Stewart’s mission focuses on building trust and respect between the two communities, UN SC members hear

UN Security Council members held yesterday closed consultations on Secretary-General Antonio Guterres’ reports and they were briefed by Colin Stewart, Special Representative of the UN SG in Cyprus on his mission.

Stewart told the members of the UN Security Council during the three-hour meeting on Secretary-General Antonio Guterres’ reports, that the focus of the mission is now to build trust and respect between the two communities and to create a better environment for peace building on the island, said Odd-Inge Kvalheim, Norway`s Deputy Permanent Representative to the United Nations and Chairman of the Security Council for January, during informal comments to the media.

He said that Security Council members welcomed the appointment of Colin Stewart to his new post and held an open exchange of views on the situation, as detailed in the Secretary-General`s two recent reports.

According to Odd-Inge Kvalheim they also recognise the challenging situation on the ground as described in the reports and called for respect and adherence to all relevant Security Council resolutions and decisions and “expressed their readiness to engage in negotiations on the Security Council resolution to extend the mandate of UNFICYP.”

Members also expressed concern about the recent increase in COVID-19 cases, acknowledging the negative socio-economic impact of the virus on the island.

The members of the Council look forward to the renewal of UNFICYP`s term before January 31st. The adoption of the resolution for the renewal of UNFICYP`s term is scheduled to be discussed on January 27.

Asked by CNA correspondent about public complaints about the UN`s lack of reaction on the Varosha issue, Odd-Inge Kvalheim replied that many of the Council members touched upon this issue as well, adding that “the Council was following the situation very closely.”  He further noted that there had also “been some criticism for some of the measures taken on the ground in that respect.”

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