Juncker Blames South For Failure of 2017 Cyprus Talks

North Cyprus News - Jean-Claude Juncker
[Former EU Commissioner – Jean-Claude Juncker]
Former European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker’s comments with respect to the last session of Cyprus negotiations in Crans-Montana, Switzerland in 2017, where the Greek Cypriot side ended the talks, leaving them unresolved, are his own opinions, said government representative Konstantinos Letymbiotis on Thursday, BRTK reports.

At the time the talks were led by TRNC President Mustafa Akinci and Greek Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades. Letymbiotis highlighted that Juncker accepts there is potential for a Cyprus settlement and that the EU can play a strong part in this endeavour. He said that President Nikos Christodoulides is working to continue negotiations from where they were left off. Moreover, UN Special Envoy for Cyprus Maria Angela Holguin will brief the UN Secretary-General next week to examine future steps.

In an interview with the Cyprus News Office (CNA) on the 20th anniversary of commemoration of Cyprus’ entry into the EU, despite still being a divided country and contrary to EU rules, Juncker communicated positive thinking around the settlement prospects and praised Christodoulides describing him as a good-willed and great leader. He expressed that whereas the EU ought to help if asked by both parties, it cannot take autonomous initiatives.

Juncker commented that the final significant transaction period was in 2017, putting the fault for the stalemate on the Greek Cypriot side. He communicated his regret that more effort was not made on the issue and criticised the south’s administration for not seizing the moment.

Juncker shared his encounters with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, noticing a time when Erdogan was more open to settling the Cyprus issue. He observed that younger Cypriots are progressively uninterested in the long-standing division, having grown up with the status quo and not being aware of its impact.

CNA

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