017, in the Swiss resort of Crans-Montana, but failed to yield any results.

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