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21 June, 2002
The United States desires a solution to the Cyprus problem as soon as possible, it is working in this direction and supports the relevant efforts of the United Nations, Greek-origin U.S. Ambassador to the UN John Negroponte told expatriates within the framework of the annual conference of the International Coordinating Committee for Justice for Cyprus (PSEKA) and the Council of Hellenes Abroad.
Negroponte, who was honored with the ''G. Livanos'' award, said that the next six months will be ''really critical'', leaving it to be clearly understood that the initial time frame by the UN Security Council which foresaw an in principle settlement of the Cyprus problem by the end of June, was now probably impossible to be met.
Having stressed the steadfast support of the U.S. to UN Secretary General Kofi Annan and to his special adviser for Cyprus Alvaro de Soto, he reiterated that the U.S. continues to support the creation ''of a bizonal, bicommunal federation which would safeguard the rights of both sides.''
He underlined that there can be positive results in Cyprus, citing as examples the recent developments in three other international matters, namely ''the recent U.S.-Russia agreement on the reduction of nuclear weapons, the liberation of Afghanistan and the declaration of the independence of East Timor.''
Also speaking at the same event was Greek-American Senator Paul Sarbanes who stressed the positive stance and support, which the Greek side has found in Congress over the past decades concerning the Cyprus issue.
Source: Athens News Agency