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UN envoy to visit Cyprus mid-march

maria angela holguin cuellar
File photo: Maria Angela Holguin Cuellar

The UN Secretary-General’s personal envoy Maria Angela Holguin will be in Cyprus in mid-March, President Nikos Christodoulides said on Sunday.

Speaking to reporters after a church ceremony, Christodoulides said Holguin’s appointment opens a window of opportunity which creates the conditions to allow talks to resume.

The president sought to stress these will be substantial talks and not talks for the sake of talks.

He underlined the basis of the talks likes in the agreed framework: a bizonal, bicommunal federation.

“This is not up for discussion and this is the message both from the international community and our own towards Turkey and the Turkish Cypriot community.”

Christodoulides also commented on British High Commissioner to Cyprus Irfan Siddiq, saying his statements “do not under any circumstances help in the efforts to resume talks.”

Siddiq was served a demarche by Cyprus’ foreign ministry after he said Turkish Cypriots need incentives to go back to the negotiating table.

“Such statements are unacceptable. This is not up for discussion,” Christodoulides stressed.

He also commented on the German President’s visit to Cyprus Frank-Walter Steinmeier, highlighting that Germany has excellent relations with Turkey.

Christodoulides noted this would be an opportunity to discuss how the conditions can be created for talks.

Asked over the idea to have an EU envoy, as the initiative appears to be sinking, Christodoulides put the blame on Ankara, saying it had a negative stance.

Nonetheless “this does not mean the efforts have come to end.”

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