Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) President Ersin Tatar condemned the Greek Cypriot terror organization, EOKA, said Turkish Cypriot sources on Saturday.
In a written statement issued on the anniversary of the launch of EOKA’s armed attacks against the Turkish Cypriot people, Tatar said that the terror organization launched its attacks on April 1, 1955, to annex Cyprus to Greece, turning the island into a blood bath -- marking the beginning of decades of pain and suffering.
The organization, supported by the Greek Cypriot leadership, the Greek Cypriot Orthodox Church and Greece aimed to wipe out Turkish presence from the island, according to the statement.
“The main reason why the Turkish Resistance Organization (TMT) was formed was to protect the Turkish Cypriot people from these attacks,” said Tatar, highlighting that many Turkish Cypriot villages, places of worship and innocent Turkish Cypriot civilians were targeted by members of EOKA between 1955 and 1958.
He also maintained that following the establishment of the 1960 partnership Republic of Cyprus of which Turkish Cypriots were equal founding members, EOKA set out to implement the Akritas Plan, a covert plan to annihilate all Turkish presence in Cyprus.
“In December 1963, EOKA launched the ‘Bloody Christmas’ attacks in line with its plan to wipe out all Turkish presence from the island and to unite Cyprus with Greece. Again, hundreds of Turkish Cypriot villages were attacked between 1963 and 1974 and thousands of our people were displaced and forced to flee their homes,” the statement read.
Against this background, the Greek Administration of Southern Cyprus’s leader Nikos Anastasiades’ remarks, which glorified the EOKA terror organization, are dreadful, Tatar stressed.
Tatar called Anastasiades not to embrace the EOKA and distort the history to attack TMT, which fought for protecting Turkish Cypriots’ lives in the face of systematic terror attacks.
The island has been divided since 1964 when ethnic attacks forced Turkish Cypriots to withdraw into enclaves for their safety.
In 1974, a Greek Cypriot coup aiming at Greece’s annexation led to Turkey’s military intervention as a guarantor power to protect Turkish Cypriots from persecution and violence.
The TRNC was founded in 1983.
The Greek Cypriot administration entered the EU in 2004, the same year that Greek Cypriots thwarted the UN’s Annan Plan to end the decades-long dispute.
Reporting by Emre Aytekin
Writing by Ahmet Gencturk