Cypriot leader says new UN effort towards solving Cyprus problem expected

Source: Xinhua| 2018-10-14 20:15:29|Editor: Li Xia
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NICOSIA, Oct. 14 (Xinhua) -- The United Nations is expected to start a new efforts towards solving the Cyprus problem after a hiatus of more than 14 months in the negotiations, Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades said on Sunday.

He added that the effort would involve a sounding out the parties involved in the issue.

"The Greek Cypriot side will respond in a positive way to possible soundings by the United Nations. I wish that the behavior of Turkey and the Turkish Cypriots will be the same," Anastasiades told a group of Greek Cypriots.

Anastasiades promised he will make whatever it takes within his power to reach a solution that will reunite Cyprus and restore international law and order.

Cyprus was partitioned when Turkey sent troops to occupy the northern part of Cyprus in 1974, in response to a coup by the military rulers of Greece at the time.

More than 40 years of negotiations came to an end in July 2017, when participants at an international conference in Switzerland -- Greek and Turkish Cypriots and guarantor powers Greece, Turkey and Britain -- failed to agree on a blueprint submitted by UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres.

The Secretary General is expected to receive on Monday a report by a personal envoy, Jane Holl Lute, on the results of her soundings of the parties to restart the negotiations.

Anastasiades said last week after meeting the UN permanent representative in Cyprus, Elizabeth Spehar, that she will arrange a meeting with Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci by the end of October.

He said she told him that Akinci had responded positively to a proposal he made for the two to meet, ostensibly to arrange for the opening of more crossing points between the two parts of Cyprus, but also "to discuss about the future of Cyprus."

Commenting on the expected new UN initiative, Anastasiades said he expected a sounding out mission to find out whether existing differences can be bridged on the basis of some new ideas being floated.

But he cautioned that such a move does not necessarily mean a new dialogue on the Cyprus issue.