The government said on Monday it hoped UN Special Adviser Espen Barth Eide’s optimism that the talks would resume soon was correct, but in any event the Greek Cypriot side was continuing to work on matters related to moving forward with negotiations.
Spokesman Nicos Christodoulides said he had seen Eide’s interview with Politis where the special envoy said he was expecting concrete moves this week to ease the current situation, and that he was confident President Nicos Anastasiades and Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci would return to the negotiations.
“We hope that what he says will happen,” Christodoulides said. “Maybe he heard something on the part of Mr Akinci to justify this optimism.” The spokesman said the position of the president was clear, and he was ready to resume dialogue immediately.
Christodoulides, commenting on another statement by Eide that effectively time was running out, said this was not the first time the same thing had been heard over the past 22 months
“Only through discussions and conversations can we see if this process can overcome the various obstacles. Without dialogue, we cannot appreciate how or for how long the process will proceed,” he said.
The spokesman said Anastasiades had put forward some ideas to Eide when they met last Friday. This included moving ahead with a system whereby three lists are drawn up with convergences, small disagreements and substantial disagreements. The idea was mooted last year during negotiations.
“On our side this has been prepared for almost all chapters,” said Christodoulides. Through this exercise, he said they were able to establish 10 to 15 disagreements in all. But these could only be resolved in negotiations, he added.
In another issue related to the talks, the spokesman said Anastasiades, who will be in Brussels on Wednesday for the European Council, would discuss Turkey’s demand that the four freedoms be granted to Turkish nationals post solution. These comprise freedom of movement of persons, goods, services and capital. So far the spokesman said the response to this within the bloc have been the same as that of Cyprus.