After previously saying Cyprus doesn’t exist as a country, an official document submitted by Turkey to the European Union – which it wants to join – has referred to the Republic of Cyprus as a “defunct” state, according to reports in Cypriot media.
The document by Turkey’s Foreign Ministry, which was reportedly circulated to all EU member states during a session of the EU-Turkey Association Council in Luxembourg on June 23, said that Ankara is against Cyprus’s membership of any international organization until “a final and just settlement” has been reached on the divided island, reports said.
The document also called for a new bi-zonal and bi-communal federation on the basis of two constituent states, reports said. There was no official reaction to the reports.
Turkey refuses to recognize Cyprus as a country and since an unlawful 1974 invasion of the northern part of the island by the Turkish military, only Turkey recognizes the territory it holds in violation of international law.
Oddly, the report comes just as Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades and his Turkish counterpart, Dervis Eroglu – who operates on the orders of Ankara – have begun a tender round of resumed talks in an attempt to unify the island. Anastasides, even before the talks began, was willing to make so many concessions that one of his coalition parties walked out of his government.
A press release issued after the meeting hailed progress in reunification talks between the two sides, although Turkey said there aren’t two sides and there hasn’t been any movement in 40 years.
“The EU welcomed the resumption of the full-fledged settlement talks in Cyprus between the leaders of both communities under the auspices of the UN. Turkey’s commitment and contribution in concrete terms to such a comprehensive settlement remains crucial,” the statement said.
Turkey invaded Cyprus 40 years ago after a brief Greek Cypriot coup staged by supporters of unification with Greece.
Cyprus has been split ever since into an internationally recognized southern Greek Cypriot state and a breakaway Turkish Cypriot entity in the north recognized only by Ankara.