UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres announces new talks on Cyprus reunification to begin this month

United Nations: United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has announced that the rival leaders of ethnically divided Cyprus have agreed on new talks in Geneva in June, a significant step forward that could see the final round of negotiations on a peace agreement to reunify the Mediterranean island.

Guterres invited Greek Cypriot president Nicos Anastasiades and Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci to a working dinner at United Nations headquarters on Sunday night seeking to break an impasse over how a summit aiming for a reunification deal should proceed.

Anastasiades insisted on first dealing with the issue of the withdrawal of Turkish troops that Greek Cypriots consider a threat. More than 35,000 soldiers remain in the breakaway Turkish Cypriot north after Turkey's 1974 invasion that followed a coup by supporters of union with Greece.

Akinci insisted he wanted no preconditions.

Guterres announced that both leaders agreed that the issue of security is "of vital importance" and would be given a high priority.

Published Date: Jun 05, 2017 09:48 AM | Updated Date: Jun 05, 2017 09:48 AM

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