CNA News

Gaza humanitarian proposal discussions enter “technical details”, President says

Nicosia’s proposal for a humanitarian aid corridor to Gaza upgrades the role of the EU in the region, Cyprus President Nikos Christodoulides said on Friday, urging at the same time for no timeframes regarding its implementation. Specific discussions on technical details are underway, he said, adding that “final arrangements” are being made with Israel.

In statements in Nicosia, before attending a one-day seminar on cancer, the President was asked about the way forward after Israel’s political endorsement of the proposal and the Foreign Minister’s contacts there.

“We are in contact with Israel and implement some final arrangements, if you like,” the President said, adding that Nicosia is at the same time in contact with the United Nations and he spoke with the Secretary-General on the structure of the humanitarian aid to Gaza.

Moreover, the President referred to contacts with EU partners, while noting that he discussed on Thursday the issue with the German Chancelor and “we are moving towards implementation stage when all features are in place.”

Asked if it is a matter of time to see the implementation of the proposal, the President replied “I would not say it is a matter of time. We should not apply timeframes. What matters is that specific discussions on the initiative of the Republic of Cyprus – an initiative which is being acknowledged by the international community – started on technical details.”

Beyond the role of Cyprus in the region, the proposal also enhances the role of the EU in the region, with Cyprus being a member state in proximity to the region, he added.

He also said that the initiative also sends a message of what we want to see in deeds, not just words, “to show that we are a pillar of security and stability in the region.”

Asked if during his telephone conversation on Thursday he asked the German Chancelor to convey a message to the Turkish President, who is paying a visit to Berlin, President Christodoulides said that the call “was also related to today’s visit by the Turkish President in Berlin.”