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UK’s support to Cyprus not expressed just in words, new High Commissioner says

Matthew Kidd

The United Kingdom’s support to the efforts to reach a solution of the Cyprus problem is not only expressed in words, the country’s new High Commissioner to of Cyprus, Matthew Kidd, said on Thursday.

Presenting his credentials to President Nicos Anastasiades, the High Commissioner, who also served previously in Cyprus as HC, said that the work of the leaders of the two communities “have brought this goal significantly closer than when I left two years ago.”

“The shape of a settlement that can be just, viable and lasting is becoming clearer. Your negotiations are steadily reducing the number of issues remaining to be settled, and are starting to build hope across the island that a solution is within reach,” he said.

He added: “it is easy to say that my Government supports your efforts. And it is true. But our support is expressed not just in words. You expect of us more than that. Always within the framework of a negotiating process under Cypriot leadership, we will seek to offer ideas where they can help; influence, where we have it; and practical experience, to help ensure that the many steps that will be needed to put a settlement into practice, robustly and durably, will be in place when they are needed.”

On bilateral ties, Kidd said they have extended to more fields, as he highlighted the agreement between the two countries on EU matters.

“Any two countries, which find that they vote together on 90 per cent of the business of the European Union can be confident that they are to a high degree like-minded, and not just on the EU’s agenda.”

Kidd said the main objective of his second mission to Cyprus would be to build on the like-mindedness to the benefit of both countries.

“I hope that we can take forward our engagement in the fields of economic growth and prosperity; our collaboration in many aspects of security and defence; our shared Commonwealth membership; and our shared efforts to extend the huge range of personal links tying Cypriots to Britain and British people to Cyprus,” he said.

The high commissioner said he will ensure that the design of the UK’s future relationship with the EU – following its decision to leave — did not weaken the bilateral bonds between Cyprus and the UK, or reduce the scope to keep working together “wherever we are like-minded.”

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