10/26/2020 | News release | Distributed by Public on 10/26/2020 14:01
Holding a joint press conference with TRNC President Tatar, President Erdoğan said: 'We discussed possible future steps regarding the Cyprus issue and reviewed the latest developments in the Eastern Mediterranean. The Turkish side favors a fair, lasting and sustainable solution in Cyprus. To this end, it has taken the steps incumbent upon it in good faith and with a sense of responsibility.'
President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and President Ersin Tatar of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) held a joint press conference following their meeting at the Presidential Complex.
Congratulating TRNC President Tatar on his recent electoral victory, President Erdoğan stated that the election took place in an atmosphere of transparency and political maturity which highlighted the Turkish Cypriots' culture of democracy.
'GREEK CYPRIOT SIDE'S IRRECONCILABLE MINDSET IS THE UNDERLYING REASON WHY THE NEGOTIATIONS HAVE FAILED EVERY TIME'
Noting that he had a fruitful and comprehensive meeting with TRNC President Tatar, President Erdoğan said: 'We discussed possible future steps regarding the Cyprus issue and reviewed the latest developments in the Eastern Mediterranean. The Turkish side favors a fair, lasting and sustainable solution in Cyprus. To this end, it has taken the steps incumbent upon it in good faith and with a sense of responsibility.'
The Turkish side alone exerting efforts is not sufficient for a solution, President Erdoğan underlined. 'It is obvious that the Greek Cypriot side has no such intention as to accept a solution on the basis of the Turkish Cypriots' equal partnership. This irreconcilable approach and mindset of the Greek Cypriot side is the underlying reason why the negotiations going on for over 50 years have failed every time. The Greek Cypriots don't want to share with the Turkish Cypriots the state they usurped in 1963. It needs to be seen that no outcome can be achieved under the current parameters of the negotiation process which has lasted more than fifty years. Following the conclusion of the Crans-Montana talks in July 2017, we underscored that federation could no longer be a valid model for a solution under these circumstances, and that new ideas were needed. The time since then has proven us right.'
Pointing out that the Greek Cypriot side has left unreturned the calls for cooperation in the sharing of hydrocarbon revenues since it doesn't consider the Turkish Cypriot people to be an equal partner, President Erdoğan said: 'The Greek Cypriot side continues to usurp the equal rights of the Turkish Cypriots, whom it wants to see, so-to-speak, as a minority under its administration.'
'WE BELIEVE A TWO-STATE SOLUTION MUST BE BROUGHT TO THE TABLE WITH A REALISTIC APPROACH'
'A solution whereby the two peoples could live side by side in peace, prosperity and security must be built upon the island's realities', the President stated. 'At this stage, we for sure think it will be a loss of time to start negotiations exclusively on the basis of a federation. We therefore believe a two-state solution must also be brought to the table with a realistic approach. Turkey maintains its will for a fair, lasting and sustainable solution in Cyprus.'
Noting that he and TRNC President Tatar also exchanged views on the latest developments in the Eastern Mediterranean, opening of Maraş and other topics, President Erdoğan stated: 'Just as we protect our own rights within our continental shelf in the Eastern Mediterranean, we also safeguard the legitimate rights and interests of the Turkish Cypriots, who are the joint owners of the island. We have shown friend and foe our determination in the regard at every stage.'
'ATTEMPTS WHICH DON'T TAKE TURKEY AND THE TURKISH CYPRIOTS INTO CONSIDERATION HAVE NO CHANCE OF SUCCESS IN THE REGION'
The culprit for the current situation in the Eastern Mediterranean is the Greek Cypriot side and Greece duo, which have been paying no heed to warnings and ignoring constructive advices since 2003, President Erdoğan underlined. 'What is more, energy companies - whose appetites have been whetted by the region's hydrocarbon resources, - and the powers behind them have seen no harm in getting involved in this game. However, this game has now been foiled. As we have been saying since the beginning, attempts which don't take Turkey and the Turkish Cypriots into consideration have no chance of success in the region.'
Pointing out that he and his Turkish Cypriot counterpart Mr. Tatar also discussed possible future steps to further strengthen the cooperation between the two countries, President Erdoğan stated: 'Turkey will continue to exert every effort for the economic, diplomatic and social development of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus. Our goal is to make sure that the Turkish Cypriots enjoy better life standards and look to the future more confidently.'
Turkey's support for the Turkish Cypriots results from the heart-to-heart bond and shared destiny beyond legal and political considerations, the President stressed. 'The Turkish Cypriots will always find Turkey on their side. As has been thus far, we will overcome all hardships in solidarity and walk together to even better days.'
TRNC PRESIDENT TATAR: 'FIVE-PARTY CONFERENCE PROPOSAL IS A LAST OPPORTUNITY'
TRNC President Tatar, for his part, described Turkey's five-party conference proposal as a last opportunity for resolving the Cyprus issue through agreement, and said: 'We are of the opinion that this meeting will be decisive in determining as to whether a two-state solution will come to the table and whether an agreement will be possible.'
Referring to the hydrocarbons as a test of sincerity for the Greek Cypriot side, President Tatar noted that the TRNC wouldn't expect conciliation from the Greek Cypriot side which avoids cooperation even in the sharing of maritime resources.
Following the press conference, President Erdoğan and First Lady Emine Erdoğan hosted an official dinner for President Tatar and First Lady Sibel Tatar of the TRNC.