UK Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab has assured President Nicos Anastasiades of Britain’s intention to positively contribute to an informal five-party conference the UN Secretary-General seeks to convene.
The assurances were given during a telephone conversation with Raab on Wednesday, government spokesman Kyriakos Koushos said in a written statement.
Anastasiades argued that illegal activities of Turkey both in the fenced-off town of Varoha and in the island’s Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) do not contribute to the creation of a constructive climate for the resumption of talks.
“Raab assured the President of the UK,s intention to positively contribute to the convening of an informal five-party conference, which the UNSG intends to convene, as well as during the continuation of the talks,” the statement added.
Cyprus negotiations will not take place during the informal five-party conference as the aim is to agree on how to proceed with the talks after they crashed three years ago at Crans-Montana.
UN chief Antonio Guterres has instructed his special advisor Lute to begin consultations with all involved parties to determine whether the preconditions are in place to convene an informal 5+1 Cyprus summit.
Last week, rival Cypriot leaders held a ‘break-the-ice’ meeting where they promised to back a United Nations-led Cyprus peace push involving Greece, Turkey, and Britain.
It was the first meeting of Anastasiades, and Turkish Cypriot leader Ersin Tatas since the Ankara-backed hardliner was elected in the breakaway north.
There have been no official UN-sponsored Cyprus settlement negotiations since a conference in Switzerland – also involving Turkey, Britain, and Greece – collapsed in July 2017.
Britain, Greece, and Turkey are guarantor powers of the island’s sovereignty under a treaty signed by Cyprus to gain independence from British rule in 1960.
— Dominic Raab (@DominicRaab) November 11, 2020