The United Nations Secretary General’s Special Advisor to Cyprus Espen Barth Eide has expressed concern over the Cyprus negotiations process.
UN Special Advisor Espen Barth Eide, who met with the Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Kotzias yesterday, flew to Ankara to meet with Turkish officials on Wednesday.
Speaking to reporters after his meeting with the Greek Foreign Minister, he admitted that the reunification talks are going through a difficult phase.
“Despite the fact that we have made significant progress on so many chapters, and in spite of the fact that both of the leaders are of the view that it would be good to reconvene the (second) International Conference on Cyprus in Geneva we have not been able so far to agree on the modalities and the order of things to be discussed in a possible new Geneva Conference,” he said.
But he also pointed out that the UN is not giving up, and he is in a round of conversations with the governments of the guarantor powers to continue to prepare “as if we will be able to go to Geneva, because we need to be ready”.
He also pointed out that the two sides had covered a lot of ground and were “very, very close” to an agreement, “actually more close than most people seem to understand”.
The UN envoy said he was not asking “anyone to put pressure on anyone” but also voiced concern that “the process is in serious trouble”.
He expressed his conviction that the failure of the talks “was not in the interests of Greece, Turkey or any other international actor”.
“Even though it concerns the Cypriots, failing to find a solution could have international repercussions, impacting relations between Greece and Turkey, Turkey’s relations with the EU and the general situation in the Mediterranean,” Eide argued.