President Mustafa Akıncı has received renowned chef Zihni Türksel, who recently beat 76 other competitors to win an Azerbaijan gastronomy competition in which 22 national cuisines and 55 regional cuisines participated.
Daily News of Life and times in North Cyprus goes around the world
By Kathy Martin…
I note from the local press and media that “British” Ex-pats who have permanently resided here (and presumably other countries) for less than 15 (yes fifteen!) years will be allowed to vote in the UK “in-out” referendum on Britain’s EU membership.
Some of the chinless (and in my opinion brainless) wonders in the House of Lords want this time limit to be abolished and allow any Briton residing here (or presumably any other foreign country?) to be able to vote on this issue
Should anyone permanently reside outside a country why should they (based purely on place of birth or parenthood) continue to have the right to interfere with or influence that country’s polices or status?
Indeed in the (fairly) recent vote on whether Scotland should remain in the “United” Kingdom, only voters on the electoral roll who physically resided in Scotland were allowed to vote in that referendum!
I was extremely pleased and gratified to learn that my rambles are obviously being read by people in high places!
In last week’s ramble I bemoaned the fact that although the freshwater pipeline from Turkey had been about for some time, no thought had apparently been given to the distribution of this life-giving substance!
A few days ago “our” President Mustafa Akıncı, also bemoaned the same fact! To me, this is proof that my rambles are read by him or someone in his office!
One recent news item that has caused concern is that the TRNC is preparing to adopt the Euro as its legal tender!
Personally speaking this concern is largely due the current UK pound to the Turkish lira rate, approximately 4.5 to the pound that I get from my (UK) pensions! This exchange rate has enabled us to live a “comfortable” life style.
The main cause for my concern is that over the years all of the European “Mediterranean” countries (including Greek Cyprus) that adopted the Euro have been obliged to seek financial “bailouts” from the European Central Bank.
I appreciate that some, if not all of these countries may have been somewhat profligate and were therefore unable to “balance the books” when it came to budget day.
However, in my opinion, as a “one size fits all” currency, in its present format the Euro is both politically and economically flawed!
Unfortunately, we, and, I presume, most Ex-pats, are residents but not citizens who can vote, so we will just have to wait and see!
This leads me into a “nightmare” scenario!
Last week I had a dream, but this week my nightmare is being forced to return to the UK either for financial or political reasons!
Although we have had our times of austerity here during the last decade, we have mostly been able to live a lifestyle that we couldn’t afford to keep up to in the UK.
Kathy says “I would like to end on what was the start of his ramble, which would have normally have been sent to Soner for inclusion on the KibKom forum on the day he died (1st November 2015).
Alistair was very concerned that President Erdoĝan was turning into a megalomaniac. Alistair found out that the reason the US presidents are not allowed to run for more than 2 terms, that is 8 years, is that once a leader gets to 10 years the power goes to their heads!
What he would have made of the outcome to the Turkish election on 1st November we will never know.”
In “Hürriyet”, a (mainland) Turkish newspaper last week it was reported that someone in the AKP (President Erdoğan’s political party) has suggested that President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan be granted the title of “Caliph”.
This would make him the chief civil and religious leader of all of the Sunni Muslims throughout the world!
Isn’t that man’s ego and megalomania already inflated too much? He is already building (OK, he is very kindly letting mere mortals do the physical work) a presidential “palace” of 1,000 rooms!
If you would like to read Alistair’s life story Click here
The Cyprus conference will begin again today in the town of Crans-Montana in Switzerland.
The conference, which will be held within the framework of the UN Secretary General’s declaration on 4th June, will start at 10.00 local time. (TRNC time: 11.00)
The conference, which will be attended by the both sides in Cyprus, as well as the guarantor countries Turkey, Greece and the United Kingdom, will focus on the issues of “Security and Guarantees” alongside all other issues for which a solution has yet to be reached so far in the Cyprus negotiation process.
Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu, Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Kocias, and the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs Boris Johnson will participate in the conference. Vice President of the European Commission Frans Timmermans and the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Federica Mogherini will represent the EU as an observer country.
The UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres is expected to attend the conference in the following days.
The Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Serdar Denktaş and Foreign Minister Tahsin Ertuğruloğlu will be present at the negotiations to be held in Crans-Montana.
Meanwhile, the official opening of the Cyprus Conference was held yesterday evening at the Le Regent Convention Centre in Crans-Montana.
President Mustafa Akıncı, the Greek Cypriot leader Nicos Anastasiades, the UN Secretary General’s Special Adviser on Cyprus Espen Barth Eide, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu, Greece’s Foreign Minister Nikos Kocias and the UK Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs Boris Johnson attended the meeting. Federica Mogherini, High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, was also present at the dinner.
Additionally, President Mustafa Akıncı held a meeting with Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu in Crans-Montana in order to evaluate the current status of talks before the conference.
Discussing the Cyprus Conference to be held in Switzerland, Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Tuğrul Türkeş has stated that the UN has ‘forced’ the meeting in Crans-Montana this week.
Türkeş, who is in London said: “I have to use this term again, a meeting will be forcibly held in Crans-Montana by the UN on June 27-28, with a ‘compulsory’ ‘meeting once again.” He continued, “Turkish Cypriot people do not deserve the unfair isolations imposed on them and they need to get rid of these as soon as possible. The politicians in Cyprus, especially the TRNC President, the negotiator and the government, are doing their utmost. Turkey also supports the TRNC. I know that the international press often misrepresents these things. It is clear that Turkey has always lent its support to finding a solution.
The Greek Cypriot side, which unfairly secured EU membership in 2004, sees the Turkish Cypriot people as a minority. This is the problem – it starts here. Our proposal, however, is to facilitate two equal communities, and a new federation state. Turkey supports this. This is the truth. Today’s population rates do not mean anything. However, from time to time, the Western press, especially the European press says so many different things.”
The United Nations (UN) Secretary General’s Special Adviser on Cyprus Espen Barth Eide has stated that the UN will not present a “joint document” to the parties in the conference.
Eide said at a press conference at the UN Geneva Office that the Cyprus Conference, which will start today, will be the continuation of the conference in Geneva in January.
Eide reiterated the statement of President Mustafa Akıncı at the press conference held the previous day that the conference should be treated as time for “a decision”. Responding to the question, “Are you of the same opinion?” Eide said that this approach is crucial: “we hope that it will be a conference for a decision, for a comprehensive solution that will unite the island.”
The United Nations (UN) Secretary General Antonio Guterres called on all interested parties to consider the opportunity of Cyprus reunification this week.
In his written statement ahead of the Cyprus Conference which will start today in Switzerland, Guterres said that he is pleased that the parties are coming together again for negotiations in Switzerland. He added that this determined step which has been taken by the sides has encouraged him.
Stating that the UN would support this effort, Guterres said, “As Secretary-General of the United Nations, I reiterate my steadfast commitment to supporting this effort. I urge all participants to demonstrate the will and leadership required to conclude a comprehensive settlement.”
To read more news and information from the TRNC Ministry of Foreign Affairs, please click here
Pictures shown are courtesy of the TRNC Public Information Office Facebook page.
By Kathy Martin…
Prince Harry, who is now something like 5th in line for the British throne, has said that he had an absolutely spiffing time during his fairly recent military duties in Afghanistan. As such he is now apparently advocating for the return of compulsory “National Service” in Britain.
However, something seem to have escaped the massive intellect of this gay (in the original sense of the word) young prince. He was a pampered and protected “Royal”, as such while he may have had to endure some, if not many, of the rigours of military life, he would never have been allowed (unlike other military personnel) to go anywhere without a screen of bodyguards. From memory, these bodyguards would have been (politically) more relevant or essential a couple of years ago when he would have been 3rd in line for the throne!
I believe that these bodyguards, whether military or “civilian” police would have cost the British taxpayers a lot of money!
I say this because; in my opinion “granny”, despite being one of the wealthiest women in the world with access to a vast unearned fortune would have dipped her hands into her purse, if Westminster and Whitehall were not prepared to provide the necessary funds!
Oops, I have strayed a bit, and you may have got the impression that I am not a royalist! However, to me, the entitlement for anyone to gain a position in a social or political environment purely by an accident of birth, rather than by ability, is an anathema.
OK, back to the original subject, Prince Harry probably doesn’t realise or appreciate the cost to the taxpayer of having a million or so youths being in the armed forces for a number of months.
Leaving aside, for the moment, the most glaringly obvious, pay, I want to look at other logistics. I presume, that there are tracts of land in the UK that still belong to the Ministry of Defence (MoD), but are there any with barracks or other accommodation that are fit for habitation? Or will such buildings have to be built from scratch, or, presumably at lesser expense, refurbished?
Continuing with logistics, are there sufficient clothing manufacturers in the UK to manufacture millions of uniforms (Dress, daywear and fatigues) for men and (presumably) women? It may, of course, be possible to manufacture or import firearms or Artillery pieces of various sizes, but are there any suitably qualified armourers to look after them?
The above lists/paragraphs are by no means exhaustive, but the BIG question remains, where does the money come from?
If we close all hospitals at the weekends, only open them 0900 – 1700 during the week with a half-day closure on Wednesday, we could almost do it!
OK, now to local, well island, news etc.
Regular readers, especially those who read my rambles in the now defunct “Kibkom Times” will know that I have long been sceptical of the likelihood or even the possibility of an acceptable settlement under the misconstrued belief that the Greek and Turkish Cypriots are basically similar peoples who actually WANT to live together at whatever cost!
Last week I was flabbergasted, amazed and astounded at the progress that had been made by “our” President Mustafa Akinci and the Greek Cypriot President, Nicos Anastasiades.
However my faith (or pessimism or realism) in human nature has been restored!
Nicolas Papadopoulos, leader of the Greek Cypriot Diko party, has said that he and his party will oppose any measures that would “downgrade” the Republic (South Cyprus) or “upgrade” the TRNC”!
As far as I can make out, Diko is the third largest party in the Greek Cypriot government and holds the balance of power between the two “main” parties.
I may be very obtuse or over-imaginative, but to me that is tantamount to a judge or magistrate telling an accused, before the start of the court proceedings, that he will be found guilty, irrespective of any evidence proving innocence!
In addition, there is the statement by the head of the Greek Cypriot negotiating team property delegation, Erato Kozakou-Marcoullis. She is reported to have said that the property issue will only be resolved with the return of every Greek Cypriot property. To me that doesn’t sound like a basis for negotiation, more like an ultimatum!
What a week it has been in politics, in various parts of the world!
Firstly, the recent general elections in Turkey have reduced AKP (the ruling/dominant party during the last decade or so) to 40% of seats in parliament. The party founder and current President of Turkey, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, wanted the AKP to gain 60% of seats, so that the Turkish constitution could be changed without debate or opposition in parliament.
Personally, I am very pleased that the AKP didn’t get anywhere near the desired (needed) 60% of seats. This is not because I am against change, but I strongly believe that in any democratic parliament the opposition should be strong enough to force debate and due consideration on any parliamentary matter, especially if it involves something as potentially “permanent” as a change in the constitution. Otherwise the “democratic” government becomes, in effect, a dictatorship.
Meanwhile, back in dear old Blighty the Prime Minister, David Cameron, has decided not to block pay rises for MPs (depending where they are in the pecking order) of between 5 and 10%.
This is at a time when “austerity” and “we are all in this together” are the buzz words in the Treasury.
Really? The “real” people, the workers, are facing either pay freezes or pay rises of 1%!
For the edification of any Member of Parliament reading this, a worker is someone who actually works, gets his (or her) hands dirty, pays taxes from which your pay comes from and, incidentally, votes YOU into parliament!
Having mentioned “austerity” above I must say that I am flummoxed that Greece has continued to be financially “afloat” for so long! When the current Prime Minister, Alexis Tsipras, was elected to power on 25th January this year on an “anti austerity” political platform, Greece was apparently something like a week away from bankruptcy.
I can’t remember the exact figures or details, but I think that Greece had to pay back something like 3 billion Euros to the ECB (European Central Bank) or maybe it was the IMF (International Monetary Fund) before it received its next tranche of (something like) 5 billion Euros. Something which, about 5 months later, has yet to happen!
I am not a financier, but if “Peter” says to “Paul” that he wants to give “Paul” 5 billion Euros, but only after “Paul” gives “Peter” 3 billion Euros, surely it would make sense for “Peter” to give “Paul” only 2 billion Euros?
OK, I know that there is more to it than that, but my question remains, why, after 5 months has Greece not been forced to pay, get thrown out of the Euro or be declared bankrupt?
Leaving aside the reasons for Greece’s current dire financial situation (inefficient, indeed, ineffective tax collection systems, bloated, over paid civil service etc), if the central bank(s) in Athens had had more control over the Greek currency, rather than the “one size fits all” Euro it is likely that the general population would not have suffered so much when a remedy was applied.
My personal opinion as to why Greece has not had to pay back the amount demanded on time and been obliged to leave the Euro zone, is that it would mean at least two things to the EU politicians and financial whizz kids.
Talk about being caught between the devil and the deep blue (Mediterranean) sea!
By Chris Elliott…….
The Presidents of South Cyprus and the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus have been meeting each other with their respective teams at meetings promoted by the UN to try to find an amicable agreement to settle the Cyprus dispute that has divided the island since 1974.
To the utter amazement of so many people around the world, hopeful that the island will be reunited after all of these wasted years, the government in the south of Cyprus have approved a recent decision to introduce the commemoration of “Enosis” in public schools and the new law allows the celebration of the 1950 referendum, when 96 percent of Greek Cypriots voted for the island to be annexed to Greece.
Is this just cynical gamesmanship designed to spoil the chances of a peace settlement by antagonising the Turkish Cypriots? I wonder what President Makarios, a supporter of Enosis, would have thought of this situation. He went before the UN Council on 19th July 1974 to complain that Greece with whom Enosis (union) was planned, had invaded Cyprus. The Greek Cypriots fell out with the Greeks then over Enosis and if they go down that path again, will they fall out with the so called mother country yet again?
Now the latest news feeds are saying that Nikos Anastasiades the Greek Cypriot leader is blaming both Turkey and North Cyprus for the collapse of the talks. President Mustafa Akıncı has stated that the reason negotiations have stalled is due to the Greek Cypriot side’s refusal to accept political equality.
President Akinci has also stated “If you take the root cause of such conflict, ‘Enosis’, and vote to commemorate it, you must understand that it will cause great indignation among the Turkish Cypriots” and added that the UN must play a vital role in overcoming this event and we will wait to see the developments and then determine our stance. So will there be a leaders’ meeting on Thursday 23rd February?
Perhaps Anastasiades is in line for a Cyprus medal of honour for his latest cynical damage limitation exercise as he steers the Cyprus ship into a whirlpool.
On 16th July 2013 we published the following article and slowly but surely, the truth of the Cyprus issue is bubbling out of those dark corners and we can only hope and pray that commonsense will prevail and through honesty and true friendship, an agreement with political equality will finally be reached by the Greek and Turkish Cypriot authorities and its people.
Reading the daily outpouring of rhetoric from politicians today, it pays to look back in time to try to learn the truth of what really happened and this is what Makarios said on the 19th July 1974 to the UN Council about the problems in Cyprus and who was at fault..
THE SPEECH BY MAKARIOS
THE UN SECURITY COUNCIL
on Turkish Republic of North Cyprus
MAKARIOS: “… It may be said that it was the Cyprus Government which invited the Greek officers to staff the National Guard. I regret to say that it was a mistake on my part to bestow upon them so much trust and confidence. They abused that trust and confidence and, instead of helping in the defense of the Island’s independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity, they themselves became the aggressors… the events in Cyprus do not constitute an internal matter of the Greeks of Cyprus. The Turks of Cyprus are also affected…The Security Council should call upon the military regime of Greece to withdraw from Cyprus the Greek officers serving in the National Guard, and to put an end to its invasion of Cyprus…”
President Makarios: I should like at the outset to express my warmest thanks to the members of the Security Council for the keen interest they have shown in the critical situation created in Cyprus after the coup which was organized by the military regime of Greece and was put into effect by the Greek officers serving in and commanding the Cyprus National Guard. I am particularly grateful that the Security Council has agreed to postpone its meeting until my arrival here to give me the opportunity of addressing it on the recent dramatic events in Cyprus.
As stated in the video above by President Makarios.
“What has been happening in Cyprus since last Monday morning is a real tragedy. The military regime of Greece has callously violated the independence of Cyprus. Without trace of respect for the democratic rights of the Cypriot people, without trace of respect for the independence and sovereignty of the Republic of Cyprus, the Greek junta has extended its dictatorship to Cyprus. It is indeed a fact that for some time now their intention was becoming obvious. The people of Cyprus had for a long time feeling that a coup by the Greek junta was brewing, and this feeling became more intense during the recent weeks when the terrorist organization ‘EOKA B’, directed from Athens, had renewed its wave of violence.”
I knew all along that the illegal organization had its roots and supply resources in Athens. I became aware that the Greek officers staffing and commanding the National Guard were recruiting members for that organization, and they supported it in various ways to the point of access to the munitions supply stores of the National Guard. In the camps of the National Guard, the Greek officers were conducting open propaganda in favor of that illegal organization and turned the National Guard from an organ of the state into an instrument of subversion. Whenever, from time to time I complained to Athens about unbecoming conduct by Greek officers of the National guard, the reply was that if I had concrete evidence in proof thereof those found guilty would be recalled. From the all tenor of their attitude, I received the unmistakable impression that their standard response was a pretense of innocence. A few days ago documents came into the hands of the Cyprus police clearly proving that ‘EOKA B’ was an appendage of the Athens regime.
Funds were being remitted from Athens for the upkeep of this organization and detailed directives regarding its actions were also given to it. I then found it necessary myself to address a letter to the President of the Greek regime, General Gizikis, asking him to give orders for the cessation of the violence and bloodshed by ‘EOKA B’ and for its dissolution. I also requested him to recall the Greek officers serving with the National Guard, adding that my intention was to reduce the numerical strength of this Force and to turn it into an organ of the Cyprus State. I was waiting for a reply. My impression was that the Athens regime did not favor the reduction of the Force, much less the withdrawal of the Greek officers.
The Greek Ambassador in Cyprus called on me, on instructions from his Government, in order to explain to me that the decrease in the numerical strength of the National Guard or the withdrawal of the Greek officers would weaken the defense of Cyprus in case of danger from Turkey. This was an argument which, even though it appeared logical, was not convincing because I knew that behind this argument other interests were hidden. I replied that as things developed I consider the danger from Turkey of a lesser degree than the danger from them. And it was proved that my fears were justified.
On Saturday, 13 July, a conference under the presidency of General Gizikis was held in Athens which lasted for many hours. It was attended by the Greek Chief of Staff of the armed forces, the Ambassador of Greece to Cyprus, the commander of the purpose of discussing the content of my letter. As was stated in a relevant communiqué issued at the end of this conference, it was to be reconvened on Monday, 15 July. The reference in the communiqué to a second conference was deceiving. For a while on Monday I was waiting for a reply to my letter, the reply came, and it was the coup.
On that day, I returned from my summer house on the Troodos mountains, where I had spent the week-end, and by 8 a.m. I was at my office at the Presidential Palace. Half an hour later I was welcoming in the reception room a group of boys and girls, members of the Greek Orthodox Youth from Cairo who came to Cyprus as my guests for a few days. Hardly had I greeted them when the first shots were heard. Within seconds the shots became more frequent and a member of the Presidential Guard informed me that armored cars and tanks had passed the fence and were already in the yard of the Presidential Palace which was shaking from mortar shells. The situation soon became critical. I tried to call the Cyprus Radio Station for the purpose of issuing a special broadcast announcing that the Presidential Palace was under attack, but I realized that the lines were cut off. Heavy shelling was ever increasing. How my life was saved seemed like a providential miracle. When I eventually found myself in the area of Paphos, I addressed the people of Cyprus from a local radio station informing them that I am alive and that I will struggle with them against the dictatorship which the Greek regime is trying to impose.
I do not intend to occupy the time of the members of the Security Council with my personal adventure. I simply wish to add that during the second day of the armed attack the armored cars and tanks were moving towards Paphos, while at the same time a small warship of the National Guard began shelling the Bishopric of Paphos where I was staying. Under the circumstances, I found it advisable to leave Cyprus rather than fall into the hands of the Greek junta.
I am grateful to the British Government which made available a helicopter to pick me up from Paphos, transfer me to the British bases, and from there by plane to Malta and London. I am also grateful to the Special Representative of the Secretary-General and to the Commander of the Peace-Keeping Force in Cyprus for the interest which they had shown for my safety. My presence in this room of the Security Council was made possible thanks to the help given to me by the British Government and the representatives of the Secretary-General, Dr. Waldheim, whose keen concern for me and for the critical situation which developed in Cyprus moves every fiber of my heart.
I do not know as yet all the details of the Cyprus crisis caused by the Greek military regime. I am afraid that the number of casualties is large and that the material destruction is heavy. What is, however, our primary concern at present is the ending of the tragedy.
When I reached London, I was informed of the content of the speech of the representative of the Greek junta to the United Nations. I was surprised at the way they are trying to deceive world public opinion. Without a blush, the Greek junta is making efforts to simplify the situation, claiming that it is not involved in the armed attack and that the developments of the last few days are an internal matter of the Greek Cypriots.
I do not believe that there are people who accept the allegations of the Greek military regime. The coup did not come about under such circumstances as to be considered an internal matter of the Greek Cypriots. It is clearly an invasion from outside, in flagrant violation of the independence and sovereignty of the Republic of Cyprus. The so-called coup was the work of the Greek officers staffing and commanding the National Guard. I must also underline the fact that the Greek contingent, composed of 950 officers and men stationed in Cyprus by virtue of the Treaty of Alliance, played a predominant role in this aggressive affair against Cyprus. The capture of the airport outside the capital was carried out by officers and men of the Greek contingent campaign near the airport.
It is enough to state on this point that certain photographs appearing in the world press show armored vehicles and tanks belonging to the Greek contingent in Cyprus. On the other hand, the Greek officers serving with the National Guard were directing the operations. In these operations, they recruited many members of the terrorist organization ‘EOKA B’, whom they armed with weapons of the National Guard.
If the Greek officers serving in the National Guard were not involved, how does one explain the fact that among the casualties in battle were Greek officers whose remains were transported to Greece and buried there? If Greek officers did not carry out the coup, how does one explain the fact of night flights of Greek aircraft transporting to Cyprus personnel in civilian clothes and taking back to Greece dead and wounded men? There is no doubt that the coup was organized by the Greek junta and was carried out by the Greek officers commanding the National Guard and by the officers and men of the Greek contingent stationed in Cyprus – and it was reported as such by the press around the globe.
The coup caused much bloodshed and took a great toll of human lives. It was faced with the determined resistance of the legal security forces and the resistance of the Greek people of Cyprus. I can say with certainty that the resistance and the reaction of the Greek Cypriot people against the conspirators will not end until there is a restoration of their freedom and democratic rights. The Cypriot people will never bow to dictatorship, even though for the moment the brutal force of the armored cars and tanks may have prevailed.
It may be alleged that what took place in Cyprus is a revolution and that a Government was established based on revolutionary law. This is not the case. No revolution took place in Cyprus which could be considered as an internal matter. It was an invasion, which violated the independence and the sovereignty of the Republic. And the invasion is continuing so long as there are Greek officers in Cyprus. The results of this invasion will be catalytic for Cyprus if there is no return to constitutional normality and if democratic freedoms are not restored.
For the purpose of misleading world public opinion, the military regime of Greece announced yesterday the gradual replacement of the Greek officers of the National Guard. But the issue is not their replacement; the issue is their withdrawal. The gesture of replacement has the meaning of admission that the Greek officers now serving in the National Guard were those who carried out the coup. Those officers, however, did not act on their own initiative but upon instructions from Athens, and their replacements will also follow instructions from the Athens regime. Thus the National Guard will always remain an instrument of the Greek military regime, and I am certain that the members of the Security Council understand this ploy.
It may be said that it was the Cyprus Government which invited the Greek officers to staff the National Guard. I regret to say that it was a mistake on my part to bestow upon them so much trust and confidence. They abused that trust and confidence and, instead of helping in the defense of the Island’s independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity, they themselves became the aggressors.
I am obliged to say that the policy of the military regime in Greece towards Cyprus, and particularly towards the Greek Cypriots, has been insincere. I wish to stress that it was a policy of duplicity.
For some time talks were going on between the Greek and Turkish Cypriots in search of a peaceful solution to the Cyprus problem, which on many occasions has occupied the time of the Security Council and the General Assembly of the United Nations. The representative of the Secretary-General and two constitutional experts from Greece and Turkey have been attending the talks. The Security Council has repeatedly renewed, twice yearly, the mandate of the peace-keeping Force in Cyprus, expressing every time hope for a speedy solution of the problem.
It cannot be said that up to now the progress of the talks has been satisfactory. But how could there be any progress in the talks while the policy on Cyprus of the regime in Athens has been double-faced? It was agreed by all the parties concerned that the talks were taking place on the basis of independence. The regime of Athens also agreed to that, and time and again the Greek Ministry of Foreign Affairs declared that the position of Greece on this issue was clear. If that were the case, why had the military regime of Greece created and supported the terrorist organization ‘EOKA B’, whose purpose was stated to be the union of Cyprus with Greece and whose members called themselves ‘unionists’?
Inside the camps of the National Guard, the Greek officers continually charged that while Enosis was feasible its realization was undermined by me. When reminded that Greece had made its position clear on this and that it supported independence, their reply was that no attention should be given to the words of diplomats. Under such circumstances how was it possible for the talks to arrive at a positive result? The double-faced policy of the Greek regime was one of the main obstacles to the progress of the talks.
In the circumstances that have now been created in Cyprus, I cannot foresee the prospects of the talks. I would rather say that there are no prospects at all. An agreement that may be reached by the talks would be devoid of any value because there is no elected leadership to deal with the matter. The coup d’état of the military regime of Greece constitutes an arrest of the progress of the talks towards a solution. Moreover, it will be a continuous source of anomaly in Cyprus, the repercussions of which will be very grave and far reaching, if this situation is permitted to continue even for a short time.
I appeal to the members of the Security Council to do their utmost to put an end to this anomalous situation which was created by the coup of Athens. I call upon the Security Council to use all ways and means at its disposal so that the constitutional order in Cyprus and the democratic rights of the people of Cyprus can be reinstated without delay.
As I have already stated, the events in Cyprus do not constitute an internal matter of the Greeks of Cyprus. The Turks of Cyprus are also affected. The coup of the Greek junta is an invasion, and from its consequences the whole people of Cyprus suffers, both Greeks and Turks. The United Nations has a peace-keeping Force stationed in Cyprus. It is not possible for the role of that peace-keeping Force to be effective under conditions of a military coup. The Security Council should call upon the military regime of Greece to withdraw from Cyprus the Greek officers serving in the National Guard, and to put an end to its invasion of Cyprus.
I think that, with what I have placed before you, I have given a picture of the situation. I have no doubt that an appropriate decision of the Security Council will put an end to the invasion and restore the violated independence of Cyprus and the democratic rights of the Cypriot people.
Editors Note: On 20th July 1974 the Turkish Armed Forces launched “Operation Atilla” a peace intervention operation in Cyprus as a guarantor power which was intended to safeguard the lives of the Turkish Cypriots who had been driven into enclaves and under threat of annihilation.
On Saturday 20th July 2013 the world is still waiting to see what the UN intends doing about this 39-year-old problem although the issues go back even further. The first Turkish Cypriot to be killed by EOKA it seems, was on 21st June 1955, who was a policeman, so the truth needs to be told, understood and realistic settlements made to bring peace and harmony back to Cyprus.
Compound this with the UN Annan Plan for peace which was accepted by Turkish Cypriots and rejected by the Greek Cypriots on 24th April 2004. The Greeks Cypriots are then welcomed into the European Union but the Turkish Cypriots are left to continue to live with international embargoes.
President Mustafa Akıncı gave a speech at the 23rd World Energy Congress in İstanbul, the most important global organization of the World Energy Council.
President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin, Venezuela President Nicolas Madura and President of Azerbaijan İlhan Aliyev attended the opening of the Congress, which was hosted by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, under the theme, “Embracing New Frontiers”.
Highlighting the intensified negotiation process which has been ongoing for 16 months, President Akıncı said, “If the Greek Cypriot side also displays a logical and realistic understanding, then a bi-zonal federation will soon be possible.”
Akıncı pointed out that the main theme of the 23rd World Energy Congress is “Share for peace”, and stressed that this could be achieved in the Eastern Mediterranean if Cyprus also takes an active role.
Akıncı said, “Should we reach a solution to the Cyprus Problem, a United Federated Cyprus will be able to contribute to matters of international energy security and energy access”. He said the natural gas discovered in the region “can reach Europe in the most economic and safe way through an energy corridor that will be constructed in Cyprus via Turkey.” Akıncı added that this would not only benefit Greek and Turkish Cypriots, but would allow countries like Turkey, Greece, Israel and Egypt, which play an important role in the region, to redefine their relations in the spirit of peace and cooperation.
President Akıncı said that the settlement in Cyprus would be a huge opportunity for the larger geographical region.
Akıncı explained that that an energy deal to construct an undersea electricity cable link between the Middle East and Europe via Turkey is on the agenda, as well as natural gas. He said: “Rather than implementing a subsea power cable project between Israel, South Cyprus, Crete and Greece, the project between Israel, Cyprus and Turkey will be faster, cheaper and shorter. The solution to problems on the island will create new horizons in these fields.”
During the Congress, President Mustafa Akıncı also met with Presidents of Turkey, Russia, Venezuela and Azerbaijan.
The agreement to supply undersea electricity from Turkey to the TRNC via cable link will be signed today.
The agreement will be signed by Turkish Energy and Natural Resources Minister, Berat Albayrak, and TRNC Economy and Energy Minister, Sunat Atun. Work on an undersea electricity cable link between the two countries will soon begin.
The agreement will allow for greater involvement of the TRNC in the interconnected electricity system for the Eastern Mediterranean and Europe.
To read more news and information from the TRNC Ministry of Foreign Affairs, please click here
Pictures shown are courtesy of the TRNC Public Information Office Facebook page.
By Margaret Sheard…..
We met Zekai Altan some 2 years ago and have had the pleasure of staying at his lovely eco friendly Nitovikla Hotel in Kumyali, it was only for a weekend but such a relaxing experience. Since then we have kept in contact with Zekai and were pleased when he invited us to the launch of his new book Gizemli Kıbrıs (Mysterious Cyprus) which was held at the Merit Hotel in Lefkoşa on Thursday 8th September. Zekai was accompanied by his wife Kader, and we noted the arrival of his one year old grandson for this very special occasion.
The event was attended by President Akıncı and his wife Meryl as well as The Minister of Health – Faiz Suçuoğlu, Undersecretary of the Ministry of Tourism and Environment – Ismet Esenyel, Ersin Tatar, Mehmetçik Mayor – Cemil Sarıçizmeli, and also many other familiar well-known faces who we have met many times previously.
As the guests were arriving we were entertained with some lovely violin music played by Aytaç Çağın and there were also 3 ladies from Kumyali who were demonstrating their expertise with basketwork and wool spinning which was very interesting to watch.
We were then treated to a film showing Zekai and his efforts to promote eco-tourism and areas of the Karpaz with traditional handicrafts and eco-friendly plants growing naturally which would eventually be used in typical Cypriot cuisine. The whole evening was conducted in Turkish so we were a little lost with the dialogue but it was plain to see the importance of promoting the natural beauty of the Karpaz region and the traditional Cypriot culture from the aspect of tourism.
The introductions during the event were made by Turkish Cypriot Broadcaster Hüseyin Kanatlı and there were a number of speeches made, including President Mustafa Akıncı, Faiz Suçuoğlu, Ismet Esenyel and of course Zekai Altan who talked about his special interest in tourism and at Nitovikla living and promoting the authentic life and culture of true Cypriots. He said “Tourists do not come here to see 10-storey concrete buildings. They already see this in their own countries but the authenticity of the Karpaz will lure them all the time”. President Akıncı in his speech pointed out the need to support eco-tourism and wished Zekai success.
After the departure of the President, Zekai settled down to book-signing and judging by the long queue I expect he was there for a long time after we too took our leave.
Zekai’s book is in the Turkish language but he will be producing it in English in the near future. I have seen a draft of the English version and offered to help with proof-reading this very intriguing account of Cyprus heritage for him so I will also be eagerly looking forward to the launch of this book and writing a review for our worldwide readership.