US President, Donald Trump, has described Cyprus as a valuable partner of the US in a vulnerable region.
According to diplomatic sources, Trump who was speaking at the ceremony during which he received the credentials of the new Ambassador of the Republic of Cyprus in Washington, Marios Lyssiotis, spoke about the two countries’ common interests in promoting stability and prosperity in the Eastern Mediterranean, and underlined that he looks forward to strengthening bilateral relations.
He also expressed hope for a Cyprus settlement, assuring of US support to the reunification of the island in a bizonal, bicommunal federation to the benefit of all Cypriots.
On his part, Lyssiotis conveyed President Nicos Anastasiades’ regards to President Trump, and referred to the high level of relations and cooperation between Cyprus and the US both at the bilateral and the international level. He also said he is committed to working with a view to further enhance and strengthen these relations.
He noted that the aim of Cyprus’ foreign policy is to promote stability in the region and build bridges of cooperation with neighbouring countries. Lyssiotis said that the US has a pivotal role to play towards this direction.
He described the discovery of hydrocarbon reserves in Cyprus’ EEZ as a tool of cooperation with neighbouring countries and underlined that US support which is based on principles is necessary so that Cyprus will continue its efforts for research and exploitation of natural resources in its EEZ.
The new Ambassador of Cyprus also referred to the continuing Turkish occupation of Cyprus’ one third and thanked the US for the help and solidarity it extends to efforts under the UN auspices to reunite Cyprus on the basis of a bizonal, bicommunal federation.
He expressed hope for the resumption of the talks, and underlined the contribution of the UN peace-keeping force in Cyprus, both in maintaining stability on the island and for the peace-talks for a Cyprus settlement.
Cyprus has been divided since 1974, when Turkish troops invaded and occupied 37% of its territory. Numerous UN-backed negotiations, aiming at reuniting the island under a federal roof, have failed to yield results. The latest talks under UN aegis took place in the summer of 2017 at the Swiss resort of Crans – Montana.