NICOSIA - President Demetris Christofias has hit back at claims that he is responsible for the delay in agreeing a bailout deal saying he hopes that the recent wave of criticism "wont be another link in the chain of the efforts to reduce reliability and validity of Cyprus".
Responding to a question that he was being blamed by a technocrat from Brussels for the delay in finding a deal with the Troika, President Christofias said, "I don't know who this technocrat is. That person has absolutely no right to make those comments and I sincerely hope that those words are not yet another link in the chain of the efforts to reduce reliability and validity of Cyprus."
He added, "We are ready to honour whatever we have agreed. But if from day to day, certain people - serving other interests - want to put forward their own demands then that is their business."
In June last year, Cyprus became the fifth euro-area country to seek a bailout after its banks took large losses from Greece’s sovereign debt restructuring.
A few months ago, President Christofias said that discussions with the Troika would be a painful and lengthily process. “The negotiation is difficult, which was to be expected. Time is, of course, important in this negotiation. But we all have to answer the question of whether the time factor is the only important factor. In our view, the content of the agreement is the key factor as it will determine the future of our country and people for the coming years.”