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Elders return to Cyprus as peace process enters second phase

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A year after talks to reunify the divided island of Cyprus began, Desmond Tutu, Lakhdar Brahimi and Gro Brundtland will visit Ankara, Athens and Cyprus to discuss issues related to the peace process with political leaders. Also available in Ελληνικά and Türkçe (PDF).

Tutu, Brahimi and Brundtland also to meet leaders in Ankara and Athens

Three members of The Elders plan to visit Cyprus on 10-11 September. The delegation, to be led by Elders chairman Desmond Tutu of South Africa, will also include former UN Special Envoy Lakhdar Brahimi and former Norwegian Prime Minister Gro Brundtland.

Before travelling to Cyprus, the three Elders will visit Ankara (8 September) and Athens (9 September) to discuss issues related to the peace process with senior political leaders. Their visit will take place approximately one year since talks to reunify the island began between the Greek Cypriot leader Demetris Christofias and Turkish Cypriot leader Mehmet Ali Talat.

The Elders are not seeking to intervene in the political negotiations between the two leaders in any way. The focus of their visit will be to lend support to those who are working for a lasting settlement, with special emphasis on listening to the views of women about the future of the island.

Former US President Jimmy Carter, who visited Cyprus in October 2008 with Archbishop Tutu and Mr Brahimi, regrets he is unable to join his fellow Elders on this visit due to prior commitments.

Details of the Elders' itinerary will be made available next week. Media representatives who wish to be kept informed are kindly asked to register via the Elders' website.

This media release is also available in Ελληνικά and Türkçe (PDF).

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