Nicosia consents to appointment of UNSG Cyprus envoy
07:48 - 07 December 2023
Nicosia has given its consent to the UN Secretary General to appoint a special envoy for Cyprus, Government Spokesman Konstantinos Letymbiotis has confirmed.
Addressing a media briefing, Letymbiotis added: "We expect a positive response from the Turkish Cypriot side as well.”
Asked to confirm the identity of the envoy (the Cyprus News Agency reported yesterday that UNSG Antonio Guterres has settled on Maria Ángela Holguín Cuéllar for the post, citing sources), the government’s spokesman said he could not confirm anything yet and the government was waiting for the UNSG’s announcement.
Letymbiotis said the new envoy will explore the prospects of resuming negotiations on the Cyprus issue, within the agreed framework and in line with the UN Security Council resolutions. The government, he said, is willing and ready to resume the talks from where they left off, with the aim of achieving a sustainable and final settlement – “on the basis of a bi-zonal bi-communal federation with political equality”.
"We hope that there will be a positive response to the appointment of the envoy from the other side as soon as possible," he added.
Improved Greco-Turkish relations a positive
Referring to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s current visit to Athens, Letymbiotis welcomed the clear improvement of Greco-Turkish relations, saying this can have a positive impact on the Cyprus problem as well.
Athens and Nicosia coordinate closely, so as to exhaust every possibility of significant progress on the Cyprus issue, he added.
Asked whether the Cyprus issue will be on the agenda during the Greek Prime Minister's discussions with the Turkish President, the Spokesman said that "the Cyprus issue is always very high on the agenda of the Greek government". He added that the Cypriot President is in constant contact with the Greek Prime Minister and that they will also have a phone communication after the end of the meeting in Athens.
President will not be convening the National Council for now
Meanwhile, Letymbiotis was asked if the President has considered the request by political parties DISY and AKEL to convene the National Council. He said that the President is in contact with the political parties every day, and that they can be informed by the President if they wish so. However, he will not be convening the National Council for now.
(Photo: UNSG Antonio Guterres, Source: The United Nations, © COP28/Christophe Viseux )