UK confirms support for Cyprus reunification

Defense Secretary Michael Fallon signs defense co-operation program with Greek Cypriot administration

UK confirms support for Cyprus reunification

World Bulletin / News Desk

 The U.K., as a guarantor power, will do "whatever necessary" to secure a settlement in Cyprus, Defense Secretary Michael Fallon confirmed Friday.

Fallon’s remarks came during a visit to the divided island to sign a deal on a defense co-operation program with the Greek Cypriot Administration, according to a U.K. government statement. 

   "Our priority is for both sides to find an agreement allowing each community to feel secure," Fallon said.

The statement added Fallon and Greek Cypriot Defense Minister Christoforos Fokaides "agreed that the key regional partners would now work closely across special forces, counter terrorism, crisis response, intelligence, air defense, hybrid warfare and cyber."

Fallon said the deal was part of Britain’s effort to step up its global role and that "Cyprus is a key partner in promoting European security and stability."

"We have now committed to strengthen our defence partnership with greater co-operation in areas such as counter terrorism, maritime security, and crisis response,” he said.

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 was followed by the intervention of Turkey as a guarantor power.

   Cyprus’ three guarantors -- Turkey, Greece, and Great Britain -- were assigned when it gained independence from the U.K. in 1960.

Reunification talks in Cyprus resumed in May 2015 and both sides have repeatedly expressed optimism that a solution could be found.

Once a final agreement is reached, it would be put to both Cypriot communities in a referendum.​

Güncelleme Tarihi: 10 Şubat 2017, 22:07