‘Unacceptable’ Turkish claims leave no room for optimism

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Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias said there is no room for optimism in resuming moribund Cyprus talks due to Turkey’s “unacceptable claims”.

He told the Greek newspaper Kathimerini that 48 years after the Turkish invasion, the Cyprus problem remains an unresolved international issue of illegal invasion and occupation.

“Greece, in coordination with the Republic of Cyprus, is working to find a just, functional and viable solution.

“This solution can only be a bi-communal bizonal federation, in the framework set by the relevant UN Security Council resolutions”.

The Greek Foreign Minister noted that unacceptable and persistent claims of Turkey and the Turkish Cypriot leadership for a ‘two-state solution’ and illegal actions in fenced-off Varosha are entirely not in line with the framework of the solution.

“They leave no room for optimism for the resumption of a meaningful and credible negotiation process”.

Varosha, the fenced-off section of Turkish-occupied Famagusta, is often described as a ‘ghost town’.

UN Security Council resolution 550 (1984) considers any attempts to settle any part of Varosha by people other than its inhabitants as inadmissible and calls for the transfer of this area to the administration of the UN.

UN Security Council resolution 789 (1992) also urges that the area under the control of the United Nations Peace-keeping Force in Cyprus be extended to include Varosha.

Turkish Cypriot leader, Ersin Tatar, announced in July 2021 a partial lifting of the military status in Varosha to allow visitors.

The UN Security Council called for the reversal of this course of action.

In his latest report, UN Secretary-General Guterres said the position of the United Nations on this matter “remains unchanged.”

The Turkish side also advocates a Cyprus solution based on two separate sovereign states and not reunification under a bizonal federation.