Israel And Cyprus Downplay Crisis In Ties Over Turkey Reconciliation

Cyprus' President Nicos Anastasiades (L) shakes hands with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu during a press conference at the latter's Jerusalem office, on July 24, 2016. / AFP / EPA/POOL AND POOL / JIM HOLLANDER (Photo credit should read JIM HOLLANDER/AFP/Getty Images)

The Jerusalem Post reports: Jerusalem and Nicosia downplayed any crisis in ties as Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades flew to Israel Sunday evening for a hastily arranged meeting expected to focus on developments in Turkey and energy issues.

The meeting, planned late last week, fueled speculation of sudden difficulties in the relationship as a result of the rapprochement agreement Israel and Turkey signed last month.

Israel’s relationship with both Cyprus and Greece has flowered in recent years, both as a result of the discovery of natural gas in the eastern Mediterranean and because of the steady deterioration of Israeli-Turkish ties since Recep Tayyip Erdogan first came to power in 2002.

One diplomatic source in Jerusalem said Israel had kept Nicosia abreast of its negotiations to reconcile with Turkey, and that there was nothing dramatic about Anastasiades’s trip. The source said a face-toface meeting was warranted as a result of the developments in Turkey following the failed coup there two weeks ago.