Hopes for a solution to the Cyprus issue are diminishing after Turkey will not accept the removal of Turkish troops from the island as part of any negotiations.
On Tuesday, Turkey’s Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said that his country and the Turkish Cypriots will not discuss a proposal requesting no guarantees and no Turkish troops on Cyprus.
Cavusoglu made the statements at Crans-Montana where Turkish and Cypriot sides are in talks at the initiative of the UN.
"Zero troops, zero guarantees is a non-starter for Turkey or the Turkish Cypriots," Cavusoglu was quoted as saying in the afternoon, adding that the security concerns of both communities are important and that he is responsible for those of the Turkish-Cypriots.
Greece’s Foreign Minister Nikos Kotzias responded to the impasse saying that during these talks "the Turks confessed their true intentions."
Turkey’s Foreign Minister was asked whether he would at least accept "sunset clause" for the withdrawal of Turkish troops but he rejected the possibility outright leaving no room for negotiations on the matter.
"There will be no sunset clause; this cannot be even a dream for us. If there is anybody dreaming this they should wake up," said Cavusoglu.
"We came here with goodwill [...] We know what we want. We have announced our 'red line'. A decision on the final solution must be taken this week. We show flexibility. However, we did not see reciprocity. There may be other reasons for this. There are still leaks. In order to reach a solution, the other side must reciprocate our positive steps," he said.
Commenting on Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Kotzias' statements earlier in the day, he said "We are not here to make the other side happy," and criticised Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades for calling on the sides to fall in line with the UN, saying: "Anyone who made ludicrous proposals does not have the right to ask Turkey to fall in line".