(Reposted from: In-Cyprus. July 31, 2019)
The European Union will provide support to the first four proposals from the Bi-communal Technical Committees in Cyprus, according to a press release issued Wednesday by UNDP, the United Nations Development Programme.
The EU-funded support facility to bi-communal Technical Committees will support the proposals submitted by the Technical Committees on Crime and Criminal Matters, Humanitarian Matters, Environment and Education.
The four proposals that will be funded by the facility are as follows:
- Participation in a workshop at the University of Cambridge on Joint Contact Room
- Angels of peace, a project aiming at social inclusion
- Cooperation for exchange of experience and information between environmental experts
- Pilot production of educational materials on peace education
“We are pleased with the proposals selected so far and we encourage all Technical Committees to seize the opportunities for developing proposals for small, ad hoc activities as well as more substantive projects,” said Meltem Onurkan Samani, Technical Committees Turkish Cypriot Coordinator and Adrianos Kyriakides, Technical Committees Greek Cypriot Coordinator.
The Steering Committee for the “Support facility to the bi-communal Technical Committees” comprises the Technical Committees’ Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot Coordinators and representatives from the European Commission, United Nations Development Programme and the United Nations Office of the Special Adviser to the Secretary General on Cyprus.
The press release recalls that the European Commission, as part of its support to confidence-building measures, initiated the “Support to the Bi-Communal Technical Committees Facility” and the contribution agreement signed with UNDP is for a value of €1 million with a duration of two years.
This support facility will seek to enable cooperation and to build confidence with a view to contributing to a comprehensive settlement of the Cyprus issue.
The Bi-Communal Technical Committees were established by the leaders of the Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot communities under the auspices of the United Nations, to address issues that affect the day-to-day life of people, through encouraging and facilitating greater interaction and understanding between the two communities.
The Republic of Cyprus has been divided since 1974 when Turkish troops invaded and occupied 37% of its territory. Repeated rounds of UN-led peace talks have so far failed to yield results. The last round of negotiations, in the summer of 2017, at the Swiss resort of Crans-Montana ended inconclusively.