MURAT YETKİN > Turkey wants new Cyprus solution bid


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On the day that Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu made a statement about the possibility of a two-state solution in Cyprus, that is March 26, as the first Turkish official to voice that after some 10 years, he had already signed and sent eight letters to demand a new solution initiative on the island of Cyprus, with its Greek-ruled south sector in a deep economic crisis for almost two weeks now. Davutoğlu’s letters were addressed to Ban Ki-moon, the United Nations secretary-general; the foreign ministers of the U.S., Russia, U.K., France and China, the five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council; Germany, the unnamed strategic partner of the U.N.-P5; and Greece, Turkey’s natural partner and rival on the Cyprus problem.

The letters, according to Turkish Foreign Ministry sources who answered Hürriyet Daily News questions, did not mention the possibility of a two-state solution (that is, actually making the current situation following the Turkish military intervention in 1974 official) if the Greek Cypriot government tries to abuse the economic crisis as a pretext to claim sovereignty over the reportedly rich oil and gas resources discovered around the island, both south and north. But it clearly stated the lines used in a press release on March 23 (put on the ministry’s website on a Saturday evening), as the final sentence; “Turkey and the Turkish Cypriots” were “ready to work with Greece and the Greek Cypriots.”

It was interesting in the sense that Turkey does not recognize the Greek government-run Republic of Cyprus, as long as it claims sovereignty over the Turkish government-run northern territory, divided by a U.N.-controlled Green Line. A U.N.-sponsored referendum had been carried out in 2004 for the reunification of the island, which Turks approved but Greeks did not, only to be rewarded by European Union membership, which really drove the Turks crazy as the main reason for declining sympathy for the EU in the country. By taking Greek Cyprus in, the EU had not only imported a major border problem into its system, but also a weak and vulnerable economy as everyone can see with the outcome nowadays.

Now the Turkish foreign minister is saying that if the Greek Cypriots would take the Turkish Cypriots as their political equivalents, not minority representatives, a four-party solution could be reached, as in the establishment of the Republic of Cyprus in 1960 when Turkey, Greece and the U.K. had worked out a solution; mainly “a new state of affairs” for the island.

The first answer to Davutoğlu’s letters came from his Greek partner, Dimitris Avramopoulos, on March 28 and similarly put on the website of the Foreign Ministry of the Hellenic Republic. In this rather long answer, Avramopoulos states that 1974 is the main reason for the problems, softly warns against possible exploitation of the desperate situation the Greek Cypriot government is in and declines a four-party meeting but does not close doors by acknowledging Ankara’s “willingness” to solve the Cyprus issue.

Will Turkey’s initiative to start a new round of diplomacy indeed turn into traffic for a “new state of affairs”? It is not clear yet. But given the already heated-up state of the waters of the East Mediterranean with Egypt and now Syria, and given the new state of affairs between Turkey and Israel with the possible energy cooperation outcomes, the economic crisis in Cyprus might be used for good, for a lasting solution for both the Greeks and Turks living on the island.


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chuck maki

3/31/2013 10:50:30 PM

the 1974 guarantees by Turkey, Greece, and the United Kingdom were ignored by the Greek side...the UK with bases on the island did nothing and of course the junta ruling Athens were only interested in Cyprus being Greek...therefore, the Turkish state was forced to act as it did. Greek American politicians blocked military aide to Turkey and Turkey responded by taking over American bases that were vital to security.

Vargen Vargen

3/31/2013 8:55:20 PM

Isnt there any international law that could help solving this issue?

ismail demir

3/31/2013 8:43:34 PM

Unless international bodies stoping spoiling Greeks, neither Cyprus issue nor world economic problems will be solved.Greeks should be reminded to behave according to their signature (London-Zurich agreements).Debt crisis showed the real face of Greeks (they have no moral issue for taking others money) but due to anti-muslim character of international bodies Greeks continue to annoying Turkey.


3/31/2013 7:09:39 PM

TRNC does need Greek permission to exist. it will do so for a very very long time it seems. There is little hateful Greeks can do about it.

Ken Alden

3/31/2013 6:16:24 PM

@Thessalonian,I assume that you are correct on all legal points of the Documents that mentioned. Please tell us, is there any grant that gave the Majority Greek Cypriot population to force the Minority Turkish Population to get a permit to buy a bag of cement to fix the stop of the house or grants the Majority to have 2000 mainland Greek Cammondoes to act as Cypriot National Guard, to place & keep the Minority Cypriot Turks in Detention C in 1974enters, "For their own Protection"! R.S.V.P.!

Ken Alden

3/31/2013 3:05:04 PM

Dear Mr. L. Kousoulides, The root cause of Trukish intervention in 1974 was the Cypriot drive for "Enosis" with Greece and abuse of Turkish Cypriot Minority. To forestal this in the future, a "Two State" separate but equal is the only solution, a la USA example! Your reluctance to share the Natural Resources on Teretoria basis, indicates that you do not view the Turkish Cypriots as equal partners on the island but rather as your suplicants. Sir, this is the same "Heated-up old soup" of 1974, Sir

Agnostic Turk

3/31/2013 1:53:32 PM

@Andreas, you seem to have learned well from Armenians. They invented a quote from the infamous "rising corporal" to push forward their cause. And I am making a fully logically argument, and somehow my argument is related to the "rising corporal."

john albay

3/31/2013 12:26:53 PM

@CYis greek, well your name says it all! What arrogance to say that cyprus is greek! We Turkish cypriots have been 500 years on the island and due to people like you who supported ENOSIS and EOKA B ,who supported the murderers of us Turkish cypriots,we no longer want to have reunification and dont want any dealings with you greek cypriots! Now you are Bankrupt and have lost all your friends(russia and the zionist jews in israel) you are alone in the world. Even the greeks have turned against you

Another View

3/31/2013 4:18:12 AM

@agnostic Turk. Such deep analysis! Your words sound so familiar. 80 years ago a rising corporal in Germany was admonishing other nations in a similar manner as the Agnostic Turk. Germans back then projected their rising economic power, cultural influence and military might. Fairness, international law and democracy be damned. The neighbors of Turkey including Greece are getting fed up with the loudness and aggressiveness of the neo Ottomans of Ankara.

Peter Kypros

3/31/2013 2:07:35 AM

No country will accept a violation of international law and UN resolutions in order to satisfy the geopolitical interests of any other country. This is something that Mr Davutoglu knows very well but hopes that Turkey will be able to bribe other countries to bypass it. It did not happen for almost 40 years and never will as that will undermine the foundations of UN and its resolutions. Turkey should take a brave step and help bring a solution to the problem consistent with UN.resolutions.
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