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15-03-2024 21:21

Statements by the President of the Republic

“Our aim is to increase the volume of humanitarian aid to Gaza even further,” said the President of the Republic, Mr Nikos Christodoulides, yesterday. He also mentioned that he will be in Egypt on Sunday, where he will participate in a Summit together with the President of Egypt, the President of the European Commission and heads of European Union (EU) member states.

In his statements to journalists, upon his arrival at the “Women Symbols of Cyprus” event, in response to a journalist’s remark that the ship carrying humanitarian aid from Cyprus to Gaza has reached its destination and when asked what to expect from the “Amalthea” initiative, the President of the Republic replied, “The second ship is being prepared. We want to increase the volume of humanitarian aid transport, so we are talking to several countries. I spoke with the Dutch Prime Minister today who has supported us from the very start. I asked for some technical assistance in relation to the transport to make things proceed faster. He responded positively and in fact a team will be sent from the Netherlands and a Dutch Minister will be in Cyprus on Tuesday. Heads of state who have supported the initiative have already expressed their interest to visit Cyprus.

On Sunday, I will be in Egypt with the President of the Commission, the Greek Prime Minister and two other EU heads of state from the EU Presidency, from Belgium.

We are proceeding; our aim is to increase the volume of humanitarian aid even further. We are on a very good track. There is support from many more states, because they see that what we said is being implemented and we are proceeding with things.”  

“The creation of the pier will certainly allow even more aid to be transported, because there will be no limit to the number of ships which can be used. Only specific ships are currently allowed. For instance, the Dutch Navy has such ships. It was something I discussed with Mr Rutte today. The creaton of the pier will allow considerably more ships to transport aid. In fact, the next steps were recently discussed in the teleconference of Foreign Ministers in order to see how a fund can be set up, so that we can send even more aid. We have one aim, to use this humanitarian corridor we have proposed and we all see that it is being implemented,” stated the President of the Republic.

Asked whether during his meeting tomorrow with the personal envoy of the United Nations (UN) Secretary-General on Cyprus, Ms María Ángela Holguín, he will seek to learn about the methodology which will be followed as well as whether there are reports that the UN will wait for the completion of the municipal elections in Turkey to initiate any possible process, the President of the Republic responded, “No, the second question, in relation to how long the UN will wait, was not discussed. I will meet tomorrow with Ms Holguín, who leaves on Sunday. So, it is probably the last meeting of her current visit. She will return in April after visiting a number of European capitals of EU member states and Brussels. I have been in telephone contact with Ms Holguín all this time. Tomorrow, I will have the opportunity to be informed of the results of her contacts and exchange views.

In relation to the methodology, I wanted to say that regarding the Cyprus problem, methodology is part of the substance and we cannot separate methodology from substance. It was something we discussed with Ms Holguín from our first meeting. That is our position and I think everyone understands that you cannot separate methodology from the substance when we are talking about the Cyprus problem. I wanted to say that if there is political will – from our part, it is a given and I am glad that it has been recognised by the international community and that we have had the appointment of Ms Holguín – we can indeed reach the objective of resuming the talks. It is an effort where careful handling is needed with a single objective, the resumption of the talks.”