Cyprus President Nicos Anastasiades, said on Tuesday evening that the proposals he put forward during the Conference on Cyprus in the Swiss resort of Crans-Montana in the summer of 2017 are no longer valid from the moment talks were discontinued.
He was replying to questions on the sidelines of an event celebrating the 20-year anniversary of daily “Politis” on Tuesday evening, a presidency press release says.
Asked whether the proposals he put forward at Crans-Montana are valid or whether they have been withdrawn President Anastasiades said that “as I stated during the same evening, when the (UN) Secretary General decided to discontinue the dialogue, but also before in writing, it is evident that the proposals were submitted provided that an agreement would be reached.”
“That evening I clearly stated that from the moment the dialogue is discontinued, the proposals are no longer valid,” he said.
Replying to a comment by a journalist that the Turkish Cypriot side did not submit any proposals, President Anastasiades said: “no, apart from two paragraphs which referred to the presence of troops and the continuation of intervention rights.”
Replying to another question about the Crans-Montana conference and the UN Secretary General’s framework and whether it is the one submitted on June 30th or on July 4th he explained that the informal document of June 30th did not unfortunately reflect what the Secretary General defined as the framework within which the negotiations should go ahead.
Both the Greek Cypriot side through its negotiator Andreas Mavroyiannis via email and the Turkish Cypriot side “protested that the document the UN SG’s Special Advisor Espen Barth Eide had submitted did not correspond to reality or did not convey the precise positions of the Secretary General,” he said.
He added that as a result and due to the lack of progress in the coming days, on July 4th a meeting was convened which included all Cypriots and Eide dictated what the Secretary General had asked him to convey to the sides during a telephone communication.
Therefore, he explained, “there is no document for the 4th of July but there are clarifications on the ambiguities or the omissions the informal document Eide gave us contained.”
Replying to a journalist’s comment that there are no minutes about this President Anastasiades said that “there are definitely minutes, since both sides kept minutes, in shorthand or otherwise.”
He replied negatively to a question whether he will release the minutes expressing “regret” that certain people just choose to criticize without too much thought.
“And it is with regret,” he continued, “that I say that, unfortunately, while for all the days negotiations were ongoing, whether they were in the morning, in the afternoon or the evening, minutes can be found, the only minutes missing are those from the morning of the 4th of July”
Replying to another question President Anastasiades said that “there are minutes” adding that “they were kept by certain people”. He further expressed the hope that UN SG’s special envoy Jane Holl Lute’s efforts to find the minutes will be successful.
Cyprus has been divided since 1974, when Turkey invaded and occupied its northern third. Repeated rounds of UN-led peace talks have so far failed to yield results. The latest round of negotiations in July 2017 at the Swiss resort of Crans-Montana ended inconclusively.