President Ersin Tatar statement following the working lunch with UN Senior Official Jane Hall Lute. Tatar: "We are putting forward something new for the first time in 50 years”.
President Ersin Tatar had a working lunch at 1pm with UN Senior Official, Jane Holl Lute, who has been assigned for this position for Cyprus by United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres. After the one-and-a-half hour meeting, President Ersin Tatar made a statement to the press.
Presidency Special Representative, Ergün Olgun, as well as some of the members of the negotiating team participated in the meeting where discussions were held in relation to the five-plus-UN informal meeting, to be held in Geneva on April 27-29.
“FOR THE FIRST TIME AFTER 50 YEARS WE ARE GOING THERE TO SAY SOMETHING NEW”
“Cyprus is not the old Cyprus, and the eastern Mediterranean is not the old eastern Mediterranean,” the President stated, adding: “The conditions have changed. International relations are now based on different dimensions. We will be going to this meeting fully prepared. After I was elected, a new will of the people has arisen and this is a will supported by the majority of the public," he said.
Stating that the Turkish Cypriot side will be going to Geneva to make the necessary openings and convey their new ideas to the UN and the interested parties at the negotiating table, the President said: “What has been discussed for the last 50 years is well known. After 50 years, we are going there to say something new for the first time."
President Tatar said: “We are continuing preparations. Founding President, Rauf Denktaş also talked about the cooperation of states based on sovereign equality during his tenure. But at that time, they were discussing this within the framework of a federation. However, it has now transpired that this would not be acceptable in a federation-based agreement. Therefore, a just, sustainable settlement in Cyprus would only be possible on the basis of cooperation of two States, co-existing side-by-side with sovereign equality.”
President Tatar, referring to the remarks made by Ms Lute during their meeting, said it would be the first meeting the UN Secretary General, Antonio Guterres, will be attending since the pandemic started. “This demonstrates the importance attributed by the Secretary General to the Cyprus issue,” the President said.
Stating that today’s meeting was his last with Ms Lute before the informal meeting in Geneva, the President expressed his gratitude and thanks to Ms Lute for her tireless efforts in organising the informal meeting.
President Tatar said that they had the opportunity to convey the stance of the Turkish Cypriot side to Ms Lute once again and reiterated that "with the cooperation of two independent states living side by side, based on sovereign equality, there can be a sustainable, comprehensive, fair and respectful settlement in Cyprus".
President Tatar stated that the Turkish Cypriot side will make the necessary openings in Geneva and convey their new ideas to the UN and the interested parties at the table, saying: “What has been said, what has been discussed for the last 50 years is well known. After 50 years, for the first time, we are going there to say something new."
"MS LUTE HAS MADE A GREAT DEAL OF EFFORT TO ORGANISE THE MEETING TO BE HELD IN GENEVA"
President Tatar stated that they came together with Ms Lute and her team today at a working lunch and indicated that this was their last meeting before the informal meeting in Geneva.
President Tatar stated that Ms Lute informed him during the meeting that even though the United Nations Secretary General has been avoiding meetings due to the Covid-19 pandemic , the meeting in Geneva will be the first that the Secretary General will be attending during this pandemic period, which shows the importance he gives to the Cyprus issue.
Stating that the Turkish Cypriot side is “in full preparation for such an important meeting,” the President stated that they reiterated to Ms Lute the policy and vision of the Turkish Cypriot side in this last meeting before Geneva.
President Tatar said:
“Our position is clear and unambiguous. The Turkish Cypriot side has made many evaluations regarding this issue. We are closely following the perception of the public with the meetings and contacts I have continued to have with a majority of the public, from political party leaders, non-governmental organisations, former foreign ministers and various institutions -- and of course the public. I have notified Ms Lute that the Turkish Cypriot people have always wanted an agreement in Cyprus on the basis of equality, but after the failure of federal-based negotiations for over 50 years, I have been elected as the president to obtain a viable and sustainable settlement that is mutually respected -- which would only be possible on the basis of sovereign equality of two independent States that coexist side-by-side in a cooperative relationship. We expressed to Ms Lute that this is very important for in terms of a feasible settlement that provides stability in Cyprus and the region, and of course our views are very important in order to create regional balances and to be beneficial for everyone."
President Tatar said that the three-day long informal meeting will be held that will also be attended by the three guarantor countries -- Turkey, Greece and the UK.
"The informal meeting is being held to explore whether there is a common ground that exists between the sides in order to start formal negotiations," the President said, adding that "The Republic of Turkey supports the policy of the Turkish Cypriot side in relation to a settlement that is based on a two State model. We will put forward our sincere views at the informal meeting," he said.