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Nicosia welcomes renewal of UNFICYP mandate

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The Foreign Ministry welcomed the unanimous renewal of the UN Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus mandate until 31 January 2022 by the Security Council.

The Foreign Ministry said the Security Council reaffirmed the Presidential statement “condemning Turkish illegal actions in Varosha, announcements by the President of Turkey and the leader of the Turkish-Cypriot Community on 20 July, calling for the immediate reversal of illegal actions that took place since October”.

“In relation to Varosha, the Resolution reiterates the Security Council’s position that no action should be taken that is not in line with the aforementioned Resolutions, whilst urging refrain from actions that undermine the prospects for a peaceful solution.”

Nicosia is also satisfied that the UNSC said a solution to the Cyprus problem must be based on a Cypriot state with one sovereignty, one citizenship and one international personality, with its independence and territorial integrity safeguarded consisting of two politically equal communities.

“It is precisely in this context; the Security Council regrets that no agreement was reached on the resumption of negotiations at the informal meeting in Geneva on 27-29 April, and reaffirms its full support for the Secretary-General’s ongoing efforts for the resumption of the negotiation process, based on a bi-zonal bi-communal federation.

“It underlines the need for the peaceful settlement of disputes in accordance with international law, a message that could only have Turkey as its exclusive recipient.”

Unanimously adopting resolution 2561 (2021), the 15-member organ added that it fully supports the Secretary-General’s decision to convene an informal “five plus United Nations” meeting between the leaders of the two Cypriot communities and the guarantor Powers — Greece, Turkey, and the United Kingdom — at the earliest opportunity.

It urged the sides and all involved participants to approach those talks in the “spirit of openness, flexibility, and compromise” and show the necessary political will and commitment to freely negotiate a mutually acceptable settlement under United Nations auspices.

Reaffirming all its relevant resolutions on Cyprus, the Council recalled the importance of achieving an enduring, comprehensive, and just settlement based on a “bicommunal, bizonal federation with political equality”, as set out in previous Council texts.

The UNSC called upon the leaders of the two Cypriot communities to provide the “necessary political support and overall guidance to free the bicommunal technical committees from obstructions in their work and enable them to function effectively, as well as to improve the public atmosphere for negotiation, including by delivering more constructive and harmonized messages and by more explicitly encouraging contact and cooperation between their two communities”.

Further, the Council called upon those leaders to urgently agree on the reopening of all crossing points on the island while urging effective coordination to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

The Council also recalled the status of Varosha as set out in relevant resolutions and, in 2020, a presidential statement that expressed deep concern about developments in the one-time coastal resort.