The United Nations Security Council (UNSC) has issued an unfortunate statement about the Pile – Yiğitler road, the construction of which was commenced for purely humanitarian purposes in order to facilitate the access of our citizens living in the village of Pile to TRNC territory as well as their lands in Pile.

 

The Pile – Yiğitler road project has a history of more than 25 years. During this period, the authorities of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus have always displayed a constructive attitude and called on the relevant sides to engage in cooperation. It is rather meaningful that the relevant parties, especially the United Nations, who were indifferent to our calls and demands to take the necessary steps to facilitate the daily lives of our citizens living in Pile, are now criticizing this entirely humanitarian project.

 

The events which took place on 18 August 2023 are distorted in the UNSC statement, just like it was distorted in the statements made by the UNFICYP and other parties. The main task of UNFICYP is to maintain tranquility between the sides on the island. However, during the events that took place on 18 August 2023, UNFICYP, by means of its personnel and vehicles, tried to prevent a humanitarian project, which does not entail any military motives. In doing so UNFICYP displayed a provocative attitude.

 

UN Peacekeeping Operations are guided by certain principles which include obtaining “consent of the parties” and remaining “impartial”. UNFICYP did not attempt to get the consent of the Turkish Cypriot side since it started its operations on the island and owes its presence and operations in the TRNC solely to the goodwill of the Turkish Cypriot side. This latest incident, revealed once again the biased attitude of the UNFICYP, which receives almost half of its budget from Greece and the Greek Cypriot side acting as the spokesperson of only one side on the island.

 

TRNC has the sovereign right to develop projects in its own territory that will benefit its citizens, like any other sovereign state. The Security Council has never warned or intervened against the Greek Cypriot side despite continuous violations in the buffer zone, including the permanent violations, particularly in the village of Pile. Nevertheless, the Security Council’s call for the Pile-Yiğitler road works to be negotiated and carried out by the parties is not a consistent and fair approach.

 

UNSC is trying to impose, as it has done so many times in the past, the already exhausted formula. We would like to remind, once again, to the member states of the UNSC that there are two peoples and States in Cyprus, and we would like to emphasize that acknowledging and respecting this fact is the step in the right direction. Reaching an agreement on the Cyprus issue requires the start of a new process that is open to cooperation on the basis of sovereign equality and equal international status, within the framework of respect for the inherent rights of the Turkish Cypriot people.