Statement delivered by Special Adviser of the Secretary-General on  Cyprus Espen Barth Eide on behalf of the Leaders

Today, the Turkish Cypriot leader, Mr. Mustafa Akıncı, and the Greek Cypriot leader, Mr. Nicos Anastasiades, concluded their sixth leaders’ meeting. Since we last met, we have had the most intense period of negotiations to date with substantive, daily meetings.

Parallel to the meetings of the negotiators, working groups on property, the economy and European Union matters meet with increasing frequency, making progress on some key issues.

At today’s meeting the leaders continued to focus on aspects of governance and power-sharing, on property, criteria on territory, cross cutting European Union issues and economic matters. The leaders also discussed the ongoing implementation of a range of confidence building measures.

The leaders recognize the importance of having the principles and values upon which the European Union is founded upheld and embedded in the comprehensive settlement, whilst respecting its bizonal and bicommunal character.  The working group on European Union matters held its first meeting this week. The leaders welcome the European Union’s commitment to help the achievement of a comprehensive settlement and to prepare for the application of the EU acquis throughout the island. In this context, the upcoming visit of the President of the European Commission, Mr. Jean-Claude Juncker to Cyprus will provide a good opportunity to further underline the European Union readiness to assist the United Nations-led process.

Stressing the importance of the economic dimensions of a settlement, Mr. Anastasiades and Mr. Akıncı have also focused on this vital issue.  In today’s global economic climate it is essential that a functional, federal Cyprus is financially viable and committed to capitalizing on the economic opportunities that will open up as a result of reaching a final settlement. This will be done in close cooperation with the relevant international financial institutions.

Mr. Akıncı and Mr. Anastasiades reaffirmed their unwavering commitment to a settlement and look forward to their next meeting scheduled for Monday, 27 July 2015.