Cyprus Mail

Cyprus, Greece and Israel to press on with broader cooperation

President Nicos Anastasiades and outgoing Israeli foreign minister Avigdor Lieberman – here on a private visit – have discussed energy cooperation, bilateral relations and regional issues, the government spokesman said on Tuesday.

Monday’s talks at the presidential retreat focused on defence, energy, the economy and tourism, Nicos Christodoulides told state broadcaster CyBC.

“There are several issues where we have a common approach, which we plan to enhance further through dialogue. There is a strong political will both on behalf of Nicosia and Jerusalem to strengthen these ties,” Christodoulides said.

Bilateral talks would continue at the level of technocrats and that President Anastasiades will visit Israel soon after Netanyahu forms a new cabinet.

Speaking on Sigma television, the spokesman said that announcements on issues of mutual interest could be made during Anastasiades’ trip to Israel.

These announcements could relate to both energy and security, Christodoulides said.

The spokesman did not disclose details of what is being discussed.

In the meantime, he added, Cyprus, Greece and Israel will press on with broader cooperation efforts. Further multilateral meetings of the heads of the state should be expected.

Cyprus and Israel are negotiating a unitisation agreement for joint development and production activity in their offshore gas reservoirs.

The Aphrodite reservoir in Cyprus’ block 12 partly runs into the acreage of Israel’s Ishai licence.

Anastasiades visited Jerusalem in May 2013, and last June he invited Netanyahu to visit Cyprus.

Ties between the two neighbours grew after the 2010 Gaza flotilla incident, which caused a deep rift between former allies Israel and Turkey.


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