NICOSIA – The occupying Turkish forces on the northern third of Cyprus seized in unlawful 1974 invasions will move to open another section of the abandoned resort of Varosha, Cypriot Foreign Minister Ioannis Kasoulides said.
He told the state’s CyBC radio that the area of Ayios Memnonas would be opened in another provocation, after earlier ignoring United Nations resolutions that only the residents of property confiscated there were the lawful owners.
Kasoulides said that the government received information that it was directed by Turkish-Cypriot hardline leader Ersin Tatar, who said that municipal and government buildings would be opened.
Ayios Memnonas community leader Christoforos Ellinas told the Cyprus Mail he received similar information and denounced it, adding that it shows the contempt the occupiers have for the UN as well.
Ayios Memnonas was a village just south of Varosha, north of Deryneia, which Ellinas said had been undergoing rapid development prior to the invasion with an agriculture-based economy specializing in oranges.
Tatar told a Turkish TV Channel that the self-declared government no country in the world apart from Turkey recognizes and he has demanded that change and the UN accede to it.
He also said that opening the resort to tourists could benefit the Turkish-Cypriot side that’s often in dire straits financially and largely depends on Turkey for its support to stay afloat.
While wanting recognition for the invaded and occupied land he said he wouldn’t make concessions nor would a 35,000-strong Turkish army posted there be removed ever.
That was a condition which led to the collapse of talks in 2017 at the Swiss resort of Crans-Montana when the Turkish-Cypriot side was led by Mustafa Akinci, considered a moderate but who wanted the troops kept.
The UN Security Council called for a reversal of the partial reopening of Varosha but was ignored at the same time Tatar was making his demands even though the occupied territory doesn’t belong to the UN.