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Akinci refuses to meet Russian FM in buffer zone

27 November 2015

President Akinci has declined Moscow’s suggestion that he meets with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov in the UN buffer zone. Akinci has insisted that the Russian FM meets him at his residence in the North.

Lavrov is due to pay a two day working visit to Cyprus on 1st December to discuss the Cyprus problem and the Syrian conflict. He will meet President Anastasiades and his Greek Cypriot counterpart Ioannis Kasoulides to exchange views on Russia’s relations with the EU.

“We offered a compromise option of meeting Lavrov on the ‘green line’ to the leader of Cypriot Turks. The proposal would have taken account the interests of both communities residing on the island but it was turned down,” Russian foreign ministry spokesperson Maria Zakharova said.

Such a meeting could be interpreted as official recognition of the TRNC by Russia, Zakharova said.

“In our view, it would be damaging for our position of principle concerning the settlement of the Cyprus problem,” she added. “It is important to discuss the situation in the Cypriot settlement and talk about the situation in Syria,” Zakharova said.

She noted that South Nicosia had “reacted immediately and with full understanding of Russia’s position” after Turkey downed a Russian Su-24 bomber on Tuesday.

President Akinci has pointed out that both leaders and the two sides represented should be regarded as equals in the negotiations and wishes to be represented as an equal when visited by high ranking officials.

In-Cyprus

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