President of the Republic of Cyprus Nicos Anastasiades said positions of principle and decisions that concern the procedure of the talks on Cyprus are two separate issues.
In a speech on Tuesday in Nicosia during the IMH-IN Business Awards, President Anastasiades said he wants to assure everyone that no one should be worried as regards the positions of principles in the negotiations.
He appealed to all during these critical hours to be united to achieve the common goal which is to rid the country of the occupation and reunite it, creating conditions of peaceful coexistence with Turkish Cypriots.
For the first time, he said, since 1964, during the talks we are discussing the abolition of guarantees and the withdrawal of the occupation army.
“I would like to make it clear. That decisions that concern the procedure are one thing and positions of principle that need to be maintained in the negotiations are another. I want to assure everyone that no one should be worried as regards the positions of principle”, the President said.
We are making efforts to show the determination of the Greek Cypriot side to achieve, at last, a solution that will correspond to the expectations not only of the Greek Cypriots but to all of the people”.
He said that he will be in Portugal to attend a meeting with the seven leaders of Mediterranean countries and in Strasbourg to address the Council of Europe. He will also attend the European Council in Malta.
Cyprus has been divided since 1974, when Turkish troops invaded and occupied 37% of its territory. Anastasiades and Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci have been engaged in UN-led talks since May 2015 with a view to reunite the island under a federal roof.
Participants in the Conference on Cyprus held on January 12, in Geneva, decided to establish a working group at the level of deputies, with the task to identify specific questions and the instruments needed to address them, a statement issued from the Conference on Cyprus said.
According to the statement issued, the group will commence its work on 18 January and the Conference will continue at political level immediately thereafter to review the outcome of the working group’s discussions. In parallel, the negotiations on outstanding issues in the other chapters will continue between the two sides in Cyprus.
ENDS, CYPRUS NEWS AGENCY