President Eroglu has invited President Anastasiades to the Deep Purple rock concert, which is scheduled for 24th May at the University of the Near East, Nicosia.
Eroglu said that he had invited the Greek Cypriot president during recent negotiations, but had not received an answer. The president said he will invite Anastasiades again to the concert which marks the 25th anniversary of the founding of the university.
Recently, the band’s lead singer, Ian Gillan posted a statement on his own website ‘Caramba’, defending the band’s decision to perform in Turkish Cyprus amid criticism from Greek Cypriots. He said the the band was not taking any sides and that Deep Purple had performed in many troubled regions in their touring history. “We have never been on one side or the other when it comes to performing music. I remember, during the Cold War, hearing about visits to London by the Bolshoi Ballet and the top football teams from Moscow, also the Cossack dancers, and many other cultural exchanges between the West and the Soviet Union. The diplomatic and cultural side was always open for art, entertainment and sport, no matter how frightening and confrontational all the rest of it was,” Gillan said.
Aside from the concert invitation, President Eroglu said he and his negotiators were aiming for a referendum in three months’ time to resolve the dispute. “But Anastasiades thinks there will not be a solution before 2015,” he said. The peace talks re-started in February after a two-year break.