Cyprus and Israel “writing a new bold chapter”
Cyprus and Israel together “have been writing a new bold chapter in their relations in recent years”, President Nicos Anastasiades told members of the American Jewish Committee in Chicago as regards “our mutually beneficial partnership.”
“The exchange of high level meetings, most recently in June by myself in Israel and in July by Prime Minister Netanyahu in Cyprus, is merely the tip of the iceberg,” he said. “We are two countries in a turbulent yet important neighbourhood that faces many common challenges. For Israel, Cyprus is a stable, predictable and reliable partner and vice-versa”.
He said the discovery of hydrocarbons had created impetus in bilateral relations which had opened new horizons in regional cooperation. “This translates into much needed energy security, diversification, and exports for both countries,” Anastasiades said.
He also praised the AJC for being “instrumental in identifying and promoting the relationship with Cyprus, as well as in helping advance our relationship with Israel and the United States.”
Anastasiades also said that the strategic importance of energy cooperation between Cyprus and Israel was of particular importance to the U.S. and Europe, mainly in offering an alternative energy corridor route for the EU.
“At the same time we believe that the huge recent discovery of the Zohr natural gas field in the exclusive economic zone of Egypt enhances the prospects for further synergies in the region,” the president added.
He added that bilateral cooperation is not only limited to energy and security, but extends in an array of fields including tourism, economic exchanges, agriculture and high tech industries. “In a nutshell, Cyprus and Israel are true strategic partners,” he said.