Turkish Cypriot leader hopeful of reviving UN-led talks

Turkish Cypriot leader hopeful of reviving UN-led talks

Turkish Cypriot leader hopeful of reviving UN-led talks

Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akıncı and the first lady Meral Akıncı on the way to Berlin. (Photo: Turkish Cypriot Presidency)

Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akıncı expressed hope on Nov. 24 for making progress in reviving UN-led talks for a settlement in Cyprus.

Speaking to reporters in Berlin ahead of a trilateral meeting on Nov. 25 with his Greek Cypriot counterpart Nicos Anastasiades and UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, Akıncı said he would try to achieve positive results.

“We came here with the hope and intention to make a positive step forward towards a solution to the Cyprus problem,” he said.

“Our wish, our goal would be to give good news to Cyprus.”

Akıncı said they would discuss a road map and exchange views on how to create conditions to move forward.

He remained cautious about a probable five-party Cyprus conference in the coming months involving guarantor powers Turkey, Greece and the U.K., saying there is still more work needed to ensure that such a meeting would not be another unsuccessful attempt.

United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres is due to host an informal dinner for Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akıncı and Greek Cypriot leader Nicos Anastasiades.

The meeting will be held at the Hotel Adlon Kempinski, a few meters away from the Brandenburg Gate.

The UN Secretary General's special interim advisor for Cyprus, Jane Holl Lute, met with representatives on Nov. 24 to prepare for the tripartite meeting.

Lute had a meeting with Erhan Erçin, the Special Representative of Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akıncı, and Andreas Mavroyannis, the negotiator of Greek Cypriot leader Nicos Anastasiades.

Ahead of the meeting, the pro-reunification group 'Unite Cyprus Now' has sent a letter to Antonio Guterres and the UN Security Council asking them to work with the leaders to bring an end to the division of Cyprus and to keep the sides within UN parameters, the June 30 framework and past agreements.

In an open letter, the group said almost two and a half years have passed since the talks broke down in Switzerland: “Two and a half years of inaction and waste of time, during which tensions in and around Cyprus have only increased.

The Cyprus problem has remained unresolved for decades despite a series of efforts by the UN for a lasting settlement between Turkish and Greek Cypriots.

The latest attempt to resolve the problem ended with failure two years ago in Switzerland, and recent tensions in the Eastern Mediterranean have further complicated efforts for a settlement.

The Greek Cypriot administration continues to oppose recognizing the political equality of Turkish Cypriots and claims to be the sole legitimate government of the whole of Cyprus.

The island has been divided into a Turkish Cypriot government in the northern third and Greek Cypriot administration in the south since a 1974 military coup aimed at Cyprus' annexation by Greece.

Turkey's intervention as a guarantor power in 1974 had stopped years-long persecution and violence against Turkish Cypriots by ultra-nationalist Greek Cypriots.