Turkish Cypriots could 'go their own way' says PM

Northern Cyprus premier Huseyin Ozgurgun urges Greek Cypriots to return to reunification talks by end-year

Turkish Cypriots could 'go their own way' says PM

World Bulletin / News Desk

Turkish Cypriots will forge their own path if Greek Cypriots do not return to the negotiating table by the new year, the country’s prime minister said Friday.

"If we do not have a solution by the end of 2016, we need to be at the point of continuing [alone] as the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC)," Huseyin Ozgurgun told Anadolu Agency following fruitless reunification talks recently held in Switzerland.

"I would return to the table again today, but after a week or 10 days, we would not talk about the same things again," he said.

Ozgurgun accused Greek Cypriot negotiators of failing to acknowledge even the “smallest right” of Turkey or Turkish Cypriots.

"It is necessary to give up this mentality in order to return to the table and go further," he added.

Ozgurgun listed his conditions for a return to talks: that the Greek Cypriot side "would accept the equality of the Turkish Cypriot side; political equality; and the effective and actual guarantee of Turkey" on the island.

He also claimed the Greek Cypriot side never regarded Turkish Cypriots as equal partners.

The Turkish Cypriot premier was also critical of Southern Cyprus for not accepting Turkey's guarantor role in the decades-old dispute. 

Ozgurgun said Greek Cypriots had said "no" to every solution plan put forward by the UN for 50 years. He also condemned the international community for failing to criticize Southern Cyprus for repeated breakdowns in peace talks.

He stated that the Turkish Cypriot side said "yes" to the Annan Plan in 2004, while the Greek Cypriot side said "no" to the scheme, then joined the EU.

“How far will we endure it? How far will we go on like this?" Ozgurgun asked. 

Negotiations between Greek Cypriot leader Nicos Anastasiades and Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci, ended Monday in Switzerland without a solution.

Reunification discussions resumed in May 2015, and both sides have repeatedly expressed optimism that a solution can be found by the end of 2016.

Last Mod: 25 Kasım 2016, 16:33
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