Ban calls on Turkish Cypriot leader to reach towards settlement

28 June 2010

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today urged the Turkish Cypriot leader to “grasp the current political window of opportunity to reach a settlement” in the dispute over the Mediterranean island of Cyprus.

In a meeting at United Nations Headquarters in New York, Mr. Ban and DerviŞ Eroğlu discussed the situation in Cyprus, where UN-backed negotiations are taking place with the aim of reunifying the island.

“The Secretary-General encouraged Mr. Eroğlu to grasp the current political window of opportunity to reach a settlement,” according to information released by the UN spokesperson’s office. “He hoped that the two leaders would make serious advances in the coming months, understanding that this would require compromises on both sides.”

For his part Mr. Eroğlu voiced his commitment to reaching a settlement, adding he believed it could be achieved this year with goodwill and compromises from both sides.

The negotiations began in 2008 after the then Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot community leaders committed themselves to working towards “a bi-communal, bi-zonal federation with political equality, as defined by relevant Security Council resolutions.”

That federation would comprise a federal government with a single international personality, along with a Turkish Cypriot constituent state and a Greek Cypriot constituent state, which would be of equal status.

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Cyprus in the spotlight during talks between Ban and Greek premier

The United Nations-backed efforts to reunify the island of Cyprus and the ongoing dispute over the name of the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia have topped the agenda during talks between Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou.