Anastasiades-Akinci fail to agree on territorial adjustment
President Nicos Anastasiades and the Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci “have not been able to achieve the necessary further convergences on criteria for territorial adjustment,” a UN statement read following their talks in Mont Pelerin on Monday evening.
If the leaders had been able to reach an agreement on territory it, “would have paved the way for the last phase of the talks,” added the UN statement.
“The two sides have decided to return to Cyprus and reflect on the way forward,” it continued, with Anastasiades scheduled to return to the island at 2pm (local time) on Tuesday.
UN Special Adviser on Cyprus, Espen Barth Eide, “will bring these developments to the attention of the Secretary-General [Ban Ki-moon],” concluded the statement.
Cyprus Government Spokesperson Nikos Christodoulides announced on Twitter that there was “no conclusion” reached following the Mont Pelerin talks.
"Unfortunately there was no conclusion on the territorial criteria,” he tweeted in Greek.
Christodoulides noted that Anastasiades was “not happy” with the way the talks concluded, noting that upon his return to Cyprus, Anastasiades “will inform the Cypriot people about the developments and what happened during the negotiations.”
Christodoulides rejected and denounced criticism aimed by Akinci’s Spokesperson Baris Burcu on the Republic’s position, stating that “it does not in any case reflect to what happened on the negotiating table.”
Furthermore, the Spokesperson commented that the Turkish Cypriot side’s references to maximalist positions by the Republic “do not in any case respond to reality.”
Christodoulides confirmed that there was “no conclusion on the criteria related to Greek Cypriots returning to their ancestral homes” within the territorial adjustment talks.
NOT THE END OF THE ROAD
When commenting on if the Cyprus talks could now be in danger, Christodoulides remarked, “it’s too early to make such assessments,” while he underlined that the “Greek Cypriot side is constantly committed to its goal to creating conditions that will pave the way for a positive outcome.”
Christodoulides added: “We have one goal, which is to terminate the occupation and reunite our country. We will do everything possible towards this direction.”
Referring to a multi-party conference involving the Republic, Turkish Cypriot leadership, and the island’s three guarantor powers – Greece, Turkey and the UK – Christodoulides confirmed that the government “was ready to give a date for the conference on the security and guarantees issues if there was an agreement on territory and if a map was drafted based on that.”
“NOT HAPPY AT ALL”
Christodoulides stated that the Republic was “not happy at all” as “due to the Turkish Cypriot side’s stance it was not possible to have an outcome to this very promising process.”
In his closing statements to the press, Christodoulides affirmed: “The government’s side is clearly willing and determined to continue the effort to lift the occupation and reunite the country.
“This is crystal clear and someone who has been following the developments at the negotiating table during the last 18 months cannot question it.”
Cyprus has been divided since 1974, when Turkish troops invaded and illegally occupied its northern third.
Anastasiades and Akinci have been engaged in UN-led talks since May 2015, with a view to reunite the island under a federal roof.
If a final agreement is reached it will be put to both communities in a referendum. A 2004 peace deal, the ‘Annan Plan’, was approved by Turkish Cypriots but overwhelmingly rejected by Greek Cypriots.