Freshman Republican Nicole Malliotakis, who represents New York’s 11th district, has authored a new bipartisan resolution calling on the Biden Administration to prioritize the Cyprus issue.
“Turkey has been illegally occupying Cyprus for nearly 50 years, violating the Treaty of Guarantee which established and guaranteed Cyprus’ independence” she states in her resolution.
The Congresswoman, the daughter of a Greek immigrant and a Cuban refugee, is leading a bipartisan resolution calling on the new administration to condemn Turkey for its illegal occupation of Cyprus.
In addition, she and the other sponsoring representatives, including Congressmen Gus Bilirakis (R-FL), Chris Smith (R-NJ), Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA), Chris Pappas (D-NH) and Congresswoman Dina Titus (D-NV), wish to encourage Biden to prioritize this perennially thorny issue, which has haunted politics in the Mediterranean since the Turkish invasion in 1974.
New York Assemblyman Michael Tannousis, who represents Rep. Malliotakis’ former district in the New York legislature, also gave his full support for the resolution.
Cyprus brutally invaded during Summer of 1974
“Turkey has been illegally occupying Cyprus for nearly 50 years, violating several international treaties, including the North Atlantic Treaty and the Treaty of Guarantee, which established and guaranteed Cyprus’ independence,” Rep. Malliotakis said in a written statement announcing the resolution.
She goes on to state “as a Senator, President Biden strongly supported solving the Cyprus problem. We now urge his Administration to make this a top foreign policy priority by condemning Turkey’s illegal occupation of Cyprus and demand its cooperation in recovering the four American citizens who are missing as a result of its 1974 invasion”.
Malliotakis may face difficulties in rounding up support for the measure, however, due to domestic politics, since she and 140 other representatives voted against the ratification of the results of the 2020 election.
Some Democrats are avoiding any appearance of cooperating with or finding common ground with any of these members for that reason.
Recent talks at the UN’s European headquarters in Geneva failed to reach an agreement — or find any common ground whatsoever — on the thorny issue. On May 2, Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades took a swipe at Turkey and the “arrogance of those who envision a new Ottoman empire” in a televised address on Easter Sunday.
Speaking about the failed UN-sponsored informal talks on Cyprus in Geneva, he accused Turkey and Turkish Cypriots of trying to rewrite international law by ignoring the UN resolutions and EU policy on the reunification of the island.
“At the informal Geneva summit, Turkey and the Turkish Cypriot leadership recorded a new ‘historic’ performance, as they called it,” said Anastasiades.
“In defiance of the UN Charter, UN resolutions and decisions, in defiance of the EU, they asked the UN Secretary-General to become an accomplice to their own illegal actions, claiming recognition of the sovereignty of the subordinate of Turkey.”
The President said this claim was not only contrary to international law and the UNSG’s mandate but was also contrary to the wishes of both Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots.
He went on to say how he had opposed all of this during the Geneva meeting, which failed over three days last week to find common ground for new negotiations.