President Nikos Christodoulides said on Monday he hopes Turkish Cypriot leader Ersin Tatar will respond positively to UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres’ proposals on the Cyprus problem.

Speaking after a church service on April 1, Christodoulides commented on Tatar’s visit to New York later this week to meet with Guterres.

“Things are simple,” the president said, responding to a question on April being a month with developments in the Cyprus problem.

“As I said, the UN secretary-general, when we met in Brussels, but also previously Mrs Holguin, conveyed some proposals to me, which I have accepted. I hope there will be a response from the other side,” he said.

“And in this context, I think the meeting that will take place on April 5 in New York is important, and I hope that there will be a response from the Turkish Cypriot side.”

Christodoulides said that he is in contact with Holguin, but that in the coming days the most important thing will be Tatar’s meeting with Guterres, where the former will be asked to respond to the proposal by the UNSG.

Tatar’s invite came after Guterres met Christodoulides in Belgium on the sidelines of the European Council summit last week.

The Turkish Cypriot side had requested that Guterres also hold a meeting with Tatar, and Guterres promptly invited him to travel to Brussels the following day. However, Tatar was unable to travel to Brussels, and the New York meeting was scheduled instead.

It is expected that Tatar will inform Guterres on his position on the Cyprus problem, insisting on the acceptance of sovereign equality and equal international status of the island’s two sides as “essential” for the resumption of negotiations.

Additionally, it is expected that Tatar will tell Guterres that it is “no longer possible” for one of the two parties at the negotiating table to be accepted as a state and the other to be seen as a community.