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Russia says no change to its stance on Cyprus

Russian foreign ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova

Russia’s approach to the Cyprus problem has not changed as Moscow says that it continues to advocate for a solution based on UN security council resolutions.

The Russian foreign ministry stated on social media on Wednesday that its spokeswoman Maria Zakharova reiterated the nation’s support for the establishment of a bizonal, bicommunal federation with common international legal status, sovereignty and citizenship.

The confirmation of Russia’s unchanged stance to the issue is notable amidst the cleaving apart of Moscow from the West, specifically the EU and Cyprus.

Cyprus and Russia shared historically warm ties which have recently been strained amid a barrage of EU sanctions following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Those measures have been responded to in a tit-for-tat manner by Moscow, which has included Cyprus on a list of ‘unfriendly countries’. That has led to measures such as visa restrictions on EU citizens.

There have been concerns in Cyprus of potential blowbacks for its participation in the EU measures on Russia.

Just four days after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Russian ambassador to Cyprus Stanislav Osadchiy said Cyprus had “shot itself in the foot” by signing up to the bloc’s sanctions.

Last month, Russia said it had no intention of recognising authorities other than the Republic of Cyprus amid reports at the time of the creation of a consulate in the north.

It added, however, that Russia is “exploring the possibilities” of providing assistance to thousands of Russian nationals living in the territories over which the government of the Republic of Cyprus does not exercise “effective control”.

Assistance might include consular services, but also humanitarian, cultural and educational support, the embassy said.

 

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