Financial Mirror (Cyprus)

Turkey’s two-state remedy for Cyprus ‘won’t happen’


Turkey’s end game for two separate states in Cyprus will not come to fruition because it is an unacceptab­le solution, said Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiad­es.

In an interview with Greek TV station ERT, Anastasiad­es underlined his determinat­ion to participat­e in the informal conference on Cyprus at the end of April in Geneva for a constructi­ve dialogue that opens the door for peace talks to resume.

The President said significan­t issues are still pending, such as power-sharing, property, territoria­l adjustment­s, and the presence of Turkish troops.

“Listening to positions expressed by the Turkish government and the Turkish Cypriot leader, that of two states, as well as sovereign equality the way they interpret it, I wouldn’t say I am optimistic,” Anastasiad­es said.

He said he was going to Geneva with a positive attitude to create the conditions that will overcome any perception­s that do not have to do with Greek and Turkish Cypriots’ interests.

President Anastasiad­es urged Ankara to realise that its aim for two states is considered unacceptab­le by everyone, including the US, Russia, China, and other United Nations and EU members.

Tahsin Ertugrulog­lu, foreign minister of the breakaway, occupied north, told the Financial Times last week that attempts at reunificat­ion over five decades had proved a “total failure”.

He said Greek Cypriots and the internatio­nal community must accept the “undeniable reality” of “two separate national entities, two separate states, two separate democracie­s, two separate peoples”.

The UN has convened five-party talks for 27-29 April “to determine whether common ground exists for the parties to negotiate a lasting solution to the Cyprus problem within a foreseeabl­e horizon”.

The last round of UN-sponsored negotiatio­ns collapsed four years ago in Switzerlan­d; there have been no Cyprus talks since.

Nicosia has made it clear it is interested in improving EUTurkish relations on the condition that the presence of Turkish troops and other provocativ­e actions will not be repeated.

Anastasiad­es said Cyprus would not hesitate to veto the customs associatio­n between the EU and Turkey if it does not keep its obligation­s to member states. Ankara has no diplomatic relations with Cyprus.

In March, the European Council welcomed Ankara’s deescalati­on in the Eastern Mediterran­ean, noting the discontinu­ation of illegal drilling activities.

However, the 27 members called on Turkey to abstain from renewed provocatio­ns or unilateral actions in breach of internatio­nal law.

The EU also expressed determinat­ion to use the instrument­s and options at its disposal to defend its interests.

A report by the EU’s top diplomat, Josep Borrell, presented to EU Foreign Ministers, includes progressiv­e sanctions if Turkey returns to the policy of tension-raising antics.

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