The UK Government stands ready to engage with any meetings in support of the Cyprus settlement process, the Minister for the European Neighbourhood Wendy Morton has stated in a letter to the National Federation of Cypriots in the UK.

The Foreign Office Minister welcomes the UN Secretary General’s “continued willingness to work with the parties to conduct in-depth consultations on a way forward and echo his hope that ongoing consultations will lead to a return to negotiations.”

Mrs Morton adds that the UK continues to support those consultations through dialogue with the parties and the UN Secretary General’s Representative on the Cyprus Dispute, Jane Holl Lute, with whom officials are “in regular contact”.

She also welcomes the UN Secretary General’s commitment to explore the possibility of convening an informal five-plus-UN meeting with the parties at an appropriate stage, as well as the meeting between the Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot leaders, on 3rd November, at which they expressed their determination to respond positively to the UNSG’s commitment. “We continue to urge all sides to engage constructively and demonstrate they are committed to making progress towards a settlement as a matter of urgency,” adds Wendy Morton.

Her letter is addressed to the Federation’s President Christos Karaolis as a response to his communication to Prime Minister Johnson on the grim anniversary of the UDI on 15th November.

The Minister reassures Mr Karaolis that the British Government continues to be a strong supporter of a comprehensive, just and lasting settlement of the Cyprus issue, based on the internationally accepted model of a bi-zonal, bi-communal federation. She notes that London therefore welcomes the stated readiness of the sides to resume settlement talks and looks forward to the resumption of dialogue.

According to Mrs Morton, the issue of Varosha underlines the importance of reaching a comprehensive Cyprus Settlement as a matter of urgency and, as such, the UK Government continues to encourage the parties “to engage constructively and demonstrate their commitment”.

She adds that the UK continues to be concerned by the situation in Varosha, including the opening of the beach within the fenced-off area on 8 October and she repeats that representations have been made to Turkey via various diplomatic avenues.

She also notes that in response to the announcement on Varosha, the UK called for the UN Security Council to hold closed consultations on the matter on 9 October.

The UK also continues to support the numerous Security Council Resolutions covering the issue of Varosha, notably 550 (1984) and 789 (1992) and in this regard it supports the 9 October UN Presidential Statement reaffirming its support for the relevant Security Council Resolutions and expressing deep concern regarding the announcement.

In his letter to Boris Johnson Mr Karaolis was referring to the 15th November as “a day of shame”, he was recounting evidence of Turkey’s negative role on the Cyprus issue and as origins the British Prime Minister to exercise his power to make a lasting difference in relation to Cyprus proactively and constructively.

Athanasios Gavos (Cyprus News Agency)