Ambassador Julie Fisher stressed the need to act now for the people of Cyprus and the region
Cyprus reunification must not be deferred any longer, US Ambassador Julie Fisher said, speaking Thursday evening during a reception for the 4th of July, in the presence of President Nikos Christodoulides.
“Mr. President, we have heard your message on the fierce urgency of now regarding reunification. And we agree that this question must not be deferred any longer. Too much is at stake for the people of the island, the people of the region and indeed the transatlantic family”, she said, commenting on the President’s address. She added that the people of Cyprus can count on the United States to play its role in support of that process.
“We continue to stand ready to work with all Cypriots in this endeavor, the US Ambassador said.
Fisher said in her address that in moments of opportunity and in moments of peril, we lean on the lessons gleaned in institutions of higher learning thus where we study law and history and the tenets of the UN Charter.
“Where we have the opportunity to debate and question and delve deeply to understand the world and one another. It’s these shared experiences and shared world views that inextricably bind us together in rejecting Russia’s unjustified, unprovoked and inhuman war against Ukraine. It’s the shared goal of ending this war that binds us together in countering the tools that fuel it”, the Ambassador noted.
She went on to say that in this spirit she hopes that they will seize every opportunity in American-Cypriot relations in front of us today and not defer until tomorrow.
That, she added, includes the opportunity to improve and expand the benefits of our democracies at home, the opportunity to maximize results for our citizens as we make it easier to travel and study in each other’s countries and the opportunity to work together with partners to advance regional security and stability, combat transnational threats and confront the realities of climate change.
“And, of course, the opportunity to bring the people of this island together in support of the settlement of the Cyprus question, as led by Cypriots, facilitated by the United Nations and governed by UN Security Council Resolutions”, she pointed out.
Ambassador Fisher said that education plays a central role in many of the President’s administration’s goals, namely for economic development, for the nation’s youth and for unifying the island.
“So, holding this event at the first Cypriot public university to open its doors felt to us like the perfect fit. Whether it’s the educational ties that have brought more than 6000 Cypriots to the United States since independence. Whether it’s the University ties that link our researchers and innovators. Or the ties and understanding of one another we develop when studying at places like Queens College in New York, all these can and do bridge the divide of 1000s of kilometers”, the Ambassador said.
Cyprus has been divided since 1974 when Turkey invaded and occupied its northern third. Repeated rounds of UN-led peace talks have so far failed to yield results. The latest round of negotiations, in July 2017 at the Swiss resort of Crans-Montana ended inconclusively.
The article appeared at Kathimerini on July 7, 2023