Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) rapporteur for Varosha Piero Fassino visited the city on Wednesday, marking his second visit to Cyprus since undertaking the role.

Fassino arrived on the island on Monday, meeting with President Nikos Christodoulides and House president Annita Demetriou on Tuesday, before travelling to the north on Wednesday to visit Varosha.

He was accompanied by the PACE’s two Turkish Cypriot observers, Oguzhan Hasipoglu of ruling party the UBP and Armagan Candan of opposition party the CTP, and Famagusta’s Turkish Cypriot mayor Suleyman Ulucay.

Speaking after his visit, he said he hopes Varosha will once again become a “living town”, and that “of course, this is something which can happen with the agreement of the two parties concerned.”

In addition, he expressed his belief that reaching a solution to the Cyprus problem “with the help of the United Nations”, is an imperative.

Candan spoke to the Cyprus Mail after the meeting, explaining that Fassino’s findings from his visit will be compiled into a report, which will be submitted to the PACE’s next assembly at the end of June.

His report will then be voted on by the PACE’s members.

Candan said that while the votes will not bind any member state, “it is expected that all the Council of Europe’s member states take the vote, and thus the findings of the report, into consideration.”

In addition, Candan said he had conveyed to Fassino “our stance regarding [UN Envoy Maria Angela] Holguin’s attempts to restart negotiations, and our party’s well-known stance on the matter of Varosha”.

“We also spoke of our ideas which we believe will facilitate steps towards a solution, including our will for a three-party meeting or a five-party meeting. All sides should be open to this,” he added, making reference to Turkish Cypriot leader Ersin Tatar’s refusal to hold such a meeting in the presence of Holguin.

Such a meeting, Candan said, “would pave the way to try to find common ground.”

Hasipoglu spoke to press after the meeting, thanking Fassino for “listening to both sides” before preparing his report.

“Of course, we will raise our own objections to elements in the report which we may not like, but it is important that the Council of Europe at least listens to both sides regarding the Cyprus problem,” he added.

Fassino was also set to meet with the Immovable Property Commission and Ersin Tatar, while he had also met with UN Special Representative Colin Stewart on Tuesday.

UN Peacekeeping force in Cyprus (Unficyp) spokesman Aleem Siddique said Stewart had discussed the UN’s role in Cyprus and the contributions made by Unficyp to peace building efforts across the island.