Cyprus Mail
Cyprus Talks

This year a decisive one for Cyprus, says foreign minister

Foreign Minister Nicos Christodoulides

The new year is a pivotal one for the Cyprus problem, Foreign Minister Nicos Christodoulides told CNA on Thursday, highlighting that the present unacceptable status quo does not constitute a solution.

In view of the latest developments and ongoing efforts to formulate the terms of reference, Christodoulides said that 2019 is “undoubtedly and without a dose of excess a pivotal year for the Cyprus problem and for efforts towards its solution”.

The first challenge is the formulation of the terms, which will allow for a meaningful, focused and results-oriented negotiation. This is the sole goal of the Greek Cypriot side, he said, as was also clearly expressed to the UN envoy, Jane Holl Lute during her recent visits.

Christodoulides explained that through the terms of reference, which will deal with issues of both substance and procedure, the negotiating parties will be able to clarify if they are on the same page regarding the information already on the negotiating table.

“It is expected that the terms of reference will confirm the progress of the last negotiating process, of the Guterres framework, and set procedural points, such as if a new attempt for intercommunal talks will be initiated in Nicosia, or if there will be a new conference on Cyprus,” he said.

Agreement on these terms is a highly achievable goal if all parties acknowledge that the status quo poses a threat to the whole of the Cypriot people, Christodoulides said.