No linkage between Turkey's EU obligations and direct trade, says Spokesman
Nicosia, Nov 1 – The European Union makes no linkage between Turkey’s obligations towards Cyprus and direct trade with occupied areas, Government Spokesman Stephanos Stephanou indicated yesterday.
Commenting on Turkish press reports that Turkey would open its ports and airports to the Republic of Cyprus under the condition of approving direct trade with the Turkish occupied areas, Spokesman Stephanou said that “Turkey’s obligations are well mentioned both in the Commission’s progress report and the communication on Enlargement Strategy.”
Spokesman Stephanou indicated that “the EU makes no linkage of the obligations undertaken by Turkey and which Turkey should fulfill, with direct trade.”
The Spokesman called on Turkey to meet its obligations and underlined the one that would benefit more from this is Turkey itself.
At the same time he reminded that Turkey’s obligations include not only the opening of its ports and airports to the Republic of Cyprus but also Turkey’s concrete contribution towards the efforts for achieving a Cyprus solution, on the basis of UN Resolutions.
Commenting on statements made by Turkish Cypriot leader Mr. Mehmet Ali Talat after his meeting with Turkish President Abdullah Gul, regarding the need to set a timetable for solving the Cyprus problem by 2010, as well as the attempts to link this issue with the so-called presidential election in the occupied areas in April, Spokesman Stephanou pointed out that the position of the Greek Cypriot side on this issue is well known and that “there are no timetables.”
He added that the Greek Cypriot side is committed to the solution process and is working hard towards this direction, noting that the fastest way to reach a settlement is through the respect of the UN Resolutions for Cyprus and respect the agreed negotiation basis for a solution between the two communities.
He clarified that the agreed basis for a solution, which is also included in many UN Resolutions, is the one providing for a bizonal bicommunal federation with political equality as defined in the relevant UN Resolutions, for a state with single sovereignty, single citizenship and single international personality.