Cyprus Ready to Support Turkey's EU Accession for the Reunification of the Island
The authorities of the Republic of Cyprus have expressed their willingness to appoint a special envoy for Cyprus in order to resume negotiations with Turkey and resolve the issue of the divided island. One of the key incentives to achieve this goal is the prospect of Turkey's accession to the European Union, according to Euractiv.
Cyprus believes that the EU can offer Turkey new incentives that have not been realized for various reasons in the past. The appointment of a special envoy entails conducting negotiations with Ankara aimed at emphasizing the benefits Turkey would gain from the reunification of Cyprus.
"Appointing a well-known and respected political figure would provide the necessary impetus in efforts to resume negotiations on the Cyprus problem," said an unnamed Cypriot official.
Although the question of appointing a special envoy has not yet been discussed at the EU level, it may be raised during the meeting of foreign ministers of EU member states scheduled for July 20. Cypriot officials note that EU leaders associate Turkey's position on the Cyprus issue with the future relations between the EU and Turkey, seeking to enhance these relations after the re-election of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
It should be recalled that Cyprus became divided in 1974 when Turkey invaded its territory following a coup by supporters of union with Greece. Turkey and Turkish Cypriots insist that any peaceful agreement should first recognize the separate sovereignty of Turkish Cypriots.
Earlier reports stated that Greece is ready to start negotiations with Turkey to reach an agreement on the delineation of territories where each country has exclusive economic rights, including the right to search for oil and gas in the maritime shelf.
According to the Greek Foreign Minister, the Greek government wants to take advantage of the current favorable climate, with the highest priority being an agreement on the reunification of ethnically divided Cyprus as a federation, in accordance with UN resolutions.
At the NATO summit in Vilnius, Erdogan unexpectedly demanded that the acceptance of Sweden into the Alliance be linked to the resumption of negotiations on Turkey's EU membership, which have reached an impasse.