President Mustafa Akinci has said that both sides will exert every effort they can to reach a result in the Cyprus negotiations. In statements after the four-hour meeting he held on Monday night with President Anastasiades with the presence of UN Secretary-General Special Advisor on Cyprus Espen Barth Eide, Akinci noted:
“There are agreements reached, there are points of difference, there are different views. The entire issue is to overcome these differences and reach a common result which both sides can approve. This is not an easy process”.
Akinci said that on Monday evening, they firstly held a three-party meeting with Eide and exchanged views on the issues and afterwards they continued the discussion with the participation of the negotiators and the delegations. Akinci added:
“The instruction we have given to our negotiators is to intensively start within the forthcoming days on the issue of the criteria as regards the property. I think that they will start meeting as of tomorrow”.
Akinci recalled that the next meeting between the leaders will be held on 30th October and noted that they reaffirmed their determination to continue negotiations more intensively as of November. “We have a serious process before us. It needs intensive work”, he said.
Replying to a question regarding recent statements made by President Anastasiades regarding the bi-zonal characteristics of a potential settlement, EU derogations and “red lines”, Akinci noted:
“Nothing such as a red line was discussed. The discussions are on how we can overcome the differences of opinions. That is, both sides are exerting efforts to solve this issue. You know that the one side has unfortunately become an EU member before the solution. Therefore, a little bit more reference is made to the EU laws, but as is recalled in the joint agreement reached on 11th February 2014, on the one hand it is said that we will remain committed to the EU principles and on the other to the bi-zonal, bi-communal structure which has become a UN parameter and to a federal structure which will include political equality. And it was very clearly and evidently stated that this characteristic of the solution will be protected. I think that here our understanding of bi-zonality emerges. I have many times explained what my understanding is. There is no need for me to repeat it. They are also expressing what their understanding is. You are actually seeing these, they are published in the press. Therefore, now we are not in a position to say that there is an agreement on this point, that is to say that there is an agreement on the issue of what these concepts mean”.