Solution is possible with cooperation before a settlement, Turkish Cypriot FM says
Turkish Cypriot Foreign Minister Kudret Özersay has said that before the settlement (in Cyprus) there should be cooperation between the parties on the island and the region.
In an interview on private broadcaster Kıbrıs Genç Tv on Dec. 27, Özersay said that there is no need to wait for a comprehensive settlement in order to achieve concrete progress.
Özersay said that their vision regarding the Cyprus problem coincides with the statements of the last two reports of the United Nations and the findings of European Union authorities.
“It is a mistake to make our entire lives and developments in the Eastern Mediterranean fixated to the solution in Cyprus. We need to open new doors,” Özersay said.
“While the search for a comprehensive settlement continues in Cyprus, we need to build cooperation that will help increase the confidence between the two sides, prepare the Greek Cypriot side to share (power) and eliminate the risk of conflict,” he added.
“This may be more difficult for critical issues such as natural gas, but it is not impossible,” he noted.
Pointing out that everything is related to Eastern Mediterranean and maritime jurisdictions are associated with the solution, Özersay noted that Turkish Cypriots could not live today due to negotiations with Greek Cypriots about the future and the final form of the partnership.
Responding to a question regarding the annexation possibility of Turkish Cyprus to Turkey, Özersay said he didn't find this alternative right.
“Turkish Cypriots fought and lost their lives, including my father. These people didn't fight for someone else to rule us. We have been fighting at the negotiating table for 50 years because we do not want Greek Cypriots to rule us,” he said.
“Turkey is our ally and our strategic partner, but this and the historical depth of our relationship do not require us to say "let Turkey rule us" eventually,” he added.
Responding to the questions about his possible presidential candidacy, he said that he would run for election only to win.
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 first round of the presidential election in Turkish Cyprus in April 2020, Kudret Özersay might challenge President Mustafa Akıncı, Prime Minister Ersin Tatar and ex-Prime Minister Tufan Erhürman.