Joint statement still a work in progress

Despite speculation in the press that a joint statement could be agreed soon, the Greek Cypriot government’s spokesman, Christos Stylianides said that there had been no results yet in attempts to formulate a joint statement prior to the resumption of negotiations on the Cyprus problem following an informal meeting of party political leaders took place on Monday, which was chaired by President Anastasiades.

Stylianides said that “we are currently in a process of deliberations”, adding that the international community is helping towards this direction.

When asked if a UN draft statement had been submitted before to the party leaders, Stylianides said that two or three documents had been presented but not by the UN, adding that the party leaders were fully briefed on all the details of certain documents which are under discussion.

He stressed the need for collective action, noting that “we must expect developments within the next days.”

Meanwhile, Turkish Cypriot daily ‘Kibris’ reported yesterday, that Osman Ertug, President Eroglu’s special representative, has said that negotiations could resume this week and the visits of the representatives of the leaders to Athens and Ankara could take place in two weeks, if the Greek Cypriot side abandons its “rigid stance”.

Ertug continued that “the Greek Cypriot side seems to have understood that they could not continue [indefinitely] the rigid stance they follow until now on the issue of the joint statement. We will see within a few days if this is true. Our wish is for these developments to happen within a few days. We, as Turkish Cypriot side, are the ones who said yes to the unconditional realisation of the negotiations and the visits”.

Ertug added that the Turkish Cypriot side has the right to ask for Turkey’s effective guarantees to be included in the joint statement as a return for Greek Cypriot side’s insistence on the single sovereignty.

Additionally, Alexander Downer, the UN Secretary General’s Special Adviser on Cyprus, held separate meetings with the two communities’ chief negotiators, Andreas Mavroyiannis and Osman Ertug.

Downer, who arrived here over the weekend, will be meeting President Anastasiades today, later crossing to the TRNC to see President Eroglu.

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