Nicosia, Cyprus – Ersin Tatar, President of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC), called on United Nations (UN) Secretary-General Antonio Guterres to approach the formula of sovereign equality on the island and cooperation based on two states with an open mind.
According to a written statement from the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) Presidency, President Ersin Tatar wrote a letter in response to a letter sent to him by United Nations (UN) Secretary General Antonio Guterres.
In his letter, Tatar expressed support for an informal and 5+UN meeting to determine whether there is common ground between the two sides in Cyprus.
“For a just, realistic and sustainable compromise, in light of the new conditions prevailing in Cyprus and in our region, we aim to establish a cooperation relationship between the two sides based on two sovereign states with equal international status., “he said.
The search for a federal solution in Cyprus has been a decades-long process, Tatar said, recalling that all the compromises, efforts and initiatives of the former UN secretaries-general have been blocked by the Greek Cypriot side.
“Greece and Greek Cypriot duo blocked the compromise”
“In Crans-Montana, despite all the flexibility and goodwill expressed by the Turkish Cypriot side and Turkey, the Greek Cypriot side and Greece blocked the compromise without the intention of reaching a solution and tried to maintain the status quo., “he said.
Recalling that Jane Holl Lute, appointed by the UN Secretary-General for the Cyprus issue, met during her visit to the island in December 2020, Tatar said that in the light of the new conditions in Cyprus and the region, they explained that they aimed to establish a cooperative relationship between the two sides with equal international status and based on two sovereign states.
Tatar stated that it is not possible for the negotiation process in Cyprus to start again from where it was left in Crans-Montana, stressing that a process based on a new and common ground must be timed to be result-oriented and meaningful.
Emphasizing that the Turkish Cypriot side does not only design its ideas with a forward-looking approach, Tatar also noted that the element of sustainability is taken into account in order not to repeat the failed experience of the 1960 partnership Republic, which lasted only three years.
President Tatar stressed that eliminating the Cyprus problem on the stated ground will help restore regional security and stability and pave the way for the creation of an embracing vision in the Eastern Mediterranean.
“We are at a turning point in efforts to resolve the Cyprus problem through negotiation”
Tatar also said that building a submarine pipeline to transport natural gas in the Eastern Mediterranean to Turkey and Europe via Turkey is the most commercially viable option.
“We are at a turning point in efforts to resolve the Cyprus problem through negotiation. It is the responsibility of all concerned to make the maximum effort by taking this opportunity to resolve the problem in a final manner.” he made his assessment.
Turkey is in favor of a fair, permanent, sustainable solution on Cyprus. The efforts of the Turkish side alone are not enough for a solution. It is obvious that the Greek side has no intention of accepting a solution on the basis of the equal partnership of the Turkish Cypriot people.
The reason for the current situation in the Eastern Mediterranean is the Greek/Greek Cypriot duo, who have not heeded Turkey’s warnings since 2003 and have ignored its constructive suggestions. New ideas were needed for a solution on the long-divided island, the failure of the 2017 Crans-Montana Cyprus talks showed that a federation would not be viable.
As the Greek Cypriot side did not see the Turkish Cypriot people as equal partners, they left unanswered their calls for cooperation for the sharing of hydrocarbon revenues. He accused Greek Cypriot administration of seeing the Turkish side “as a minority under their own rule” and said they “continue to usurp the equal rights of the Turkish Cypriots. There were already two separate states in Cyprus.
The solution in which the two peoples can live side by side in peace, prosperity and security should be based on the facts on the island. At this stage, Turkey definitely considers that starting the negotiations exclusively on the basis of the federation option would be a waste of time.
Turkey now believes that the two-state solution should be brought to the table with a realistic approach. The efforts of the Turkish side alone were not enough for a solution, it was obvious that the Greek side did not intend to accept a solution based on the equal partnership of the Turkish Cypriot people.
The only reason that negotiations have failed for over 50 years was the Greek Cypriot administration’s uncompromising attitude. The Greeks don’t want to share the state they extorted in 1963 with the Turkish Cypriot people. The abandoned town of Maras in the Turkish Cypriot city of Gazimagusa, also known as Famagusta, partially reopened for public use on October 8, 2020.
Turkey favors fair, permanent solution on Cyprus
Turkey’s proposal for a five-party conference on the Cyprus issue is the “last chance for an agreement. TRNC considers that Turkey’s proposal to convene a conference with the participation of the TRNC to discuss the developments in the Eastern Mediterranean is extremely realistic and constructive.
However, it would be “a dream” to expect the Greek Cypriots, who have refused to compromise even for the maritime resources around the island, to agree with the suggestion, stressing that no one had the right to knowingly commit the TRNC to the plots of the Greek side.
TRNC is determined to take further steps in harmony and cooperation with Turkey. TRNC also dismissed prospects for a federation, stating no one on the Greek side believed in such an outcome.
The island of Cyprus has been divided since 1974, when a Greek Cypriot coup was followed by violence against the island’s Turks and Turkey’s intervention as a guarantor power.
It has seen an on-and-off peace process in recent years, including a failed 2017 initiative in Switzerland under the auspices of guarantor countries Turkey, Greece, and the UK. The Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus was founded in 1983.