President Papadopoulos says federal solution need not sacrifice justice
New York, Sep 26 - In remarks at the General Debate of the 62nd session of the General Assembly of the United Nations in New York on Wednesday, President Papadopoulos said that a settlement of the Cyprus problem in the form of a bizonal, bicommunal federation can be truly comprehensive and need not sacrifice justice for the sake of peace. He noted that the Cyprus problem is not a derivative of bad community relations but one of outside intervention, and only progress through preparing the ground can lead to an agreed settlement.
President Papadopoulos referred to the history of the Cyprus problem, noting that ''for many years the UN has made strenuous efforts in trying to broker a solution,'' adding that ''it might be that the task has been so arduous because the truth remains that the Cyprus issue, when stripped of niceties of diplomatic terminology, is a question of foreign aggression and continuing occupation of a significant part of a sovereign state, entailing enclaved and missing persons, refugees and massive and enduring violations of human rights.''
He posed the question as to why the problem persists after so many years during which the national, regional and international political landscape has undergone dramatic changes, noting that ''certainly, it is neither for lack of political will nor for lack of effort on our part.''
''Rather, the occupying power has not displayed any motivation to solve the problem and this has only been reinforced by the Annan plan which satisfied all Turkish desiderata, thus being readily accepted by the Turkish side. Instead, Turkey has used its dominant position to command trade-offs of all sorts,'' he pointed out.
“We consider that a solution to the Cyprus problem and good neighborly relations between Cyprus and Turkey are a sine qua non for the stability of both countries and the wider region. An opportunity to put this doctrine to practice has arisen as a result of Turkey’s aspiration to join the EU. However, the catalytic effect of this accession negotiation process has not thus far helped relieve the Cyprus problem of artificial and unfounded Turkish concerns and unrealistic policy considerations that have, in any case, been rendered obsolete by the emerging political environment,'' he said.
In reference to the 8 July 2006 agreement, President Papadopoulos said ''sidelining or circumventing stages of the process will only lead to expediting not the solution, but the confirmation of deadlock.''
President Papadopoulos said the Greek Cypriot side remains fully committed to the mission of good offices entrusted to the UN Secretary General by the Security Council, ''as it is clear to us that we cannot sustain the status quo and must insist on a meaningful and forward looking process that can elicit concrete results leading to a settlement of a bizonal, bicommunal federation, with the correct meaning of each of these terms.''