UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres underlined on Wednesday the importance for the two sides in Cyprus to quickly reach an agreement on the terms of reference, in order to start settlement talks, adding that “the political process needs to be restarted.”
“it’s very important to quickly come to an agreement on the terms of reference to be able to start substantial talks that this time I would hope would be different from all past ones. So that is the message I will convey to all the leaders that I will meet,” he said during during a press conference ahead of the 74th session of the UN General Assembly.
He said it was time to at least agree on the terms of reference, based on the work that was done, namely at Crans-Montana, “because I’m a strong believer that the political process needs to be restarted and I think that is also very important for the parties.”
“I see a lot of impatience, namely the Security Council with the fact that there has been no progress. So I believe that there are very good reasons for the parties to understand that at least on terms of reference they need to come to an agreement,” Guterres said.
Guterres’ envoy Jane Holl Lute held back-to-back separate meetings with the two leaders starting on September 1 but was unable to overcome a sticking point that emerged between the two sides, reportedly involving the co-governance issue, to decide on terms of reference to restart the talks.