Cyprus President Nicos Anastasiades met with British Prime Minister Theresa May in London Tuesday. It is reported that the two discussed the latest developments with regards to efforts to resume negotiations on the Cyprus problem.
A Downing Street spokesperson said that May “expressed hope that progress would be made towards the resumption of talks.”
CNA sources said that Anastasiades told May that the UNSG’s special envoy Jane Holl Lute is now expected to visit Ankara, in the framework of her visits to the involved countries.
The same sources expressed the Greek Cypriot side’s readiness for the immediate resumption of the settlement talks, noting that neither Brexit nor the European Parliament elections should be considered a reason for delay.
Anastasiades reiterated his position that talks should resume from the point where the previous negotiating process stopped. May is said to have acknowledged that the progress achieved so far should not be wasted.
May also affirmed that the UK government’s position with regard to the thorny issue of guarantees has not changed, namely that the UK does not wish to retain its role as a guarantor power in the framework of a Cyprus issue settlement. This reiteration of the British position was highlighted by Anastasiades himself in a statement outside No10 Downing Street after the meeting.
The No10 spokesperson also said that May updated Anastasiades with regard to Brexit. She also welcomed the pledge Cyprus has made to protect the rights of UK nationals in a no deal scenario and reiterated the government’s commitment to protect the rights of EU citizens, the spokesperson added.
Both leaders expressed optimism that a deal would be reached, even before the next European Council on March 21. [Kathimerini Cyprus]