TRNC Minister of Foreign Affairs Tahsin Ertuğruloğlu strongly criticised Irfan Siddiq, the British High Commissioner to Southern Cyprus. The Minister noted that Siddiq, who not only exceeded the limits of diplomatic courtesy, but also made a habit of exceeding the limits of decency, started to perceive insulting the TRNC and the Turkish Cypriot as a virtue.

Minister Ertugruloglu strongly reacted to Siddiq’s remarks and said, “Siddiq with his statements, is acting like a member of ELAM, more Greek Cypriot than a Greek Cypriot. Instead of following a well-balanced policy, due to being a Pakistan origin, he is endeavoring to look nice to the Greek Cypriot side”.

Ertuğruloğlu pointed out that it was not possible for a diplomat who ignored the facts of the Cyprus issue to have any kind of contribution to the process, adding that blaming Turkish Cypriot people for not sharing the same ideas as them was not going to take them anywhere.

Quoting the Commissioner’s statement that claimed the two sides’ interest had not changed since both had shown interest in federation before, Ertugruloglu said, “This statement shows how distance he is to understand the issue”

He said the Greek Cypriot side, since being recognized as the sole representative of the Cyprus Republic had not been interested in the Federation. “It’s you who created and fueled the problem. It’s you who is still treating Greek Cypriots as the Republic of Cyprus. On the other side, you are cursing Turkish Cypriots who are putting up a struggle with pride. This is rudeness, waywardness and lack of diplomatic courtesy”

The Minister also stated that there would be no ground for renewed negotiations unless the United Nations corrected a 60-year mistake, which is to treat Turkish Cypriots as part of a state and Greek Cypriots as the state.

Ertugruloglu said Siddiq “exceeded both diplomatic and etiquette boundaries by interfering in the internal affairs of the TRNC.”

He accused Siddiq of attempting to incite the public, saying: “There is no return to the federation model; we have closed that chapter. You insult the Turkish Cypriot people who resist treating the Greek Cypriots as ‘the Republic of Cyprus.’ This impertinence is devoid of diplomatic courtesy.”

He rejected any return to the federation model and asserted that the TRNC is a “reality” independent of Siddiq’s approval and will be recognized by other countries.