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Tuesday, April 16, 2024

We have a moment of opportunity to resolve the Cyprus issue, says Stewart

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    We have a moment of opportunity to resolve the Cyprus issue, says Colin Stewart – The role of Civil Society in achieving a solution

    We have a moment of opportunity to solve the Cyprusproblem, said the Special Representative of the UN Secretary General and Head of the United Nations Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus, Colin Stewart. Mr. Stewart welcomed an event at Ledra Palace, Wednesday afternoon, on the role of Civil Society in maintaining peace, on the 60th anniversary of the UN resolution to create UNFICYP.< /p>

    We have a moment of opportunity. There is still much to be done. But no matter how small it is, we have a chance“, he emphasized.

    Turkey and Greece are close “and that is useful,”, he said and noted that this does not mean that the problem will be solved, “but it is much better than the opposite,”, as he said. In addition, he added that the Greek Cypriots are pushing for negotiations, something that “in the past we could not take for granted”, reiterating that this does not mean that the problem will be solved either.

    He underlined that now we have a personal envoy of the UN Secretary General for the first time in seven years, after the failure at Cran Montana. “And that in itself is a huge opportunity. It doesn't mean the problem will be solved, but it means this is a moment we can get something out of if we want to,' he said.

    Referring to the personal envoy of the UN Secretary General, Maria Ángela Holguín Cuéllar, he said that she has excellent experience in her contribution to ending the war in Colombia. “I am very impressed with her and I think she has very good ideas and motivations,”, he noted.

    “We must seize every opportunity we have, no matter how small,”, he said, as “we don’t know if there will be another”. He pointed out that we waited seven years for’ she. “So I know how hard you all have worked and how tired you are, but it's now or never. Now is the time to make all your efforts to move things towards a solution, he told the representatives of Civil Society who participated in the event.

    He underlined that in Cyprus there is a majority that wants to resolve the problem in a mutually acceptable way. “That means by definition through negotiation, through compromise, through win-win, through something that is good enough for everyone. And that will require political courage and you know that is hard to find. So you can help, give courage. Say “we'll support you if you make the tough decisions”. I have referred to the Secretary General when he said that leadership is about compromise. It takes a leader to make tough decisions. And to make them a little easier, he will need the support of the world, said Mr. Stewart, adding that most of the substance of the Cyprus issue has, in one way or another, been discussed and there are convergences.< /p>

    Civil Society's role in achieving a solution

    Mr Stewart said Ms Holgin strongly believes that Civil Society is &# 8220;absolutely vital” and that she is committed to ensuring that Civil Society has a voice, “and that is another element of the opportunity”, she said.

    He added that he believes that Civil Society has a key role to play in the ability to reconcile History. “If you see B’ World War, one of the things that established the peace, was the agreement between France and Germany to cooperate in a common text. At some point, Cyprus will have to do this. Either now, to create the conditions for a solution, or later. One way or another, this must be done, otherwise it will continue to be an obstacle, he underlined.

    He also added that civil society has a lot to offer to technical committees and “we should consider how to increase” this interaction. “We proposed a new technical committee for the youth, as well as the participation of young people in the technical committees,”, he noted.

    He also said that the 60th anniversary is not a celebration. “There is no way we can be proud of the fact that we have been here for 60 years,”, he said, adding that UNFICYP has not been able to fulfill its mandate. “The purpose of a peacekeeping mission is to help solve the problem and then leave. We certainly haven't finished it, he said.

    Fri’ all this, he continued, this anniversary reminds us that this conflict remains unresolved for a full 60 years. Let's take this opportunity to remind the world that we should all be unhappy that this situation is dragging on and maybe we can help stir things up”.

    Source: cyprustimes.com

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