Leaders agree to meet more often
By Stefanos Evripidou
Published on February 10, 2011
THE LEADERS yesterday agreed to intensify their meetings after they met for the first time since they both saw UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon last month in Geneva.
According to UN Special Adviser Alexander Downer, the session was once again dominated by procedural issues on how to move forward.
President Demetris Christofias and Turkish Cypriot leader Dervis Eroglu decided, in line with Ban’s request during their tripartite meeting on January 26, to “intensify the process over the next few weeks”, said Downer.
However, the intensification appears to be directed towards the leaders’ respective aides who will have two half-day meetings a week. The leaders, on the other hand, will meet only once a week on Wednesdays, apart from next week when they will meet on Thursday.
Downer refused to be drawn on what chapters would be discussed, saying this would be discussed next week.
Asked how long the “intensified” talks would go on for, he replied: “We’ll have to wait and see. As you know, the Secretary-General wants to meet the leaders again soon. No particular time has been decided at this stage for that meeting.”
On his return to the presidential palace, Christofias said he agreed with Eroglu to continue the talks on the core issues from where they left off. The president called on Eroglu to confirm all that has already been agreed with former Turkish Cypriot leader Mehmet Ali Talat.
“Our opinion is that reaffirmation is needed of what was agreed with Mr Talat previously in a clear manner, as well as the little agreed with Mr Eroglu on the issues of economy and the EU,” said Christofias.
Asked if he believed Eroglu would agree to link the chapters of territory and property, Christofias said: “They say hope dies when there are no people left... Our position is known and we insist on it.”
Regarding the basis of the talks, Christofias noted that this issue was already cleared up with Talat but as the “new leader” of the Turkish Cypriots, he wanted Eroglu to clarify the basis of the solution they are trying to achieve.
“He is a new leader and I want to know how he really thinks on all issues,” he said. Eroglu toppled Talat as leader of the Turkish Cypriots in elections in the north held in April 2010.
The president also stated that he was prepared to continue negotiations up to the eve of elections in Cyprus in May and after. Elections will also be held in Turkey in June.
“Just let me go vote and from there on I’m ready to continue. We will see if Turkey is ready,” he said.
In remarks to the press after briefing the Security Council on Tuesday, Ban spoke about his meeting with the two leaders in Geneva, saying that the two “cleared up some of their differences. But much more work is needed”
Asked if he was satisfied with the progress so far, the SG said: “I will be satisfied when both leaders will agree completely on all the core issues, but I was reasonably satisfied with, first of all, their commitment to address all these issues through negotiation - that I appreciated very much.” He added that the two had a “lively” exchange of views in Geneva.
On a possible new tripartite meeting in March, Ban said the three will “continue to have another round of negotiations soon” the timing of which will be decided as Downer continues “to assess the situation on the ground”.
“In the meantime, I urged the two leaders to continue their bilateral negotiations, so that they can bridge the gaps and to have as [many] convergences as possible,” said the UN chief.
塞浦路斯 ， 塞浦路斯问题
当被问及如何长“加强”谈判将继续下去之后，他回答说：“我们将不得不等待和观望。 如你所知，秘书长要会见的领导人一次。 没有特别的时间已经决定为这次会议在这个阶段。“
当被问及他对迄今所取得的进展感到满意，法兴说：“我一定会满足的时候，两位领导人同意就所有核心问题进行全面，但我是相当满意，首先，他们的承诺，以解决所有这些问题通过谈判 - 。我非常赞赏：“他补充说，双方有一个”活泼的“交换意见在日内瓦举行。