Foreign Minister Mevlut Çavuşoğlu said Tuesday that U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres would return to Cyprus talks today in the Swiss Alps to speed up the reunification process.
"It is very simple. We wanted him to come here and he is coming on Thursday. This is serious business and his role is important," Çavuşoğlu told reporters after a meeting in Crans-Montana, Switzerland with representatives from the Turkish and Greek Cypriot sides and those from two guarantor countries, Greece and the U.K.
"When he [Guterres] was here, we decided on the framework of the talks and he brought positive energy to the discussion. His presence is very important because this is a very important conference and the final one," Çavuşoğlu added.
Responding to a question regarding the progress of the talks, Çavuşoğlu said, "[Talks] are moving very slowly."
Earlier Tuesday, Çavuşoğlu criticized the Greek Cypriots for not showing "good intentions and flexibility" in the reunification talks taking place in the Swiss resort-town of Crans-Montana.
"If there is to be a solution, we should decide this week, because this is the last conference," Çavuşoğlu said.
"We have shown good intentions and flexibility but this should be met with a response. Unfortunately, we have not seen any positive response from the other side. On the other hand, we have also seen that some confidential documents were leaked despite promises," Çavuşoğlu said.
The foreign minister said Ankara could not accept "zero troops" in Cyprus.
Turkish Cypriot President Mustafa Akıncı added: "The Turkish Cypriot side, as well as the Turkish side, are following the parameters that have been set forth by the secretary-general and we are working hard along those lines. We hope that the next few days will be productive."
Meanwhile, the talks have been temporarily suspended at the request of the two sides, but are expected to resume later Wednesday, the United Nations said.
"The morning meetings have been postponed until late afternoon at the request of the two leaders to allow time for prep work and consultations," Aleem Siddique, spokesman for U.N. mediator Espen Barth Eide, told AFP via email.
He said Eide would hold a series of bilateral meetings before talks resume at 6:00 p.m. (1600 GMT).
The four party representatives issued a joint statement inviting Guterres to return to the Swiss Alps, saying progress has been slower in the second week of talks than in the first.
Çavuşoğlu also said Guterres should return to Crans-Montana regardless of the progress being made.
Guterres left the Swiss resort town Saturday after participating in the Cyprus conference on Friday, along with Turkish and Greek Cypriot leaders as well as the guarantor countries of Turkey, Greece and the U.K.
The latest round of Cyprus talks in Crans-Montana began June 28.
On Monday, the U.N. received proposals from the Turkish and Greek Cypriot sides, as well as from Turkey, Greece and the U.K.
The U.N. is seeking a peace deal to unite Cyprus under a federal umbrella, which could also define the future of Europe's relations with Turkey, a key player in the reunification dilemma.
The island in the eastern Mediterranean has been divided since 1974, when a Greek-Cypriot coup was followed by violence targeting the island's Turks, resulting in Ankara's intervention as a guarantor power.
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