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Cyprus Marks the 49th Anniversary of Turkish Invasion

Cyprus Turkish Invasion
The current status quo is not and will never be accepted, President Christodoulides said. “LookingTowards Turkey, Nicosia, Cyprus” by neilalderney123 is licensed under CC BY-NC 2.0.

Cyprus marked the 49th anniversary of the Turkish invasion on Thursday with sirens blaring across the island at 5:20 am, as a reminder of the first landing of Turkish commandos on the shores of Pente Mili in Kyrenia.

The current status quo is not and will never be accepted and cannot be the future of Cyprus, President Nikos Christodoulides said.

“This day brings back horrible memories of that dreadful morning of July 20, 1974, when the Turkish army invaded the island causing devastation.”

He added: “Our effort and struggle is for this year’s sad anniversary to be the last one that part of our country is occupied.

“We are struggling with all the political and diplomatic means at our disposal to reverse this unacceptable state of affairs and the fait accompli of the invasion and the occupation, to free and reunite our country, on the basis of the UN decisions and resolutions, the High Level Agreements and the principles and values of the EU, of which the Republic of Cyprus is a member state.”

200,000 Greek Cypriots left their homeland after the Turkish invasion

Christodoulides noted that today marks 49 years since the Turkish army forced 200,000 Greek Cypriots to leave their ancestral homes and left thousands of people dead and missing.

The president said that unfortunately the consequences still remain.

“Our homeland remains divided with the Turkish army having 37 percent of our territories under its control, with the refugees continuing to be uprooted, while we continue to struggle in order to establish the fate of missing persons.”

He added that the current status quo is not and will never be accepted and cannot be the future of Cyprus.

Christodoulides said that since his election, he has made intensive efforts through initiatives and proposals to break the deadlock and resume talks from where they were left off in 2017 at Crans-Montana, with a view to reach a lasting and viable solution, with no foreign interventions and troops.

He went on to say that his proposal for a more active engagement of the EU in efforts to break the deadlock and resume talks, always under the UN auspices and within the framework of the UN Secretary General’s good offices, lies in this framework.

On July 20, Turkey launched the first phase of the invasion of Cyprus, while on August 14 the second phase occurred, and large areas of the Famagusta district were occupied, while Greek Cypriots fled the area of Varosha.

Since then, Turkey has illegally occupied 37 percent of the territory of the Republic of Cyprus, an EU member state since 2004.

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