TRNC Foreign Minister Tahsin Ertugruloglu has accused President Nicos Anastasiades of trying to change the format of the talks set to take place in Geneva next week, adding that such an attempt is unacceptable.
In a statement on 1 January 2017, President Anastasiades claimed that the five-party meeting that is agreed to take place on 12 January 2017 in Geneva will be ‘‘…more of a four-party conference’’ and said ‘‘…relevant parties will attend the conference, namely the Republic of Cyprus and the three guarantors’’. Anastasiades also said that he will go to Geneva as the President of the so-called ‘‘Republic of Cyprus’’, and asserted that ‘‘there will be no multi-party conference on 12 January unless a map is submitted”. Furthermore, he maintained his insistence that the Permanent Members of the UN Security Council should be present at the conference.
Issuing a written statement on Tuesday, Foreign Minister Ertugruloglu said that Anastasiades insisted that the conference on Cyprus will not be a five party conference but a four party conference to be attended by the Republic of Cyprus and the three guarantor countries, Turkey, Greece and the UK.
Stating that Anastasiades chose to ignore the official agreement reached and instead tried to change the meeting’s format to suit his own interpretation and preference, Ertugruloglu said:”This is in direct contradiction with the Burgenstock format and the Good Offices Mission of the UN Secretary General”.
Ertugruloglu further noted that such an attempt, made intentionally only days before the Geneva talks, aimed at preventing any chances of reaching a successful conclusion from the summit. “The agreement reached between the two leaders on December 1st and announced by the UN clearly states which parties or countries will be taking part in the five-party conference”, he said.
Ertugruloglu added that the current negotiations held under the auspices of the Secretary General’s Good Office’s Mission are held on the basis of equality and did not envisage any preconditions.
He concluded by saying that the UN should not remain silent over such attempts to derail the upcoming Geneva talks.
BRT, TRNC Foreign Ministry