Downer to remain in current post for another 6 months

Rebutting mistaken press reports that Alexander Downer will be leaving his role as the UN Secretary General’s Special Envoy to Cyprus, UNFICYP spokesman Michel Bonnardeaux has said that Downer will remain in his post for another six months.

Invited to comment on speculation that Downer will be replaced and will be appointed as head of an Australian foreign diplomatic mission, Bonnardeaux said:

“Yes, I have seen the press reports today, I have asked Mr. Downer and he told me that his contract has just been renewed [for another six months].”

Asked whether Downer is planning to meet both Cypriot presidents, the UNFICYP Spokesperson said that “so far, there aren’t any planned meetings”.

Downer met yesterday with the Turkish Cypriot and Greek Cypriot negotiators, in what has been described as meetings of a “procedural nature.”

The UN official is expected to leave Cyprus today and to brief the UN Security Council next week

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