President addresses the nation on Independence Day
Nicosia, Oct 1 – The President of the Republic of Cyprus Tassos Papadopoulos stressed in Nicosia on Monday that no threat and no danger can disperse hope about the nation’s survival, as long as its independence and international recognition are secure.
In an address to the nation, on the 47th anniversary since independence from British colonial rule, the President said Cypriots have every right to be proud of their democratic nation, which has been further strengthened by joining the European Union in May 2004.
“We can be cautiously optimistic. However there is no room for excessive expectations nor any place for fatalism or feelings of being defeated,” he said, referring to efforts to find a negotiated settlement that would reunite the country, divided since the 1974 Turkish invasion, noting also that the road to a just and viable settlement has never been easy but unity on the home front will help overcome any problems.
The President also stressed his commitment to a bizonal bicommunal federal solution, as this term is interpreted in international practice, which means a settlement that will not violate the freedoms and the human rights of the citizens and which will be viable and lasting, balanced and functional.
Addressing the Turkish Cypriots, he assured them that their fate and their future are closely interwoven with a just and viable solution that will safeguard the human rights of all citizens.
“The national and natural survival of our people depends on the existence and the strength of our nation and the existence and the strength of our independence. As long as our nation exists and is valid, and its independence and international recognition safeguarded and strengthened, no design, no threat and no danger can ever kill hope and the prospect of surviving and prospering in this land,” the President said.
The statehood, the credibility and the legal status of the Republic are not undermined by repeated attempts by the Turkish side to upgrade the illegal Turkish Cypriot regime, in occupied Cyprus, he pointed out.
He said everybody in Cyprus has a duty to safeguard and protect the nation, which supersedes everything - the government, the House, the political parties and each and every citizen.
On the search for a political settlement, Papadopoulos had this to say: “No President of the Republic and none of its governments bears any responsibility for the absence of a solution. This lies squarely on the Turkish side which states, in the most provocative manner, that it is seeking a two-state solution.”
“The solution shall be a compromise, a mutual compromise, it needs good disposition and a spirit of consensus from all sides, not just our side and in that respect we should be careful not to provide Turkey with alibis and move responsibility to our side for Ankara’s deeds,” he said.
“There are no magic recipes for a solution in Cyprus. The only path we have before us today to reach a mutually acceptable solution is the full implementation of the July agreement of last year and we remain committed to that and shall continue to work for its implementation,” he stressed.
This agreement, he recalled, is backed by the UN, the Security Council and the EU. The agreement was reached under UN auspices between Papadopoulos and the leader of the Turkish Cypriot community, Mr. Talat.
“On the anniversary of the Republic’s independence, we reiterate our determination to continue our struggle, in the strong belief that we shall be vindicated at the end, irrespective of the difficulties ahead,” he concluded.