‘The Future of Cyprus’ webinar organised by the British Turkish Cypriot Association (BTCA), the Council of Turkish Cypriot Associations UK (CTCA) in cooperation with the Circle Foundation think tank was held on 24th March.
According to the statement of the British Turkish Cypriot Association (BTCA), the Council of Turkish Cypriot Associations UK (CTCA) and Circle Foundation, Former UK Government Minister Brooks Newmark moderated the webinar and Ergün Olgun the Special Representative of Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) President Ersin Tatar, former UK Foreign Secretary Jack Straw, Co-Chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group for the TRNC Lord Northbrook, Sir David Amess Member of Parliament for Southend West and Professor of Political Science and International Relations, Maltepe, Istanbul Dr Hasan Ünal participated as speakers.
Speaking at the webinar, Jack Straw mentioned that a bi-zonal, bi-communal federation did not seem possible anymore and that is the reason why Turkish Cypriots prefers a two-state solution. Straw underlined that it was a mistake of the European Union (EU) to accept Cyprus as one country and the current situation is only in favour of the Greek Cypriot side.
Prof. Dr. Hasan Ünal made a speech on the relations of Ankara and Moscow. The speakers evaluated the 5+UN informal meeting. Ergün Olgun pointed out in his speech that the aim of the summit in Geneva is to see whether a common ground exists for a solution. The fact that the Greek Cypriots see the Turkish Cypriots as a minority and it is an unacceptable point of view for the Turkish Cypriots there would be another summit in one month after Geneva. Stressing that there is no possibility for the EU to be neutral in any way, Olgun added that there is no obstacle for Britain to recognise TRNC either.
Sir David Amess stated that if the EU behaves neutrally it could have a helping role and Lord Northbrook said that the semi direct flights via Turkey, that were just touchdown flights, should be started again.
Organisers of the webinar made a statement following the webinar and said ‘For peace and stability in Cyprus we support economic and social equality however the EU and international community could not provide this. Yet they have promised to recognise both sides in Cyprus equally and lift the unjust isolations to Northern Cyprus. An alternative plan or a two-state solution should be seriously taken into consideration’
Source: TRNC Public Information Office