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UN Special Envoy Meets Anastasiades, No Unity Talks Restart Yet

November 1, 2018

NICOSIA – United Nations special envoy Jane Holl Lute met with Cyprus’ President Nicos Anastasiades, reportedly carrying a message from UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres urging the restart of collapsed unity talks.

Lute, an American diplomat, is the latest in a long of line of them who have been trying to get Cypriots and Turkish-Cypriots to try to reunify the island divided by an unlawful 1974 invasion in which Turkey seized and holds the northern third.

Speaking to reporters, government spokesman Prodromos Prodromou said the meeting was “productive,” using the usual diplomatic language to not reveal any real information. Lute will move on to meeting Turkish-Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci.

Negotiations fell apart at the Swiss resort of Crans-Montana in July, 2017 after Akinci and Turkih President Recep Tayyip Erdogan insisted on keeping an army on the northern third and demaning the right to militarily intervene again when they wanted.

The Turkish side it would never relent from those conditions while Anastasiades said he won’t talk without the removal of the troops, leaving the two sides at loggerheads with no explanation why Guterres said the talks are still alive or how current contact could be productive at all.

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