NICOSIA – Without linking it to long-stalled hopes of joining the bloc, a European Union report pushed Turkey to commit to reunification talks on Cyprus, the northern third occupied by Turkish-Cypriots after 1974 invasions.
That was in the EU’s enlargement policy review, Turkey trying since 2005 to speed the process of joining but seeing it stall over President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s authoritarian rule and refusing to recognize Cyprus.
“Turkey is expected to actively support the negotiations on a fair, comprehensive, and viable settlement of the Cyprus issue within the UN framework, in accordance with the relevant UN Security Council resolutions and in line with the principles on which the EU is founded and the EU acquis,” the report said.
That’s contradictory to Turkey’s stated policy of now rejecting reunification, as does Turkish-Cypriot hardline leader Ersin Tatar, who said he will accept only UN acceptance of the isolated, occupied side as a self-declared republic.
The report, said The Cyprus Mail, cautioned Turkey against ratcheting up provocations with unilateral actions, warning that could raise tensions and prevent any hopes of finding a solution.
Turkey was urged to follow UN Security Council resolutions that have no authority but said, among other issues, that lands and homes seized in the invasion still belong to the rightful Greek-Cypriot owners.
But Tatar has instead taunted the UN while also demanding recognition and, with the backing of Erdogan, partially opened the abandoned resort of Varosha in occupied territory, also against resolutions.
Turkey “must immediately reverse the unilateral actions announced on 20 July 2021, and all steps taken since October 2020 that run contrary to relevant UNSC resolutions,” said the report, referring to Varosha.
The report also mentioned violations by Turkish unmanned aerial vehicles in the Nicosia flight information region and the national airspace of the Greek-Cypriot side that’s a member of the EU.
It also noted that Turkey “continued to refuse to recognize the Republic of Cyprus and repeatedly advocated a two-state solution in Cyprus, contrary to relevant UN Security Council Resolutions,” a stance still going on.