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Letter to Congressional Leaders Reporting on the Cyprus Conflict

January 24, 1994

Dear Mr. Speaker: (Dear Mr. Chairman:)

In accordance with Public Law 95-384 (22 U.S.C. 2373(c)), I am submitting to you this report on progress toward a negotiated settlement of the Cyprus question. The previous report covered progress through September 15, 1993. The current report covers the remainder of September through November 15, 1993.

On September 20, 1993, the United Nations Security Council responded to the September 14 Report of the Secretary General on his good offices in Cyprus. The reply was contained in a Presidential letter and conveyed the Security Council's continued support for the Secretary General's efforts. In the letter, the Security Council reiterated the obligation of both parties to cooperate fully and without delay in reaching an overall framework on the package of proposals. It also expressed the Council's recognition of the important role that Turkey could play in this effort.

On October 4, Under Secretary of State Peter Tarnoff met with Cyprus Foreign Minister Michaelides in New York City. Mr. Tarnoff stressed that the moment is ripe for pushing toward a resolution of the Cyprus conflict. They discussed proposals for an island-wide census as requested by the United Nations and the demilitarization of certain areas of the island. Mr. Tarnoff welcomed all ideas that might stimulate discussion and said that he appreciated the Cypriot's willingness to discuss new initiatives.

Ambassador John Maresca, U.S. Special Cyprus Coordinator, met with British Under Secretary Greenstock in London on October 7. Mr. Greenstock briefed the Ambassador on his September 16-18 visit to Cyprus. They discussed benefits for both communities in the Secretary General's confidence-building measures (CBMs), and agreed to the need to resume the intercommunal dialogue quickly after the Turkish Cypriot elections. He also stated that it was important to keep a dialogue open with both sides.

On October 12, Turkey dispatched former Deputy Prime Minister Inonu to northern Cyprus to help resolve the dispute among the Turkish Cypriot leadership about the election issue. Turkey's intercession was helpful in bringing about a compromise that enabled the Turkish Cypriots to hold their elections December 12.

On October 15, I met with Prime Minister Ciller of Turkey and expressed my personal interest in a just and permanent solution being quickly achieved on Cyprus. I also reiterated our position that Turkey must use its influence and good offices with the Turkish Cypriots. She assured me that Turkey fully supports the goal of a resolution of the Cyprus problem and would further explain the benefits of the CBMs to the Turkish Cypriots.

The first U.N. teams of experts began their review of the Varosha/Nicosia Airport CBMs in Cyprus on October 17. The teams established at the request of the Secretary General and endorsed by the Security Council, had the mandate to examine the various aspects of the package of CBMs related to the re-opening of the fenced area of Varosha and Nicosia International Airport.

United Nations Special Cyprus Negotiator Clark visited Cyprus November 7-10 where he met with the U.N. "experts teams" and with President Clerides and Mr. Denktash. He said that preliminary results from the teams showed tremendous benefits for the two communities. Mr. Clark also stated that progress on the CBMs must be seen by the end of January. A delay in implementing the CBMs, he added, could cause serious difficulty, and might result in the Security Council considering possible "alternative measures." Mr. Clark again stressed the need for Turkey to use its good offices in ensuring a quick resumption of the negotiating process.

Although there has been little movement during this period because of the elections in northern Cyprus, I am pleased to note that all involved have indicated a willingness to return to the negotiating table. Our position is well known—we expect both sides to return to the negotiations soon after the December 12 elections. As I noted several times, I firmly believe that the Secetary General's package of confidence-building measures is fair and balanced, and that its acceptance by both sides will hasten a final overall framework agreement. I hope that in my next report, I will be able to state that negotiations have resumed and that progress is being made.



NOTE: Identical letters were sent to Thomas S. Foley, Speaker of the House of Representatives, and Claiborne Pell, Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

William J. Clinton, Letter to Congressional Leaders Reporting on the Cyprus Conflict Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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