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Political parties back President’s message to Erdogan at UN assembly

world leaders gather for the 78th annual united nations general assembly
Cyprus President Nikos Christodoulides addresses the 78th United Nations General Assembly

Political parties in Cyprus on Thursday said that President Nikos Christodoulides sent the right message to Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan, during his speech at the UN General Assembly a day ago.

During his speech, Christodoulides called on Erdogan to work together for peace in Cyprus, and to find a solution based on the agreed international framework.

Addressing the UN General Assembly in New York, he said: “Mr Erdogan, let us work together, guided by a vision of peace. Let us build a brighter future for our countries, through dialogue, and respect of international legality.”

Commenting on the aggressions that Cyprus has witnessed over the years, including the opening of Varosha, the consistent taunting of maritime vessels in the exclusive economic zone (EEZ), and most recently the attack on UN peacekeepers in the buffer zone near Pyla, Christodoulides reiterated his call for negotiations to begin on the Cyprus problem.

“That is why the resumption of negotiations, firmly anchored on the agreed framework, is my absolute priority. The current status quo cannot be the future of Cyprus. It cannot be the future for Cypriots,” he said.

However, a day before the president spoke, Erdogan called again for the international community to recognise the ‘TRNC’.

In his speech, Erdogan said that “the transformation of the Eastern Mediterranean into an area where peace, prosperity and stability will prevail is possible only with respect for rights and laws by all parties”.

He went on to claim that in the past 60 years, “the Turkish Cypriot side has always made sincere efforts to find a fair, permanent and sustainable solution,” asserting that a federation-based solution is no longer viable.

Commenting on Thursday opposition Disy said that they support the president’s initiative to achieve the goal of resuming negotiations within the agreed solution framework.

The sentiment was echoed by opposition Akel, who said that the president was correct to showcase the violations of Turkey in relation to Varosha and Pyla.

They added: “We also share the positive messages of peace and cooperation that he sent from the floor of the General Assembly to our Turkish Cypriot compatriots as well as the call to Turkey to cooperate for a solution on the agreed basis and framework.”

However, they said that the president should be more specific on some critical issues, as the Guterres framework agreed in 2017, after the failure of the Crans-Montana talks.

Diko, who supported Christodoulides in the last elections, said: “The speech of President Christodoulides sent the international community substantial messages while at the same time gave a clear answer to Erdogan’s unacceptable insistence on the partition, clarifying in the most categorical way that ‘the criminality stemming from invasion, aggression and the use of force cannot be recognized’.”

According to the announcement by Depa, the speech sent the correct messages for the way forward on the Cyprus issue.

“Underlining the need for a more active involvement of the European Union, for assistance from the UN, with a clear reminder of the benefits that such an undertaking can provide, offers a vision of a common European future for all Cypriots with simultaneous advantages for Turkey in its relations with the Union,” the party said.

Socialist party, Edek, also said that Christodoulides sent the right message about the Cyprus problem, and the right message to Erdogan regarding the recognition of the ‘TRNC’.

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