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Turkish PM: Two separate nations in Cyprus
2003-09-04 10:36:51

He alleges that Mr Simitis told him that the Cyprus problem cannot be solved

Ankara Anatolia news agency (03.09.03) reports from Berlin that Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who is currently in Berlin, Germany, on Wednesday delivered a speech on ``New Reforms-Is Turkey on the Path to the European Union (EU)?`` in a meeting organized by the Friedrich Ebert Foundation and the Turkish Research Center (TAM).

On the Cyprus issue, Erdogan said: ``Non-solution is not a solution. We can solve the problems if the other side sits at the negotiation table by showing the same approach. But Mr Simitis told me that he would not sit at the negotiation table for an issue which he didn`t think would be sorted out. Now the Annan plan is on agenda, but it is not a plan which was prepared by taking the view of the Turkish side. Despite everything, we don`t reject the plan, we say that it could be discussed. But the plan has its deficiencies and mistakes, this can`t be denied.``

Mr Erodgan also referred to the partial lifting of restrictions on movement by Rauf Denktas and added: ``In spite of that, the olive bought in the north of the island is confiscated in the south of the island. The Greek Cypriot side even brought onto the agenda giving two-years imprisonment to Greek Cypriots who spent a night in the Turkish side. The problem can`t be solved if the Greek Cypriot side assumes such a negative stance towards the positive steps taken.``

Mr Erdogan alleged that there are two separate religions and nations in Cyprus, adding: `` The EU admits such a problematic country rather than admitting a country which does not have problems.``

Ankara Anatolia (02.09.03) also reported from Berlin that statements were made after a meeting between the German Foreign Minister, Mr Joschka Fisher, and the Turkish Prime Minister, Mr Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

On his part Mr Fischer said regarding Cyprus that the EU process would be an important opportunity for the solution of the Cyprus problem.

Mr Erdogan, on his part, alleged that Turkey took concrete steps for the solution of this issue, but the other side did not take a concrete step and did not give a response.

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