- Title: Cyprus peace deal needs to be watertight for vote, says President
- Date: 7th April 2017
- Summary: NICOSIA, CYPRUS (APRIL 7, 2017) (REUTERS) EXTERIOR OF PRESIDENTIAL PALACE VARIOUS OF CYPRIOT PRESIDENT, NICOS ANASTASIADES, SITTING AT HIS DESK ANASTASIADES SITTING IN AN ARMCHAIR AND LISTENING TO REPORTER (SOUNDBITE) (Greek) CYPRIOT PRESIDENT, NICOS ANASTASIADES, SAYING: "The negotiations are starting again, notwithstanding the time that was lost, and I believe a great amount of time was wasted on obsessions, on demands that were out of the question for the Greek-Cypriot side to accept." ANASTASIADES SITTING IN AN ARMCHAIR AND SPEAKING TO REPORTER (SOUNDBITE) (Greek) CYPRIOT PRESIDENT, NICOS ANASTASIADES, SAYING: "If I am not satisfied that what we are trying to achieve meets our expectations - for both communities' (expectations), I say it openly - then I would not be willing to put it before the people. Therefore, it must be a balanced deal, which, as I have said a hundred times, doesn't create the feeling of one side prevailing or winning over the other." ANASTASIADES SITTING IN AN ARMCHAIR AND SPEAKING TO REPORTER (SOUNDBITE) (Greek) CYPRIOT PRESIDENT, NICOS ANASTASIADES, SAYING: "This is a good moment, one which offers us a better prospect towards a solution, but to speak of a "last chance" - there could be other opportunities, the issue there is what solution it would lead to. In any case, I would like to emphasize that it doesn't depend on the Greek-Cypriot side. It depends on the resolve and the sincere intent also of the other side." ANASTASIADES SITTING IN AN ARMCHAIR AND SPEAKING TO REPORTER (SOUNDBITE) (Greek) CYPRIOT PRESIDENT, NICOS ANASTASIADES, SAYING: "Everybody needs to understand, all those involved, that one community's survival should not be contingent on the other's, on decisions taken by the other." ANASTASIADES SITTING IN AN ARMCHAIR AND SPEAKING TO REPORTER (SOUNDBITE) (Greek) CYPRIOT PRESIDENT, NICOS ANASTASIADES, SAYING: "It is dangerous to make predictions. However, if we take into account, objectively, what is in our best interest, including for Turkey, the incentives offered by a solution of the Cyprus problem are, I believe, extremely significant, including for the Turkish people and the Turkish economy. Hydrocarbons are something that can play an important role in the economy. We have excellent relationships with our neighbours. A possible solution on Cyprus would facilitate Turkey's plans, either concerning supplies in its internal market, or converting Turkey into an energy hub." ANASTASIADES SITTING IN AN ARMCHAIR AND SPEAKING TO REPORTER (SOUNDBITE) (Greek) CYPRIOT PRESIDENT, NICOS ANASTASIADES, SAYING: "There is no doubt a European Turkey would be something completely different from a Turkey that is far away from Europe. Therefore, it is something that creates worry or increased tensions in the relationship. I believe that after the referendum a restoration of relations will be sought. But that will not be enough, as it appears there are now basic differences in philosophy from European perceptions and those of President Erdogan." ANASTASIADES SITTING IN AN ARMCHAIR
- Embargoed: 21st April 2017 18:45
- Keywords: Cyprus Greece Turkey 1974 reunification referendum
- Location: NICOSIA, CYPRUS
- City: NICOSIA, CYPRUS
- Country: Cyprus
- Topics: Conflicts/War/Peace,Military Conflicts
- Reuters ID: LVA0016BEJP6V
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Cyprus's president said on Friday (April 7) he would not be willing to put any peace deal to a popular vote unless he was convinced a blueprint to reunite estranged Greek and Turkish Cypriots would work.
In an interview with Reuters, President Nicos Anastasiades also said a lasting deal would be in the interests of Turkey,
Anastasiades and Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci will resume peace talks on April 11 after a two-month interruption. United Nations mediators hope that will lead to a deal which would then be put to referendum.
Regarded as a moderate, Anastasiades has frequently tried to temper expectations of a quick fix to divisions that have defied many previous mediators. Anastasiades' five-year term ends next February. He has not said if he will stand again.
Reunification efforts failed in 2004, when Greek Cypriots rejected and Turkish Cypriots accepted a United Nations peace blueprint. Present negotiations are Cypriot-led.
Turkey, whose role in a post-reunification Cyprus remains a highly sensitive issue in the talks, will hold a referendum on April 16 on boosting the powers of President Tayyip Erdogan.
Anastasiades said he didn't want to speculate how a victory in that vote for Erdogan might affect the Cyprus talks, but said he was concerned at friction emerging between Turkey and Europe.
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