A two-state solution in Cyprus is a non-starter, European Council President, Charles Michel, said on Wednesday, speaking before the European Parliament plenary.

In a debate with MEPs about the outcome of the recent European Council meeting, Michel said the EU will continue to actively support the process to settle the Cyprus problem, including the issue of Varosha, stressing that a two-state solution is a non-starter.

Michel said de-escalation in the eastern Mediterranean is a good sign, but constructive engagement needs to be deepened.

He noted that engaging with Turkey remains the EU`s policy aiming at modernizing the EU-Turkey Customs Union, but at the same time they need to deepen on addressing existing irritants.

Michel referred to the framework for the continued financing of Syrian refugees and host communities in Turkey, Jordan, Lebanon, and other parts of the region, noting that the European Council expects this work to be taken forward, without delay, and calls for formal Commission proposals.

Furthermore, he noted that the rule of rule and the respect of fundamental rights is a key concern, in particular the targeting of political parties in the media and Women`s Rights Dialogue and these issues remain an important part of the EU-Turkey relationship.

On October 8, 2020, the Turkish side opened part of the fenced area of Varosha, following an announcement made in Ankara on October 6.

Both the UN Secretary-General and the EU expressed concern, while the UN Security Council called for the reversal of this course of action.