No: 260, 23 July 2021, Press Release Regarding The Second Phase Of Maraş Initiative By The Trnc Government

Republic Of Turkey Ministry Of Foreign Affairs 23.07.2021

We reject the Presidential Statement made by the UN Security Council on the second phase of the Maraş initiative, announced by the President of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC), H.E. Mr. Ersin Tatar, on 20 July 2021, as well as the statements from various countries which are based on unfounded claims and inconsistent with the realities on the Island. We fully share the TRNC's official responses to them.

These statements are based on Greek-Greek Cypriot black propaganda and groundless claims, such as that Maraş is not TRNC territory, that the TRNC will confiscate the properties in Maraş and bring settlers there against the property rights.

Maraş is a part of TRNC territory. Furthermore, it has not been opened to settlement and was declared as a military zone as a good will gesture by the TRNC authorities.

Last October, the TRNC Government has allowed public access to two main streets and the beach in Maraş, which has remained closed for 47 years and has started to pose environmental hazards. Lately, the TRNC Government has lifted the military zone status of a pilot area, which corresponds to 3.5 percent of Maraş.

All decisions taken by the TRNC authorities, within the scope of the Maraş initiative, respect the property rights and are in full compliance with international law. Contrary to claims, the relevant UN Security Council resolutions are not violated. Moreover, the UN Security Council resolutions are not above property and sovereignty rights.

As stated by H.E. President Erdoğan, these steps will not cause new grievances, but will eliminate the current ones to the benefit of everyone.

On the other hand, the UN Security Council unfortunately insists on not to notice the realities on the ground concerning the Cyprus issue as well.

Despite all the goodwill of the Turkish side, decades of efforts could not lead to a bizonal, bicommunal federal settlement due to the intransigent attitude of the Greek Cypriot administration. In the absence of an agreement on this model between the parties, insisting on a federal settlement now damages the credibility of the Council.

A new negotiation process towards a just, lasting and sustainable settlement to the Cyprus issue could begin only by securing the equal sovereignty and equal international status of the Turkish Cypriot people.

With this understanding, we invite the UN Security Council to elude itself from the misleading propaganda of the Greek-Greek Cypriot duo, and to support the lawful steps taken by the TRNC regarding Maraş as well as their constructive and realistic proposal submitted in Geneva.

It makes no sense for the EU to talk about lawfulness as it unlawfully admitted the Greek Cypriot administration into the Union confessing that this was a political decision. This is equally applicable for some European countries who backed the lawlessness at that time. The fact that this group is now trying to teach us lawfulness is completely an act of hypocrisy.

We once again call on this group and the international community to face the realities on the Island, to end the injustice they have caused to the Turkish Cypriot people, to respect the will of the Turkish Cypriot people as well as their sovereign equality and equal status which they achieved in 1960.

Atatürk

Mehmet Hakan Olcay Ambassador
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