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EU partners will deliver ‘unambiguous’ message to Turkey

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Cyprus Foreign Minister Nikos Christodoulides believes the country’s EU partners will deliver a “clear and unambiguous” message to Turkey at the European Council in June that partition is unacceptable.

Christodoulides was in Lithuanian Thursday for “very open and productive” discussions with counterpart Gabrielius Landsbergis.

His visit to Vilnius comes a week after the UN-led Geneva summit, which failed to end the stalemate on Cyprus talks.

“We are deeply disappointed that we did not have the desired outcome,” Christodoulides said.

“As we said before the meeting, attending would not be enough.

“The positions put forward by the Turkish side run contrary to all relevant UN Security Council resolutions and the common EU position as clearly set out in relevant Decisions and Conclusions.

“These positions are outside the agreed framework, as they aim openly at the partition and not reunification of Cyprus, the partition of an EU member state.”

Christodoulides said Nicosia relies on its EU partners to persuade Ankara to adhere to the UN and its obligations towards the EU to reunify Cyprus.

“We are certain that in line with the EU’s common positions, our EU partners will deliver a clear and unambiguous message to Turkey, including at the upcoming European Council in June during which the prospect of a positive agenda with Turkey will be discussed.”

Nicosia and Vilnius also agreed on the “importance of injecting new momentum in our cooperation.”

“We agreed to take concrete steps in creating additional opportunities benefiting the people of our countries in the area of trade, economy, education and tourism.”

“I believe that Cyprus and Lithuania have a clear, common understanding of what it means to be in a challenging neighbourhood, and the importance of the EU playing an active role in ensuring Europe’s immediate neighbourhood – from South to East – is predictable, secure and prosperous.”

Last month’s Geneva summit failed to find enough common ground to allow for the resumption of formal negotiations on the Cyprus problem.

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said he would convene another meeting of the 5+1 in the next two to three months.