ATHENS (ANA) – All the classified material in the Cyprus File that was held by the Hellenic Parliament and the competent Parliamentary committee has been sent to Cyprus Parliament, while any additional material that arises in the future will be sent to Cyprus, Greek Parliament President Nikos Voutsis said on Friday following his meeting with Cyprus President Nicos Anastasiades.
In a tweet on his personal Twitter account, meanwhile, Anastasiades welcomed the handover of the Cyprus File with the comment “Knowledge of history guides our steps.”
The Cypriot president received Voutsis on Friday afternoon, for a meeting that Voutsis said had focused on developments concerning the Cyprus issue and the Cyprus File.
Addressing the Cyprus House of Representatives earlier on Friday, Voutsis said he felt “honoured, moved and a sense of responsibility”.
The protocol that would be signed for the handover of the Cyprus File was in some ways the end of an era for an issue that was constantly under discussion and the start of processes that in a reasonable space of time could also take the form of publication, so that the press and citizens could have access in the next months, he said.
Voutsis also revealed that the Greek parliament had at no time held a vote on the issue of the Cyprus File and that “everything just stopped” after October 1988 and nothing more was done.
“You may perhaps remember that in that period, from 1988-1990, there were many governments, many events and developments. In other words, we had to pick up the thread and understand what happened after so many years – 43 years after the disaster, 29 years after the last discussion on the Cyprus Fil in Parliament,” he told Cyprus lawmakers.
Though the issue had been discussed, he added, the results of the report and the archive had stayed put “and no one concerned themselves with them in any way” because there was always some good pretext, something going on or some reason to put it off “and not make things harder.”
“Now we are taking up that thread again and this is a qualitative institutional step regarding this issue,” Voutsis added.
“We must not forget the immense responsibility that we have, as Greece, as a country, that on the tragedy and on the victims of the Cyprus tragedy in both its phases, it was possible to have and set up the change in regime and restore democracy to our country,” he said.
The Cyprus File consists of a collection of documents and witness reports compiled and collected by a Greek Parliamentary investigative committee looking into the events before and during the Greek coup of July 15, 1974, which led to the Turkish invasion of the island.
The committee to examine the events that led to the junta-led coup in Cyprus was set up in 1986, following a proposal by PASOK to “investigate the conditions under which the treacherous and criminal coup against the independence of the Cypriot Republic was planned and executed in Greece and Cyprus”.
A large number of the meetings were devoted to procedural issues, while the rest focused on the examination of 86 witnesses. After 154 meetings, the committee delivered its findings in October 1988. The minutes of the meetings cover 20,798 pages, while, in addition to the minutes, the archives drawn up by the committee include dossiers of documents provided by the ministries of Foreign Affairs, Defence and Justice.