Cypriot FM discusses Cyprus talks with US Deputy Secretary of State
New York, Sep 24 – The latest developments in the Cyprus issue, bilateral relations between Nicosia and Washington as well as regional concerns have been discussed during a 45-minute meeting between the Foreign Minister of the Republic of Cyprus Markos Kyprianou and US Deputy Secretary of State James Steinberg, that was held in New York on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly.
US Assistant Secretary of State for Europe and Eurasia Philip Gordon was also present at the meeting.
Speaking after the meeting, the Cypriot Foreign Minister said that it took place in a “warm” and “friendly” atmosphere.
Minister Kyprianou added that he had the opportunity to explain to Deputy Steinberg that the Cypriots are currently in the process of direct talks, to describe the problems that the Cypriots face and to explain what is expected from the Turkish side, so as to proceed more quickly in the talks.
The Minister stressed that the proposals each side puts on the negotiating table should be constructive and consistent with the aim of a bizonal bicommunal federation, and must not have “the flavor” of confederation.
Minister Kyprianou and Deputy Steinberg agreed to stay in contact during the second phase of the UN-led direct negotiations on the Cyprus problem.
“We will keep the US government informed and if it is necessary to seek help, they are always willing to provide assistance,” said Minister Kyprianou.
Speaking after the meeting, a State Department official said the Cypriot Foreign Minister had given the Deputy Secretary “his sense of the state of Cyprus talks.” The official noted that “Deputy Steinberg appreciated the update, underscored US interest in a settlement and expressed continued support for UN-led direct talks. Both agreed to stay engaged as talks proceed.”