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06 November 2006

Just the facts

medium_map_of_turkey.jpgIn discussing the area of Cyprus under Turkish military occupation since 1974, Tulin Daloglu states that it is subject to "economic sanctions," ("Geopolitical realities in Ankara," Op-Ed, Tuesday).

There are no sanctions. In fact, because of the dynamics of Cyprus' European Union membership in 2004, people and goods are moving relatively more freely across the divide. There have been more than 12 million incident-free crossings, and the per capita income of the Cypriots in the occupied area has tripled to approximately $11,000 — higher than in Turkey itself. Moreover, nearly two-thirds of Cypriots of Turkish ethnic origin possess Republic of Cyprus passports, are EU citizens and travel anywhere.
    Miss Daloglu conveniently forgets that approximately 43,000 armed Turkish troops are occupying more than one-third of the territory of Cyprus in flagrant violation of human rights and mandatory U.N. Security Council resolutions. This is the real cause of the ills facing the people of Cyprus, and no amount of Orwellian doubletalk obliterates this fact. The writer refers to the Annan plan, knowing very well that based on its own terms, it is defunct, as it was defeated overwhelmingly. After 30 years of saying "no" to any plan, the Turkish side accepted this specific plan as it met Turkey's demands. It is Turkey that is boycotting trade with Cyprus, even though the EU prohibits this. Talk of "economic isolation" is but a deception politically exploited by Turkey and its servile entity and designed to avoid a just, viable and lasting settlement to the Cyprus question for the sole benefit of the people of Cyprus.
    Press counselor
    Embassy of Cyprus

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