French Foreign Minister Says Cyprus Unity Would Be “Message of Peace”

French Foreign Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault. (AP Photo/Petr David Josek)

NICOSIA – With negotiations lagging, there’s still a chance for Cyprus reunification that would ” send a unique message of peace in the region,” French Foreign Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault said in a visit to the capital city.

He spoke following a meeting with his Cypriot counterpart Ioannis Kasoulides as Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades and Turkish-Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci are mulling moving the talks to Switzerland to prevent news leak.

Ayrault expressed the wish that a solution is found as soon as possible “to the benefit of Cyprus, the European Union and the wider region, the Cyprus Mail reported.

Asked about France’s views on Turkish guarantees in Cyprus, Ayrault said, “France is in close contact with other permanent members of the Security Council to examine what the most appropriate role for the body might be”.

Kasoulides said items on the agenda of talks were the international aspects of the Cyprus problem and the issues of security and guarantees, as well as energy, bilateral relations and regional issues.

“We value our cooperation with the French government greatly, and especially its traditional support and the keen interest it shows, as a permanent member of the (United Nations’) Security Council, in our efforts to find a solution to the Cyprus problem,” Kasoulides said.