President Mustafa Akinci has reacted, “within the framework of diplomatic courtesy”, to the possibility of being sidelined during the Cyprus negotiation. In statements yesterday after briefing the leaders of the four political parties which form the coalition government, Akinci said the following on the issue:
“If Turkey continues to negotiate with the Greek Cypriot side, I will be annoyed and I will not hide this annoyance. If the Greek Cypriot side and Greece wish, we can meet. We can meet unofficially. We can meet officially. If Mr Anastasiades wants, he can go to Ankara, but the Turkish Cypriot leader should also be able to go to Athens. If Turkey negotiates with the Greek Cypriot side and this becomes continuous, this cannot be accepted”.
Referring to the meeting he held yesterday with the coalition government, Akinci noted:
“We carried out our assessments. Tomorrow we will have a similar meeting with the opposition. Today we held a meeting with Mrs Spehar as well. I briefed the parties participating in the government about the meetings in New York. We had a fruitful meeting with the UNSG, but Mrs Lute’s reports were not ready yet. Mrs Lute’s report will be received by the UNSG and we will have the opportunity to re-evaluate the situation on 15 October.
With Mrs Spehar we discussed the situation as regards the opening of the Derinya and Aplic border crossings. She will hold contacts in the south and we will talk again. I hope that we will meet with Mr Anastasiades on a date not in the not too distant future. On the one hand we should determine a date for the opening of the borders checkpoints and announce it together and on the other I wish to discuss with him how the future of this island will be shaped. This is our responsibility.
Some speculation has been published on this issue [the loose federation model]. When I talk with Mr Anastasiades, I will expect him to further clarify this issue. The agreements reached until now include that the powers to be given to the two states exclude the powers to be given to the federal state. Beyond this, the founding states will even have the right to make international agreements. These are included in the agreements. I do not know which fields are included in the agreements for the central government, Mr Anastasiades thinks that [powers] should be transferred to the two states. [The late Glafkos] Clerides also had an opinion. He supported that more powers should exist in the two constituent states. This is not wrong. No negotiations exist now. We will have the opportunity to evaluate these in an environment in which we will meet, even if it is a social meeting”.
Referring to the meeting between Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Kudret Ozersay and the DISY chairman Averof Neofitou, Akinci said:
“Mr Ozersay met with Mr Neofitou as a party leader. This is not harmful. On the contrary, it is useful for other leaders of our parties to meet with other party leaders. As long as they stay within this framework, there is no problem. I am not a party leader. I am the elected leader of the Turkish Cypriot people. I hold meetings within the framework of the power given to me by the people in this capacity. We do not want the continuation of the status quo on this island. I underline that we should not go outside the UN framework. Face to face meetings will be held. I am not excluding them, but these should somehow take place within the framework of the UN as well. All sides should help in this process. […]
Yesterday I had a telephone conversation with Mrs Lute. I think that today she has completed her report and submitted it to the esteemed UNSG. We are waiting for 15 October now and we will make an assessment accordingly”.