Experts are anticipating a solution from the critical Cyprus talks, after the Turkish and Greek Cypriot sides agreed to continue discussions on reaching a permanent solution following the first round of the Cyprus reunification talks in Geneva last Thursday.
With the Cyprus reunification talks on technical details tomorrow, Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu announced last week in Geneva that the Cyprus reunification talks would continue with technical discussions with a working group at the deputy level from Jan. 18, followed by ministerial and prime ministerial level meetings. Başaran Düzgün, editor-in-chief of Turkish Cypriot newspaper, Havadis, told Daily Sabah that the Cyprus talks are reaching a conclusion, which will either result in a resolution or a continuation of the longstanding conflict. While Düzgün said that the meeting tomorrow is to be at a technical level, including only the guarantor states, Foreign Minister Çavuşoğlu also informed media members that each country will prepare their "tangible suggestions" at their own capital and bring them forth at Wednesday's meeting, also to be attended by experts and deputy ministers. The Turkish Cypriot newspaper head also noted that the sides must find common ground in efforts to not lose a historic opportunity for the island.
Meanwhile, Greek Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades said last Friday that Turkish troops must leave the island. "Our position remains... that we must agree on the withdrawal of the Turkish army," he told reporters in Geneva. In response to Anastasiades, Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus President (KKTC) Mustafa Akıncı said on Sunday that Turkey's presence and guarantee on the island should not be compromised. Commenting on his remarks, Düzgün underlined that according to public surveys from the island, 89 percent of KKTC citizens want Turkish troops to remain on the island while he said 90 percent of the Greek Cypriots do not want Turkish troops. "Thus, a common ground must be found between the two islands, perhaps Turkey being a guarantor for only the KKTC and Greece being guarantor for only the Greek Cypriots because currently the guarantors are the guarantor of the entire island," Düzgün added.
Analogous to Düzgün, Dr. Sylvia Tiryaki, the deputy director and co-founder of the Global Political Trends (GPoT) Center in Istanbul, indicated that the long-divided island is close to reaching a solution as she stated there is "good will" from both Turkish and Greek Cypriots. While Tiryaki also noted that there must be a compromise in order to reach a permanent resolution, she said that if there is no resolution reached on the island then the international community must recognize the de facto situation on the island. Tiryaki further said that despite the "good will" from both Cypriot sides, Greece is reflecting its own domestic politics onto the reunification talks and causing conflict.