Greek Prime Ministers Kyriakos Mitsotakis , left, shakes hands with Cyprus' new President Nikos Christodoulides before their meeting in Athens, on Monday, March 13, 2023. (AP Photo/Petros Giannakouris)
ATHENS – During his visit to the Greek capital, Cyprus’ new President Nikos Christodoulides met with Prime Minister Kyriacos Mitsotakis and expressed their desire to involve the European Union in resolving the division of Cyprus since the Turkish invasions in 1974.
However, Turkish-Cypriot leader Ersin Tatar, a hardliner aligned with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, opposes EU involvement despite the soft sanctions imposed on Turkey for their drilling activities off the island.
“The mobilization of Greece and Cyprus is more necessary than ever before. We stand together in the upcoming European Council,” said Mitsotakis, emphasizing that the answer remains a bizonal bicommunal federation.
Tatar has rejected the bizonal bicommunal federation proposed by Greece and Cyprus, instead demanding that the United Nations recognize the occupied territory as a sovereign country. Mitsotakis acknowledged the difficult geopolitical climate with “overt revisionism” as Christodoulides discussed the need for more EU involvement in resolving the Cyprus issue, stating that the current situation cannot be the solution.Tatar has rejected that as well, demanding instead that the United Nations accept the occupied territory as a sovereign country as it remains isolated while the Greek-Cypriot government is a member of the EU.
Mitsotakis said that Christodoulides assumed his duties at a very difficult period of geopolitical volatility with overt revisionism.
Christodoulides stated, “I discussed with Mitsotakis the urgent necessity for increased EU involvement in resolving the Cyprus issue. We are fully aware that the situation is complex, but we firmly believe that the current status quo cannot provide a solution,” as reported by The Cyprus Mail.
Christodoulides began his meetings in Greece with President Katerina Sakellaropoulou, where they discussed the Cyprus problem and upcoming meetings with UN Assistant Secretary-General Rose Marie DiCarlo. Christodoulides described his visit to Greece as symbolic yet essential, expressing his desire to end the division of Nicosia, which remains the last divided capital in Europe, although there is still a wall in Belfast, Northern Ireland.
NICOSIA - A reach-out by Cyprus' new President Nikos Christodoulides to have the European Union take part in negotiations over how to reunify the island split by Turkish invasions in 1974 was dismissed by Turkish-Cypriot leader Ersin Tatar.
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