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Cyprus Talks

Parties need to discuss constructively with Lute says Spehar

UN Secretary-General’s Special Representative Elizabeth Spehar

All parties involved in the Cyprus talks need to discuss with UN envoy Jane Holl Lute in a constructive manner, UN Special Representative and Unficyp head Elizabeth Spehar said at the UN’s end of the year party held at Ledra Palace on Tuesday night.

She added that all the parties need to be frank with Lute – who is set to arrive in a few days – as the result of their talks would decide the future of Cyprus negotiations.

“We strongly believe that this solution and the future of this island are in the hands of the Cypriots themselves, with the leaders having the core responsibility during the talks,” Spehar said.

Other factors, including the guarantor powers, will have an effect on the process, she added.

2017, she said, had been a year full of news for the Cyprus problem, while looking back on 2018 there were few and sporadic steps taken in the peace process.

Spehar said that the leaders only met twice in 2018 and that during one of their meetings they agreed to open the Lefka/Aplici and Deryneia checkpoints on November 12.

After the recent consultations with the parties involved, the UN Secretary General decided that prospects for a solution remain alive, she said, adding “it is important to remember that during the last round of negotiations there was significant progress achieved and it will be significant to build on that.

“The uncertainty of the present cannot overshadow the prospects of a united future.”

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