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Cyprus Cyprus Talks

Ozersay: Cyprus talks a vicious circle, alternatives needed  

Kudret Ozersay

Turkish Cypriot ‘foreign minister’ Kudret Ozersay has said that talks had turned into a vicious circle and that other alternatives were needed.

He was addressing a conference entitled “An Alternative Way on the Cyprus Issue” organised by Geneva University of Diplomacy and International Relations that took place on Thursday.
In his speech, Ozersay said he had 15 years of experience as a negotiator for the Cyprus talks, and had worked with three Turkish Cypriot leaders and four Greek Cypriot presidents.

“The negotiations have now turned into a vicious circle. Other alternatives need to be tried to solve the problem,” he said.

Ozersay said the lack of common vision among the parties constituted the biggest problem and stressed that the federal partnership model, which has been on the agenda for the last 50 years, could not be achieved without the sharing of “authority and prosperity” by the main actors.

This model, which has been the basis of the endless Cyprus negotiations that started in 1968 and has continued for 50 years, was now worn out, he said.

He accused the Greek Cypriots of acting as the sole owners of the hydrocarbon resources in the Eastern Mediterranean, and argued that the Greek Cypriot leadership was not in favour of a solution because they had an advantage with the current status quo.
The fact that the hydrocarbon resources “jointly belong” to the communities on both sides of the island is accepted by everyone, Ozersay said.

“We have to find an alternative way of cooperation in this field. If we can achieve this, there will be an interdependence between the relevant actors both in the region and in Cyprus,” he said.

Ozersay also accused the Greek Cypriot side of trying to block his contacts in Geneva by sending letters to all UN institutions.

Speaking to Turkish Cypriot Bayrak TV, Ozersay said that he and his team were trying to be discreet when scheduling their contacts in a bid to prevent the Greek Cypriot side’s obstructive efforts.

“The Greek Cypriot administration’s outdated methods and efforts are unacceptable,” he added.

He said, however, that no one could silence the Turkish Cypriots on international platforms.

He said his contacts in Geneva were focused mainly on humanitarian issues such as asylum seekers and refugees as well as the missing persons.

Meanwhile, Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci had a meeting on Friday with US Ambassador Judith Gale Garber to discuss the Cyprus problem according to media reports in the north.

Akinci had a meeting on Thursday with British High Commissioner Stephen Lillie.

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