President Mustafa Akinci who met with United States Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland, last week, has said that the Turkish Cypriot side wants to bring four chapters in the negotiations to a conclusion by September.
The Turkish Cypriot side aims to achieve as much progress as possible on governance and power-sharing, property, economy and the EU by September. The property issue has been particularly complex. However, since the negotiations began and Akinci was elected as president, there has been significant progress in four of the six chapters being negotiated.
Nevertheless, the Turkish Cypriots want to see all the outstanding issues discussed abroad, where the two sides will continue to meet under the auspices of the United Nations.
Akinci proposed that the most sensitive issues, such as territory and guarantees, are discussed outside Cyprus, with the hope of finalising the talks.
Nuland also met with Greek Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades, who asked the US to exert its influence over Turkey to persuade it to give up its guarantees and withdraw its troops from the North.
“These are the core issues of the Cyprus problem,” said a Turkish Cypriot source close to negotiations.
“They can be solved if both sides show political will. The leaders need to show true leadership, put aside concerns about the next elections or their political careers, and move forward with courage”, the source said.