President Christofias meets with Prime Minister Papandreou
Athens, Jan 19 – President Christofias and Prime Minister Papandreou discussed the Cyprus problem in a meeting at Maximos Palace in Athens, on January 19.
The two reaffirmed their commitment to a solution based on the agreements for a bizonal, bicommunal federation with political equality as it is defined in the UN resolutions.
The Prime Minister of Greece accepted an invitation to visit Cyprus for a meeting with President Christofias and the leaders of the political parties for a joint evaluation of the Cyprus problem.
After the meeting, President Christofias and Prime Minister Papandreou had a working lunch which was followed by statements to the press.
Prime Minister Papandreou welcomed President Christofias and assured him that Greece will continue to support Cyprus actively, in every possible way.
“President Christofias has our full faith and support. We support his efforts to reach a just, functional and viable solution in Cyprus, without deadlines or arbitration; a solution based on UN Security Council resolutions and the principles and values of the EU with the full implementation of the Acquis Communautaire; a solution that will safeguard the functionality of the Cypriot state and its effective participation in the EU; a solution that will result in the termination of the military occupation and the division of the island. We do not forget and we stress it in every direction that the Cyprus problem is an issue of military occupation and invasion by Turkey,” Prime Minister Papandreou said and added:
“Today we had a very lengthy, productive and, I believe, useful discussion. President Christofias briefed me in depth on the first phase of the intensive negotiations and on his thoughts regarding the continuation of the talks next week.
We agreed that the proposals of the Turkish Cypriot side concerning the chapter of governance were negative and, I would say, backward and that in order to have progress in the talks the agreed basis of the talks must be maintained as it has been agreed, namely for a bizonal, bicommunal federation, with political equality, as defined in UN decisions, with a single sovereignty, a single citizenship and a single international personality.”
Prime Minister Papandreou pointed out that they also agreed on the necessity to continue the talks for a mutually acceptable agreement and that they exchanged views on Turkey's EU accession prospect, in the light of the conclusions of the European Council last December.
The Greek Prime Minister assured President Christofias that the close cooperation and coordination between the two countries will continue on all issues and at all levels and noted that a team of law experts will be created immediately to help the Cyprus Government and its negotiating team with anything it may need. “We have asked the Cyprus Foreign Minister Mr. Markos Kyprianou and the Deputy Foreign Minister of Greece Mr. Droutsas to immediately promote the implementation of our decisions,” he added.
President Christofias welcomed the fact that Mr. Papandreou accepted his invitation to visit Cyprus for a meeting with himself and the leaders of the political parties. Upon his return to Cyprus, President Christofias said, inter alia, the following:
“I consider that the visit to Greece, in terms of the aims and their implementation, was absolutely successful. We went to Athens to meet with the Greek Prime Minister and members of his government in order to give a full picture of the developments in the Cyprus problem and the situation – after the submission of the document of the Turkish Cypriot side, which we considered unacceptable and we do not accept as a basis of discussion – as well as the discussions of the first three day phase of the intensive talks.
There was a full briefing and an exchange of views during a private meeting with the Prime Minister and during a meeting between our teams and the Greek side’s teams. There was total identity of views and full support was expressed publicly for the President of the Republic and the policy he follows in the course of the negotiations. I wish to express my warm gratitude to the Greek Prime Minister and the Greek Government, for their full and unwavering support.
I met with the President of the Hellenic Republic Mr. Karolos Papoulias on Saturday night. The meeting lasted 45 minutes; it was cordial, very friendly and the Greek President was very eager to be briefed. I thank President Papoulias for his support and for the love he expresses for Cyprus and the leadership of our state.”
Referring to his meeting with the Greek Prime Minister, President Christofias said that he and Mr. Papandreou decided to coordinate and intensify the international presence and presentation of the Cyprus problem and the Greek Cypriot side’s positions, and that there was a meeting of the two foreign ministers in this direction, while at the same time deliberations begun to create a joint action plan.
President Christofias also said the Prime Minister of Greece accepted an invitation to come to Cyprus for a meeting with the political party leaders and the President of the Republic to discuss the Cyprus problem.
Referring to his meetings with Greek political party leaders, President Christofias said that the dialogue was open and friendly and that full support was expressed for the Cyprus Government’s policy on the Cyprus problem.