Cyprus supports Tbilisi’s EU aspirations

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Georgia looks forward to Nicosia’s support for its EU aspirations and recognizes that it can learn from Cyprus, which followed the same path until it joined the bloc, its President Salome Zourabichvili said.

On Tuesday, she made the comments following a meeting in Nicosia with President Nicos Anastasiades during the first official visit of a Georgian President to the island.

Anastasiades was the first Cypriot President to visit Georgia in 2019.

He said that the visits are important milestones in strengthening the two countries’ cooperation at bilateral and multilateral levels.

The President said Cyprus highly appreciates the community’s activity and presence on the island.

This is why it decided to grant land in Gialia village to construct a monastery where a Georgian church stood many centuries ago.

He said that an exchange of views took place to further deepen bilateral cooperation and speed up concluding agreements and memoranda of cooperation.

They discussed developments in the Caucasus and Nagorno-Karabakh and security issues in the Black Sea, the situation in the Eastern Mediterranean due to recent developments in Iraq, elections in Libya and instability in Lebanon and Syria.

Georgia-EU relations were also on the agenda given the Eastern Partnership meeting scheduled for December, noting Cyprus’ support for efforts to deepen Brussels-Tbilisi relations.

The Georgian President referred to the common history of the two countries and their common problems and the great appreciation of the people of Georgia for the concession of land for the construction of the monastery.

She said that this is highly valued because Georgians are used to having land taken away from them, not granted to them.

Zourabichvili said the two countries enjoy almost 30 years of diplomatic relations and need to take the next step to raise them higher.

The Georgian President said her country’s occupation of 20% of its territory is difficult and referred to Russia’s new border policy.

She said the EU presence in Georgia and its participation in the Caucasus issues and what is happening there is necessary.

On gas fields in the region, she said Georgia wants to be informed about the developments and participate.