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Athens ready to contribute to Guterres’ efforts for a Cyprus solution, Greek FM says

Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias said that Athens is ready to contribute to the efforts of the UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres for a Cyprus settlement , during a recent meeting between the two men in Geneva earlier this week.

In an interview with Greek weekly “Real” Dendias said that despite the positive step, made during the informal meeting in Berlin, on November 25, between Guterres and the two Cyprus leaders “the gunboat diplomacy implemented by Turkey is not helping to create the appropriate climate to convene an informal five-party meeting.”

In his interview, Dendias said he did not expect Turkey to act recklessly by causing any incident, since Ankara would be the one to lose in such a case.

The Foreign Minister of Greece also told “Real” that Athens is ready to defend its national sovereignty and interests. We can do it alone, but we will not be alone, he said, adding that Greece’s allies and friends, both in the EU and outside the EU, will be at their side.

Dendias also said that Athens is in talks with Cairo for the delimitation of their maritime zones, and the two countries agreed to accelerate discussions for a mutually acceptable agreement on this matter.

Cyprus has been divided since 1974, when Turkey invaded and occupied its northern third. Repeated rounds of UN-led peace talks have so far failed to yield results. The latest round of negotiations, in July 2017 at the Swiss resort of Crans-Montana ended inconclusively.

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres hosted an informal dinner for Cyprus President Nicos Anastasiades and Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci, on November 25, in Berlin, to discuss the next steps regarding the Cyprus issue.

In a statement issued after the meeting, Guterres said he committed to explore with President Anastasiades, Akinci and the guarantor powers the possibility to convene an informal five party meeting on Cyprus “at an appropriate stage.”

(Cyprus News Agency)

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