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French government conveyed position on Turkey to Cyprus
2005-08-10 15:06:30

Nicosia, Aug 10 – Cyprus Foreign Minister George Iacovou has said that the French government has communicated to President of the Republic Tassos Papadopoulos the position that Turkey has in effect not fulfilled its obligation with the declaration it made during the signing of the adaptation protocol to the Ankara agreement.

Speaking at a press conference for foreign correspondents, Mr. Iacovou was asked whether French President Jacques Chirac has sent a letter to President Papadopoulos regarding France's position on Turkey.

''The position of the French government is quite clear. The content of the French policy has been communicated to'' the government.

He explained that the Cyprus president had a consultation with the French ambassador last week who communicated to him the French government's position “and it is correct to say the French government feels that the Turkish government through the submission of the statement it has in effect not fulfilled its obligation to sign the adaptation protocol of the Ankara agreement”.

Asked whether the strategic interests of Cyprus would be harmed if Turkey does not commence accession talks in October 3, Mr. Iacovou said that Cyprus “had supported Turkey’s bid to commence negotiations with the Union.”

He added that, however: “we want a Turkey that really espouses the European values and shows that it is beginning to do so. This recent statement casts very serious doubts on whether Turkey intends to espouse these European values.”

Mr. Iacovou pointed out that Turkey’s statement on the recognition of the Cyprus Republic “has caused alarm and despondency to our European partners and several leaders have reacted to this statement.”

He added that Britain’s Foreign Secretary Jack Straw and European Enlargement Commissioner Olli Rehn adopt the position that the signing of the Protocol is in practical terms recognition.

The Cypriot Minister said that the whole issue will be discussed at the Informal Meeting of the Foreign Ministers between 1-2 September in the UK and added that the statement made by Turkey “is provocative and hits the internal European Union legal order. The EU is bound to react.”

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