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Recall ‘Barbaros’and talks can resume: Anastasiades

20 February 2015

President Anastasiades has repeated that the stalled UN-led negotiations on the Cyprus problem will not re-start unless Turkey cancels its NAVTEX (notice to mariners).

Turkey must recall its seismic survey vessel ‘Barbaros’, which is currently lying off Famagusta, he said.

In an interview with CNA, he said that a political settlement in Cyprus would help to bring peace to the region and that Ankara has an important role to play in this.

Anastasiades noted that the UN and many other interested countries are “making diplomatic moves to help create the conditions that would enable the resumption of the talks.”

“What I would like to stress is my staunch determination to participate in a dialogue of mutual respect with regard to the two communities and their negotiating status in order to allow us, with free will and not under the threat of any military action, to conclude an agreement which leave no winners and no losers,” he said.

Asked if he felt under pressure to return to the negotiating table, he replied: “As I follow various statements by many, some of whom are interested in a solution and others in serving their countries` interests, the solid advice I hear is to return to the talks. I would say that I listen to advice but I do not accept any pressure.”

The Greek Cypriot president explained that the only preconditions for his return to the negotiating table were the cancellation of Ankara’s NAVTEX and the withdrawal of the ‘Barbaros’.

“There is no doubt that unless the NAVTEX, which expires on 6 April, is revoked and until the Turkish Cypriot community elects its leader (elections are scheduled for April 17), I cannot foresee at this stage any possibility of returning to the negotiating table,” he added.

Source Famagusta Gazette

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