Zero troops, zero guarantees not realistic: Akinci

President Mustafa Akinci has expressed the hope that the stalled Cyprus talks, set to resume tomorrow, will be concluded with a bi-zonal, bi-communal federal settlement.

Speaking at the 5th Ayrelli (Wild Asparagus) Festival in Akdeniz village yesterday, the President reminded that the Turkish Cypriot side has been receiving EU financial assistance ever since voting in favour of the 2004 UN sponsored Annan Plan.

He however added that it was a great injustice that despite the fact that the Greek Cypriots had rejected the plan, they had been receiving more assistance both before and after 2004.

Akinci said that the Turkish Cypriot side, contrary to reports, did not want arbitration by the UN but to bring bridging proposals to the table and to remain impartial.

He also said that he expected the Greek Cypriot leader to do what is necessary to achieve a federal settlement.

Touching on the latest vote in the Greek Cypriot House of Representatives to reverse the decision to commemorate the 1950 Enosis plebiscite at public schools, Akinci said that to bring back to the agenda an historical event which took place 67 years ago, was not something to be underestimated.

The future cannot be built with past approaches such as Enosis [union with Greece], partition [Taksim] and annexation,” he said.

The Turkish Cypriot side, Akinci added, would begin negotiations with good will and it was important for the Greek Cypriots to accept the philosophy of a bi-communal, bi-zonal federation.

Highlighting the importance of the issue of guarantees, Akinci said that the Turkish Cypriot side will behave reasonably and realistically.

Zero troops and zero guarantees is not realistic nor reasonable,” he said, referring to the Greek Cypriot side’s demands on these subjects.

Akinci also pointed out that the next two months will be crucial because of the upcoming elections in South Cyprus, as well as the expected launch of hydrocarbon exploration activities off the coast of the island.


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