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Cypriot FM says Mr. Talat has revealed his true positions on Cyprus issue
2005-08-11 11:09:46

Cyprus Foreign Minister George Iacovou said in Nicosia on Wednesday that Turkish Cypriot leader Mehmet Ali Talat has divulged his intentions that what he really wants is the recognition of the illegal regime in the occupied north through the ending of the so called isolation of the Turkish Cypriots.

The Minister was commenting on an interview which Mr. Talat gave to the “New Anatolian” newspaper’s website in which he stated that he proposed the opening of ports and airports in the occupied areas in exchange of the return of Varosha.

Speaking to foreign correspondents in Cyprus, Mr. Iacovou also said that “Mr. Talat is supposed to be a leader who always talks in terms of reunification and this cuts across the grain because he is talking about recognition.”

He added that the political aim behind the ending of the “isolation” of the Turkish Cypriots is his intention to obtain “recognition, short of full recognition” of the illegal regime in the occupied north.

“This is why in the context of the consultations we had been having with the European Commission and our partners within the European Union we had indicated in no uncertain terms that this absolutely cannot be the start of anything”, the minister noted.

Please see below a comprehensive memo prepared by the Government of Cyprus:

The leader of the Turkish Cypriot community, Mr. Mehmet Ali Talat, in a statement on the issue of the termination of the so-called “isolation” of the Turkish Cypriots, has in fact revealed the true intentions and the overall objectives of the Turkish side. During an interview to the New Anatolian newspaper last week, Mr. Talat was asked to explain his position regarding the proposal of President Papadopoulos for the opening of the Famagusta port and the return of the city of Varosha to its lawful inhabitants, in the context of the discussions within the EU on the draft regulations for the Turkish Cypriot community. In reply, Mr. Talat, stated:

“In exchange for returning Maras [Varosha], we want the opening of our airports and harbors, and an end to the cultural embargo. It means the end to our isolation. I’m surprised when I see people criticizing this proposal without understanding its importance. Because the meaning of our proposal is to achieve the last phase before full recognition in exchange for Maras. Essentially everything except recognition. The Greek Cypriot side already saw this and immediately rejected the proposal”.

The Turkish Cypriot leadership, in full accord with the Government of the Republic of Turkey, has been trying during the last 15 months to present the image that their objective is the reunification of Cyprus and not the recognition of the illegal secessionist entity. While deceiving the world with such statements they actually worked for the opposite, under the guise of the termination of the so-called isolation of the Turkish Cypriots and their insistence on direct trade and direct contacts that would involve the opening of the illegal ports and airports in the occupied part of Cyprus.

The Government of the Republic of Cyprus, from the very start, was insisting that the lifting of the so-called isolation of the Turkish Cypriots was only a guise to seek upgrading and eventually set the stage for recognition of the secessionist entity of the “TRNC”. It was clear for us that the Turkish side’s objective was not an economic one, aimed at the economic development of the Turkish Cypriot Community, but a purely political objective aiming at gaining concrete political benefits. The recent statement of Mr. Talat makes it abundantly clear that the ultimate political aim behind the slogan of “ending the isolation” and “direct trade”, that the Turkish Government and the Turkish Cypriot leadership have fabricated and projected so tenaciously, is the de jure division of Cyprus and the recognition of the illegal regime in the occupied part of Cyprus, in contravention of mandatory resolutions of the United Nations Security Council and relevant positions of the European Union. In our view it is imperative that the ultimate consequences of certain initiatives that are being used to facilitate realization of such an unacceptable and counterproductive political agenda are seriously evaluated by the international community.

This development, in conjunction with Turkey’s recent provocative declaration on Cyprus at the signing of the Protocol to the Ankara Agreement, raises serious concerns as to the real intent of the Turkish side. We trust that the international community will seriously evaluate and will exert every possible influence on the Turkish side to abandon, once and for all, such policies which are neither helpful in the efforts to solve the Cyprus problem, nor in promoting Turkey’s interests and ambitions for an EU accession process.

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