Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Cyprus: Talks between Cypriot leaders begin in New York

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon (back to camera) greets Greek and Turkish Cypriot leaders Demetris Christofias (centre) and Dervis Eroglu (right) at Greentree Estate in Manhasset, New York. UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon met today with the leaders of the Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot communities as they began two days of United Nations-facilitated talks on reunifying the divided Mediterranean island nation.

This is the fifth time that the Secretary-General is present at talks between Greek Cypriot leader Dimitris Christofias and his Turkish Cypriot counterpart, Dervis Eroglu, as they continue the negotiations begun in 2008.

Ahead of the talks, Mr. Ban said he looked forward to “a productive meeting and concrete progress” during the two-day session being held at the Greentree Estate on Long Island.

The UN-facilitated talks are aimed eventually setting up a federal government with a single international personality in a bi-zonal, bi-communal country, with Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot constituent states of equal status.