UN Special Adviser for Cyprus, Espen Barth Eide, is to visit Turkey on Wednesday and meet with Foreign Ministry Under-secretary Feridun Sinirlioğlu.
They are expected to discuss the hot topics in the Cyprus negotiations including property, the right to hold land and Turkey’s position as one of the guarantor states to Cyprus.
The UN envoy’s recent statement on the return of land has been the cause concern, but in response, he tried to refine his statements, saying that his remarks had been misunderstood.
He said that the leaders had agreed that the rights of all property owners and current users would be respected in a settlement and that a property commission would be created to decide on return, exchange or compensation.
Shortly after Eide’s statement was made, Akıncı dismissed claims of returning land that is currently being controlled by Turkish Cyprus to Greek Cyprus. Akıncı said: “Our aim is to make an agreement that is in accordance with international law and will protect the rights of both sides.”
He said his government regards the system of a rotating presidency as an indispensable part of political equality in the peace talks. With the reunification talks reaching a critical phase, Akıncı said that the significant topics are property, land and Turkey’s guarantor position.
Although both Turkish Cyprus and Turkey aim to keep the guarantor position, Greek Minister of Foreign Affairs Nicos Kotzias had previously said guarantor powers were no longer required. While the Turkish and Greek Cypriot leaders had agreed on a five-step plan to resolve the Cyprus issue, Akıncı reassured that any agreement would have to include Turkish Cypriots’ freedom, equality and security.