A new map emerges in Mediterranean: Turkish Cypriot PM
Turkish Cypriot Prime Minister Ersin Tatar has said that the balance in the Mediterranean has changed, and this new balance should be taken into consideration by all the parties.
While answering questions from anchor Hakan Çelik on private broadcaster CNN Türk on Dec. 8, Tatar said that a new map has emerged in the Mediterranean Sea, after a maritime pact signed between Turkey and Libya.
“The Greek Cypriot side comes to such a game that they will lose what they have. The agreement with Libya has changed all balances. A new map has emerged,” Tatar said.
“This [claims of Greece and Greek Cyprus] is done through the rights of small islands such as Meis and Crete. Under international law, the continental shelf of a tiny island cannot be a demand for exclusive economic zones,” he said.
Referring to the ongoing Cyprus talks, Tatar said that the failure to achieve a final solution in Cyprus could result in a separation.
Currently, in their [Greek Cypriot] minds, these negotiations are based on a federal partnership. We aim to maintain the existence of the Turks in the north under the constituent state,” Tatar said.
“They [Greek Cypriots] are putting trapped agreements in front of us. Our desire is to have the majority of Turks in the property and population in the northern part of Cyprus,” he added.
Referring to the tripartite meeting between Turkish Cypriot President Mustafa Akıncı, his Greek Cypriot counterpart Nikos Anastasiades and U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres held in Nov. 25 in Berlin, Tatar underlined that the talks have been going on more than 50 years without any results.
“What we cannot give up is that right to guarantee of Turkey. We know very well what the Greek Cypriots want. Mustafa Akıncı and his colleagues think that these guarantees can be changed by another mechanism. You cannot force anyone to marry, this business has been spoken for 50 years in Cyprus,” he noted.
In 1974, following a coup aiming at Cyprus’ annexation by Greece, Ankara had to intervene as a guarantor power.
In 1983, Turkish Cyprus was founded.
The decades since then have seen several attempts to resolve the dispute, all ending in failure. The latest one, held with the participation of the guarantor countries Turkey, Greece, and the U.K., ended in 2017 in Switzerland.
In the second round of the presidential election in Turkish Cyprus in April 2020, Ersin Tatar might challenge incumbent Mustafa Akıncı.