LEFKOSA, TRNC – The President of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) Dervis Eroglu met with a U.S. official on Tuesday to discuss peace talks between Turkish and Greek Cypriots.
U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary Eric Rubin said the U.S. would do everything it can to support the peace process.
Rubin also said the US would find ways to help meet the needs and expectations of both sides for confidence-building measures, which could be a chance for progress in the finalization of the process.
“We will do everything we can to support the Cyprus peace process,” said Rubin. “We hope for an agreement between the sides as soon as possible, yet we are not the ones to schedule the finalization date – it is up to the Turkish and Greek Cypriot officials.”
The leaders of the Turkish and Greek sides had announced a joint declaration on unifying the island under a federation of two states in February. A similar deal in 2004 failed after Greek Cypriots refused it, though the Turkish side voted in favor of the plan.
The island of Cyprus has remained divided into Greek and Turkish parts since a Greek Cypriot coup was followed by a Turkish peace mission to aid Turkish Cypriots in the north in 1974.
The Greek Cypriot administration is a member of the European Union and is internationally recognized, except by Turkey, which is the only country that recognizes the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus.
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