Secretary Clinton: Status quo in Cyprus does not benefit anyone
The United States do not believe that the status quo in Cyprus benefits anyone, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton stated on Saturday, noting that both sides would benefit from a settlement of the Cyprus problem.
Speaking at a joint press conference in Constantinople with Turkish Minister of Foreign Affairs Ahmed Davutoglu Secretary Clinton affirmed that the United States "want to see a bizonal, bicommunal federation, and we would like to see it as soon as possible, we would like to see it by 2012."
Secretary Clinon added that "The United States promoted the referendum that was presented to the population of Cyprus back in 2004 very actively" and were disappointed by the outcome "because we thought that that would have resolved a lot of the issues that are still being very difficult to overcome. We don’t think the status quo in Cyprus benefits anyone. It’s gone on for far too long."
She expressed the belief that both sides would benefit from a settlement and lent her support towards the "renewed, re-energized efforts that the United Nations is leading and that the Cypriots themselves are responsible for" noting that "it is the Cypriots themselves who will have to make the hard decisions about how to resolve all of the outstanding issues."
Secretary Clinton reiterated the U.S' desire for a bizonal, bicommunal federation by 2012 adding that this is in line with UN statements and "something I know Turkey believes", stressing that the U.S. will do "everything we can to support this process and finally try to see a resolution."
Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmed Davutoglu stated that he and Secretary Clinton discussed, among other issues, "the Turkey-EU relations and also the latest point reached in the negotiations about Cyprus."
On Saturday, July 16, Secretary Clinton flew to Greece, where she held meetings with the President of the Hellenic Republic, the Prime Minister, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, the Minister of Finance, and the leader of the opposition.