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Cyprus solution could help wider region, says Shimon Peres

DISY leader Averof Neophytou (left) with Shimon Perez

Former Israeli President Shimon Peres has said that a solution to the Cyprus issue would help both the island and the wider region.

He was speaking during a meeting with visiting Chairman of the House Committee on Foreign and European Affairs and DISY leader Avrof Neophytou at the Peres Peace Centre in Jaffa, an official statement said on Wednesday.

Neophytou, who has been visiting Israel at the invitation of his Israeli counterpart Tzachi Hanegbi, concludes his visit today.
Peres has said that Turkey`s policy of zero problems with its neighbours had resulted in a policy with zero friends and neighbours.

Regarding the Cyprus issue, Peres said that a solution would help both Cyprus and the wider region but it was generally recognised that, if Turkey did not show real will, free of policies that put Cyprus under its hegemony, a solution to the Cyprus problem would not be achieved.

During the discussion, Neophytou briefed Peres on the latest developments to the Cyprus problem and exchanged views on Turkey and its stance on regional issues and the Cyprus problem.

Peres outlined his vision of developing technology and science as a tool to achieve peace and stability throughout the world, including Cyprus and the Middle East. He underlined the importance of cooperation between Cyprus and Israel in the fields of science and technological development.

He also said that Cyprus could become a centre for research, exploiting its status as an EU member, and underlined the significant role that universities in Cyprus can play towards this.

Peres accepted an invitation from Neophytou to visit Cyprus to contribute to these efforts and to talk to the academic community on the island about his vision of peace in the region. Peres, Neophytou said, will be visiting the island in April.

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