Before leaving for Adelaide for his delayed vacation, the United Nations secretary-general’s special Cyprus envoy Alexander Downer gave the Greek Cypriot leadership one last compromise formula, which was already accepted by Turkish Cypriots. If accepted by the Greek Cypriots as well, the so-called “statement crisis” would be resolved and a “final” set of talks to resolve the Cyprus problem on its fiftieth anniversary would be soon underway.
The first answer came embedded in speech from Anastasiades at a social gathering. He said he did not believe in the merit of starting a new process, knowing the process would soon collapse. Interesting, was it not? The Greek Cypriot leader was sure the new process, if it could ever get underway, would collapse in a short period of time. Why he was so sure? Because he would not let it survive and produce a bitter compromise accord. Because like his predecessors, he never intended to achieve a solution, the entire game was one to fool the world, pretending as if Greek Cypriots wanted a negotiated settlement while working to achieve a resolution through osmosis – gradually and systematically absorbing the “frustrated” Turkish Cypriots into the so-called Cyprus nation… Among all Greek Cypriot leaders since 1960, only the late Tassos Papadopoulos was smart enough to publicly admit a “resolution through osmosis” doctrine.
Accepting Turkish Cypriots right to exist on the island as a “politically equal” partner of Greek Cypriots apparently remains a nightmare for the Greek Cypriot leadership, but that has to be the foundation stone of any resolution to the Cyprus problem. Indeed, Downer’s latest proposal was composed Dec. 14 as a last ditch effort, after the Greek Cypriot side flatly rejected the Turkish Cypriot proposal. Otherwise, Downer would pack up and go to assume an important diplomatic post for his country, Australia.
Besides the perennial demand of the Greek Cypriots that the new federation on the island should have “single sovereignty,” Downer’s proposal said single sovereignty would be as described in the U.N. charter Article II. Furthermore, Downer incorporated some ideas from the Turkish Cypriot side (in exchange for them agreeing to single sovereignty) and said single sovereignty would emanate equally from Turkish Cypriots and Greek Cypriots (no community or people reference because of issues of semantics). Lastly, it was stressed that neither Greek Cypriots, nor Turkish Cypriots would have hegemony over the other, as they are political equals with each other. Greek Cypriot top advisors apparently reached the conclusion that the above wording “diluted the notion of single sovereignty” and rendered susceptible the effectiveness in governance principle…
What will happen now? Will Downer pack up and go? That of course, would be his decision, which everyone should respect, but what will happen to the Cyprus problem? Despite all the calls that the new process should include punitive clauses and the side responsible for failure should pay a price, the process apparently faltered before going underway; what now? Will the Greek Cypriots pay a price for their adamancy and accustomed “oxi” stance regarding a future in partnership with Turkish Cypriots? Well they are the “sole legitimate government” of the entire island. They are EU members. They are U.N. members. Thus, the status quo will continue and Turkish Cypriots will remain to be left outside to freeze in the perennial “bleak mid-winter” of Cypriot politics.
Rewarding intransigence has helped the Cyprus problem, started in December 1963, complete its 50 years with no end in sight… Is it not enough? Can’t something be undone to end this gross injustice?