UN documents show that the UN Secretary General’s special adviser on Cyprus Espen Barth Eide was the one who proposed a trilateral format for the Geneva meetings on Cyprus, not Greece’s Foreign Minister Nikos Kotzias, according to an article posted by journalist Michalis Ignatiou on his website http://mignatiou.com/ on Sunday.
Citing the documents at his disposal, Mignatiou noted that these effectively refute much of the criticism aimed at Greece and Kotzias regarding the outcome of the Geneva talks. Among others, they show that all sides were clearly notified in advance that the meeting would take place over two days and would continue on Friday, January 13, the article said.
The author also noted that Eide was largely to blame for the negative press against the Greek side, for tolerating if not actually assisting the efforts of the Turkish “spin machine” to cast the blame on Kotzias.
“Eide is responsible for the negative press against the Greek minister because he didn’t tell the truth: in other words, that all the proposals at the meeting were made by himself as UN envoy, and not by Kotzias,” Mignatiou said.
The same documents show that the Greek minister at no time proposed a trilateral format but simply accepted the proposal made by Eide, as he was obliged.
As a result, the article said, the claims made by Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu were shown to be excuses and showed that the Turkish minister had gone to Geneva fully intending not to budge from Turkey’s positions on guarantees and rights of intervention but to leave early on Friday morning, avoiding a serious discussion on security issues on a political level. He also demanded that Turkish occupation troops remain on the island after any Cyprus solution.
The Greek side, the article said, declared its readiness to stay on Friday, which it did, in order to take part in talks on a ministerial and political level. It pointed out Kotzias was still in Geneva when Cavusoglu had left, with the Turkish minister essentially saying he had “more important things to do” and citing domestic problems in Turkey.
The article attributed a report in the Politico website to the “public relations mechanism” activated by Turkey in Brussels and elsewhere. It also quoted diplomatic sources saying that the Geneva talks were “salvaged” from the breakdown caused by Turkey due to the responsible stance adopted by Cyprus President Nicos Anastasiades and the Greek foreign minister, while describing their cooperation with each other as “perfect”.