Turkish leader says UN offers sole platform for ending Cyprus problem

28 September 2007

The United Nations remains the only platform for resolving the Cyprus problem, Turkey’s Prime Minister told the General Assembly today as he called on the members of the international community to remove all of their restrictions on Turkish Cypriots as soon as possible.

The United Nations remains the only platform for resolving the Cyprus problem, Turkey’s Prime Minister told the General Assembly today as he called on the members of the international community to remove all of their restrictions on Turkish Cypriots as soon as possible.

Recep Tayyíp Erdogan said there has been no recent progress towards a settlement of the Cyprus problem “due to the intransigence of the Greek Cypriot side. This clearly attests to the need to urgently resume comprehensive negotiations under an expedited process within a given timeframe.”

Mr. Erdogan said that at a meeting on 5 September, “President Talat of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus proposed to resume without further delay substantial negotiations to reach a comprehensive settlement by the end of 2008. This proposal, however, was rejected by the Greek Cypriot side. Should a solution be genuinely sought on the island, this proposal merits serious consideration.

“The international community should not only support the will displayed by the Turkish side to reach a comprehensive settlement, but also encourage the Greek Cypriot side to be more forthcoming in this regard.”

The Prime Minister said a comprehensive settlement is only possible “under the good offices mission of the UN Secretary-General on the basis of the well established UN parameters.”

On 8 July last year, the leaders of the Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot communities signed an accord setting out the necessary framework for a political process designed to lead to the resumption of full-fledged negotiations under the auspices of the Secretary-General’s good offices, but the negotiations have not yet begun.

Mr. Erdogan also noted that, in a May 2004 report, the previous UN Secretary-General called for the lifting of all restrictions imposed on the Turkish Cypriots, and that the current UN chief, Ban Ki-moon, has since stood by those conclusions.

Yet, “the unjust restrictions… which have no legal or moral premise continue with no end in sight,” he said, calling for their immediate removal.

 

♦ Receive daily updates directly in your inbox - Subscribe here to a topic.
♦ Download the UN News app for your iOS or Android devices.