20:28 GMT +318 August 2019
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    EU Ready to Support New Initiatives on Cyprus Settlement - EU Commission

    © AFP 2019 / GEORGES GOBET
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    The European Union is ready to support any new initiatives aimed at settlement of the Cypriot crisis if such moves emerge, European Commission Deputy Chief Spokesperson Alexander Winterstein said Friday.

    BRUSSELS (Sputnik) Earlier in the day, UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres announced that the new round of talks to end the Cypriot issue ended in a failure. The UN chief added that despite the fact that the talks have not brought any positive outcome, new initiatives to settle the dispute could be worked out in future.

    "If such initiatives were to take place, he said that the United Nations stands ready to support this. And the same is true, of course, for us in the European Union we continue to stand ready to support any further initiative that could lead to a positive outcome," Winterstein said, speaking about Guterres' words on the issue.

    The spokesman added that several EU officials, such as European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker had exerted a lot of efforts to contribute to the reunification of the divided island.

    "Look, you know how much President Juncker has been advocating for and working for this process of reunification. You may remember the speech that he gave in Cyprus… for him this is a priority," Winterstein said, adding that Brussels would continue providing assistance for the parties to the talks in case of new initiatives.

    The Mediterranean island of Cyprus has been partitioned since 1974, when Turkey occupied the island's north, later proclaiming the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC). Turkey maintains military presence in TRNC, which is only recognized by Ankara as an independent state. The United Nations and the European Union have exerted a lot of efforts to reunify the island by political and diplomatic means.


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