Senior US official in Turkey for talks on Cyprus, Syria
US Deputy Secretary of State William Burns, who is seen in this file photo, were in Istanbul yesterday to have a bilateral meeting with Turkish Foreign Ministry Undersecretary Feridun Sinirlioğlu. AFP photoU.S. Deputy Secretary of State William Burns held a meeting with Turkish Foreign Ministry Undersecretary Feridun Sinirlioğlu in Istanbul on Feb. 24, in which they discussed a broad range of bilateral and regional issues of mutual concern.
A brief statement from the Turkish Foreign Ministry announcing the visit said the meeting would take place within the close political dialogue between the two allies. The Syria crisis, Cyprus issue and counter-terrorism were listed as some of the items on the agenda.
On the same day, speaking after a meeting between the Greek Cypriot negotiator Andreas Mavroyiannis and his Turkish Cypriot counterpart, Kudret Özersay, a United Nations spokesperson confirmed “substantive discussions” were started in the resumed talks aimed at reaching a comprehensive settlement of the Cyprus problem.
During a telephone conversation with Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan on Feb. 19, reflecting his country’s close interest in the process, U.S. President Barack Obama “thanked the prime minister for his constructive role in the effort on Cyprus to renew negotiations for a settlement.”
Turkish and Greek Cypriot negotiators will make simultaneous cross visits to Athens and Ankara on Feb. 27, following the resumption of a new round of reunification talks last week.