Turkey, Greece to host Cyprus crosstalks Feb 27

Turkey, Greece to host Cyprus crosstalks Feb 27

ANKARA – Hürriyet Daily News
Turkey, Greece to host Cyprus crosstalks Feb 27

Turkish Cypriot leader Dervis Eroglu (R) and Cypriot President Anastasiades (L). AFP Photo

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.

Following months of a stalemate in agreeing to a joint statement last week, Turkish and Greek Cypriot leaders re-launched U.N.-brokered reunification talks after an 18 month hiatus.

The negotiators will simultaneously meet with the undersecretaries of the two foreign ministers and under similar protocol procedures. Turkish Foreign Ministry Undersecretary Feridun Sinirlioğlu will host Andreas Mavroyiannis from the Greek Cypriots, while Kudret Özersay from the Turkish side will meet the Greek Foreign Ministry’s Secretary General, Anastasis Mitsialis.

The Greek Cypriot side hopes to discuss specific topics on negotiation talks, such as pushing forward its Varosha proposal. However, a Turkish official told the Hürriyet Daily News that the cross meetings with the negotiators aimed to build confidence and help break psychological barriers, and did not amount to a negotiation platform with guarantor countries.

The appointed negotiators are more empowered in the new round of reunification talks, and the talks will mainly proceed through meetings between them. The negotiators have agreed to meet twice a week.

Turkish Cypriot President Derviş Eroğlu and Greek Cypriot leader Nikos Anastasiades will meet less often compared to negotiations in previous years, meeting “as often as necessary,” according to the joint declaration released by the leaders last week.

“Any kind of arbitration will be excluded,” according to the joint statement, in an entry made upon the request from the Greek side, which aims to reject an arbitration role of the U.N. secretary general similar to that of former Secretary General Kofi Annan in 2004.