Posted on 11/01/03 in Peace & Conflicts
The Mediterranean island of Cyprus has been split into a Greek Cypriot south and Turkish Cypriot north since Turkey’s invasion in 1974 following an abortive coup by Greek and Greek Cypriot supporters of union with Greece. Only Turkey recognizes the breakaway Turkish Cypriot state, keeping 40,000 troops on the island. Around 100,000 Turkish settlers moved to the island from Turkey since 1974. Peace negotiations have been unsuccessful in reuniting the island for the last 28 years. In November 2002 U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan presented a plan to reunify the island before the Greek side, which is the internationally recognized Republic of Cyprus, joins the European Union. 28 February 2003, is the deadline set by the U.N. for reaching a settlement. As the deadline approaches, massive demonstrations are being held in Cyprus in favor of reunification of the island. However, Mr. Denktash, the representative of the Turkish Cypriots insists on not showing good faith in the negotiations and on rejecting vital provisions of the U.N. plan. Although recent polls and demonstrations indicate that Mr.Denktash has lost the majority support he once enjoyed amongst Turkish Cypriots, he is still supported by the unelected army generals and senior bureaucrats in Turkey who see Cyprus as a vital Turkish interest.
- A federal solution to the Cyprus problem that satisfies the common and competing interests of all Cypriots based on the UN resolutions and principles.
- Representation of the Turkish Cypriot community in the negotiations by its NGOs since the current leadership no longer represents the Turkish Cypriot community at large.
- An urgent, comprehensive population census in northern Cyprus, under the close scrutiny and monitoring of international observers, to establish the origins of the citizens living in this part.
- The full demilitarization of the island as part of the solution agreement, thus a schedule for the Turkish army’s withdrawal from the island. We ask all concerned people globally to join our struggle and show solidarity. This can be done in many ways such as by publicizing our events and demands in the media, attending our events, organizing events in your region, putting your signature under our demands. Please visit our protests page for more information about this global coalition and sign our demands.
Sign the petition, go to: http://www.cyprusaction.org/signin