Cyprus Mail

Biden: solution must come from the Cypriots

Final statements by Joe Biden at the Ledra Palace with President Anastasiades and Dervis Eroglu

DIFFERENCES between the two communities on how to resolve the island decades-long dispute are not irreconcilable, and a solution must come from Cypriots, US Vice President Joe Biden said on Thursday night.

“Things do not have to remain as they are now,” Biden said in a statement coming out of a dinner at the Ledra Palace in the UN-patrolled buffer zone in Nicosia.

Flanked by President Nicos Anastasiades, Turkish Cypriot leader Dervis Eroglu and the UN Secretary-General’s Special Representative in Cyprus Lisa Buttenheim, Biden announced that the two leaders have agreed to speed up the process of negotiations as well as intensify efforts towards confidence-building measures.

The function at the Ledra Palace took longer than expected, with Biden and the leaders stepping outside a few minutes past 10pm.

The two leaders, he also revealed, have agreed henceforth to meet twice a month as part of the talks’ process.

Following the first statement, the two leaders went back inside. Biden stayed to read out a second, lengthier statement in which he said that it was ultimately up to the two communities to reach an agreement.

“There will always be doubters. A solution cannot come from the outside, nor from the United States,” he said.


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