President travels to Belgium for EU Summit

President travels to Belgium for EU Summit

President of the Republic Nikos Christodoulides will travel to Belgium, where he will address the College of Europe in Bruges on Wednesday and will participate on Thursday in the European Council meeting in Brussels, Government Spokesman, Konstantinos Letymbiotis, has said, adding that the President will also attend a working lunch of the EU leaders with the UN Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres. 

Asked if there will be a tete- a -tete meeting between the President of the Republic and the UN Secretary General, the Spokesman said that if an opportunity comes up, based on the UN Secretary General’s schedule, it is something that “we will see.”

In statements on Tuesday after a Council of Ministers meeting, Letymbiotis said that President Christodoulides will be in Bruges on Wednesday following an invitation by the Society of Cypriot Students of the College of Europe, to address the College, as part of the national week dedicated to Cyprus. This will be the first time that a President of the Republic of Cyprus will be visiting the College, he added.

He said that the President of the Republic will have a meeting with Rector of the College Federica Mogherini and then he will address students and academics of the College of Europe and the European Diplomatic Academy, including Cypriots. 

President Christodoulides will also meet with Vice-President of the European Commission, Margaritis Schinas, before leaving for Brussels.

The Spokesman said that on the 21nd of March the President of the Republic will participate in the deliberations of the European People’s Party and then he will attend a lunch with the UN Secretary-General and the leaders of the other EU member states, mainly on the subject of the Middle East, the situation in Ukraine and global challenges.

He said that among the issues that the Summit will discuss are the Middle East, Ukraine, Migration, Security, Enlargement and External Relations of the EU.

On March 22, he added, the President of the Republic will participate in the anniversary event for the completion of 30 years since the European Economic Area, together with the leaders of the EU member states, Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein. An expanded Eurozone Summit will follow.

Asked if there will be a tete-a-tete meeting between the President of the Republic and the UN Secretary General he said that if an opportunity arises, based on the program of the Secretary General of the UN, it is something that “we will see”.

President Christodoulides, who will be accompanied in Bruges and Brussels by the Government Spokesman, the Director of the President’s Press Office, Victoras Papadopoulos, and other officials, will return to Cyprus on March 22.

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. UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres appointed María Ángela Holguín Cuéllar of Columbia as his personal envoy for Cyprus, to assume a Good Offices role on his behalf and search for common ground on the way forward in the Cyprus issue.  stockwatch

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