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Politics

Turkish Defense Ministry Demands Two States, Partition for Cyprus

ANKARA – With Cyprus off the table during Greece’s detente with Turkey – and reunification talks long stalled – Turkish Defense Ministry representative Zeki Oztur repeated insistence on the United Nations and world recognizing the Turkish-Cypriot occupied side.

“We call on the parties to move toward a reasonable solution that is in line with the historical and current reality, instead of outdated status quo and provocative statements,” he said, which has been demanded by Turkish-Cypriot hardline leader Ersin Tatar as well.

Turkey twice invaded Cyprus in 1974 and has occupied its northern third since, setting up a self-declared republic which only Turkey accepts, leaving the Turkish-Cypriots isolated in the world and relying on Turkey for aid.

“We support the legitimate interests of our (Turkish) Cypriot brothers… and emphasize once again the confirmation of their acquired rights, which is their sovereign equality and equal international status,” he added.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and other Turkish officials have reiterated the same, falling on deaf ears at the UN, Secretary-General Antonio Guterres presiding over the last round of reunification talks in 2017.

That was at the Swiss resort of Crans-Montana and collapsed after the then Turkish-Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci and Erdogan said a 35,000-strong army on the occupied side would never leave and demanded the right of further military intervention.

Guterres has dispatched yet another envoy, Colombia’s Maria Angela Holguin Cuellar to try to restart the talks although so many have failed at the task that Cyprus has been called “the graveyard of diplomats.”

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