NICOSIA – More than five years after the last round of reunification talks collapsed at the Swiss resort of Crans-Montana, United Nations Secretary-General needs to name a new Special Envoy to mediate the unsolved dilemma, Cypriot government spokesman Marios Pelekanos said.
The call comes as President Nicos Anastasiades said as his 10 years in two terms in office is due to end with February, 2023 elections that one of his biggest regrets was not being able to bring the island together again 48 years after Turkey seized the northern third in 1974 invasions.
Pelekanos noted that UN Assistant Secretary-General for Europe, Central Asia and Americas, Miroslav Jenca. Pelekanos had visited Cyprus in November but that, “We believe that if he (Guterres) goes ahead with the appointment (of an envoy) then a better preparation of the ground could be done,” said The Cyprus Mail.
Anastasiades raised the issue in September 2021 with Guterres – who was at the Swiss debacle and became the latest UN chief to fail to broker a deal – but was ignored in yet another entreaty.
The UN chief’s office later said an envoy would be sent in the autumn of 2022 but that hasn’t happened either and with Anastasiades on the way out there seems to be no momentum for it.
Pelekanos said the government feels it’s important to use the run-up to elections – including in Turkey in 2023 – so that we can take the next step immediately after,” but didn’t say what it would be.
Anastasiades said, “What should be taken into account is, on the one hand, the will of the Secretary-General, which I want to hope will be manifested in the appointment of a special envoy as he proposed;” the paper reported.
The last envoy, Norway’s Espen Barth Aide, was also at the failed negotiations and irked Anastasiades with his handling of the failed affair and the UN has let the issue essentially drift since then.