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Cyprus Cyprus Talks

Security Council extends UNFICYP mandate (update 2)

Foreign Affairs Minister Nicos Christodoulides

The United Nations Security Council has approved renewal of UNFICYP’s mandate for a further six months.

Earlier on Thursday, the government expressed satisfaction over the text of the resolution on the renewal of the mandate of UN peacekeeping force in Cyprus (UNFICYP).

Nicosia said it was satisfied with the text of the resolution, which did not reflect negative references included in the UN Secretary General’s report, published earlier this month.

“We note that references sought by the Turkish side about the supposed isolation of Turkish Cypriots, the Republic’s natural resources … have been avoided,” government spokesman Nicos Christodoulides said.

He also highlighted the inclusion of a reference on the importance of having a constructive environment so that substantive talks could take place.

The wording regarding the humanitarian matter of missing persons has also been strengthened.

The Security Council expressed support for the ongoing efforts of the Secretary General’s Special Advisor Espen Barth Eide, noting the importance of a conducive environment, and calling for the resumption of structured negotiations without delay, in a results oriented manner as agreed to in the Joint Declaration adopted by the Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot leaders on February 11, 2014.

It is also stressed the need for renewed efforts of the leaders and negotiators to reach a comprehensive settlement as soon as possible.

The Council is reiterates the importance attached by the international community to all parties engaging fully, flexibly, and constructively in the negotiations and notes that the negotiations have not yet resulted in an enduring, comprehensive and just settlement based on a bicommunal, bizonal federation with political equality, as set out in the relevant Security Council resolutions.

The sides are encouraged to intensify the substantive negotiations on the unresolved core issues interdependently, and it is stressed that the status quo is unsustainable.

The UNSC also highlighted the importance of intensifying efforts to resolve the missing persons issue, noting that half of all missing persons have yet to be located and more than 70 per cent have yet to be identified.

It is asked for access to be granted to all areas to allow the Committee on Missing Persons to carry out its work.

President of the Republic Nicos Anastasiades has suspended his participation in the talks following a Navigational Telex or NAVTEX, issued by Turkey in October last year, as Turkish seismic research vessel Barbaros violated the Republic’s exclusive economic zone.

Repeated calls for the withdrawal of Barbaros went unheeded by Ankara, which announced recently the NAVTEX`s extension until April 6, 2015. (CNA)

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