United Nations says there was not enough common ground to resume negotiations on war-divided Cyprus, after three-day summit aimed at breaking four-year stalemate in peace talks .
Diplomats had tried to move forward to end a decades-old conflict between rival Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots, which is destabilizing the eastern Mediterranean and is a key source of tension between NATO allies Greece and Turkey.
“The truth is that at the end of our efforts, we have not yet found enough common ground to allow the resumption of formal negotiations relating to the settlement of the Cyprus problem”, declared the Secretary-General of the United Nations, Antonio Guterres, at a press conference in Geneva.
He said the United Nations would try again in “probably two or three months.”
Guterres had invited officials from the two communities in Cyprus, as well as the foreign ministers of Greece, Turkey and the United Kingdom – a former colonial ruler in Cyprus – to participate in an effort to resume the peace negotiations that collapsed in mid-2017.
Cyprus was divided into southern Greek Cypriot and northern Turkish Cypriot in 1974.
Previous discussions of reunification under a federal umbrella, as called for in UN resolutions, have failed.
Turkey and the Turkish Cypriot leaders, led by Ersin Tatar and allies in Ankara, dismissed subsequent talks on a federation-based deal as a “waste of time” because nearly five decades of negotiations on this model have failed. to nothing.
Instead, they came up with what is essentially a two-state model which the Greek Cypriots in turn said they would not accept as it would legitimize the partition of the country.
The separatist Turkish Cypriot enclave created after a Turkish military invasion is recognized only by Ankara, while the Greek Cypriot administration is internationally recognized as the government of Cyprus.
This invasion came after a coup that sought to join the island with Greece.