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Politics

Turkish-Cypriot Leader Tells Cypriots to Abandon Reunification

January 3, 2021

Three months into taking office, Turkish-Cypriot leader Ersin Tatar has yet again said he won’t even talk reunification but wants two states on the island where Turks have occupied the northern third since an unlawful 1974 invasion.

Ersin Tatar said Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades, whose government is a member of the European Union that Turkey has fruitlessly been trying to join since 2005 – the occupied side unrecognized in the world – to "not pursue unrealistic dreams" of unifying the island.

Tatar is a nationalist hardliner who was elected in October, 2019 on a platform agreeing to back Turkish President Recep Tayyp Erdogan, whose government doesn’t recognize Cyprus and bars its ships and planes.

"We have brought the two-state solution to the agenda, with the support of Turkey. For the existence of our state, for the freedom, safety and sovereignty of our nation, we support the two-state solution. We will continue to advance on this path," he said, the pro-government Daily Sabah reported.

The last round of reunification talks when Mustafa Akinci was the leader of the occupied territory where Turkey keeps a 35,000-strong army fell apart in July 2017 at the Swiss resort of Crans-Montana.

That happened when Akinci and Erdogan said their army would never leave and as they demanded the right of military intervention, which was too much for Anastasiades to even discuss.

But Tatar said it was because the Greek-Cypriot side didn’t want whea

Tatar underlined that a solution to establish a federation collapsed during the Crans-Montana Cyprus talks in 2017 because the Greek side was not interested in a fair agreement, which he meant was having permanent separation.

"Mr. Anastasiades, who said 'I will not discuss any solution other than federation and I support what I said at Crans-Montana,' in his first remarks in 2021, claimed that UN Secretary-General's former Cyprus envoy Mr. Eide (Norwegian diplomat Espen Barth Eide) formulated the two-state solution and tried to pass the buck," he said.

Tatar added that Anastasiades "himself knows" that the two-state solution is the only way to go but claimed the Cypriot President was under intense pressure from the Greek Orthodox Church and other forces not to accept it.

He said Anastasiades "tried to hide the truths" by claiming that "Turkey is attempting to annex Cyprus" and that it "hindered the implementation of the constitution of the Republic of Cyprus,” the name only Turkey and the Turkish-Cypriots use for their self-declared government that's isolated in the world.

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