We are following with concern the decision of the Greek Cypriot Administration of South Cyprus to recruit 3000 professional soldiers in the Greek Cypriot National Guard.

It should be known that at a time when the negotiations have been intensified with the aim of finding a comprehensive settlement on the Island, we find it very difficult to comprehend the Greek Cypriot side’s decision to increase the number of military personnel which would create tension.

The Greek Cypriot decision to recruit 3000 new military personnel when issues such as not having a military for the new partnership Republic to be established based on political and sovereign equality of the two peoples on the island, while maintaining the effective guarantee of Turkey are being negotiated, makes us question the Greek Cypriot side’s conviction for a solution and only serves the purpose of questioning the sincerity of the Greek Cypriot side towards a settlement. Furthermore, it is apparent that the said decision contradicts the statements made by the two Leaders regarding the possibility of reaching a settlement in the year 2016.

We urge the Greek Cypriot side to refrain from taking actions which would have negative impact on the current process. We further call on the Greek Cypriot side, when taking decisions of such sensitive nature, to take into consideration the envisaged new partnership and cooperation between the two sides.