Cyprus: Annan to confer with Pres. Papadopoulos
Cyprus: Annan to confer with President Papadopoulos
United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan and President Tassos Papadopoulos have agreed to meet to review the situation in Cyprus, which has been divided into Turkish Cypriot and Greek Cypriot sectors for 40 years.
The meeting, planned for 28 February in Paris, will concern “ways of moving forward the process of reuniting the island,” a spokesman for Mr. Annan said today.
Last month, in Davos, Switzerland, Mr. Annan met with Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan to review the latter’s proposal on dealing with the situation.
The United Nations Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus (UNFICYP) has been operating since 1964 to prevent further fighting between the Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot communities and one of its roles is to monitor ceasefire lines that extend some 180 kilometres across the island.
In December, the Security Council extended UNFICYP’s mandate until the middle of June, following Mr. Annan’s report on the country that noted the situation in Cyprus was calm but “progress toward a political solution remains negligible at best.”
Official contacts between the two parties have not resumed since the April 2004 referendum on a comprehensive settlement plan failed. About 65 per cent of Turkish Cypriots voted in favour of the plan, while 76 per cent of Greek Cypriots voted against.