Turkish Cypriot leader receives UN envoy, reiterates his 2-state solution

Turkish Cypriot leader Ersin Tatar discussed the issue of Cyprus on Feb. 1 with the U.N. mission chief appointed to facilitate the solution of the decades-old dispute on the divided island.

Tatar received Colin Stewart, the U.N. secretary general's special representative in Cyprus and head of the U.N. Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus (UNFICYP), a statement released by Tatar's office said.

He reiterated once more his two-state solution approach on the island based on equal international status and sovereign equality, adding that the efforts to find a realistic, fair and sustainable solution to the issue would continue.

Speaking to Turkish News Agency-Cyprus (TAK) following the meeting, Stewart said he is always pleased to meet with Tatar, describing today's meeting as "excellent."

Stewart said they have been making a great effort to create conditions that could pave the way for a final solution to the crisis on the island.

Stating that he conveyed the Security Council's decision on the extension of the mandate of the UNFICYP, Stewart said: "The Security Council, as the U.N. Secretary-General, is eager to appoint an envoy and wishes to see a consensus on the powers of this envoy."

Stressing that the Council also wants the two sides on the island to respect the U.N.'s authority in the buffer zone, Stewart noted that the council is concerned about the possible effects of violations in the buffer zone if they continue.

"The Security Council strongly encourages measures aimed at creating the conditions for ultimately a settlement in Cyprus, such as inter-communal relations, understanding, building trade relations, peace education on the island," he noted.

Pointing out that there is a long distance between the two sides...

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