EU: New Varosha move, step in the wrong direction

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Turkey and the Turkish Cypriot leadership are fully aware of the position of the European Union against opening up fenced-off Varosha, said Commission spokesperson Stefan De Keersmaecker.

He told the Cyprus News Agency that further opening sections of the beach of the abandoned resort were a step in the wrong direction.

De Keersmaecker said that the Commission is “well aware” of the latest developments and is following them with “great concern.”

“The Turkish Government and the leadership of the Turkish Cypriot community are fully aware of the EU position on Varosha.

“We continue to be guided by the relevant UN Security Council Resolutions with respect to Varosha, which consider attempts to settle any part of the city by people other than its inhabitants as inadmissible and call for the transfer of that area to the administration of the United Nations.

“No actions should be carried out in relation to Varosha that are not in accordance with those Resolutions.”

He said opening new parts of the beach or preparing it for the summer season “is a further step in the wrong direction.”

“The EU once again underlines the need to avoid unilateral actions in breach of international law and renewed provocations, which could raise tensions on the island and compromise the ongoing efforts to seek common ground between the parties towards a lasting settlement of the Cyprus issue, in line with relevant UN Security Council resolutions”.

The spokesperson said that actions that undermine UN Security Council resolutions are “unacceptable”.

Turkish Cypriot leader, Ersin Tatar, announced in July 2021 a partial lifting of the military status in Varosha after opening part of the fenced area.

The UN and the EU have denounced the move, but the Turkish side has expanded instead of rolling back.