An informal five-party summit on the Cyprus issue is to reportedly take place in the US under the auspices of United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres in early March.
The conference will be hosted at Greentree on Long Island, at a UN resort where other similar meetings have taken place in the past.
Cypriot Foreign Minister Nikos Christodoulides has told state-run RIK TV that the exact date of the meeting will be announced in the coming days. It will take place at the level of foreign ministers, which means that Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias and his Turkish counterpart Mevlut Cavusoglu will also be present.
A bilateral meeting between Dendias and Cavusoglu, the first since the resumption of exploratory contacts between Greece and Turkey on Monday, is also expected to take place on the sidelines of the five-party meeting.
By that time, further developments are expected in Greek-Turkish issues, especially in the context of NATO. According to some analysts the 62nd round of exploratory contacts in Athens may have already taken place.
The five-party conference in March, the first in many years, will not take place during an inauspicious phase given the fact that the leadership of the Turkish-occupied entity in northern Cyprus openly supports a policy favoring the island’s partition.
Meanwhile, Dendias referred on Wednesday to the resumption of exploratory contacts, noting that the big step in Greek-Turkish relations has not been made yet. “Let’s be honest: It was Turkey that stopped the meeting in 2016 and not Greece, as Turkey claims,” Dendias told Euronews, stressing that the important thing is that they were repeated.
“I understand that it was a meeting to meet again. We will see where we go from there. We have to be realistic, but we also have to be optimistic,” he said.