Cyprus Will Block Turkey’s EU Accession Hopes Over Migrant Deal

NICOSIA – Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades, unhappy with a migrant deal struck by the European Union, said he will block Turkey’s membership talks unless his country is recognized as a state, the Associated Press reported.

EU leaders on March 17-18 are due to finalize an agreement with Turkey to take back illegal immigrants in return for accepting refugees in Turkey who are seeking asylum in Europe.

But that deal gives Turkey six billion euros as well as fast-track to joining the EU and visa-less travel without guarantees Ankara will recognize Cyprus and as it continues to bar Cypriot ships and planes although Cyprus is already in the EU.

Anastasiades had hinted earlier he would consider a veto of the EU deal unless Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan softens his hard line against Cyprus.

Anastasiades and Turkish-Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci have been in negotiations since May of 2015 to try to reunify the island divided by an unlawful invasion in 1974 and as Turkey still keeps a standing army on the northern third it occupies.

Speaking March 15 after talks with EU Council President Donald Tusk, Anastasiades said unblocking Turkey’s path to EU membership at this time would also undermine ongoing talks aimed at reunifying the ethnically divided country.

Anastasiades said it’s “unwarranted, counterproductive and not to mention unacceptable” to shift the burden of Europe’s massive migration crisis to Cyprus..

Turkey has demanded that Cyprus lift its veto on five of 35 policy areas in its EU accession talks in order to agree to a deal with the European Union to take back thousands of migrants.


NICOSIA — Israel on Thursday dispatched two water-dropping aircraft to help battle a large wildfire that has scorched at least 10,000 acres (4,000 hectares) of forest in the foothills of the Pentadaktylos mountain range in the breakaway north of ethnically divided Cyprus.

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Mission…to Alonnisos, a TNH Documentary

O oceanic you sing and sail White on your body and yellow on your chimeneas For you're tired of the filthy waters of the harbors You who loved the distant Sporades You who lifted the tallest flags You who sail clear through the most dangerous caves Hail to you who let yourself be charmed by the sirens Hail to you for never having been afraid of the Symplegades (Andreas Empeirikos)   What traveler has not been fascinated by the Greek islands, drawn by the Sirens’ song of a traveler’s dreams? TNH and our video show ‘Mission’ marked the change of the season by transporting viewers into the heart of summer.

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