President Mustafa Akinci, speaking after his arrival in the TRNC from New York evaluated his meetings there and explained the processes in the negotiations which were likely to recommence on 4th October.
Noting that the time for “delaying tactics” for a solution to the Cyprus had been exceeded a long time ago, Akinci argued that the fact that they want a timetable and a road map for the negotiations, means that they want a solution. Pointing out those who say no to a timetable, does not really want a solution, Akinci said: “No matter what is said, there is a timetable and this was set naturally”.
Akinci added that they will intensify their work in order to complete and close the issues remaining in the first four chapters.
Referring to the phone conversation he held the other night with the UN Secretary- General Ban Ki-moon, Akinci said that Ban has a very clear road map in his mind and also realises how important is the time factor in the negotiations. He added that the UN Secretary-General reaffirmed his intention to be by the side of the two leaders during the next three months and before the end of his term.
Arguing that they will continue the negotiations following a “realistic and reasonable line”, Akinci added that if they cannot find a solution, then the Turkish Cypriot people will make an evaluation and will take the necessary steps. “However, let’s focus today on the positive scenario since it would be shame for something that can be achieved, to be missed. Probably we will not have this chance again. Therefore, in the next three months, we should exert efforts to be positive and behave positively and try to establish a structure that we will be able to live in equality, security and freedom”, Akinci said.
Stating that on 3rd October he will be attending the opening session of the assembly, he added that the negotiation process will most likely consist of three stages, with the first stage to launch on 4th October. “We will set a schedule for our meetings and afterwards we will launch intensified talks in order to sort out the issues that remain open”, Akinci said, adding the following: “The next stage should be where the territory issue will be discussed in detail. It is preferable to discuss this not in Cyprus but abroad. We have never evaluated the issue of security and guarantees and the territory issue as issues of the five-party summit. We’ve never had this demand, nor have we made such a proposal”.
Arguing once again that the Greek Cypriot press publishes “exaggerated and speculative reports”, Akinci reiterated the view that it is not possible to discuss the territory issue in such an environment and maintained that it is for this reason he wants to address these issues in a Camp David-style meeting. Stating that right after this process, his goal is to reach to a solution with a five-party meeting to discuss the issues of security and guarantees, he added: “If we cannot reach a solution, ultimately, we should explain this to our communities and the rest of the world”.
Akinci reiterated also that the Turkish Cypriot side certainly wants to see the rotating presidency in a possible solution and added that it considers this as an “important element of political equality and of their effective participation in the decision-making system”.
Replying to a question, Akinci explained that he had never said to the UN’s Special Adviser Espen Barth Eide that they “were deceived”. He explained that prior to their departure for New York, they had a common approach to the message they would sent to the Secretary-General, they decided to launch preparation for a five-party meeting under the condition of reaffirming this after completing first their work in Cyprus, and argued that President Anastasiades took steps backward since he was influenced by the “National Council and the opposition front”.
Akinci further added that he could not ignore the attacks which had been by some groups, such as ELAM. Pointing out that ELAM is represented in parliament in the south, he added that those groups had gone unpunished.