Cyprus Problem | The ‘Downer Plan’

Cyprus Problem – The ‘Downer Plan’

The Havadis newspaper (16.12.13) published the first part of a 78-page document which outlines the agreements and  convergences between the sides during the Cyprus Talks and which some are calling the ‘Downer Plan’ and others the ‘Ban Ki-moon Plan’. In effect it is the results of the negotiations between former President Christofias and former President Talat and current President Eroglu during the period 2008-2012.

The plan, which has been submitted to both sides, according to Havadis, shows that “big agreements and convergences” have been achieved on the Governance and Power Sharing chapter and that the presidency in federal Cyprus will be rotated so there will be a President and a Vice President and the legislative power will consist of the Senate and the House of Representatives. In case the Cabinet cannot take a unanimous decision, a majority of one or two votes from members of the opposite community will be enough to pass the decision.

A deadlock exists on the issue of guarantees, writes Havadis, with the north wanting the continuation of the 1960 Treaty of Guarantee and Alliance, while the south insists that there is no need for such agreements and demands the demilitarization of the island within a short period of time.

Convergence has reportedly been achieved on the basic principles on the property issue, but discussions were still ongoing concerning the number of the Greek Cypriots who will return under Turkish Cypriot administration. The UN Secretary-General’s special adviser, Alexander Downer has reportedly suggested that the number of the Greek Cypriots who will return  should determine the percentage of the north which will be given back to the south. It has not been determined which land will be returned. For example, Greek Cypriots want the establishment of a canton in the Karpas at the villages of Yeşilköy, Yenierenköy and Dipkarpaz and the return of more land in the plain of Mesaoria, which the Turkish Cypriot side strongly rejects.

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