“Revenue agreement” is usurpation of Turkish Cypriot people’s equal rights and interests

It has been stated that the Greek Cypriot administration of South Cyprus has reached a “revenue agreement” with Noble Energy and its partnered consortium of companies regarding the natural gas to be exploited from the “Aphrodite” gas field, and that it stands to gain 9 billion Dollars from the gas over an 18-year period. The said agreement amounts to nothing other than the usurpation of the legitimate rights and interests of the Turkish Cypriot people – the equal co-owners of the island and therefore the natural resources around it – and is unacceptable.

There is no place for the equal rights and interests of the Turkish Cypriot people within this vision!

The escalation of the unilateral, illegal and unjust activities of the Greek Cypriot administration, which turns a blind eye to all the Turkish Cypriot calls for cooperation regarding the hydrocarbon resources around the island, has, once again, demonstrated the vision of the Greek Cypriot administration, the occupier of the 1960 partnership Republic, regarding the future of the island. There is no place for the equal rights and interests of the Turkish Cypriot people within this vision, which is a concrete testimony to the fact that the Greek Cypriot side is not ready for sharing whatsoever.

Given this situation, these unacceptable steps are threatening the stability and security of the island and region, and are raising tensions to dangerous heights. The culprits of this situation are the international community and relevant companies which display an unjust stance, just as much as the Greek Cypriot side which insists on continuing its unilateral activities.

We will commence drilling activities in the shortest possible time

We would like to share with the public that as long as the Greek Cypriot administration insists on continuing its unilateral activities regarding the hydrocarbon resources around the island and refrains from cooperating with our side as regards our co-owner rights, the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus, together with the Republic of Turkey, will resolutely take all necessary steps and will commence drilling activities in the shortest possible time in the areas we have licensed to Turkish Petroleum with a view to protecting our peoples’ equal rights and interests.

“IF THE GREEK CYPRIOT SIDE WANTS TO SEE “OCCUPATION”, THEY SHOULD LOOK AT THEIR OWN ACTIVITIES”

The TRNC and Turkey have always objected to unilateral activities regarding the issue of natural resources and have argued that all sides should cooperate on this issue. The Greek Cypriot side, which rejects our calls for cooperation and continues to take unilateral steps, cannot hide its usurpation attempts by misrepresenting our reciprocal steps taken to protect our rights.

The Greek Cypriot side unjustly and meaninglessly defines the reciprocal activities in this area as “occupation”. This is an area which clearly falls within the continental shelf of Turkey, a country with a special position according to international law and with the longest coastal line in the Eastern Mediterranean. Furthermore, the Greek Cypriot side itself accepts that these resources also belong to the Turkish Cypriots. Nevertheless, this is, in essence, a confession of the fact that it is the actions of the Greek Cypriot side which constitute “occupation”. If the Greek Cypriot side wants to see “occupation”, it should look at its own unilateral steps in these areas.

“YOU CANNOT HIDE YOUR ATTEMPTS TO USURP OUR RIGHTS”

The TRNC and Turkey have been acting consistently and only to protect their own rights, thus the Greek Cypriot leadership’s attempts to verbally attack the TRNC and Turkey, slandering them with so-called “occupation”, is an attempt to hide its own actions aimed at usurping our rights.

“NO ONE SHOULD BE SURPRISED AT THIS DEVELOPMENT”

The fact that international actors appear surprised at the developments which have taken place over the past few days is sheer insincerity. Any realistic party would not deem this just move of Turkey and the TRNC as unexpected, given that they have clearly and consistently emphasized for months that unless the Greek Cypriot side accepts the call for cooperation in this regard, they would take reciprocal steps.

“BE CONSISTENT”

The approach of and steps taken by the TRNC and Turkey regarding the hydrocarbon resources have been peaceful and consistent from the start. The real inconsistency lays in stating, on the one hand, that these resources also belong to the Turkish Cypriots, while, on the other hand, conducting unilateral activities for years by ignoring the will of the Turkish Cypriots. Another inconsistency is, while stating that these resources belong to both communities, consenting to or remaining observer to the unilateral exploitation of these resources only by the Greek Cypriots, and even going so far as to act as the advocate of the Greek Cypriot side.

In light of these events, we invite the Greek Cypriot side and the international community to act consistently and call on them to act on their own statements to the effect that these resources belong to both peoples of the island.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Kudret Özersay travelled to İstanbul today upon the invitation of Turkish National Defence Minister Hulusi Akar.

Özersay will participate in the opening ceremony of the International Defence Industry Fair (IDEF), which has been held every two years since 1993, with the Foreign and Defence Ministers from different countries and will hold various contacts.

Özersay will start his contacts with a reception to be given in honour of guest ministers this evening. Özersay will hold an inter-delegation meeting with Akar tomorrow.

The TRNC Security Forces Commander (GKK) Brigadier General Tevfik Algan, Undersecretary of the Deputy Prime Ministry and Ministry of Foreign Affairs Güneş Onar and Protocol Director Cem Topçu are in the delegation of Özersay.

The latest developments and technology in the fields of defence, maritime and aviation following the rapid developments in defence and security areas in the Eastern Mediterranean Region and the Middle East recently will be exhibited at the IDEF, which is recognized as one of the biggest defence industry fairs in the world in terms of participant firms and the number of delegations.

The words of the Archbishop is the clear reflection of a medieval mentality

To be disturbed by reciprocal visits and economic relations is intolerance

Economic and commercial activities should increase

 

We regret the statements made by Archbishop Chrysostomos to the Greek Cypriots on the occasion of Easter celebrations, one of the most significant days for Christianity. His words are a clear reflection of a medieval approach and mentality. The statements he made unfortunately reveal in the most explicit manner that there has not been the slightest improvement in the Greek Cypriot Orthodox Church’s racist, primitive and intolerant stance.

 

In his statements, the Archbishop did not hesitate to express a Middle Age mentality, which characterized Greek Cypriots who are shopping in our country and prefer to use Ercan Airport for their journeys as communities whose “national” and “religious” values have both suffered from erosion. The most important factor that would create an environment of trust between the two Peoples on this island is the fact that the two parties deepen their relations and cooperation especially in the fields of trade, economy and tourism.

 

At this juncture, we would like to call once more upon the Greek Cypriot administration to condemn these statements, which have already led to a lack of trust between the two parties, and give a message to the Greek Cypriot community emphasizing the importance of peaceful co-operation, rather than remarks sowing discord between the two Peoples. The mutual increase of crossings between the two sides and the enlargement and liberalization of the scope of economic and trade relations and activities is what we really need on this island, since they will create a mutual economic interdependence.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Kudret Özersay met with the Chairman of the Central Bank of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus, Rifat Günay.

Minister Özersay and Chairman Rifat evaluated the current economic climate of the country and also the financial context along with the operations of the Central Bank. Especially, views were exchanged on the proposed law to the Assembly on fixed rate consumer credit.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Kudret Özersay sent a letter to the French Foreign Minister regarding the fire which broke out at Notre Dame Cathedral last night (15th April) and has caused much destruction.

In his letter, expressing his deep sorrow for the fire which has severely damaged one of the most important symbols of the history and worship places of millions of people in the world, Özersay conveyed support and solidarity for France on behalf of the TRNC government.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Kudret Özersay received National Billiard Player Alara Gaffari who reached the third place in the 2017 European Youth Billiard Championship.

In his speech at the reception, Özersay pointed out that the new generation is self-confident, hardworking and talented and said: “Our responsibility is to support the youngsters who are successfully representing our country in the international arena  despite all the obstructions and initiatives.”

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Kudret Özersay received the President of the Public Service Commission (KHK) Kamil Kayral, who paid a farewell visit due to the ending of his term in office.

At the meeting they exchanged views regarding the work done and problems faced so far by the Public Service Commission and ways to resolve them.

CALL ON THE GREEK CYPRIOT ADMINISTRATION FROM THE MINISTRY OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS: “STOP PROTECTING MURDER SUSPECTS”

“Stop sheltering murder suspect Salman and return him”

The killing last September of one of our country’s most successful ceramic, statue and painting artists, Hasan Işık Özgöçmen, has deeply saddened our public. It is known by all circles that the suspect determined during the investigation following the murder of Özgöçmen, namely Muhammad Salman of Pakistan, fled to Southern Cyprus and was captured by the Greek Cypriot police in Limassol.

As of today, the address of murder suspect Salman in Southern Cyprus has been determined. According to confirmed information, suspect Salman continues to be sheltered at Menoya (Menogeia) refugee camp in Larnaca, where other asylum seekers are held.

Since the whereabouts of the suspect of this heinous crime which has deeply affected our public has been determined, we publicly call on the Greek Cypriot administration to return the suspect to our side so that he may stand trial without further delay.

We would like to inform our public that initiatives were also taken regarding the murder suspects of Gökhan Naim and that the Greek Cypriot authorities arerefraining from sharing any information in this regard.

In these and other such cases, the political excuses put forth by the Greek Cypriot leadership cannot act as justification to offer refuge to criminals, protect them and reward them with impunity.

We take this opportunity to reiterate our call on the Greek Cypriot side; that it is necessary to cooperate on such issues if we are to begin building confidence between the two sides.

In light of the recent discourse regarding the status of the bicommunal village of Pile and the events that unfolded within the framework of the football match held outside the borders of the bicommunal village between Mağusa Türk Gücü and Nea Salamina teams, Our Ministry has felt the need to put forth the following clarifications.

As is known, Pile, where Turkish Cypriots and Greek Cypriots are cohabitants, has a unique status. The local administrations of the Turkish Cypriot and Greek Cypriot peoples in Pile are separate and their representatives are elected separately by each community respectively.

The Turkish Cypriot Police authorities are authorized to deal with incidents involving Turkish Cypriots, and the Greek Cypriot Police authorities are authorized to deal with incidents involving Greek Cypriots. In incidents where the members of both communities are involved, the police authorities of the two sides intervene together, under the supervision of UNFICYP. As it will be recalled, the police authorities of the two sides intervened jointly in the case of the casinos operating illegally in the village of Pile. In addition, the municipal and other public services are also provided by the respective authorities of either side. Although located in the buffer zone, Pile is not under the control of UNFICYP as is the case in the rest of the buffer zone. In this context, the only role of UNFICYP in Pile is observation and liaison activities. Against this background, it is unacceptable that UNFICYP, by alleging that it could not provide adequate security measures, insisted to move the football match, an organization where Turkish Cypriot and Greek Cypriot athletes and spectators were to participate jointly, to a stadium situated in South Cyprus rather than holding it in a stadium in the buffer zone, where security would have been provided by the police authorities of the two sides. Moreover, it is simply irresponsible for the UN to create the impression that Pile is an area where there are security concerns.

Unfortunately, it is recently being observed that there is an increase in the biased stance of UNFICYP regarding issues concerning the buffer zone. This biased stance is not only contradictory to the mandate of UNFICYP, but is also at odds with the spirit of these events which are organized with the aim of bringing the two peoples closer together.

These developments reconfirm that the recent position of the Turkish Cypriot side regarding the need to review the mandate and operations of UNFICYP in light of the changing circumstances on the island is justified.