Cyprus Mail
Cyprus Cyprus Talks

European parliament will do ‘its utmost’ to help a solution

By Jean Christou

The European Union has the highest interest in seeing that the Cyprus negotiations between President Nicos Anastasiades and Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci are successful, European Parliament President Martin Schulz said on Wednesday.

Schulz was speaking in Brussels after a meeting with Akinci. In a brief statement to the press Schulz said the European Parliament said would do “whatever is possible” and “the utmost” to contribute to a successful solution.

“Both communities are now led by people in favour of the Annan Plan… and in favour of a bi-communal bi-zonal federation settlement. That is a goal which we want to see achieved,” he said.

The Annan Plan is rarely spoken of in the context of Cyprus negotiation since it was rejected by the majority of Greek Cypriots in 2004 though it was accepted in referendum by the Turkish Cypriots. Anastasiades’ ruling DISY party did come out in favour of the plan at the time.

In his statements, Akinci said he wanted to see a solution for the people of the island. “We don’t want a continuation of the status quo,” he said. “We want to see a better future for younger generations. Our generation… we have suffered a lot. Now it is high time, for the younger generation, that we create a better future.”

Akinci said that the Turkish Cypriots had been “outside of international law” for many years but now they wanted to be “part and parcel of Europe”. “We want to be within the framework of international law,” he added.

Anastasiades also spoke to Schulz by phone earlier on Wednesday and discussed the Cyprus issue, and the situation in Greece, the government spokesman tweeted.

Akinci will be in Brussels for meetings with EU officials until Friday.

On Tuesday he met the President of European Commission Jean-Claude Juncker.

He said he had told Juncker to promote relations with the Turkish Cypriots in all levels so that they would be ready when the solution came. Juncker is due in Cyprus later this month where he is due again meet Akinci during his contacts on the island.

At the same time, Akinci said having an EU representative involved in the negotiations something the Greek Cypriot side would favour, would be counter productive. “There is definitely not a demand for the EU to substitute for the UN,” he said.

The two Cypriot leaders are due to meet again for negotiations on July 10. Two days prior to that they will both take part in a discussion organised by the chamber of commerce of both sides.

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