Gas power could help Cyprus dialogue: report
NICOSIA / ISTANBUL
Turkey and Greek Cyprus should take confidence-building steps, report says.The gas findings in the eastern Mediterranean might help to start a dialogue if the Turkish and Greek Cypriot communities, together with Turkey, agree to start a new dialogue over the exploitation and transportation of the find, according to an NGO report.
“The gas discovery could be the locomotive for reunification, but unilateral developments will make a negotiated settlement even more difficult and further increase tensions,” the International Crisis Group’s Turkey-Cyprus Analyst Didem Akyel Collinsworth said.
“A feasible plan to make Turkey the export route may convince Ankara of its interest in cooperating with Greek Cyprus, which should make talks with Turkey conditional on reaching a settlement first,” said the recently released report, titled “Aphrodite’s Gift: Can Cypriot gas power a new dialogue?” The parties should take independent confidence-building steps to seek mutual advantage and reduce tensions, said the report. “Both sides on the island should agree to share revenues from any hydrocarbon exploitation and establish an advisory committee to discuss joint use and distribution. Turks and Turkish Cypriots should avoid aggravating tensions.”