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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 11-01-14

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From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>




    UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon expressed hope on Friday that during his meeting in Geneva on January 26 with the leaders of the two communities in Cyprus, much more progress would be made in addressing core issues of the Cyprus problem, including property and security issues.

    Speaking at a press conference, Ban said it was not desirable to place any deadlines regarding the Cyprus problem, noting that the nine-week period between his previous meeting with the leaders on November 18 and the meeting of January 26 was given in order to make possible ``a more improved agreement.``

    Asked about recent remarks by German Chancellor Angela Merkel in Nicosia, the UN chief said he would be meeting ``the two leaders of Cyprus` communities, both Greek and Turkish Cypriot leaders, on the 26th of January,`` when he would ``engage in negotiations after we have left on November 18.``

    ``These are very long standing issues and the negotiation has been very difficult but it is very encouraging that the leaders of both communities have been engaged in direct negotiations at the leaders` level more than 80 times. And then when I invited them to New York and we were engaging in negotiations, we still thought that more time was needed.``

    He added that this was ``why we have given them nine more weeks or so, so that they could resolve all these core issues, so by the time we meet again in Geneva, we will be able to make much more progress in addressing those core issues, including property and security issues.``

    ``That is what I am intending to do and let us see. I need the support from all the concerned parties. I think the European Union is in full support of the UN`s good offices role and they are also supporting these bilateral negotiations,`` he noted.

    Asked if a statement by one of the major EU leaders was helpful in finding a solution, the UN Secretary General said ``the important thing is that this official negotiation is now going and all the interested parties or stakeholders should encourage both leaders and the United Nations to continue to provide our good offices.``

    Invited to say if he intended to set a deadline, Ban said that ``as a matter of principle, it is not desirable to place any deadline.``

    ``I am not giving on Cyprus issue any nine-week deadline. The nine-week deadline which I gave them was to come with a more improved agreement and to meet me in Geneva,`` he added.


    German Chancellor Angela Merkel has stressed that at Germanys dialogue with Turkey it will be underlined that there needs to be progress in the process for a Cyprus settlement.

    A press release issued by Merkels office concerning her recent visit to Cyprus says that the German Chancellor assured President of Cyprus Demetris Christofias of Germanys support to efforts for a Cyprus settlement and commended his efforts to create a momentum in the ongoing UN led direct negotiations on the Cyprus problem.

    We particularly appreciate your courage, the creativity which you show, Merkel said, adding that unfortunately so far there has been no response to this readiness for compromise.

    According to the press release, Merkel underlined that Germany supports mediating efforts by the UN and added that it will be indicated during the dialogue with Turkey in the future that there needs to be progress in the process. As Germany, other EU member states and NATO are interested in a Cyprus settlement, she added.

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