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Direct talks Between President Christofias and T/C Leader Talat Began on September 3
2008-09-05 13:29:27

Sept 3 - Full-fledged direct talks between the President of the Republic of Cyprus Demetris Christofias and the leader of the Turkish Cypriot community Mehmet Ali Talat began in Nicosia, Cyprus on September 3rd, aiming at reaching a comprehensive solution to the Cyprus problem which has been forcibly divided since the Turkish invasion and occupation of 1974.

President Christofias stated that his objective is to end the division and reunite the country thereby ending the suffering endured by the people of Cyprus.

In his opening statement at the launch of negotiations on Cyprus, President Christofias stressed that “we must also consistently adhere to the agreed common basis that we reaffirmed during our meetings: a bizonal, bicommunal federation with political equality, as defined by the relevant Security Council Resolutions, with a single sovereignty, citizenship and international personality”.

President Christofias added that it was of utmost importance to safeguard the basic principle of the current process which is to reach an agreed solution under the good offices mission of the Secretary-General of the United Nations. The solution will be approved by the people in separate simultaneous referenda with no arbitration or artificial timetables in order to safeguard the Cypriot ownership of the process. He underlined that the outcome will be a Cypriot solution by the Cypriots and for the Cypriots.

President Christofias further stated that the foundations of an agreement are described in the 1977 and 1979 High Level Agreements which provide for a federal solution. He underlined that the federal solution will be a partnership of the Greek Cypriot and the Turkish Cypriot communities and that neither confederation, nor a new partnership of two states through ‘virgin birth’, which is being promoted by the Turkish side, could be accepted.

The UN Secretary General’s Special Representative has announced that the next round of talks will be held on September 11th which will focus on the issue of governance and power sharing. A third meeting has been scheduled for September 18th.

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