Introduction by Chris Elliott ….
We are delighted to be able to share President Ersin Tatar’s Christmas and New Year message to the expat community on our CyprusScene website and e-newspaper. The year 2021 presents many opportunities for the TRNC and its friends worldwide together with the expat community to present to the world the Truth and Injustice that the Turkish Cypriots have had to endure for so long and let’s pray that recognition and removal of the embargo will be the long-awaited reward.
” Dear Friends,
As we prepare to say goodbye to 2020, I hope that the forthcoming year will bring good health, prosperity and joy to you all.
As you know, this past year has been full of challenges – not least the political and economic challenges stemming from a pandemic, which the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus has managed successfully up until now when compared to many other countries in the world, and has managed to keep Covid-19 cases at low levels, making our country one of the safest and most secure.
Because of the determined stance to put health first, this and the previous government which I led as Prime Minister, implemented appropriate measures in a balanced manner to protect our economy and the different sectors of the country at a time of hardship.
We are heading towards the New Year with the continuation of inhumane isolation which affects all the residents who invested here and who love and live in our country. The continued isolation on the Turkish Cypriot people despite the many promises given to us to end the restrictions in terms of trade and direct flights is a disgrace.
Turkish Cypriots are still unable to participate in many international sports tournaments under their own flag and identity, because of the obstacles put forward by the Greek Cypriot side. I hope that the New Year will allow for a fresh approach to be taken by the international community which respects universal human rights laws and previously made promises, that paves the way for direct trade and travel between all residents in the TRNC and the rest of the world. The Turkish Cypriot side has not been the side which has prevented a settlement in Cyprus as evidently seen during the Annan Plan referenda of 2004, and more recently, the collapse of the process in Crans Montana in 2017, because of the maximalist demands of the Greek Cypriot side, and their refusal to share governance and the natural resources of the region with the Turkish Cypriot co-owners of the island.
On a positive note, however, I want to thank our expat and foreign resident friends, to whom I afford great value, for the kind messages following my election victory in October. I am aware of the impeccable work in the social and charitable field undertaken by our residents and the economic and cultural contributions to our society, which I commend.
I am indeed aware of the issues you face, from residency to property matters, and have begun a dialogue with civil organisations in the hope of addressing these issues.
As I wish you a merry Christmas and a happy new year, it should be remembered that the festive season can only be celebrated by giving the light of love to those who need it most.
I wish you and your families a very happy and prosperous new year at a time when we need to adhere to the rules of wearing protective masks, observing social distancing and adhering to good hygiene.
Let’s all stay safe and beat the Pandemic with new energy.
May God bless you all”.