UNFICYP vote critical for Cyprus talks


Nicosia is keeping an eye on New York ahead of a UNFICYP vote next week, as the US and UK are mulling over the precise content in a draft resolution for the renewal of the UN peacekeeping force in Cyprus.

Following the election of Donald Trump, the US has put forward a series of criteria concerning peace keeping missions around the world, including UN Security Council mandate renewal resolutions.

Those criteria mainly have to do with the peacekeeping missions serving the purpose of the political process and providing an exit strategy, including the case of Cyprus.

According to CNA sources, consultations between British and American diplomats have to do with the wording of the UNFICYP resolution, the draft of which has not yet been submitted to the other Security Council permanent members.

The new draft reportedly aims to meet a minimum of US demands while not undermining the forthcoming mission of UN official Jane Lute, who is set to meet with the two Cypriot leaders next week and report back to UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres.

Nicosia has been in contact with foreign capitals of all five permanent members on the Security Council – USA, Britain, France, China, Russia, in an effort to secure support for the continuation of the UNFICYP mission.

According to Kathimerini’s Michalis Tsikalas, the British appear to be eager in drawing connections between UNFICYP presence on Cyprus and the overall peace process on the divided island.

The United Nations Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus (UNFICYP), comprising military and civilian personnel from various contributing countries, arrived in Cyprus in March 1964 following intercommunal fighting.

The mandate for the force is renewed every six months by the Security Council.

[Kathimerini Cyprus]