World Bulletin / News Desk
If we want 2016 to be the year of a solution, continued Cyprus talks need to be faster and more productive, said Mustafa Akinci, the president of Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus, on Monday.
Akinci made the remarks after a four-hour meeting with Greek Cypriot leader Nicos Anastasiadis in the UN-administered buffer zone, hosted by Espen Barth Eide, the special UN Cyprus envoy.
In a press statement afterwards, Akinci described the meeting as "productive."
Stating that it would not be right to make a unilateral declaration on behalf of the two sides, Akinci said: "The details of the negotiations should be declared jointly when the two parties are ready for these declarations."
Akinci rebuffed Greek media reports claiming Turkish Cypriots had been a bad partner in the talks, saying:
"This is quite out of the question. We have always defended the opinions we have put forth. We seek progress and solutions, so we can never backtrack on our declarations, either verbal or written."
The negotiations will proceed intensely, stressed Akinci, stating that the next high-profile meeting is set for May 6, not May 9.
Reunification talks between the Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot communities on the island resumed in May 2015 when the newly elected Akinci met with Greek Cyprus’ Anastasiades.
Previous negotiations stalled in October 2014 in a row over gas exploration.
The eastern Mediterranean island was divided into a Turkish Cypriot state in the north and a Greek Cypriot administration in the south after a 1974 military coup on the island was followed by the intervention of Turkey as a guarantor power.Last Mod: 26 Nisan 2016, 09:23