Turkey's status as guarantor for TRNC must be preserved

DAILY SABAH WITH AA
ANKARA
Published 01.10.2019 00:10

Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) Prime Minister Ersin Tatar urged Turkish Cypriot President Mustafa Akıncı to clearly underline for the United Nations that Turkey's guarantor status is a red line for Turkish Cypriots and to pay regard to the act of parliament in this respect.

"Mr. Akıncı has to state to U.N. secretary-general [Antonio Guterres] that it is the U.N.'s duty to hinder the further unjust treatment of Turkish Cypriots," Tatar said on Sunday, referring to the meeting with Guterres today in a written statement via the National Unity Party (UBP), which he heads. Tatar reiterated that Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis attacked Turkey's guarantor rights on Cyprus in his speech at the U.N. General Assembly by saying unless the guarantor system, which he claims to be a system of the 19th century, is lifted, no federal solution can be found in Cyprus.

Stressing that Cyprus became a member of the U.N. after the first half of the 20th century, Tatar stated that if the guarantor system is an old model of the 19th century, the U.N. would not have accepted it in 1960. Tatar said Mitsotakis is indicating that, "Unless you give us [Greek Cypriots], the necessary ground to make C

yprus Hellenistic, no agreement will be made."

Cyprus has been divided since 1974, when Turkey used its guarantor rights to intervene on the island after a far-right Greek Cypriot military coup sponsored by the military junta then in power in Athens sought to unite the island with Greece. The coup followed decade-long, interethnic violence and terrorism targeting Turkish Cypriots, who were forced to live in enclaves when Greek Cypriots unilaterally changed the constitution in 1963 and stripped the island's Turks of their political rights. Calling on the Greek prime minister, Tatar voiced that the guarantor system constitutes their security and that the TRNC wants it to continue. "The talks at the U.N. show once again that the enosis dreams of the Greeks persist despite 21st-century realities, Turkey's power and decisiveness, TRNC's presence and all what has been experienced," Tatar said.

Tatar added that if the U.N. fails to protect the rights of Turkish Cypriots, the people will lose their faith in the U.N. completely.

In 2004, a plan of then-U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan was accepted by Turkish Cypriots but rejected by Greek Cypriots in dual referendums held on both sides of the island.

Talks have focused on a federal model, based on the political equality of the Turkish and Greek Cypriot sides, but Greek Cypriots' rejection of such a solution, including the Annan plan, has led to the emergence of other models. In a recent report, Guterres also said "new ideas" may be needed for a settlement on the island.

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