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PtD: The Mattarella visit is a trigger for an even more substantial strengthening of bilateral relations

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    ΠτΔ: Η επΙσκεψη Ματαρελα σιαστικor ενΙσχυση των διμερoν σ&chi ;σεων

    The President of the Republic hosted an official dinner in honor of the President of Italy – The dinner was also attended by church, state and political leadership, members of the Government and other officials

    The the first historic visit of an Italian President to Cyprus will be the trigger for an even more substantial strengthening of our relations, so that their level reflects the sincere feelings of familiarity between our peoples, President Christodoulidis said on Monday evening, at an official dinner he hosted, at the Presidential Palace, in honor of President Sergio Mattarella.

    The President of the Republic was accompanied by his wife Filippa Karseras Christodoulidis and President Mattarella by his daughter Laura Mattarella.

    The dinner was also attended by the church , state and political leadership, members of the Government and other officials.

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    In his address at the dinner, the President of the Republic said that the first visit of an Italian President to Cyprus since the establishment of the Republic of Cyprus, is an event of heavy symbolic and essential importance, not only because it restores a historical paradox, given the close relations between the two countries, but also because it marks a new era, where I am sure that relations will become even stronger.

    “At the same time, the fact that the visit of the Italian President takes place just three months after my own working visit to Rome highlights our common will to intensify our bilateral contacts at the highest possible level,”, he said.

    The President said that the two countries are linked by History, culture, the common European home, the Mediterranean Sea, adding that we represent two peoples who ancient times are closely connected”.

    He said that evidence of this historical connection is scattered throughout Cyprus and some of them will be visited tomorrow. President Christodoulidis spoke about the close cooperation of the two countries and the common goals and approaches both in bilateral issues and in the issues that occupy the agenda of the European Union.

    The President emphasized that this year Cyprus completes 20 years since its accession to the European Union and that this is the most important achievement of the Republic of Cyprus after its independence in 1960.

    He spoke for the close cooperation between Cyprus and Italy not only at the level of the 27, but also at the level of the nine Mediterranean EU member states, as well as the five Mediterranean EU member states on immigration issues.

    “Beyond the milestone of 20 years since we joined the EU, unfortunately, this year also marks 50 years since the Turkish invasion and continued occupation of European territory. On this Mediterranean island, on the territory of an EU member state, for 50 years there have been refugees, stranded, missing, European citizens deprived of basic human rights, he said.

    President Christodoulidis reiterated that in the context of the discussion he assured President Mattarella that he will make every effort to restart the talks to resolve the Cyprus issue, based on the relevant resolutions of the United Nations Security Council and the principles and values ​​of the EU, &#8220 ;so that all Cypriot European citizens can enjoy the benefits of a reunited homeland within the EU, the same benefits enjoyed by all European citizens without exception”.

    He also thanked President Mattarella for Italy's unwavering support for the resolution of the Cyprus issue, within the agreed framework and always on the basis of international law.

    For his part, President Mattarella said , among other things, that the visit to Nicosia, the first by a President of the Italian Republic, restores a delay and a gap, given the common membership in the EU and the excellent bilateral relations.

    He also expressed the hope that his visit to Cyprus would be an impetus for further development of the bilateral relationship.

    He also pointed out that proof of this fruitful relationship is, among other things, the Mediterranean identity of the two countries, but also the cultural and archaeological heritage.

    “Your birthplace, which I will visit tomorrow, is a tangible expression of this reality”, said the President of Italy addressing President Christodoulidis.

    He added that “the mosaics, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, preserved in Paphos can be paralleled with those of Villa de Casale in Sicily, my region. And Paphos itself is described as an idyllic place by one of the greatest Italian poets, Ludovico Ariosto”.

    He also referred to the Italian community in Cyprus and the Italian businesses that they are based on the island.

    Regarding the anniversary of Cyprus joining the EU, the Italian President noted that the Republic of Cyprus plays a fundamental role, acting as a hub for ensuring the EU's energy security.

    “The future energy security of the entire EU passes, in this sense, and the island and its resources can be a vehicle for meeting and agreement with the countries of the Eastern Mediterranean rather than competition and confrontation. This is something we need, he said.

    He also underlined the very important geostrategic role of Cyprus in the region, noting that “it is a point of reference, an advanced outpost of the European ability to react to crises with foresight, generosity and readiness”.

    President Mattarella also expressed thanks for the help that Cyprus offered to evacuate civilians from the crisis areas, including Italian citizens.

    Referring to the Cyprus issue, the Italian President pointed out the need to find a solution based on the UN resolutions, noting that tomorrow he will visit the Commission of Inquiry on the Missing Persons to pay “tribute to all the victims of the Cyprus tragedy who are still missing, as well as to all those who work for dialogue, to seek and build a future based on respect and not on resentment and confrontation”.

    The President of Italy said that the PtD's personal commitment to the resumption of talks between the two communities and his call for a joint effort by all those involved in the search for a final solution to the Cyprus issue, within the framework of the UN and with the contribution of the EU, “deserve appreciation and admiration& #8221;.

    “Italy stands by your side in your efforts to promote the agenda of intercommunal reconciliation, long awaited not only by Cypriots, but also by the whole the international community”, he concluded.

    Source: cyprustimes.com

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