President Nicos Anastasiades today kicks off his crucial visit to former colonial power Britain holding talks with Prime Minister David Cameron at 10 Downing Street.
A spokesman for the British High Commission in Nicosia told us yesterday: “It is a visit that demonstrates the commitment of the two countries to cooperate together – from business to investments to regional and energy issues.”
Michael Howe also said: “It’s an exciting future for the two countries, working, contributing together.” There is a love-hate relationship between Cyprus and Britain which still maintains two sovereign military bases on the island divided since 1974 after a Turkish invasion.
An official statement before the President’s departure on Tuesday morning said the two leaders would look at issues related to bilateral relations between Cyprus and Britain.
And at ways to further strengthen them in the broader level of the European Union – an alliance they both belong to.
Also, that the two leaders would exchange views on the Cyprus problem, economic cooperation and future investments as well as issues related to energy.
Anastasiades is accompanied in the British capital by the three key ministers - finance, foreign affairs and commerce.
Last night, he addressed a dinner in his honour hosted by the UK’s Greek and Cypriot community. Before his meeting with Cameron, the President and his ministers will hold a breakfast meeting with British Foreign Secretary William Hague.
In the evening, the Cypriot delegation is to attend a dinner hosted by Britain’s Energy Secretary Michael Fallon.
Tomorrow, Anastasiades will have breakfast talks with members of the House of Commons and House of Lords followed by a speech on maritime law at University College London.
He will also lay a wreath in the afternoon at Westminster Abbey and give a lecture at the London School of Economics.
On Friday, Anastasiades will attend a breakfast meeting with Lord Mayor of the City of London Fiona Woolf and talk to British and community media before returning home in the evening.