UNSC extends mandate of UN peacekeeping operation in Cyprus

UNITED NATIONS – The UN Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus (UNFICYP) has had its mandate extended until July 31, but the Security Council has voiced significant concerns about a number of problems, including continuing violations of the military status quo along the ceasefire lines.

The Council unanimously adopted Resolution 2618, which urged the leaders of the two Cypriot communities, as well as all other parties concerned, to refrain from any acts or statements that could jeopardize the settlement process or exacerbate tensions on the island. It also expressed concern about tensions in the Eastern Mediterranean, emphasizing the importance of peaceful resolution of issues in accordance with international law.

The Council expressed grave concern about both sides' alleged advance into the buffer zone dividing Greek and Turkish communities in the northern and southern sections of the Mediterranean island since 1974, as well as the rise in illegal construction.

It urged both sides to lower current impediments to intercommunal communication and praised the UN for continuing to hold regular talks with them.

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