Speculation Mounts that Cyprus Ghost City Varosha Will Open Under UN Control

The United Nations have not been informed of any plans by the Turkish Cypriot side to hand over the fenced-off city of Varosha to UN control, the Cyprus Mail was told on Saturday.

A UN spokesperson was commenting on an astonishing report by Turkish Cypriot journalist Esra Aygin, which cited a “senior Turkish Cypriot source” as saying that the Turkish Cypriot side’s intention is to give up the area so it can be placed under UN control, according to UN resolutions and international law.

The source stressed it would not be “under Turkish Cypriot control”.

According to the report, the unnamed source denied the plan had ever been to open up Varosha for its rightful owners under Turkish Cypriot control. Such reports were widely circulated earlier in the week.

“All the work that is being done is towards opening Varosha under the UN control in line with UN resolutions and international law,” Aygin quoted the source as saying.

“Nobody is talking about opening it under Turkish Cypriot control.”

UN Security Council Resolution 550 of 1984 calls for Varosha to be handed over to the administration of the United Nations and resettled by its former inhabitants.

Varosha has been a ghost-city since August 1974, when its inhabitants fled as the Turkish army advanced to the south.

It was fenced off by the Turkish army, with access allowed only to the Turkish military.

(Source: Cyprus Mail)