Cypriot leaders to begin intensified talks

January 06, 2010, Wednesday/ 17:41:00/ TODAY'S ZAMAN
Turkish and Greek Cypriot leaders will launch intensified negotiations on the reunification of the island next week, the Anatolia news agency said on Tuesday.

Turkish Cypriot leader Mehmet Ali Talat and Greek Cypriot leader Dimitris Christofias will meet for three days starting Jan. 11, and then meet again on Jan. 25 and hold negotiations for three more consecutive days.

The leaders held their 60th meeting on Monday as part of negotiations they launched in September 2008 to find a comprehensive settlement to the Cyprus issue. The leaders will discuss administration and distribution of powers, the economy, the European Union and property in their intensified negotiations.

The Turkish Cypriot side is expected to present its proposals during the first three days of intensified negotiations, which will take place at the residence of Taye Brook Zerihoun, the special representative of the UN Secretary General in Cyprus, in the buffer zone in Lefkoşa.

The first round of comprehensive negotiations was completed on Aug. 6, 2009. The second round started on Sept. 10, 2009. Cyprus joined the EU as a divided island when Greek Cypriots in the south rejected a UN reunification plan in twin referendums in 2004 even though the Turkish Cypriots in the north overwhelmingly supported it.

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