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Government confirms Lute’s ‘new idea’ for talks (Updated)

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UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres’ report on his Good Offices mission in Cyprus is to be submitted to the UN Security Council mid-week instead of Monday as initially expected.

Citing a UN official, the Cyprus News Agency reported on Monday that the report will most probably be submitted within the next couple of days.

Government spokesman Prodromos Prodromou confirmed earlier on Monday that Lute has pitched in a new idea in an attempt to get the Cyprus talks moving again.

Prodromou said a “certain idea” has been conveyed in recent days by Lute, and “we should wait to see how developments unfold.”

According to media reports, the new idea concerns procedural matters that could help in drafting the terms of reference for the resumption of talks. Nicosia has reportedly agreed to the new procedure and Lute was waiting for the response of the Turkish Cypriot side. Reports said the government has agreed not to elaborate on Lute’s initiative to the public.

“We have nothing else to announce on this matter,” Prodromou said in statements to the press at the Presidential Palace.

What’s important, he said, is that the UN secretary-general is investing in the efforts to resume negotiations. This, he said, satisfies the government, because “it is the Greek Cypriot side which truly and more than anyone else has the wish for substantive negotiations to start and for the issue to be settled.”

The Security Council had asked the UN secretary-general to submit a report for his mission and Lute’s efforts by April 15. The postponement is due to that Lute only completed her latest round of contacts in Cyprus a few days ago and is still continuing her efforts to reach a procedural agreement with the two sides.

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