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Bicommunal meeting with Ban Ki-moon may take place on September 26 (updated)

If it goes ahead, a meeting between the leaders of the island’s divided communities and UN chief Ban Ki-moon would take place on September 26, it emerged on Tuesday.

“Certainly after the 25th, possibly on the 26th. It is a date that is being discussed… it will be a meeting between the two leaders with the UNSG,” President Nicos Anastasiades said on Tuesday, following his meeting with Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci. “Consultations are taking place.”

He reiterated that without sufficient progress and preparation, there will not be a multilateral meeting because it would not yield the results that are sought.

“On the contrary, it could lead to a failure, of the ongoing dialogue even, which, I must say, is on a good course,” Anastasiades said.

During Tuesday’s meeting, the two leaders discussed aspects of the Cyprus problem including the economy, EU matters and others.

Anastasiades said there were no major differences in the two chapters but there were outstanding issues and convergence was needed to close them for good.

Tuesday’s was the fifth meeting between the two leaders as part of an intensified round of talks expected to conclude on September 14.

Akinci however criticised president Anastasiades for making an announcement about the meeting as he said they had agreed that this would be included in their September 14 joint statement.

This was not right, Akinci said, as the Turkish Cypriot side was forced to make statements to answer questions concerning the meeting.

It is important, he said, that they act accordingly as per the agreements for the negotiation process to continue smoothly and to reach the goal of a solution in 2016.

In the previous meeting, the Turkish Cypriot side tabled a proposal on guarantees that differed from the state of affairs in place since 1960. But Anastasiades made it clear that it did not mean the Greek Cypriot side would accept it.

“…we have three more meetings. There will be a repeat of the exchange of views and the effort to see how it is possible for everyone to realise that modern states, especially EU members, have no need of arrangements that could be considered as guardianship of one country over another,” he said.

The president also denied reports that legal expert Polys Polyviou had resigned from the Greek Cypriot negotiating team over disagreements with him.

“He neither resigned nor I prevent anyone to have differing views on matters of a legal nature,” he said.

The president said there had been no disagreements that led to confrontations in the team.

“What I seek is fruitful dialogue through which you form a final, more positive view on how to tackle matters,” he said.

He added that he spoke to Polyviou on Tuesday and he had no intention of resigning. It was just a disagreement between him and a negotiator.

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