Cyprus Peace Process Roundup

Greece will offer Cyprus any help it needs to face Turkish threats: Greece will offer Cyprus any help it needs when it comes to facing Turkish threats over drilling in the island’s exclusive economic zone, the country’s Foreign Minister Nicos Kotzias was quoted as saying on Sunday. In a wide-ranging interview with news site on regional issues, Kotzias touched briefly on Cyprus reiterating that a solution meant ending the occupation and the system of guarantees. [Cyprus Mail]

Cyprus Leader Criticizes UN Envoy for Alleged Bias, Haste: The president of Cyprus on Sunday criticized a U.N. envoy for perceived bias and undue haste amid troubled talks aimed at reunifying the ethnically divided Mediterranean island. President Nicos Anastasiades, a Greek Cypriot, said that he’s “distraught” that U.N. envoy Espen Barth Eide appears to be adopting the positions of the breakaway Turkish Cypriots. He said Eide should grasp that “statements or threats” will produce results contrary to the goal of reunifying Cyprus as a federation. “The less is said, especially on his (Eide’s) part, the better,” Anastasiades told reporters, adding that the U.N. envoy is too much “in a hurry. [Associated Press]

Turkey fuels concern with tactics in Aegean, opposite Cyprus: Athens and Nicosia are raising alarm bells as Turkey continues to dispute Cyprus’s exclusive economic zone (EEZ) and, in particular, its rights to hydrocarbon exploration in Block 6, which was recently licensed to a consortium of Italy’s Eni and France’s Total. Ankara insists that part of the island’s EEZ is part of “Turkey’s continental shelf in the Eastern Mediterranean,” according to a recent letter to the United Nations General Assembly by Turkey’s permanent representative to the UN, Feridun Sinirlioglu. [Kathimerini]

Eide raises spectre of ‘other options’ if no Cyprus deal soon: OTHER options might have to be put on the table if Cyprus’ leaders failed to reach a deal in the near future, UNSG Special Adviser on Cyprus Espen Barth Eide has said. He did not elaborate on what those other options might be. The comments came in an interview with the Cyprus News Agency in New York ahead of his meeting with UN chief Antonio Guterres. He tweeted after the meeting: “At a critical juncture in #CyprusTalks, a thorough, strategic discussion with #UNSG @antonioguterres on the way ahead. — at United Nations Secretariat Building“. In the CNA interview, Eide also warned that a potential showdown over natural gas drilling could be more dramatic than in 2014, when the talks were suspended after President Nicos Anastasiades walked out in protest over Turkey carrying out surveys inside the island’s exclusive economic zone (EEZ). [Cyprus Mail]

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