US Ambassador to Cyprus, John M. Koenig, believes that after February’s presidential elections in Cyprus there will be a new opportunity in efforts to solve the Cyprus issue.
Speaking after a meeting on Wednesday with the General Secretary of the Environmentalists Movement Ioanna Panagiotou, Koenig said he had a very good discussion, noting they expressed views on issues concerning the Cyprus issue, the environment, the Middle East and other matters.
He also said they had the opportunity to “express the support of the US in the procedure to solve the Cyprus problem”.
Koenig, speaking in Greek, said he hoped that in the summer “we shall see a new effort” and that “we will have a viable and fair solution to the Cyprus problem”.
Asked why he referred to the summer specifically, the US diplomat said it is expected that “after the presidential elections (in February) the window will open for a new effort”, adding that some time is needed for the new government to be prepared.
“We hope that by the middle of the year, we will see the beginning of the procedure”, he added.
On her part, Panagiotou said the Movement asked for America’s support and intervention regarding Turkey’s violations and threats in Cyprus’ Exclusive Economic Zone and in efforts to find a just and viable solution to the Cyprus issue.
“We have also asked for US intervention in maintaining and protecting the cultural and environmental heritage in the northern Turkish occupied areas”, Panagiotou concluded.
Cyprus has been divided since 1974 when Turkey invaded and occupied its northern third. The latest round of UN-backed talks began in 2008 with the aim to reunite the island under a federal roof.
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