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Politics

Slovakia Pulls Out of Military Drills Over Turkish-Cypriot Units

Backing fellow European Union member Cyprus, the Slovakian government withdrew from taking part in a Turkish military maneuver called Anadolu Ankasi 2021 because of the presence of forces from the Turkish-occupied side of the island.

Turkey has held the northern third of Cyprus since an unlawful 1974 invasion and decades of diplomatic attempts to bring reunification have failed and Turkey refuses to recognize the legitimate Greek-Cypriot government and bars its ships and planes.

Slovak Foreign Minister Ivan Korcok informed Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias that his country had pulled out of the war games as they took part in a meeting of EU foreign chiefs in Lisbon, said Kathimerini.

Korcok, it was reported, told Dendias it was done to show Slovakia's support for international law that Turkey doesn't accept, and as an act of EU solidarity even as other countries have refused to along with Greek calls for sanctions over Turkish provocations.

Dendias thanked Korcok for his swift response which came after a joint demarche issued by Greece and Cyprus about the May 24-June 4 military exercise, Turkey now refusing to talk about reunification of the island and demanding recognition for the occupied territory.

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