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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 11-09-27

Cyprus News Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Cyprus News Agency at <http://www.cyna.org.cy>


CONTENTS

  • [01] LEADERS MEETING - DOWNER

  • [01] LEADERS MEETING - DOWNER

    UN SGs Special Adviser on Cyprus, Alexander Downer, said on Tuesday that the controversy regarding drilling for hydrocarbons in Cyprus Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) must not affect the ongoing direct talks.

    Speaking to the press after Tuesday`s meeting between President Demetris Christofias and Turkish Cypriot leader Dervis Eroglu, which lasted 5 hours, Downer said that the hydrocarbons issue was not discussed at todays talks.

    Downer said that when an overall agreement is reached, issues regarding the natural resources of Cyprus will be handled by the federal government, adding that this is an additional incentive for a settlement.

    He said that the UN could play the role of a mediator regarding the hydrocarbon issue, should the two sides request such a role. He clarified that so far the two sides have not asked the UN to play such a role.

    He went on to say that the leaders discussed EU matters, adding that they will meet again on Friday to discuss security issues, whereas their aides will meet on Thursday.

    The UN envoy also said that as of next week, the talks will enter a new phase to cover the period up to 24 October, leading to the planned meeting with the UN SG Ban Ki-Moon.

    Turkey, whose troops occupy Cyprus northern part since they invaded in 1974, is the only country in the world, which does not recognise the Republic of Cyprus. Following a decision by Nicosia to begin natural gas and oil exploration in its EEZ, Ankara has deployed warships in the Eastern Mediterranean.

    Drilling has already begun by Houston-based Noble Energy, off Cyprus south-eastern coast.

    The government of Cyprus has protested to the UN and the EU Turkeys moves, saying it has a sovereign right to exploit its natural resources, pointing out that Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots will benefit from any benefits that may come from oil drilling.

    Cyprus has signed an agreement to delineate the Exclusive Economic Zone with Egypt and Israel with a view to exploit any possible natural gas and oil reserves in its EEZ. A similar agreement has been signed with Lebanon but the Lebanese Parliament has not yet ratified it.

    UN-led talks between the leaders of the two communities in Cyprus are currently underway in order to reach a negotiated settlement that would reunify the island. The leaders of the two communities in Cyprus, Cypriot President Demetris Christofias and Turkish Cypriot leader Dervis Eroglu will meet with UNSG Ban Ki - moon in October in New York to discuss about progress in the Cyprus talks.


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