UN: Indirect Talks on Cyprus Adjourned in Geneva

Published July 12th, 2000 - 02:00 GMT

Indirect talks between the Greek and Turkish Cypriot leaders on the future of the divided Mediterranean island which began July 5th were adjourned Wednesday, a UN envoy said. 

Special adviser on Cyprus to UN Secretary General Kofi Annan, Alvaro de Soto, also reiterated a call to both leaders to keep low-key any events marking the commemoration of the July 20th, 1974 occupation by Turkish troops which led to the creation of the self declared Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC). 

"I have reiterated today the Secretary General's appeal to the parties to play down the tone, the size, the content and the official rhetoric accompanying any events that take place," de Soto said. 

The so-called proximity talks, now in their third round and organized by the United Nations, will resume in Geneva on July 24th and run until around August 4, said de Soto. 

The indirect talks will then again adjourn and resume in New York on September 12th until early October. 

"I am pleased that a calendar for the talks over the coming months is in place," de Soto said. 

He added that he had asked the parties to reflect on some points he had put to them and to give their reactions when they return to Geneva on July 24th. 

"I would hope that in reacting to my ideas they will also come forward with a further and deeper indication of where they stand on the issues," de Soto told reporters without divulging further details. 

Annan has obtained an agreement from the two sides to observe a "strict press blackout" regarding the proximity talks, de Soto recalled, adding this extended to periods of recess during the talks. 

But de Soto acknowledged the "moratorium could have been observed more strictly than it was". 

Over the weekend a Greek Cypriot television station reported on a leaked document outlining the position of Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash on the future make-up of the island. 

Last Wednesday, Annan said Denktash wanted to return to Cyprus for the commemoration of the July 20 1974 occupation by Turkish troops. 

Speaking to reporters after meeting both leaders separately, Annan said he had appealed to them to ensure the commemorations were low key -- GENEVA (AFP) 


© 2000 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)

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