Disy leader and presidential candidate Averof Neophytou met with former Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci as they discussed the Cyprus problem.

The announcement came from Akinci on social media with a picture of the two outside his office in the north.

“[Neophytou] was kind enough to visit me at our offices prior to New Year’s. We assessed the situation of the Cyprus problem,” Akinci wrote, adding that he wishes Neophytou health, peace and happiness – also referring to the elections in “Southern Cyprus”.

“It is important to hear from Turkish Cypriot politicians that they are against Turkey’s two-state position,” said Neophytou in a written statement later in the day.

“It is for this reason that we must also send our absolute message that we remain committed to the agreed framework of the bizonal bicommunal federation with political equality in order to be able to reunite our homeland and get rid of the occupying army and Turkish guarantees.”

Akinci served as the Turkish Cypriot leader between 2015-2020, during which time the Crans Montana talks in 2017 took place – efforts which analysts and diplomats refer to as being “so, so close” to a solution.

Efforts towards negotiations have since hit rock bottom with the previously agreed framework towards a solution of a bi-zonal, bi-communal federation no longer accepted by Turkey or current Turkish Cypriot leader Ersin Tatar.