US Senator calls two-state deal for divided Cyprus “incorrect” | World information
NICOSIA, Cyprus (AP) – The chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the US Senate said on Monday that the “retrograde vision” of the Turkish president of consolidating the ethnic division of Cyprus by striving for a two-state deal would apply to all Cypriots Is “wrong”.
Robert Menendez, a Democratic Senator from New Jersey, said a peace agreement for Cyprus based on two separate states would be based on UN Security Council resolutions and a decade-old agreement between Greek and Turkish Cypriot negotiators to reunite Cyprus as a federation.
After receiving the highest honor in Cyprus from President Nicos Anastasiades – the Great Collar of Makarius III.
Cyprus is divided into a breakaway Turkish Cypriot north and a Greek Cypriot south, where the internationally recognized government of the island has sat since 1974 when Turkey invaded after a coup aimed at unification with Greece.
Only Turkey recognizes a Turkish Cypriot declaration of independence and maintains more than 35,000 soldiers in the north.
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Almost half a century of UN-backed peace talks have not resulted in a mutually acceptable agreement. Turkey claims talks on a federal agreement have ended and a two-state agreement is now the only way forward.
Menendez was a vocal advocate of negotiations and a sharp critic of Turkey’s attempts to steer negotiations towards achieving its ambitions for regional control by maintaining a permanent troop presence on the island and the right to intervene militarily.
“My goal is for the last Turkish soldier to leave the island,” said Menendez.
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