President: Conference on Cyprus creates conditions for change of securities and guarantees (1)

President: Conference on Cyprus creates conditions for change of securities and guarantees (1)

The outcome of the Conference on Cyprus which focused on security and guarantees, which started on Thursday in Geneva, creates the preconditions for a radical change of the security conditions that were in place in 1960, President of the Republic of Cyprus Nikos Anastasiades, has stressed.

In statements at a press conference in Geneva, President Anastasiades said that the fact that the UN press release, issued after the Conference on Cyprus, clearly describes the intention of the participants (at the Conference) to reach a mutually acceptable solution – as regards the aspect of security and guarantees – that will meet the expectations of both Cypriot communities, but particularly the fact that it is ackowledged that the security of one community cannot constitute a threat for the other community, “create the prospects and the terms of reference for the team of experts to work out new ways that would be acceptable and for radical change of what was in force based on the 1960 guarantees`.

President Anastasiades further said that for the first time a multi-party Conference on Cyprus was convened, in the presence of the EU, on the highest possible level, during which Turkey was for the first time engaged in a dialogue with the Republic of Cyprus, to discuss the abolition of the guarantees and the withdrawal of the Turkish occupation troops from Cyprus.

He added that the decision to continue the Conference on Cyprus shows that the issue of security and guarantees and the implementation of the solution, constitute the beginning of a substantive dialogue for the achievement of a solution, so that its outcome meets the expectations of the Cypriot people.

Furthermore, he stressed that the only comprehensive proposal which is before the Conference is the proposal submitted by the Greek Cypriot side which served as food for thought for all participants.

President Anastasiades noted that for the first time since 1974 the Turkish Cypriot side submitted a map on the territorial adjustments through which there is a significant percentage of Turkish occupied land returned under Greek Cypriot administration.

He stressed that although the map submitted by the Turkish Cypriot side does not meet the Greek Cypriot side`s expectations, nevertheless, bearing in mind the Greek Cypriot side`s proposal on territorial adjustments, it constitutes the basis for negotiation.

President Anastasiades defended his decision on the 1st of December 2016 for the Geneva talks to resume in January (9-11 of January on internal aspects of the Cyprus issue and 12 of January for the Conference on Cyprus to take place).

He said that his decision aimed at two goals, firstly to avoid a protracted stalemate and to finally determine the intentions of Turkish Cypriot side and especially Ankara`s intentions, regarding the chapters on territory and security and guarantees.

The outcome of the Geneva Conference reaffirmed that his decision on the 1st of December was the right one, he said, adding that through the dialogue in Geneva there has been further progress on the first four chapters of the Cyprus talks. But he pointed out that this progress does not entirely meet the expectations of the Greek Cypriot side.

The Republic of Cyprus has been divided since 1974 when Turkish troops invaded and occupied 37% of its territory.

President 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.