GCC Press Review 11 Dec 2021

Front Page Headlines


Three ‘Omicron’ cases, thoughts for other measures

The new variant came to Cyprus via a school trip abroad.

  • Block 5: First licensing in the Covid period
  • Colin Stewart: First… ‘driving’ lessons


Only social meetings

The only mobility being recorded in the Cyprus problem after months is Tuesday’s cocktail event. Stewart’s first contacts with Anastasiades and Tatar.

  • Political discussion but no measures against Turkey: Basic idea to express solidarity
  • Parties are holding the government hostage: No purchase without Parliament’s approval
  • ‘Omicron’ mutation has also reached Cyprus


Sweeping price increases for all basic goods categories

‘Firy’ price increases being recorded for the household basket.

  • Cyprus problem: Stewart saw Anastasiades and Tatar separately. It will be continued during Tuesday’s event
  • Block 5 officially to ExxonMobil and Qatar Energy – The contracts have been signed
  • ‘Omicron’ reached Cyprus… Vaccines coming on Monday for children between 5-11

Cyprus Mail

Omicron cases on the island

Covid variant detected in three returning travellers.

  • Cyprus Exxon and Qatar Energy sign exploration deal
  • Leaders to attend informal event with new UNSG representative


‘O’ came, but Pfizer’s third dose can tackle it

What we were scared of happened. Three students from Limassol positive after a trip in Europe. They tested negative to the first test, they developed symptoms after five days of going to school as normal. Vaccinations of children aged 5-11 are beginning from next week in Cyprus.

  • Insistence on two states: Tatar with the same tune in his meeting with Stewart
  • Block 5 officially to ExxonMobil and Qatar Energy: New Turkish reaction expected
  • Turkey: Lira and Erdogan’s popularity declining. Reactions in the occupied areas too

Main News

Stewart holds first meetings with two leaders

Alithia, Cyprus Mail, Haravgi, Phileleftheros, Politis
Negotiations Process


The UN Secretary General’s (UNSG) Special Representative Colin Stewart held his first separate meetings with President Nicos Anastasiades and TC leader Ersin Tatar on Friday, the papers report.

Speaking after meeting with Anastasiades at the Presidential Palace, Stewart said he was ready to work with both sides and do everything he can to help the process, the papers write. Though he was asked whether he was optimistic or not, Stewart said he didn’t want to say yet, noting that he is still learning. He added that what he does know is that he will exert every possible effort to help the process and for the UN to play a constructive role.

Cyprus Mail reports that in a tweet following the meeting, Anastasiades said he had conveyed his government’s unwavering commitment to provide any assistance deemed necessary in the exercise of his challenging duties. “We continue our efforts to resume the negotiation process, in full respect for the long-established basis of the settlement, with the aim of reuniting our island and its people,” Anastasiades added in his tweet.

In a statement afterwards, Government Spokesman Marios Pelekanos said Anastasiades presented the GC’s positions reiterating its will and commitment to resuming the negotiating process to resolve the Cyprus problem.

Phileleftheros reports that Pelekanos also said that Anastasiades also extensively briefed Stewart on Turkey’s and the TC side’s illegal actions on land and sea, and stressed the need to reverse the faits accomplis in Varosha.

Speaking in the afternoon after meeting with Tatar, Stewart said he looked forward to a close relationship. “As I have told him, I want to be helpful; I want to be constructive and do all I can,” Stewart said. He said he hoped to be a good partner and he looked forward to getting out and meeting people across the island.

Stewart said he had a useful briefing on Tatar’s positions, which was fundamental for him to start understanding where the sides stood. The papers report that during the meeting, Tatar told Stewart that the TC side is opposed to a federal solution, as well as the view that GCs view the whole island as Greek. Tatar also outlined his position for two independent states in Cyprus, and defended his six-point proposal for sovereign equality as presented in Geneva.

Stewart expressed satisfaction over Tatar’s acceptance of an invitation to attend an informal  reception to be hosted by the UN on Tuesday, which President Nicos Anastasiades has also accepted.

“This will be a very informal social event without an agenda, but it will give the leaders the opportunity to talk to each other and myself to know them better,” Stewart said.

Politis reports that given the depressing situation the Cyprus problem has been in for several years, Stewart is currently hoping to foster an improvement in the climate and communication between the two sides. The paper adds that in view of the complications surrounding the Cyprus problem, Stewart so far seems grounded and a realist.

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