Hope that new Cyprus crossing points will open as planned

Hope that new Cyprus crossing points will open as planned

Work on two new crossing points across the island's divide is going to plan, Cypriot officials said on Thursday.

Greek Cypriot negotiator Andreas Mavroyiannis and head of the bicommunal Technical Committee on Crossing Points, Sotos Zackheos, inspected the works underway for the opening of Lefka-Apliki crossing in the Nicosia district.

Zackheos told CNA that "everything is running according to the time frame" that has been set out.

"We saw how the work is proceeding… everything seems to run according to the time frame we set out both in the government-controlled areas and in the buffer zone."

"We believe that if the work continues at this pace then the deadlines set out by Cyprus President Nicos Anastasiades and Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci will be met," Zachkeos added.

Last week, Mavroyiannis and Zackheos had also inspected work for the opening of Dherynia crossing point, in the Famagusta district.

The opening of more crossing points, to facilitate movement across the ceasefire line was discussed during a dinner Anastasiades and Akinci had on April 16.

Anastasiades said after the dinner that the Dherynia crossing will probably be ready by the 1 July and the Lefka-Apliki crossing by mid-September.

The leaders had agreed in 2015 that these two crossings should be made ready for people movement.

The opening of more crossings is seen as an essential element of trust building between the two communities that lived in virtual isolation of each other until Turkish Cypriot authorities paved the way for free people movement in 2003.

Currently, there are seven official crossing point between the Turkish-held north and government south, but the last crossing to open was in 2010.

[Kathimerini Cyprus]

Subscribe to our Newsletters

Enter your information below to receive our weekly newsletters with the latest insights, opinion pieces and current events straight to your inbox.

By signing up you are agreeing to our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.