Chair of the Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats (S&D) in the European Parliament, Gianni Pittella, stressed on Tuesday the importance of the reunification of Cyprus at this very sensitive and difficult moment for Europe.
Speaking through an interpreter after a meeting with Cyprus President Nicos Anastasiades at the Presidential Palace, Pittella said that the reunification of Cyprus would be wonderful in this very sensitive and difficult moment for Europe and will show that the walls and the fences can be torn down and that both communities can finally live together.
Concerning the Cyprus problem, Pittella expressed on behalf of his group his support to the negotiation process and said that they wish this historic occasion to end in reunifying the island.
Saying that much progress has been achieved, he added that there are still some issues for further discussion.
“I fully encourage both parties to achieve the final agreement,” he said, adding that the solution should be in the framework of the European values and principles. He also said that to this direction he will have tomorrow several other meetings.
Pittella said that together with the Cypriot President they expressed their condolences to the families of the victims of the terrorist attacks in Brussels.
He noted that the reinforcement of the cooperation among the national intelligence services is absolutely necessary and the intelligent services need to better investigate the propaganda spread through the social media.
Pittella added that there is a need to strengthen security in Europe, but also to strengthen culture and reach the European ghettos, because that is where, in conditions of poverty and marginalisation, the virus of terrorism can spread and get roots.
At the same time he sent the message of peace and friendship to Islam, saying that “Islam is not our enemy.” Pittella pointed out that those who feed xenophobia and islamophobia actually help terrorism, “as Donald Trump is doing in the United States and as the ‘little Trumps’ are doing in Europe,” according to the translation provided by the interpreter.