The House plenum on Friday shot down an urgent motion – by 28 votes against to 21 in favour – to pass a resolution rejecting any form of guarantees, and the presence of foreign troops or bases as part of a possible solution to the Cyprus issue.
After an intense and lengthy session, the motion, tabled by Greens leader Giorgos Perdikis was voted down by Disy and Akel deputies. It was instead referred to the House committee for European and foreign affairs for discussion.
As the Cyprus leaders narrow the gaps on some chapters, the four core issues of property, territory, security and guarantees have come to the fore in recent weeks as next on the agenda if everything goes according to plan. Some quarters see this as drawing closer to a comprehensive settlement and has sent some of the rejectionist parties into a spin, even though President Nicos Anastasiades has drawn a red line on having a Turkish guarantee incorporated into a solution.
In September, the Green Party expressed the view that parliament should get involved in the Cyprus talks by issuing a binding decision.
Perdikis said that he had asked the House president for the legislature to issue a decision binding the president that he would not accept a reunification deal that included foreign guarantees and the presence of foreign troops.
Perdikis added that the time had come for parliament to determine the Cypriot people’s stance on key Cyprus problem matters.
Before that, Diko leader Nicolas Papadopoulos suggested that constitutional matters relating to the reunification of the island must go through parliament because he did not trust the president.
There had been some suggestion that a special House committee on the Cyprus issue be set up but this was torpedoed by new Speaker Demetris Syllouris, who believed it could prove to be a negative force that would cause problems for the negotiations.