President Mustafa Akıncı made a statement today following his meeting with Greek Cypriot leader Nicos Anastasiades.
He said that although the meeting had been hosted by UN representative Elizabeth Spehar, they had held discussions alone. He said that the intention was to hold sincere and constructive discussions and to listen in the same fashion.
Akıncı said that Jane Hall Lute would be expected to return to the island. The next process would be to start a result-orientated negotiations process. As has been said many time, the talks must not be open-ended.
Within the scope of the UN General Assembly, where everyone is present, the UN Secretary-General announced that he wished to meet him and Anastasiades, first separately and then together in a tripartite meeting. Eventually a five-way meeting [with the guarantor powers] could be scheduled.
He said that he and Anastasiades talked openly of their disagreements on the main topics. Akıncı added that he believed these would be clarified by the arrival of Mrs. Lute in Cyprus.
Akıncı said that Greek Cypriot leader Anastasiades was both friendly and constructive. They had discussed hydrocarbons and confidence-building measures, he said. He said that Anastasiades had still rejected the Turkish Cypriot suggestion of forming a bi-communal committee to manage the issue of hydrocarbons offshore the island.
Regarding the issue of confidence building measures, they discussed the transition of commercial vehicles to the south, car insurance, forming a joint sports committee and the re-assessment of the EU committee. Island-wide policies could be worked on, he said.
Additionally, visitors who arrive in Cyprus via Larnaca Airport have experienced problems crossing to the north. We have conveyed that we can help Greek Cypriot farmers overcome their problems. Another issue that bothers the Turkish Cypriot people is that a new health system came into force in the south. We have people working there. According to this new law, if there is no residency in the south, those working there and those working at the bases will be charged for health insurance but cannot benefit from the service. Mr. Anastasiades has promised to address this issue seriously.
With regard to a decentralised federation, Akıncı said that a decentralised federation was a subject that the Turkish Cypriot side constantly demanded and had requested at the table. Now Mr. Anastasiades has begun to articulate this idea. Akinci said he is ready to negotiate decentralisation if the former consensus is reached. It may also have beneficial consequences, but priorities lie in the formerly reached consensus, he concluded.