TRNC Foreign Minister Emine Colak, has asked that South Cyprus suspend its general election scheduled for May 2016.
She argued that the solution of the Cyprus problem appears to be so close, for the first time since 1974, that “for the continuity of the negotiations”, the elections should be suspended.
In statements to Reuters during the last day of her visit in London, she said that she is cautiously optimistic about achieving a solution to the Cyprus problem and added: “I do not think that a referendum could be held in the beginning of 2016, but why not within 2016?”
In London, Colak met with Crispin Blunt, President of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the UK Parliament. According to Colak’s office, during the meeting she drew attention to the importance of Britain increasing its support for the negotiating process and a solution to be reached in Cyprus.
Within the framework of her contacts, Colak attended a lunch hosted in her honour by the UK Parliament’s Friends of Northern Cyprus group. She also met with Pat McFadden, Shadow EU Minister (lhs main photo) and Hilary Benn, Shadow Foreign Secretary of the Labour Party (rhs). She briefed them on the negotiating process and underlined the importance of the support offered by the Labour Party and the EU Parliament’s Socialist Group.
She said that in particular, when the Cyprus problem comes onto the agenda, listening to the views of the Turkish Cypriots is important and asked that her interlocutors hold contacts with the Turkish Cypriots in such situations.
Benn and McFadden said that their support for the solution process in Cyprus will continue and that they are always ready to listen to the views of the Turkish Cypriots and meet with them.