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North Cyprus embargo by Greek Cypriot Administration to Science

The Greek Cypriot Administration has imposed one more embargo on the TRNC in the field of Science.

The Greek Cypriot Administration, which continues to prevent international cooperation of the TRNC universities and their attendance at international organizations, prevented Assistant Professor Tomotako Kitamura, who arrived in Cyprus via Larnaca Airport, to attend an academic activity at a TRNC university.

The event occurred last Wednesday (20th March). When the Japanese academic arrived in Cyprus, Greek Cypriot authorities sent him back to Dubai after they learned that Kitamura was planning to attend an academic activity in the TRNC. Kitamura who is an Assistant Professor at one of the leading universities of Japan sent messages to the authorities of the Eastern Mediterranean University (EMU) via internet in Dubai and expressed that he would not be able to attend the academic event due to the obstacle of the Greek Cypriot side. Thereupon, the Eastern Mediterranean University Administration made the necessary initiatives for Kitamura’s arrival in the TRNC via İstanbul to attend the event. The Assistant Professor eventually attended the academic event and made his presentation which was very important for his career.

During his visit to Vice Rector of EMU Prof.Dr.Cem Tanova, Assistant Professor Tomotako Kitamura, who will return to his country tomorrow (27th March), spoke to a TAK correspondent and told what happened and answered questions.

Kitamura, who explained that he had received support from his university in Japan to attend the conference at EMU, said that he checked the website of the Embassy of Southern Cyprus in Japan before arriving and he found out that there was no need for a visa and no problem in the transition to the TRNC. That’s why; he said that he arrived at Larnaca Airport the day before the ‘Physics Days’ at EMU.

Stating that after they stamped his passport at Larnaca Airport, he had been asked why he had come to Cyprus and Kitamura indicated in his reply that he had come for ‘Physics Days’ at EMU, he was then taken to a room and questioned.

Although he had submitted the documents related to his academic identity and the brochures and leaflets related to the ‘Physics Days’, he was not allowed to enter and then he was taken to another room and they continued to interrogate him there.

Kitamura said that in the second phase of interrogation he was asked whether he knows the Cyprus problem or not and he replied: ‘I’m an academician. I have just come to make a physics presentation. I am not concerned with your problem. I didn’t come to make policy. I’m not interested in the Cyprus issue. I’m interested in physics problems.’

The young academician stated that he couldn’t cross to the North and he was told that ‘it’s illegal’, his passport and other documents were taken away and he was sent back to Dubai after waiting in Larnaca Airport for 9 hours.

While sharing his feelings about the process he had experienced in Larnaca Airport Assistant Professor Kitamura underlined that he was supported by his university in Japan for his academic presentation in North Cyprus and the presentation was very important for his career and he was anxious and stressed because he thought that he would not have the chance to do his presentation because of the Greek Cypriot obstacles.

Kitamura also stated that although he had problems on arrival and he was able to arrive in North Cyprus a little later than scheduled, he loved being in the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus and it will be his pleasure to come again.

Rector of the Eastern Mediterranean University Prof Dr.Necdet Osam met with Kitamura and extended his thanks for his attendance to the EMU ‘Physics Days’ to share his academic experience. Osam also said that he was delighted to see a valued academician at EMU despite all of the obstacles.

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