PARIS - Europe has to show solidarity with Cyprus now that it is staring recession in the face, French President Francois Hollande said in Paris yesterday.
Speaking to journalists after talks at the Palais de l’Elysees with President Nicos Anastasiades, he said: “Cyprus is going through some very difficult times…we have to show solidarity with Cyprus, a country which is going through recession and faces liquidity problems.”
He added: “President Anastasiades assured me that they will comply with all the commitments that Cyprus has undertaken a few weeks ago”.
The two leaders also talked about the forthcoming EU Summit and their goals which are growth, the banking union, EU economic governance and employment of young people, he also said.
“The same issues that I had discussed with Angela Merkel a few days ago,” he added.
On bilateral relations, he said French energy giant TOTAL will take part in explorations for natural gas reserves in the island’s Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ). And he expressed his personal gratitude for the facilities Cyprus provides to French soldiers who decompress in Paphos on their way home from Afghanistan and Mali.
On the Cyprus problem, he said that France will stand by Nicosia in settlement efforts, and added: “We want to find a viable settlement of the Cyprus problem on the basis of the international law”.
Anastasiades thanked Hollande for the chance he had given him to share thoughts and concerns on a number of bilateral and multilateral issues.
Before meeting Hollande, Anastasiaded held talks with National Assembly President Claude Bartolone. Today, he is due to meet the CEO and chairman of Total.