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Nicosia ‘satisfied’ with Guterres report

Presidential Palace in Nicosia

Nicosia appears to be in general satisfied with the UN Secretary General’s report on his Good Offices mission in Cyprus – an unofficial copy of which was handed over on Tuesday evening to the UN Security Council members.

The government has assessed that references on several issues are better in the current report than the previous one in October, and what was important was that the UNSG’s special envoy Jane Holl Lute was continuing her efforts to facilitate the formulating of terms of reference for the resumption of talks.

A diplomatic source told the Cyprus News Agency: “We note as particularly important the fact that, despite the difficulties written down, the report highlights the clear intention of the UN Secretary-General to continue the effort with a view to achieving progress in the process.”

The sources also said that there were improved references on several issues in the report compared with the October report, for example as regards the issue of hydrocarbons.

Referring to the hydrocarbons issue, he said that “regarding the enduring tensions surrounding hydrocarbons exploration, I reiterate that the natural resources found in and around Cyprus should benefit both communities and can constitute a strong incentive to find a durable solution to the Cyprus problem.”

The UNSG also said that while some progress was registered on confidence-building measures in Cyprus, “there are low expectations for real progress or agreement on the terms of reference.”

Guterres also noted that he would request Lute to continue discussions on his behalf, adding that the way ahead must be well prepared, with a sense of urgency and focus. Furthermore, he expressed hope that the ongoing consultations will lead to a return to negotiations, “to which I could devote the full weight of my good offices, with the aim of reaching a lasting resolution of the Cyprus issue. In that respect, I call on the two leaders, their communities, the guarantor powers, and other interested parties to engage in these efforts constructively, creatively and with the necessary sense of urgency,” he said.

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