US effort on Cyprus will intensify, Boucher says
By Demetris Apokis
Washington, Jan 31 (CNA)-- US Secretary of State Colin Powell will be personally involved in the efforts to reach a Cyprus settlement and the US effort will intensify, State Department's Spokesman Richard Boucher has said.
Speaking to his regular press briefing yesterday, Boucher reiterated that the US ''has strongly supported at the highest levels the UN Secretary-General's good offices mission for Cyprus and the role of the Secretary-General as facilitator in that process''.
''The Secretary (Powell) said he would be personally involved. I'm sure he'll be active and that this US effort, as we try to build momentum, will in fact intensify'', Boucher said replying to questions.
The US spokesman added that Powell talked on Thursday with UN Secretary-General kofi Annan to whom he outlined the US' ''full support for his efforts'' and he discussed the situation, ''promising that we would do what we could to help get the parties to meet his conditions for talks and for moving forward on the issue quickly''.
''The United States has been active with our own diplomats and envoys in trying to encourage support for the Secretary-General's efforts'', Boucher noted, adding that Powell has frequently raised the issue with Turkish and Greek foreign ministers and leaders.
Replying to a question regarding Powell's role in the efforts to reach a settlement in Cyprus, Boucher said that the US role has been and continues to be to support the efforts that the Secretary-General is making.
''The secretary pledged that that sort of role would continue and that he personally would be active in trying to do that'', Boucher noted.