address the Council, diplomatic sources said.
Press reports suggested that Anastasiades conveyed to Netanyahu a message on the Palestinian issue from the Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al Sisi. Anastasiades is expected to speak with Sisi again soon to convey Netanyahu’s response.
During their working lunch on Monday, Netanyahu talked about the possibility of Cyprus and Israel cooperating in the technological sector, and referred to his recent meetings with the CEOs of Google and Orange.
The two leaders also discussed Iran, terrorism and the situation in Turkey. In the afternoon, the President, who was also accompanied by First Lady Andri Anastasiades, Foreign Minister Ioannis Kasoulides, Government Spokesman Nicos Christodoulides and other senior officials, laid a wreath at the burial site of Theodor Herzl, on Mount Herzl.
Later in the evening addressing the state dinner hosted by President Reuven Rivlin, Anastasiades said that enhancing cooperation between the two countries was not targeted against any third country.
“To the contrary, our goal is to resolve the soonest possible long-standing problems, which threaten the existence of our countries,” he noted. Our struggle is to achieve an enduring solution in Israel but also in Cyprus, on the basis of UN Security Council Resolutions, he added.
“As our economic and business ties develop further, our political will to nurture and cultivate further our bilateral relations grows stronger. Our cooperation extends over a wide range of fields, from tourism, economic exchanges, agriculture, business and high tech industries. Commercial and trade ties have expanded and cultural relations have blossomed,” he noted.
He said that today Cyprus boasts a synagogue and in 2013 the University of Cyprus with the cooperation of the Embassy of Israel in Cyprus, launched a Jewish studies department.
He noted that the discovery of hydrocarbon reserves “has opened new horizons for our bilateral relations and we are working tirelessly and with determination to realise this potential to our mutual benefit.”
With regard to developments on the Cyprus problem, Anastasiades said that they are promising and that he is encouraged by the fact that full-fledged negotiations aiming at a comprehensive, viable and fair settlement of the Cyprus issue have restarted with the new Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci.
“We are cautiously optimistic that conditions may soon prevail that may enable substantive progress and eventually a lasting solution,” he added.
On his part, President Rivlin expressed hope that “this visit will take our relationship from being dear neighbours and friends, to feeling, truly, like close family.”
He recalled that during his visit to Israel in June 2013, President Anastasiades spoke of his desire to enhance and develop strategically important bilateral relations.
“You also emphasised our mutual commitment to develop and utilise our cross-border Mediterranean natural gas and oil reserves.
“On the more worrying side of things, you referred to the situation in Syria, and expressed concern that the crisis may spill over into the wider region,” he added.
He noted that “we can firmly agree, that you were right on target; not only with your positive and optimistic hopes, regarding the ‘constructive, creative and effective cooperation’ - as you put it - between our countries; but also unfortunately, with regard to the distressing deterioration in the region around us.”
He referred to the economic discovery of the Mediterranean natural gas reserves, which “is constantly bringing our two islands closer together,” adding that “we have of course, always shared much in common, culturally and historically.”