Erdogan says aim must be ‘one Cyprus’

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has called for the involvement of Cyprus’s three guarantor powers – Greece, Turkey and the United Kingdom – in negotiations for a peace settlement, adding that the aim of all sides must be to create “one Cyprus,” Kathimerini understands.

“[We] must take part in this effort and solve this longstanding problem,” Erdogan was quoted as saying after a meeting with UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon in St Petersburg, where he is on a bilateral visit. He said representatives must not leave the negotiating room “until a solution is found.”

The Turkish premier also urged the Greek-Cypriot administration to give up its demand for a joint statement from the two sides of the divided island ahead of a meeting between Cyprus President Nicos Anastasiades and Turkish-Cypriot leader Dervis Eroglu on Monday.

“In order to solve the problem, we need to approach it with honesty and put aside any preconditions,” Erdogan was quoted as saying.

However, Erdogan’s call did not seem to go down well in Nicosia. In a statement yesterday, government spokesman Christos Stylianides said the issue of adopting a joint communique “is not simply a matter of procedure, but of substance.”

Negotiations aimed at a settlement have been stalled since early 2012.

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