President Nicos Anastasiades has been invited to visit Ukraine, when possible, by his counterpart Volodymyr Zelensky.
Anastasiades announced on Thursday that he spoke with Zelensky over the phone, where the Ukrainian president expressed his appreciation for Cyprus’ support and its humanitarian assistance. Thousands of Ukrainian refugees have made their way to Cyprus.
During the phone call, Anastasiades wrote on Twitter, Zelensky reiterated that his address to the Republic’s parliament back in April was cut due to a technical glitch.
Received call by 🇺🇦 President @ZelenskyyUa. Appreciated 🇨🇾 support to 🇪🇺 perspective of his country & thanked for humanitarian assistance from CY. President attributed disruption of communication w/ the Parliament to technical glitch & invited me to visit Ukraine when possible.
— Nicos Anastasiades (@AnastasiadesCY) June 23, 2022
Zelensky’s address to parliament proved controversial as it had been expected that he would reference Turkey’s invasion of Cyprus in 1974 but no such mention was made.
During House President Annita Demetriou’s response the connection was suddenly lost on the Ukrainian side, soon after she had mentioned the Turkish invasion. That led many to believe that Zelensky disconnected, but it was quickly explained away as a purely incidental technical glitch.
In the Republic, there is a sense of solidarity with the Ukrainian people, who they see as victims of a fate similar to that of 1974 – invasion, occupation, and displacement by a bigger power.
Turkey has since emerged as an influential player in the wider region following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.