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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 09-05-23

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From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>




    Cyprus President Demetris Christofias expressed regret over Turkish Cypriot leader Mehmet Ali Talat`s stance on the issue of Limnitis crossing point.

    Replying to questions after attending the opening ceremony of the 34th Cyprus International Fair, the President criticised Talat`s assertion that the Greek Cypriot side follows a delaying stance on the issue.

    ``Talat is confused. He messed up and tries with inaccuracies, I dare say with lies, to lighten his position,`` he added.

    President Christofias declined to comment on press reports suggesting that Talat asserts that the Greek Cypriot side obstructs free movement.

    ``We must be serious, because we aim at helping the residents of the area,`` he added.

    The President said that Talat ``initially requested the opening of Kokkina and I replied positively,`` noting that he told Talat that he would be willing to discuss the various demands Talat puts on the table because he wanted to help the residents of the area.

    ``However, Talat thought that we would accept everything. This cannot happen,`` he pointed out.

    President Christofias pointed out that greater difficulties do not emerge from Limnitis issue but from the UN-led negotiating process for a solution to the Cyprus problem.

    Referring to the economic matters being discussed in the talks, President Christofias said ``the Turkish Cypriot side reneged on the progress made during the working groups as well as from the work I and Talat made on the matter.``

    Christofias and Talat decided to assign their aides, George Iacovou and Ozdil Nami to prepare a joint paper outlining the positions of the two sides on the issue of economy.

    ``It is a common assessment of the people aware of the latest results of the efforts of our aides, that Talat or the Turkish Cypriot side must revise their positions,`` President Christofias added.

    Noting that he did not yet discuss economic matters with Talat, President Christofias said that he hopes that during next Thursday`s meeting he will discuss the issue and that Talat ``will revise positions, submitted by his representatives.``

    President Christofias pointed out that he expected difficulties during the negotiating process but wondered ``what is the alternative?``

    ``I will continue the efforts. I will continue to the end defending principles and being flexible,`` he pledged.

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