Cyprus reunification helps regional stability

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A Cyprus settlement would significantly contribute to peace and stability of the region through an independent foreign policy, said a Joint Declaration issued after the Israel-Cyprus-Greece Summit in Jerusalem.

The leaders stressed the importance of respecting the sovereignty and sovereign rights in the Eastern Mediterranean and the Aegean Sea and preserving stability.

Israel Prime Minister Naftali Bennett, Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis and President Nicos Anastasiades are “convinced of the necessity of our trilateral cooperation” and will continue working closely to realize its full potential.

“Trilateral cooperation between Israel, Greece and Cyprus represents a centre of joint interests connecting Europe, Eastern Mediterranean and the Middle East,” the Joint Declaration said Tuesday.

They agreed to hold the next trilateral Summit in Cyprus in mid-2022.

“We express our full and unwavering support to the ongoing negotiation process, under the United Nations Good Offices Mission, for a just, comprehensive and viable settlement of the Cyprus problem, based on international law and the relevant UN Security Council Resolutions.

“Such a solution, which will reunify the island, based on the respect of democratic principles, human rights and fundamental freedoms of all Cypriots, would not only benefit the people of Cyprus in its entirety but also significantly contribute to the peace and stability of the region, through Cyprus’ independent foreign policy.”

The leaders said they attached great importance to the US role in the Eastern Mediterranean and “look forward to intensifying their cooperation with the United States”.

The declaration also refers to strengthening trilateral defence coordination, which includes strategic dialogue, military and defence-industrial cooperation.

“Israel, Greece and Cyprus view the energy sector, and in particular, natural gas and renewable energy, as a solid foundation for cooperation in the region…and the respect of all states to exercise their sovereign rights in their respective EEZ/Continental Shelf.”

In the energy field and concerning the EastMed Pipeline Project, Cyprus, Greece, and Israel reconfirm their support of all projects of common interests.

They note the EastMed Gas Forum, where Cyprus will assume the Presidency on January 1 2022, constitutes a “major opportunity for cooperation and dialogue, for the stakeholders of the region.”

They also acknowledge the importance of regional cooperation in environmental protection and climate change.

Cyprus, Greece and Israel also renewed their commitment to strengthening cooperation in preparedness and response for emergencies and note that they decided to resume a working group on those issues.

Concerning COVID-19, the three countries say they stand committed to offering mutual assistance to overcome the consequences of the pandemic and strengthen their cooperation in this field.