Foreign Minister Constantinos Kombos briefed the ministers of the EU responsible for European affairs on Nicosia’s imitative to promote the resumption of talks for the settlement of the Cyprus problem, during the General Affairs Council which was held on Tuesday in Brussels.
The main issues of the Council were the preparation of the upcoming European Council summit, the Windsor Framework for future relations with the UK, the country-by-country discussion on the rule of law and the European Semester.
On Monday, the Foreign Minister participated in the Foreign Affairs Council, while on the same day he also attended the Donors’ Conference for the people of Turkey and Syria, where, as the Cyprus News Agency learns, he had the opportunity to greet and have a brief conversation with Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu.
During the General Affairs Council, Kombos informed the ministers of President Christodoulides’ intention to present to his counterparts on Thursday, his initiative to resume negotiations for the settlement of the Cyprus problem, on the basis of the relevant UNSC resolutions and the acquis Communautaire.
The Foreign Minister also stressed that the initiative will emphasise the EU’s particularly enhanced role in this effort.
Also, during the GAC, ministers exchanged views on the main issues on the agenda of the upcoming summit, in particular developments in Ukraine, competitiveness, energy and migration.
The Foreign Minister reiterated Cyprus’ support for Ukraine and noted that the issue of circumvention of sanctions by third countries should be addressed “urgently and decisively”.
He also welcomed efforts made to enhance the stability and predictability of energy costs, in a way that takes into account the specificities of Member States not interconnected to the European Union’s energy network.
Kombos also referred to Cyprus’ request for the preparation of an Action Plan on Migration for the Eastern Mediterranean, and its importance for the country.
Over lunch, ministers held an informal exchange with the Deputy Prime Minister for European and Euro-Atlantic Integration of Ukraine, Olha Stefanishyna, on Ukraine’s EU integration and reforms towards EU membership.
Also, the General Affairs Council adopted two decisions related to the Windsor Framework, opening the way for the application of what was agreed with the UK regarding the status of Northern Ireland.
On the sidelines of the Council, Kombos met with counterparts from different EU countries, and had separate meetings with Commissioner for Neighbourhood and Enlargement Olivér Várhelyi, Commissioner for Cohesion and Reforms Elisa Ferreira, and Commissioner for Health and Food Safety Stella Kyriakides.
The Foreign Minister also had a formal meeting with the President of the European Parliament, Roberta Metsola, and held a meeting with the six Cypriot MEPs.