Turkish-Cypriots protested on Sunday, August 31, against the visit of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan who is set to land in occupied Cyprus for the first time since his election as the country’s president. The protests are expected to continue on Monday afternoon.
According to news agencies from occupied Cyprus, representatives of the United Cyprus Party (BKP), Cyprus Socialist Party (KSP) and New Cyprus Party (YKP), several unions and NGOs gathered near Kerynia Gate, in Nicosia, to protest on Sunday night.
The protesters wanted to set up a stage but police would not allow it because they hadn’t issued the necessary license.
The protest’s organizers have decided to meet again on Monday afternoon, in Caglayan Park, in the occupied part of Nicosia.
Speaking on behalf of the organizing committee, activist Nazen Sansal said the protest against the visit of Erdogan in Cyprus is being carried out successfully, adding that they have decided to protest again today, Monday, September 1. Erdogan “is not welcome in Cyprus,” he added.
Tayyip Erdogan said on Monday it would be impossible for his country to accept a solution that did not entail two states and political equality as he called on Greece to adopt a more positive approach in reunification talks as a guarantor country.
“Political equality is a must,” he said during a news conference in the Turkish occupied northern part of the island, his first official visit since he was elected president of Turkey.
“Everyone must know that Turkey will never accept a Greek Cypriot government turn Turkish Cypriots into a minority,” Erdogan said.
The government condemned the visit and said the comments the Turkish president made were not in line with UN resolutions.
“We also consider unacceptable the frequent call for the involvement of Greece in the dialogue in an effort to equate the responsibilities for the ongoing occupation in Cyprus for which Turkey is solely responsible,” government spokesman Nicos Christodoulides said in a statement.
The spokesman also pointed out that Turkey’s pronouncements regarding its desire to contribute to reunification were nothing but empty words.
The Turkish president said his country supported a fair, viable and comprehensive solution and it was impossible for them to accept unfair proposals.
Turkey hoped efforts made since 2008 would yield results, he added.
He also announced that Turkey will supply water to the north in two to three months, followed by electricity.
All the Greek Cypriot political parties condemned Erdogan’s visit.
Athens condemns Erdogan comments about Cyprus
Athens reacted angrily on Monday to calls by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan for a “two-state” solution to the Cyprus problem and claims that Greece is not “doing its duty” as a guarantor power, saying the comments were “disappointing” and “simply confirm Ankara’s persistence in its aggressive policy” on Cyprus.
In a strongly worded statement issued in response, Greek Foreign Ministry spokesman Constantinos Koutras accused Erdogan of trying to “equate certain of Greece’s international obligations with Turkey’s heavy burden of responsibility regarding the Cyprus issue” and described the parallel as “historically and legally groundless and, thus, politically unacceptable.”
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