Will Tory MPs unite behind Theresa May? That’s the big question at this year’s party conference – but for Boris Johnson, there is also another pressing issue: can Cyprus reunite?
The Foreign Secretary arrived in Manchester – and immediately joined a welcome reception for the Conservative friends of Cyprus. He revealed to the audience the talks he has been privy to over the past year:
We have not in the last 12 months achieved quite what I wanted to do. And there was a meeting in the Swiss resort called Crans Montana where we all tried to get together to resolve the Cyprus problem and we all went up to about 15,000 metres above sea level, roughly speaking, and we could see the summit figuratively, and indeed, literally. And we could see the way to the summit, we could see what needed to be done, some very simple steps that needed to be taken.
Alas, it didn’t quite work out that way. We skidded back down the black piste a little bit, but not all the way. That is the crucial point. And there were substantial gains made in those conversations which we intend to build on and we intend to take forward.
In the same ‘figurative’ spirit, Mr S couldn’t help but wonder if Boris was perhaps referring to another issue on his mind. With divisions brewing over Brexit – and with another possible summit in sight for the Foreign Secretary – Mr S will be interested to see whether Boris has finally worked out the simple steps needed to reunite the party.