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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 11-01-22

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From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>




    UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon wants to see the process of negotiations to reach a Cyprus settlement maintain good momentum and not end in a deadlock, the UN chief`s Special Adviser on Cyprus Alexander Downer said.

    Downer noted that the Secretary General, during his upcoming meeting in Geneva with the leaders of the two communities in Cyprus, would be discussing ways to ensure that the process maintains good momentum.

    Speaking after Friday`s meeting between the leaders of the two communities, President of the Republic of Cyprus Demetris Christofias and Turkish Cypriot leader Dervis Eroglu, Downer said ``the two leaders met for an hour-and-a-half or so today and had a bit of a discussion over coffee before the meeting and then, during the meeting, both sides made comments on governance and power sharing, and EU matters, about each other`s different proposals``, adding that ``there was an exchange of views on that.``.

    Downer said that there was also ``a discussion on the modalities for the meeting with the Secretary General in Geneva and I also made some points about how this meeting will proceed.``

    He noted that ``the plan for the meeting is that the Secretary General will meet the two leaders during the course of the morning on January 26 and they will discuss the core issues that constitute the negotiations on the Cyprus issue,`` adding that ``there will also be a working lunch, so they will continue the discussions during a meal and the process will conclude around 14:30.``

    ``As for next steps beyond that, that it is something the Secretary General will reflect on and discuss with the two leaders during the course of the meeting,`` he said, adding that ``the Secretary General wants to see the process maintain momentum, he wants to see good momentum in these negotiations.``

    Downer pointed out that ``it is clear that what we do not want is the negotiations at any point to stall, for there to be, to use the language of the negotiations, deadlock.``

    ``We want the process to maintain good momentum and so he will be discussing with the leaders ways to ensure that that happens,`` Downer said.

    Asked if there was any movement on what the Greek Cypriot side has described as troubling proposals, Downer said that he knows what the two sides have been saying and that ``we would not offer any comments on that at all.``

    ``They obviously had talks today on governance and power sharing issues, as well as EU issues, and they have exchanged views on that and proposals and have talked about each other`s proposals, so we would not offer any further enlightenment on that. That is a matter for them,`` he added.

    Asked about his recent trip to Turkey and if there were any messages from the Turkish government, Downer said ``their messages are for them, not for me, I am not a messenger.``

    He noted that he had ``a useful meeting for a couple of hours`` with Turkish Minister of Foreign Affairs Ahmed Davutoglu and members of his team on Thursday.

    ``I was able to go through a whole range of different aspects of the Cyprus negotiations,`` he said, adding that ``the Turkish government has made it clear that it wants the negotiations to succeed, it wants to see the reunification of Cyprus as a federal system.``

    He noted that ``Mr. Davutoglu made that perfectly clear to me,`` despite ``some debate about that`` over the years.

    ``We talked about some of the details and some of the ways forward and so we had a very constructive meeting. I thought it was extremely constructive,`` he added.


    Cypriot Minister of Foreign Affairs Marcos Kyprianou expressed hope that Lebanon will recover soon from the current political deadlock facing the country, according to the state`s democratic and constitutional procedures.

    Kyprianou, who is visiting Beirut, held a series of contacts with Lebanese President Michel Sleiman, President of the Lebanese Parliament Nabih Berri, caretaker Prime Minister Saad Hariri, Foreign Minister Ali Al Chami and Information Minister Tarek Mitri.

    An official press release noted that during his contacts with party and religious groups` representatives Kyprianou had an in-depth discussion on the present political situation in Lebanon and the efforts for the formation of a new government, following the fall of the Hariri government due to the tensions over the UN-backed tribunal, which was expected to issue draft indictments concerning the 2005 assassination of Rafik al-Hariri.

    He also conveyed to his interlocutors the Cypriot government and the Cypriot people`s sincere interest and solidarity towards Lebanon.

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