By Murat Demirci
LEFKOSA, Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (AA) - The UN’s special envoy to Cyprus on Wednesday reiterated that the leaders of the island’s Turkish and Greek communities were both committed to forging a peace deal by the end of the year.
Espen Barth Eide spoke after meeting Turkish Cypriot President Mustafa Akinci ahead of a scheduled meeting between Akinci and Greek Cypriot leader Nicos Anastasiades.
“I see that both leaders are determined for peace in 2016,” Eide said at a news conference in Lefkosa. “But there is no time to lose. The upcoming weeks are important for the Cyprus talks.”
Stalled reunification talks resumed in May 2015 following a previous dispute over underwater gas exploration.
The island was divided in 1974 when Turkey intervened in its role as one of the guarantors of Cypriot independence following an Athens-backed military coup.