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No talks on Cyprus until TRNC’s equal status recognized: Turkish Cypriot leader

With no outcome reached for 60 years, these talks cannot be continued with same understanding, says Ersin Tatar

Betul Yuruk   | 28.09.2021
No talks on Cyprus until TRNC’s equal status recognized: Turkish Cypriot leader Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) President Ersin Tatar holds a press conference at New York Turkevi Center after his meeting with UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres (not seen) and Greek Cypriot leader Nicos Anastasiades (not seen) in New York, United States on September 27, 2021. ( Tayfun Coşkun - Anadolu Agency )

UNITED NATIONS 

The Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) will begin official talks on the Cyprus issue if its sovereign equality and international equal status are recognized, the nation's president said Monday.

Speaking to reporters after a tripartite luncheon meeting that included UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres and Greek Cypriot leader Nicos Anastasiades, Ersin Tatar said as no outcome has been reached for 60 years, these talks cannot be continued with the same understanding.

Tatar echoed Guterres' statement, saying there is no urgency to begin formal negotiations in Cyprus as there is no common ground.

The TRNC president noted that there are two separate nations and two separate states in Cyprus, saying that if this situation is not recognized, the status quo will continue.

He also said that Turkish Cypriots are facing injustice.

"The Secretary General also confirms this in his speeches. There is a state in the north.

"This state has full-fledged institutions and organizations. That's why it is out of the question for us to take a step back from our own state from now on," he added.

Earlier, after leaving the meeting, Tatar told Anadolu Agency that the Turkish side was working "to preserve our position to safeguard the interests of our community, of the Turkish Cypriot people.

"We will be using every opportunity to discuss the way forward," he said. ​​​​​​​

Tatar met Saturday with Guterres on the sidelines of the 76th session of the UN General Assembly in New York. The two exchanged views on the Cyprus issue, according to a statement by the UN.

Anastasiades in a press briefing said he shared the Greek administration's approaches on the solution of the Cyprus issue and that their positions are in line with UN Security Council resolutions.

"We also made proposals on how to move forward. The UN Secretary General plans to appoint a special envoy for Cyprus," said the Greek Cypriot leader.

Anastasiades also said that Guterres will issue a statement regarding the trilateral meeting and how it will proceed from now on after consultation with both sides.

He said there will be no meetings between the leaders of both sides in the near future.

Cyprus has been mired in a decades-long dispute between Greek and Turkish Cypriots, despite a series of diplomatic efforts by the UN to achieve a comprehensive settlement.

Ethnic attacks starting in the early 1960s forced Turkish Cypriots to withdraw into enclaves for their safety.

In 1974, a Greek Cypriot coup aimed at Greece's annexation of the island led to Turkey's military intervention as a guarantor power to protect Turkish Cypriots from persecution and violence. As a result, the TRNC was founded in 1983.

*Servet Gunerigok in Washington contributed to this story


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