Athens to spare no effort in Cyprus settlement, says Greek FM
by Apostolis Zoupaniotis
United Nations, Sep 20 (CNA) – Greece will spare no efforts towards the ultimate goal for Cyprus which remains an agreed solution between the two parties on the island, on the basis of the UN Secretary General’s plan, the relevant Security Council resolutions and in conformity with the EU principles and acquis, pledged the country’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Petros Molyviatis.
Addressing the 60th session of the UN General Assembly, Molyviatis also said that Greece is ready to work towards building the necessary common ground, which will render possible the re-launching of meaningful negotiations.
He also referred to the relations with Turkey, noting that significant progress has been achieved in several areas of bilateral cooperation between Greece and Turkey. He added that ''Turkey’s EU perspective will further widen and deepen the scope of our relations.''
Molyviatis said that at “the beginning of the 21st century, we continue to face many threats and challenges which undermine the very basic values and principles of our societies and test our will and determination to abide by the obligations and restraints inherent in those values and principles”.
He stressed that only “through concerted collective action, dialogue and mutual understanding can we confront them and pave the way for a better, brighter future”.
On the Cyprus problem, Molyviatis said he deeply regrets “that the Cyprus problem remains unresolved. In the thirty-one years of military occupation of more than 1/3 of the territory of Cyprus, Greece has strongly supported every attempt and initiative by the United Nations for the achievement of a comprehensive settlement of the Cyprus problem'', he added.
In light of the outcome of last year’s referenda, he noted, “which should be fully respected, any new initiative will have to be carefully prepared so as to ensure real chances for success. On our part, we are ready to work towards building the necessary common ground, which will render possible the re-launching of meaningful negotiations''.
''Our ultimate goal remains'', he said, ''an agreed solution between the two parties. We remain steadfastly committed to reaching a just and viable solution for the reunification of the island following negotiations on the basis of the UN Secretary General’s plan, the relevant Security Council resolutions and in conformity with the EU principles and acquis. In this endeavour, Greece will spare no efforts''.
On Turkey, Molyviatis said ''the climate of our bilateral relations with Turkey over the recent years has been constantly improving. We have made vigorous efforts to put our relations on a new solid track. Significant progress has been achieved in several areas of our bilateral cooperation and Turkey’s EU perspective will further widen and deepen the scope of our relations''.
Cyprus has been divided since 1974 when Turkish troops invaded and occupied the island’s northern third.