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As ‘the last European divided country’, Cyprus President tells Assembly UN is ‘the only way forward’

As ‘the last European divided country’, Cyprus President tells Assembly UN is ‘the only way forward’

India Blooms News Service | @indiablooms | 27 Sep 2019, 04:29 am

New York: The past 45 years of “unacceptable status quo” has prevented lasting peace and stability in Cyprus, President Nicos Anastasiades told the United Nations General Assembly on Thursday.

Despite his country’s “sincere efforts and the constructive engagement” towards a settlement, Mr. Anastasiades said: “Cyprus remains the last European divided country”.

Yet he did acknowledge a “glimmer of hope” with a new effort by the UN Secretary-General that could “pave the way forward for the resumption of talks with the sole aim to reach a comprehensive settlement”,

The “vision of the people of Cyprus” he said, is to end the status quo with a state which will ensure common and prosperous future for the coming generations of Greek and Turkish Cypriots.

The General Debate of the @UN General Assembly, when every Member State has an opportunity to address a world audience, continues until Monday.

“I want to send a clear message”, he asserted, “the United Nations and the Secretary-General’s good offices mission is the only way forward for us”.

In his latest report on the UN-facilitated Cyprus talks, the Secretary-General expressed the hope that ongoing consultations “will lead to a return to negotiations, to which I could devote the full weight of my good offices, with the aim of reaching a lasting resolution of the Cyprus issue.”

The global front

Turning to the world at large, President Anastasiades remarked that the combination of poverty, lack of adequate educational opportunities, social and economic exclusions and climate change “constitute the most serious problems” faced by billions globally.

For these people, who look to the international community for support, he argued, “we should not only address the root causes that have led to the creation of these challenges, but also reflect on why we have yet to tackle them.

Having failed to effectively tackle these challenges has sparked religious fundamentalism, violent extremism, civil war and ethnic conflicts, among other things.

But “most alarming”, he said, is that the combination of these factors has “led to the forcible displacement of millions of people, unprecedented waves of refugees and migratory flows”.

UN support

Flagging that the UN as the “only international forum” where nations can “collectively interact, deliberate and pursue common goals”, President Anastasiades expressed his country’s “strong conviction” that multilateralism, decisive collective action, international co-operation, greater solidarity and stronger partnerships are “the only answer” to eliminate these threats.

“History has repeatedly taught us the catastrophic consequences of not adhering to the principles, rules and synergies we have commonly developed within the framework of the UN”, he stated, reaffirming Cyprus’ “unwavering support” to the Secretary-General’s reform priorities of advancing peacebuilding, humanitarian assistance and long-term development.

‘Defining moment’ of climate change

Underscoring that “we are at a defining moment as regards climate change”, the President of Cyprus stated that “we collectively carry the obligation” to provide future generations with a greener planet.

Noting “particularly alarming” projections of climate change impacts on the Eastern Mediterranean and Middle East, he announced that Cyprus has recently began coordinating regional climate change actions.

“This initiative intends to bring together our regions’ leading scientists and policymakers, with a view to developing practical and achievable solutions that will have durable benefits for our citizens”, he elaborated.

Photo Caption and Credit:
UN Photo/Cia Pak
President of Cyprus Addresses General Assembly

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Erdogan's Turkey turns Hagia Sophia into a mosque again; UNESCO regrets #HagiaSophia, #Turkey, #Istanbul, #HagiaSophiaMosqueAgain Istanbul/IBNS: Hagia Sophia, Turkey's iconic monument, a UNESCO World Heritage and one of the central attractions of its capital Istanbul, is no longer a museum. It has been turned back as a mosque though some 1500 years ago it was built as an Orthodox Christian cathedral. Hagia Sophia was converted into a mosque during the Ottoman time in 1453 while under Ataturk it was turned into a museum in 1935. The decision comes amid a growing rise of the Islamists in Turkey who had been demanding that it be restored as a mosque though Opposition leaders with secular credentials had been against the move. A top court in Turkey ruled that turning it into a museum in 1935 by modern Turkey's secular architect Mustafa Kemal Ataturk was illegal, paving the way for present Turkey president Recep Tayyip Erdogan to declare it as a mosque again and to open it for Muslim prayers. Erdogan made the announcement an hour after the court ruled the conversion to museum in 1935 as illegal and scrapped its status. "May it be beneficial," posted Erdogan on Twitter, sharing an official document on the change with his signature. UNESCO regrets In an immediate reaction, UNESCO said it "deeply regrets" the decision. UNESCO said it was "regrettable that the Turkish decision was not the subject of dialog nor notification beforehand". "UNESCO calls on the Turkish authorities to open a dialog without delay in order to avoid a step back from the universal value of this exceptional heritage whose preservation will be reviewed by the World Heritage Committee in its next session," the United Nation's cultural body said in a statement. Istanbul icon of beauty and wonderment According to Turkey's official tourism website, Hagia Sophia is a remarkable achievement in the history of architecture. and a living proof of mankind's revolt against the laws of physics and it calls it a monument whose importance transcends borders. It is one of UNESCO's World Cultural Heritage sites attracting millions of visitors across the world with its majestic grandeur

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Erdogan's Turkey turns Hagia Sophia into a mosque again 11 Jul 2020, 01:37 pm