Cyprus peace talks intensify
NICOSIA, Cyprus — Peace talks to reunify the Mediterranean island nation of Cyprus intensified Monday as rival negotiators pored over documents outlining each side’s stances on a raft of issues, including the thorny issue of security. As a second week of talks began Monday at a Swiss resort, officials were trying to crack the issues that have blocked an accord since Cyprus was divided in 1974 when Turkey invaded after a coup mounted by supporters of union with Greece.
As well as trying to come up with a set of proposals to address the security arrangements for a reunified Cyprus, officials have a host of other issues to discuss, including how power will be shared between the Greek Cypriots and the Turkish Cypriots and how much territory each side will administer.
Greek Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades and Mustafa Akinci, the leader of the breakaway Turkish Cypriots, are joined at Crans-Montana by top diplomats from Cyprus’ ‘guarantors’ — Greece, Turkey and Britain — whose input is pivotal to any agreement. Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Kotzias said all sides are aware of their responsibilities to strike a deal that would allow Cyprus to become what U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres referred to as a “normal state.” Officials said Guterres’ presence at the talks last week helped nudge the process forward after several days when progress was slow.