June 1, 2023

TRNC Citizen and Resident refused entry

from the TRNC into the Republic of Cyprus


By Chris Elliott…..

I was horrified to learn that a dear friend Debbie Mustafoğlu was denied entry at the border crossing from the TRNC into the Republic of Cyprus when she tried to travel south with two friends who collectively are planning and starting to prepare two charity concerts.

So why was she denied entry with her Kimlik (ID) Card by the Greek Cypriot Immigration Police when she attempted to travel south with her friends Hatice Salıh Kerimgil and Figen Vicky Rasmussen  to further their plans for these two charity concerts which would support children with special needs, and also a peace concert uniting both sides of Cyprus?

Figen Vicky Rasmussen, Hatice Salıh Kerimgil and Debbie Mustafoğlu

Figen Vicky Rasmussan Hatice Salıh Kerimgil and Demetra Mustafoğlu lrg

Speaking to Debbie about this incident she said “I am a Vatandas (Citizen) of the KKTC (TRNC) and married for 41 years to my husband Mehmet, who is Turkish Cypriot, but because it said on the back of my TRNC ID card (kimlik) that I was born in Oklahoma, USA, I was refused entry at which point all hell broke loose. I walked away quietly but my Turkish Cypriot girl friends gave them a severe scolding and told them that THEY discriminate against Turkish Cypriots which they were doing then and that the North does not do this to them when they cross.

I’m feeling very sad, down and disillusioned right now. It’s the first time since my breast cancer diagnosis and the battle to live back in April of this year.

With reports of positive negotiations between the Turkish Cypriots and Greek Cypriots in the quest to find agreement and a solution to the Cyprus problem, how will it ever work with attitudes from people like this?”

Since this news yesterday the 29th September we received news today from Debbie and her husband Mehmet that they had crossed into the Republic of Cyprus without problems using their US passports and celebrated the occasion with some nice cake and coffee at Starbucks.

In May 2015 she was the recipient of the US Ambassador’s State Department Cultural Diplomacy Award for her contributions to cultural understanding between the two communities of the island. (She is a Grammy List Nominee in Classical Music and a former Miss Oklahoma who has performed all over the world.)

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Looking at the whole question of entry into the Republic of Cyprus from the TRNC, we looked at a publication in the Washington DC, Republic of Cyprus Embassy webpage click here  and it begs the question – why is there no flexibility being shown to encourage people who are trying make a difference to enter the south as there are many that enter the north without difficulties? See extract below.

Admission and transit restrictions:

The Government of the Republic of Cyprus refuses admission to: (Extract)

2. Holders of “passports” issued illegally by the secessionist entity, the so-called “Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus”. Other nationalities having stamps or visas of the so-called “Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus” in their passports are only allowed to enter Cyprus after the above-mentioned visas/stamps are cancelled by the Immigration Authorities of the Republic of Cyprus.

* “TRNC” has been denied any international recognition and has been condemned and declared as illegal by the whole of International Community through Security Council Resolutions 541/83 and 550/84”.

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