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Society

Turkish Cypriots Say Not an Inch of Morphou Will be Returned

October 17, 2016

Turkish Cypriots unlawfully occupying the town of Morphou said they will never relent to Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades’ call for it to be returned as part of a unity proposal.

On Oct. 9, during an event for Greek Cypriots who had to flee the town in 1974 when Turkey invaded, Anastasiades said there would be no unification deal with Turkish-Cyprus leader Mustafa Akinci without the return of Morphou to Greek Cypriot administration.

Turkish Cypriots who would have to move, he said, would be fully supported in being relocated but they rejected it.

The Turkish Cypriot platform “We do not give an inch of ground” comprising residents of Morphou held a protest on Oct. 16 on the northern side of Zodia crossing to demonstrate against Anastasiades’ call for the return.

The Cypriot News Agency said a spokesman for the group of residents wanted to deliver a message not even an inch of land would be given back to the Cyprus Church or to the Cypriots.

They also called on the Turkish Cypriot leadership to clearly state that Morphou would remain under a Turkish Cypriot constituent state because they didn’t want to become refugees again, it was reported.

Earlier, Akinci’s spokesman Baris Burcu, blasted Anastasiades about the displaced residents of the community of Morphou, in northwestern Cyprus under the control of the Turks.

Anastasiades said the village, which was almost entirely made up of Cypriots in 1974, should be returned to the former residents.

“It is imperative that Morphou should be among the areas that must be part of the Greek Cypriot constituent state,” he said.

Burcu rejected the idea and said, “Territory will be discussed in the immediate future, names, percentages of territory, and maps, have not been discussed yet,” he said. “If the Greek Cypriot side is trying to gain some advantage by referring to specific names, it is mistaken,” he added.

Referring to the 2004 so-called Annan Plan – named after a former United Nations leader – that was accepted by Turks but rejected by Cypriots, Burcu said Anastasiades has to realize that that remarks not taking the “realities” into account, and shaped according to the demands of the “rejectionist camp,” do not help efforts to solve the Cyprus problem.

The Turkish-owned Famagusta Gazette said that Anastasiades, speaking during an anti-occupation rally organized by former Morphou residents, said that Turks occupying their houses would be given assistance to relocate.

At the same time, he underlined that, “We are not ready to accept a bad solution, because a bad solution will have the same detrimental results as a non-solution.”

The rally of Morphou inhabitants ended at Astromeritis check point where a petition was handed over to the UN calling on them to exert pressure on Turkey to change its stance and work for a just settlement of the Cyprus problem and for the restoration of all Cypriots` basic human rights, the paper said.

“Cyprus must remain an independent united state, with a single sovereignty, a single personality and territorial integrity,” the petition added, noting that a solution must not give any country the right to intervene in the state`s internal affairs.

A bevy of diplomats and politicians have failed for decades to find the answer for Cyprus unity with both sides taking hard line stances on various issues, especially the Turks over their army and wanting to keep seized properties, making a resolution this year seem even more unlikely.

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