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Greek side distorting UN chief’s Cyprus remarks: Turkey

GREEK SIDE DISTORTING UN CHIEF’S CYPRUS REMARKS: TURKEY

Guterres' statements misinterpreted by Greek Cypriot side to serve domestic policy interests, Ankara says

The Greek Cypriot administration is distorting UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres' remarks on Cyprus to score political points at home, Turkey's Foreign Ministry said Tuesday.

Following a meeting with the Turkish Cypriot Leader Mustafa Akinci and the Greek Cypriot Leader Nicos Anastasiades in New York on June 4, Guterres stressed that "all issues will be discussed interdependently" and that "nothing is agreed until everything is agreed".

These points are being ignored by the Greek side, the ministry said.

"The fact that the contents of the UN Secretary-General's remarks have begun to be distorted by the Greek Cypriot side before the ink is even dry, and the claims that the preconditions put forth by the Greek Cypriot leader have been accepted, clearly demonstrate yet again the Greek Cypriot side's lack of sincerity and the absence of political will for a settlement," the foreign ministry said in a statement.

Guterres' words "have been distorted and misinterpreted by the Greek Cypriot side so as to serve their domestic policy interests," the statement said, which "only reinforces doubts regarding the intention of the Greek Cypriot side to establish a new partnership with the Turkish Cypriot side on the basis of political equality".

The Greek Cypriot administration will hold a presidential election next February, with the current peace efforts bearing heavily on the campaign.

The Eastern Mediterranean island has been divided since 1974, when a Greek coup was followed by violence against the island's Turks, and Ankara's intervention as a guarantor power.

Akinci and Anastasiades have been involved in reunification talks to create a federal state since May 2015.

The pair met several times in Geneva last year, but their last meeting in February was fraught with controversy over a Greek Cypriot decision to introduce a commemoration of the 1950 Enosis referendum on unification with Greece.

Both sides had agreed on most of the issues in the reunification deal but the sticking points, including a security and guarantees system, remain unresolved.

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