Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Kudret Özersay has participated in the “23rd Council of Ministers Meeting” of the Economic Cooperation Organization (ECO), at which the TRNC is an observer member under the title of ‘Turkish Cypriot State’. The meeting has been organised in Dushanbe, the capital of Tajikistan.

In his speech at the meeting, Özersay outlined the TRNC’s stance on various issues. He emphasised the importance of the relationship between the Turkish Cypriot State, an observer member since 2012, and the ECO, reiterating that this current membership represents a concrete step towards resolving the unjust isolation imposed on the Turkish Cypriot people.

Foreign Minister Özersay underlined that Turkish Cypriots are exposed to numerous constraints in all areas, ranging from travel restrictions for those holding TRNC passports, to representation in international organizations, as well as restrictions in the areas of trade, education, culture, art, and sports. Stating that this situation encourages the Greek Cypriot side’s uncompromising stance on any potential settlement, Özersay said that the Greek Cypriots move further away from sharing power and wealth with the Turkish Cypriots with each day that the isolation continues.

Özersay stated that the TRNC is ready to work together with the ECO and its member states in order to take concrete steps to remove the restrictions which prevent Turkish Cypriots from becoming a part of the international community.

Özersay asked for solidarity and support from the ECO member states and emphasized the importance of the participation of the member states in the four different ECO events, which will be organized in the TRNC.