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Editorial

Another Missed Opportunity with the Cyprus Issue?

It was a cheap attack, a tactic borrowed from the past. An attack aimed at blocking a discussion about the role that Nikos Christodoulides played in the Cypriot issue as a close associate of Cyprus’ President Nicos Anastasiades.

Precisely during years when finding an acceptable solution was drifting further away, culminating in the Turks’ demand for a two-state ‘solution’ – that is to say, a permanent partition.

Andreas Mavroyiannis, the former negotiator of the Republic of Cyprus and candidate for the presidency of Cyprus, accused his opponent Nikos Christodoulides, the former Minister of Foreign Affairs, of being responsible for the loss of another opportunity for the possible resolution of the Cyprus issue.
“We came to present our side,” he said in a televised debate, “proposing for the area under Turkish Cypriot administration [to be reduced to] 28.2% and the Turkish-Cypriot side proposing 29.2%. It felt that we were a bit within reach [of an agreement] and we all knew we were getting somewhere and we had started discussion about criteria – at which point we got up and left. With the responsibility on Mr. Christodoulides, I believe we left Mont Pelerin.”

This is indeed a ‘bombshell’ revelation.

And how did Christodoulides respond? “If I were in the position of Mr. Mavroyiannis, I would have resigned at the moment if the President was so influenced by some of his advisers.”

This is interesting logic…

And Christodoulides added:
“We have an important revelation tonight. Mr. Mavroyiannis adopts the Turkish argument in Crans-Montana. Yes, that our side bears a share of responsibility for the solution of the Cyprus problem… It strengthens the quiver of Turkish argumentation.”

This is unacceptable.

He more nor less accuses his opponent of being… a collaborator with the Turks for exposing Christodoulides’ opportunistic attitude.
The latter denied the charge. “Nothing could be farther from the truth,” he said. With this answer, the former Minister tries to wrap himself in the flag and protect himself regarding his role in the Cyprus issue and the influence he exerted on Anastasiades in recent years.

What could he be afraid of?

We have seen these personal political games at the expense of national issues – with the aim of raising some people to the highest offices of the state – several times in the past. Both in Greece and Cyprus. And, unfortunately, we put up with it. However, if we had room to tolerate them then, we don’t now.

Now, we must make every effort to save what can be saved. And this presupposes both ability and self-criticism.

According to the opinion polls, Christodoulides leads by a large margin over Mavroyiannis. However, it is still quite early and there is a lot of time until the elections, so this may boomerang against Christodoulides, as often happens in such cases with  the early frontrunner.

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