Turkish Cypriot officials agree on FIFA’s proposal for football union in Cyprus
ISTANBUL – NTV
A handout picture obtained from FIFA shows Cyprus Turkish Football Association President Hasan Sertoğlu (L) and Cyprus Football Association President Costakis Koutsokoumnis shaking hands on Nov. 6 during the signing ceremony of FIFA's deal. AFP photoThe Turkish Cypriot football federation (CTFA) has given its approval for FIFA’s proposal to unify football on the eastern Mediterranean island after an unanimous vote on Nov. 29.
The text was signed on Nov. 5 in Zurich by both the Presidents of both the CTFA and the Greek Cypriot football federations. However, just after the signature, CTFA’s President Hasan Sertoğlu said the signed text was only a draft and the Turkish side was planning to ask for revisions on the document that will end the isolation of the clubs from the northern part of the island.
The deal was finally accepted by unanimity during a voting session with the participation of members from the 42 active clubs in the north of the island.
“The unanimity shows how the football clubs are approaching the issue. It also shows their confidence to the federation. This is a beginning, but we will walk on the path together,” Sertoğlu said following the vote.
He also added that steps to implement the deal will start in the beginning of 2014. The deal was approved by the Greek Cypriot football federation last week.
According the deal, Turkish clubs will join the Greek Cypriot Federation and the football division will be unified under Greek Cyprus leagues’ roof. The transition will be led by a committee composed of eight members, four from for each side, which will be responsible for implementing the conditions of the deal.
Turkish Cypriot clubs will be able to compete in European tournaments – if qualified – and will also be authorized to organize friendlies with clubs from other countries, which was previously banned due to embargos.
The football union is also seen as a significant step amid initiative for the re-initiating talks for the reunification of the island.