The appointment of a UN envoy for Cyprus could provide “critical support” for the search for a solution to the Cyprus problem, the UNSG’s special representative on the island Colin Stewart said on Saturday.

The Head of the United Nations Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus (Unficyp) however remains concerned about the developing tensions in and around the island, he was quoted as saying in the Secretary general’s good offices report on Cyprus.

The final version of the report was released overnight Cyprus time as an official security council document. In it, Stewart called on the involved parties to avoid unilateral activities that may increase tensions in Cyprus but also in the wider Eastern Mediterranean region.

The Cyprus government has also repeatedly expressed how the appointment of a UN envoy for Cyprus would ensure better preparation for future negotiations. Last month, government spokesman Marios Pelekanos said the UNSG should go ahead with the appointment of an envoy.

Notwithstanding the position on the need for the appointment of Special Envoy, the report welcomed the recent decision to assign a high-ranking UN official with the role of liaising with all involved in the context of the effort to find a breakthrough.

The visits of Assistant Secretary General Miroslav Jenca to Cyprus in April, July and November 2022, have been instrumental in highlighting “the continued commitment of the UNSG to provide his good offices and to work for the reinvigoration of negotiations,” the report added.

Stewart also expressed concern about developments in the fenced off area of Varosha. The special representative reiterated that the UN position has not changed and stressed the importance of compliance with the UN resolutions, particularly 550 and 789.

In conformity with the relevant provisions of the resolutions, the fenced area of Varosha “be transferred to the administration of the United Nations with the view to enabling the early return to the area of its lawful inhabitants under conditions of safety the soonest possible,” the report said.

Meanwhile, the natural resources of the island should be made beneficial to both communities, the UN representative said. The natural resources should provide a strong incentive for the sides to seek mutually acceptable and lasting solutions to their disagreements on issues related to natural resources and ongoing or planned energy cooperation projects in the region.