UN chief meets with Turkish Cypriot leader

UN chief meets with Turkish Cypriot leader
# 29 September 2012 22:10 (UTC +04:00)
Baku-APA. UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on Saturday met with Dervis Eroglu, the Turkish Cypriot leader, and the two discussed how to find "a comprehensive settlement to the Cyprus problem", APA reports quoting Xinhua.

During the meeting, "they exchanged views on ways of revitalizing the negotiations to find a comprehensive settlement to the Cyprus problem and discussed the work of the bi-communal technical committees," said a readout to the press from Ban’s spokesman.

"They discussed hydrocarbons exploration in the Eastern Mediterranean," the readout said. The secretary-general recalled that these resources could prove very beneficial for both communities and finance a settlement."

Cyprus has been divided since 1974, when Turkish forces invaded the island in response to a Greek-led coup apparently aimed at making it part of Greece.

Numerous UN-mediated attempts to reach a peace agreement over three decades have failed and, more than two years in, the latest effort, seen as the best yet opportunity, has not met expectations.

Some progress has been made on a power-sharing formula under a future federation, but negotiations have run into trouble on the issue of property lost during the war.

The last attempt at a negotiated solution to the Cypriot problem in 2004 collapsed when Turkish Cypriots voted in favor of a UN settlement plan, but Greek Cypriots rejected it.

As a result, Cyprus -- or the southern part ruled by Greek Cypriots -- joined the European Union that year, while the north remained effectively excluded.
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