The Conference on Cyprus at Crans-Montana failed because the Greek Cypriot side was expecting only to take on the issue of security and guarantees with the Turkish side and was unwilling to show flexibility on the other chapters, Turkish Cypriot negotiator Ozdil Nami said.
He reminded that UN Secretary-General Guterres’ vision was that “the two sides should create a new system which would provide security for everyone.”
In a lengthy interview with Greek Cypriot daily ‘Politis’ Nami said that Turkey wanted to keep its right of intervention for three presidential terms, with the possibility of a review. This was the original proposal, he noted and there would have been room for manoeuvre if President Anastasiades had shown goodwill on governance and property issues. “We did not want the right of intervention to be permanent. We were ready to accept a mechanism of re-evaluation which if the federation system works fine then the current system will be changed to a new one”, Nami said.
The Turkish Cypriot negotiator argued that the Turkish Cypriot side had submitted a proposal within the framework of UN parameters, which it accepted, unlike the Greek Cypriot side. Turkey’s intentions had been misinterpreted and President Akinci’s silence on the issue had been considered to be a signal of Turkey’s sovereignty.
Asked which of Anastasiades’ proposals fell outside the UN framework, Nami cited the rotating presidency, territory and property as an example.
Regarding the return of Maronites to their villages, he said that it could be possible without anyone being obliged to issue a TRNC identity card. Regarding the opening up of Maras/Varosha, ideas are currently being worked out, said Nami. This eventuality, on the other hand, should not be expected to be the same as if there had been a Cyprus settlement. On the other hand, they would not bring the Turkish Cypriot side to break with the UN and the international community, he said.
Referring to the possibility of continuing the negotiations, he said he did not foresee substantial moves before the [Greek Cypriot] presidential elections.
For full interview in Greek and Turkish click on the links below.